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Friday, June 27, 2008

Tonight's Summerfest 10 p.m. Shows

Flobots, Rusted Root, Sevendust, Think Floyd

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In a bid for post-rap-rock relevance, LinkinPark downplayed the role of rapper Mike Shinoda on their most recent album. A year later, however, Denver upstarts Flobots stormed modern-rock radio playlists by doing just the opposite, delivering “Handlebars,” a single built around monotone, Shinoda-esque raps. Nobody will mistake the Flobots emcees as the next coming of Rakim—if anything, their launch-pad-flat verses evoke Cake’s John McCrea—but unlike so many alternative-rock bands that play hip-hop for novelty, at least they seem to have a genuine love for the genre to complement their incisive hooks. Flobots headline the U.S. Cellular Connection Stage at 10 p.m. tonight.

Perenial Summerfest headliners Rusted Root—part of a crop of positive, feel-good jam bands to crossover to mainstream radio in the ’90s, when the current jam scene was just beginning to emerge—return to the Big Gig tonight to play the Miller Lite Oasis at 10 p.m.

Sevendust, a hard-rock band with a string of hot singles (most recently “Driven”) headline the Zippo Rock Stage at 10 p.m.

Not to be confused with the British Pink Floyd tribute band of the same name, America’s nine-piece Think Floyd aims to recreate the experience of a classic Pink Floyd concert, so they make ample use of lasers and light shows. Their shows can clock in at nearly three hours, but they keep their set lists a mystery. Sometimes they cover entire albums, sometimes they cull relative rarities from the Floyd vault. They headline the M&I Classic Rock Stage at 10 p.m. tonight.