Kurt Vile and The Violators

Kurt Vile's latest album, last month's Smoke Ring For My Halo, is his most subdued record to date; it's also his best. Much of the lo-fi scuzz that characterized Vile's previous three releases has been cleaned up and cleared away, leaving the focus instead on Vile's nimble, exquisite fingerpicking and his accompanying dark and deadpan vocal ramblings. Vile used those tools to create a warm, immersive record out of Smoke Ring; he's got “the next Lou Reed” written all over him. As for personality, he hasn't lost his amiable stoner vibe or his insouciant sneer either--”If it ain't workin',” he sings on “Runners Up,” “take a whiz on the world.” With EMA. ERIN K. THOMPSON

Sun., April 24, 9:30 p.m., 2011

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