These are turbulent times in America. Between the current economic crisis and the endless wars abroad, it's surprising that more local musicians aren't speaking out against it all. There used to be a time when art and protest went hand in hand, but these days, not so much. That's why it's refreshing to hear the songs of local rawk 'n' roller Andrew Bayuk, whose folky tunes capture the sentiment of everyday America and go beyond banal red-versus-blue politics. While singing about the United States heading in the wrong direction on songs like "Save the U.S.A" and "Think Peace," Bayuk is speaking on behalf of the country he loves, not against it. It's not the only topic in his material, but it's a welcome change. As far as his playing style goes, there's a touch of Neil Young in his guitar strumming as well as traces of Jim Croce and John Lennon in his approach to songwriting. He'll sing about social issues one minute, then follow it up with a heartbroken love song, and that juxtaposition hits the soul. Regardless of what he's crooning about, his music is refreshing, and if you catch him this weekend, he'll be playing with fellow nonconformist Timb, whose genre-hopping indie material will make for a great evening of music.
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