Harmonic Headbanging | Affectation
w/ Rule #9, American Murder, and Badmotor Uzi
Sat. March 16
7 p.m.

Affectation’s Ashley Lawson can go from singing a sweet melody to belting out a Cookie Monster growl quicker than you can say, “Knell before Zod.” Case in point: the debut self-titled LP from Summerville metal act Affectation, featuring Lawson (vocals/guitars), Jennifer Lewis (vocals/guitars), Derek Jaggers (bass), and Derrick Ouzts (drums). “The band was hesitant when I introduced the screaming into some of our songs, but I had a bigger vision for us,” Lawson says. “The combination of punk, pop, metal, hardcore, singing, screaming — I could go on and on — allows us to share the stage with acoustic artists, rock acts, and straight-up metal shows. I dig diversity.” And sometimes you can hear Lawson and company’s love for variety in one single song, in particular “West Flown LA,” which veers from Tool-ish prog-metal to Breeders-esque grunge to the aforementioned Cookie Monster growling. “This song was definitely meant to be very punk-sounding and fast-paced,” Lawson says. “It’s catchy and easy to follow along with, and I think that’s why people seem to like it so much.” The track, along with the rest of Affectation’s debut, is well worth a listen. —Chris Haire SATURDAY

GROOVE METAL | Thunderlip
w/Bully Pulpit
Fri. March 15
8 p.m.
Tin Roof

Wilmington, N.C.-based groove metal band Thunderlip ended a long-term hiatus last year after a late-night party session, according to guitarist Johnny Yeagher. It’s been a pretty long time since 2007’s The Prophecy, but the Lip is now well on its way to finishing a third full-length album. Yeagher says that since the break, which started around 2009, the band has gotten more serious. “I think we took our chemistry for granted in the early days,” he explains. “Now we all realize that what we have going on within our infrastructure is rare. We get to record and play rock ‘n’ roll with our best buds.” As Thunderlip takes its time on the new album, the recording process has been killer this go round. They’ve been spending a lot of time on pre-production, something they’ve never done before. “I’m glad we chose to embrace it,” Yaeger says. “We don’t have a deadline to meet, which has taken a lot of stress off of us. In the past we’ve always cut it close with deadlines, which affects the mood of the record. You feel like you have to roll with certain jams just to meet the label’s deadline.” He promises this record will be the best any of them have ever been a part of. This summer, Thunderlip will play a few dates with party monster Andrew W.K. before embarking on a U.S. tour in the fall. —Susan Cohen FRIDAY

Singer-Songwriter | Martin Sexton
w/ Matt MacKelcan
Fri. March 15
8 p.m.
The Pour House

Martin Sexton may possess a phenomenal range whenever he lets his pipes loose, but the Americana singer-songwriter isn’t the showy type. There’s a humble heartland rock ‘n’ roll vibe to Sexton’s music, particularly 2000’s Wonder Bar. Sexton first earned his keep busking on the streets of Boston, and that spirit remains a major element to his music today. His understated arrangements skirt the line between folk and adult-pop, David Wilcox and Gordon Lightfoot. Sometimes, however, his voice can overshadow his fine, self-taught guitar playing, but what ties it all together is Sexton’s dynamism. He goes from a breathy James Taylor croon to a soaring falsetto seamlessly. It took Sexton seven years to self-release a proper follow-up to Wonder Bar — 2007’s Seeds, arguably his finest release. Following 2008’s acoustic live album, Solo, Sexton released Sugarcoating in 2010. Although it’s not Seeds’ equal, it’s a good album, from the country-tinged soul of “Long Haul” to the gospel flavors of “Always Got Away.” —Chris Parker FRIDAY

ONE-MAN JAM | Zach Deputy
w/ Christopher Hawley Rollers
Sat. March 16
9 p.m.
Pour House

Defining Zach Deputy’s oeuvre is a fool’s errand. There are funky rock breakdowns, laid-back reggae-soul swingers, late-night R&B shimmers, and smoky lounge saunters. Most importantly, Deputy has the voice to pull it off. It’s big and a little husky, although Deputy spends plenty of time in the upper register, wailing and vamping. Over the last five years, he has released three albums, the latest of which, Another Day, arrived in 2011. He has called it his singer/songwriter album, and on it he explores more pop hooks, radio-ready melodies, and R&B. Though it’s certainly more ballad-heavy than Deputy’s other releases, Another Day is still a deliciously eclectic set. Our picks: the gospel-reggae-soul number “Thoughts of Yesterday” and the piano-pop title track. —Chris Parker SATURDAY