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The Detroit Cobras 

With the Sign-Offs and Coffinberry. Friday, March 7, at the Lime Spider in Akron.

It's a telling fact about the vaunted "Detroit scene" that its two best bands -- the Detroit Cobras and the Dirtbombs -- primarily play covers. After all, it's the cool record store/ bulging music history of that city that so informs the tastes of its modern rockers.

Though they possess the ever-marketable cute-girl lead singer and a large cult following, the Detroit Cobras have so far avoided the forked-tongue major-label demons slinking around D-town. But word is, they have finally put pinpricked finger to steaming contract with some major subsidiary imprint. And why not? This band's eight-year, two-album mission to revamp and rev up obscure '50s and '60s R&B nuggets has been an inspiration to the current garage-band glut. And the members are just old enough to be wise to the usual big-money exploitation. They're even ready to tackle some originals and have purportedly sought help from that wellspring of great garage-rock songwriting, Greg Oblivian (Oblivians, Reigning Sound). But once the booze starts flowing, all these careerist concerns shouldn't hamper the Cobras' always hot live show.

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