The Meat Puppets at the Hi-Tone Café 

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In the pre-Internet '80s, indie rock bands were united not by a sound or style but by independence — by being a product of localized, self-sufficient scenes. And the bands generally sounded that way. Sonic Youth was Lower East Side art and grime. The Replacements and Hüsker Dü were unpretentious Minnesota basement party. The Minutemen were precocious dreamers from working-class San Pedro. And Phoenix's Meat Puppets were dusty psychedelia, blending ZZ Top boogie and Neil Young whine into a purely personal sound. The band's early peak, 1984's Meat Puppets II, turned into a plateau that lasted the rest of the decade. Personal problems sidelined the band for much of the past 15 years, but brothers Curt and Cris Kirkwood put things back in place for 2007's Rise to Your Knees, test-driving a potential comeback that picked up steam with last year's better Sewn Together. The Meat Puppets play the Hi-Tone Café Saturday, January 1st, with local punk institution Pezz opening. Showtime is $10 p.m. Admission is $12. —

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