As the folk-rock revolution continues to gain speed down the steep hill that is the today's music industry, what characteristics actually define the genre remain ever-elusive. So, in the present musical climate, if a band's sound seems to defy categorization, it is almost inevitably given the "indie folk" label. Jack & the Bear has just as much trouble classifying its own sound, but if the members were pressed (and they have been) they would say (and have said on their Facebook page) that it might be something like "Randy Newman sword fighting Captain Hook on top of the eye of Sauron." With other influences including Tom Waits, Conan O' Brien, and Mark Hamill, a live performance by the Monroe, Michigan, band promises to be a highly literate, hyperactive voyage to a sonic galaxy far, far away.
Jack & the Bear performs Thursday, June 27, 11 p.m. at Abilene Bar & Lounge, 153 Liberty Pole Way. Free. abilenebarandlounge.com.