True, Portland-based Horse Feathers may take its name from a Marx brothers' movie, but there is nothing funny about this band. At times, the soft, lyrical music of Justin Ringle and friends comes off as downright melancholy. Songs like "Cur in the Weeds," the opening track on last year's House with No Home, are heartbreaking beautiful. Ringle's near-falsetto pairs with Peter Broderick's violin crescendos and Heather Broderick's cello to create simultaneous feelings of calm and sadness. At the same time, there is something oddly warm about the easy, gentle melodies of "Finch on Saturday," where Ringle sings about God and love with his heart wide open. Horse Feathers' music is inviting, as if Ringle is willing to share his innermost lyrical feelings with the rest of the world. And there's nothing wrong with that: This is sort of quiet folk that shouldn't be confined to a stereo.
Wed., Feb. 11, 9 p.m., 2009