Chemistry Sets

May 1, 2011

Various venues, May 8 and 29 Whether the Carpenters (siblings rumoured to be romantically involved) or the White Stripes (a divorced couple rumoured to be siblings), male-female duos boast a quality of intrigue unlike any other type of musical act. Beyond the enticing "Do they or don't they?" when a man and a woman prove a simpatico melodic match, the results can be like a great love story played out in song: toughness and vulnerability, swagger and sensitivity, leather and lace. Among the recent examples is Jenny and Johnny. Made up of Jenny Lewis (of on-hiatus indie-rock group Rilo Kiley) and cult singer-songwriter Johnathan Rice, the real-life lovebirds come on like a true golden couple on I'm Having Fun Now, a collection of loose and breezy folk-rock songs that evoke a '70s golden age when Southern California was the hit-making capital of the world. They bring their flawless harmonies and enviable looks to Vancouver for the first time on May 29 (Venue). Meanwhile, singer/guitarist Alison Mosshart and drummer Jamie Hince of The Kills (Commodore, May 8) have attracted a dedicated following for their sparse, inward-looking garage-y blues-punk, which reaches unprecedented levels of power on their new album, Blood Pressures. 604-280-4444, Ticketmaster.ca.

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