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Roadshow of the Week

Stan Ridgway, Neurolux

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"I'm on a Mexican, whoa oh, radio." Remember that song? Sure you do. Well, guess what? The song's singer is coming to Boise. Sponsored by Peregrine Productions and Reverend Bill, Stan Ridgway, lead singer of Wall of Voodoo and a prolific solo artist, brings his eccentric sensibilities to Neurolux.

With his newest release, Snakebite: Blacktop Ballads and Fugitive Songs, Ridgway continues to create strange songs that he talk/sings in nasally, sometimes melancholy tones. That may not sound like the most flattering comment, but there's just something about the guy and his music that will suck you in.

Ridgway and Wall of Voodoo showed up on the music scene in 1983 with their hit "Mexican Radio." At a time when new wave was trying to push punk out of the way, Ridgway's original sound and unique lyrics were a high note for people tired of songs about anarchy and angst. Compared to Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen and Johnny Cash, Ridgway has the same sense of sadness and oddness that these musical legends share. With a combination of jazz, folk, country and rock, Ridgway manages to capture ideas and images that listeners will find haunting, disturbing and familiar. His sound is a musical snapshot of an underground America. Snakebite is a strange look into a strange place by a strange man. On Ridgway's Web site (www.stanridgway.com), the album is described as "echoing swamps and talking beercans. Singing tumbleweeds and midnight mystery trains. Lonely soldiers and voodoo chain gang ghosts. Stan Ridgway sings 16 brand new two-fisted tales. It's going to be a bumpy ride." Though many acts from the '80s try to use their one-hit-wonderdom to rejuvenate dying careers, Ridgway never stopped doing his thing. This is going to be a bumpy ride? You better jump on.

September 8, tickets are $12.50 through TicketWeb, 8 p.m., Neurolux, 111 N. 11th St.

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