On paper, Titus Andronicus comes across as a weird hybrid of high concept and low art.
The New Jersey band's sound owes more to the Pogues than fellow Jersey boy Bruce Springsteen, but then again, there also are echoes of the Hold Steady, who never fail to pay homage to the Boss. Toss in strong elements of the Clash and the Replacements, and you've got Titus Andronicus.
Then there's the band's most recent album, “The Monitor,” which is a sprawling concept disc with a major Civil War theme, a chaotic mixture of punk, rock, Irish, and kitchen-sink punk sounds. Except you have to work pretty hard to hear the Civil War stuff because most of it sounds pretty modern.
Suffice to say, it can take repeated listens to get the gist of what Titus Andronicus is all about, and their live show will be on full view tomorrow night at Mickey Finn's Pub.
The band's intelligent lyrics, brawling sentimentalism, and boozy style is all over “The Monitor,” most notably on the call-to-arms tune “Theme From ‘Cheers.'” (And no, it has nothing overtly to do with the late great TV show of that name.) There's also a 14-minute album closer, and a pair of tunes that stretch out over eight minutes.
Also on the bill with Titus Andronicus are the Forest and Words After. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. and tickets are $8. Mickey Finn's is located at 602 Lagrange St.