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Tuned In

  • PHOTO COURTESY OF IHEG<br/>Alex Snydman
  • Annie and the Beekeepers
  • PHOTO COURTESY OF IHEG<br/>GZA
  • Joyride!
  • Sourpatch
  • PHOTO COURTESY OF IHEG<br/>Zammuto

The Books were such a special, one-of-a-kind musical/visual duo, it was a sad shock to hear they’d broken up in the early days of 2012. But half of the band, Nick Zammuto, almost immediately started a new group, one that takes up the unique threads of The Books’ unmistakable sound and weaves them into equally striking works of art, playful and vibrant.

The name of the new band is, simply, Zammuto, and its debut album makes a leap into an even more colorful and electric space — many of the compositions hit like bright sunshine, with percolating rhythms and musical elements that are hard to pin down. Are they samples? Or made by instruments played by human beings?

Zammuto sings through filters and effects on songs like “Groan Man, Don’t Cry” and “YAY,” while the tough, jittery, funky and funny “Zebra Butt” has spoken word bits spliced and chopped on top of a growing groove of bursting bass and quacking synthesizers; the tension builds like a well-choreographed action movie.

And like The Books, Zammuto often has homemade and humorous videos for their songs (made from found footage and anything else the frontman is inspired to throw into the mix), which play behind the band at the live show.

Zammuto is a tight, creative quartet (with Nick’s brother Mikey on bass, Sean Dixon on drums and late-era Books sideman Gene Back on multiple instruments), working hard to give audiences a memorable experience. A very recommended concert! See them at the Iron Horse in Northampton Thursday at 8:30 p.m. Snowblink and Melissa St. Pierre will open.

Annie and the Beekeepers, an Americana/pop outfit led by Berklee College of Music attendee Annie Lynch, appears at the Parlor Room at Signature Sounds in Northampton tonight at 7 p.m. Amherst-based singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Zak Trojano opens.

Marcia Hendrick (7 p.m.), Lexi Weege (8 p.m.) and Wishbone Zoe (9:30 p.m.) play Luthiers Co-Op in Easthampton Saturday.

The Alex Snydman/Jeff D’Antona Trio — drummer Snydman and pianist D’Antona with Tyler Heydolph on bass — are old friends reuniting, bringing their jazz alchemy to the Iron Horse Sunday at 7 p.m.

Founding Wu-Tang Clan member GZA takes the stage at Pearl Street in Northampton Wednesday at 9 p.m. Filling out the quadruple bill are Ratking, The Professors and Roc Foxx.

Steve Sanderson (longtime leader of the Drunk Stuntmen) and friends perform at Luthiers Co-Op Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

Chicago bassist Harrison Bankhead brings his quartet (Edward Wilkerson Jr. and Mars Williams on reeds and Avreeayl Ra on drums) to the Bezanson Recital Hall at the University of Massachusetts Fine Arts Center in Amherst Thursday at 8 p.m.

Jammy rockers Flabberghaster play Snowzees in Sunderland Thursday at 9 p.m. Timbre and Coupe are also on the bill.

Ray Mason and Steve Koziol perform alternating solo sets at the Rendezvous in Turners Falls Thursday at 9 p.m.

Locals The True Jacqueline headline an otherwise “on tour from the West Coast” bill of Sourpatch, pictured, (San Jose, Calif. quartet keeping the e_SSRq90s indie-rock sound alive) and Joyride! (similarly inspired punky indie-rock trio from San Francisco) at the Sierra Grille in Northampton Thursday at 10 p.m.

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