Conner

Friday, March 23, Oriental Theater, 303-455-2124.

By all accounts, Conner is from Lawrence, Kansas -- although considering how frontman James Duft sings, with a tar-thick, faux-British accent, you'd be forgiven if you assumed the group hailed from across the pond. And ironically, the positive notices that the quartet has received thus far have all been from U.K. pundits. Not all the reviews have been glowing, however. In one particularly unfavorable write-up, which Conner posted on its MySpace page, a reviewer chided the band for a release that accompanied its latest effort, Hello Graphic Missile, claiming that the sound "feels both uniquely cutting edge and classically familiar." Actually, that's a pretty spot-on assessment: With a yelpy croon that recalls a young, unrefined Robert Smith, Duft updates the well-worn din of incisive guitar lines and muscular, groove-laden rhythms. Out of the box, Conner has all the makings of the next indie darling, though the act has yet to burn up the blogosphere. This is your chance to get in on the ground floor of an inevitable groundswell. Word to the wise: Conner's the opener on this bill, so get there early.

 
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