Tonight: The Spinto Band at the High Dive, Mary Gauthier at the Tractor

The Spinto Band, with Miniature Tigers, Blunt Mechanic. High Dive, 513 N. 36th St., 632-0212. 9 p.m. $10. Do you know anyone from Delaware? I've met a lot of people in my life, and none of them are from there. However, if the Spinto Band's otherworldly pop is any indication (and if Delaware actually exists, of which I still am not wholly convinced, maps and Wikipedia be damned), it must be a pretty awesome place to live. The Spinto Band are one of those "too smart for their own good" pop bands; their take on the pop genre carries a brilliant sheen, jubilantly crashing and nearly careening off the rails into chaos while somehow being held together by a few well-placed threads. It only makes sense that such a band would be from a totally (seriously, they don't even have a baseball team!) fictitious place. GREGORY FRANKLIN

Mary Gauthier, with Peter Bradley Adams. Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., 789-3599. 8 p.m. $20. I'm shocked there hasn't been a movie made about Mary Gauthier. Maybe I'll write the screenplay. All the compelling, dramatic elements are there: Given up for adoption as a baby, she was raised by alcoholics in Louisiana. She steals their car and runs away as a teen, becomes a heavy drug user, goes to jail, goes to rehab, goes to college and studies philosophy, moves to Boston and opens a successful Cajun restaurant, writes her first song at age 35, and goes on to an acclaimed folk/country career crafting dark, gritty, autobiographical songs. She tours with Willie Nelson, and Tim McGraw and Jimmy Buffett cover her tunes. Well, until my movie comes out, you can catch her performing songs from her gripping new record, The Foundling, about being abandoned and searching for her birth mother. MICHAEL ALAN GOLDBERG

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