Critic’s Choice for the week of June 6-12, 2007

In this week's picks: Violin metal, ironic Jazzercise, and legendary bebop.

Return of Guitarless Metal

On Oakland string-shredding trio Judgement Day‘s last album, Dark Opus, brothers Anton and Lewis Patzner stretched the definition of a typical metal record. Now, three years later, Anton says they’re continuing to expand the expectations of what a violin and cello should sound like. Though he spends most his time touring with Bright Eyes, Anton says he’ll move back to the Bay Area to start recording new material with his bro, who just graduated from Baltimore’s Peabody Conservatory of Music. The result may be more metal or less, effects, and a lot more progressive song structure, while maintaining a pop framework. In the meantime, get a sneak peek of new songs when the band plays with Captain Ahab and Silian Rail on Tuesday, June 12 at the Hemlock Tavern in SF. 9:30 p.m., $8. (Kathleen Richards)

A River Runs Through It

Trio Navarro, named after the river in Mendocino County where its members go for meditation breaks, graces this month’s installment of Chamber Music Sundaes’ wonderful Sunday afternoon series in Berkeley’s St. John’s Presbyterian Church. Comprising musicians who play in major Bay Area ensembles, the trio’s performance of Grieg’s Andante con moto and Tchaikovsky’s Trio in A minor is complemented by a trio of San Francisco Symphony musicians performing Piazzolla’s Three Tangos. Sunday, June 10. 3 p.m., $22-$10. (Jason Victor Serinus)

Ironic Fitness

Oakland has its own little thing going on. Case in point: The Stork Club’s Festival of Fitness. Irony meters will overload as hipsters clad self-consciously in spandex, legwarmers, and headbands converge to honor the contributions of Jazzercise and Richard Simmons to ’80s cultural detritus. They’ll probably be drunk, too. The all-day event begins with a barbecue at 2 p.m. and crams twelve performers — such as rock revivalists October Allied and the slightly baffling Gorillas from the Crypt Dance Team — into the next twelve hours. Sunday, June 10. 2 p.m., $8. (Nate Seltenrich)

Vocal Bebop

It’s not just that one of the greatest jazz vocalists of the bebop era rarely comes around: Sheila Jordan never comes around! So it’s a big event for fans and fellow singers that Jordan is singing at the Jazzschool Saturday in a program titled Jazz — A Life’s Work. Her mix of beautiful music and bebop classics with often playful and always surprising vocal improvising is heavenly, even if the mainstream has never discovered her. She will be accompanied by pianist Peter Horvath, drummer Akira Tana, and bassist John Wiitala. 8 p.m., $20. (Larry Kelp)

Land of Loose

There’s something very satisfyingly early-’90s about Land of Talk. Maybe it’s the Montreal trio’s looseness: Its heralded debut seven-song mini album Applause Cheer Boo Hiss effortlessly brandishes energy and emotion without needing to get fancy. Vocalist Elizabeth Powell keeps with the theme, taking her cues from the coolly Kazu Makino of Blonde Redhead and the feverishness of PJ Harvey. Land of Talk opens for the Rosebuds with the Morning Benders on Tuesday, June 12 at the Great American Music Hall in SF. 8 p.m., $12-$14. (K.R.)

Jazz Chantoozy

Jenna Mammina has been regularly knocking out Bay Area audiences with her sultry purr, subtle phrasing, and keen musical intelligence. She’s a first-class songwriter and a talented interpreter of the American songbook from Harold Arlen to Warren Zevon. Wednesday evening, she’ll be performing at the Freight & Salvage with guitarist André Bush, her longtime collaborator and musical director. $18.50 advance, $19.50 door. (j. poet)

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