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Buzz Bands

January 24, 2008|Kevin Bronson

No sooner had David Quon, Derek Van Heule and Nathan Warkentin taken inventory from the disintegration of their last band -- the Colour, which disbanded last summer -- than they got a shot in the arm from their housemates. "We had been jamming, and things clicked -- it was refreshing and nice," singer-guitarist Quon says of the evolution of fledgling Long Beach trio We Barbarians (pictured). Then-roomies Nathan Willett and Matt Maust of ascendant indie-rock quartet Cold War Kids offered to help the Barbarians release their first EP. "They are the most selfless people I know," Quon says. "The encouragement was amazing." The EP is titled "In the Doldrums," but its raw, bluesy rock (think: the Walkmen) feels more like three guys using the lessons from a couple years of hard knocks to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Betrayal gets rooted out in "Yesmen and Bumsuckers"; resilience is celebrated on the broad shoulders of "War Clouds." For Quon, anyway, it's a tentative step forward. "It's a stretch for me, because I'd never been much of a lyricist, and I'd never done lead vocals," he says. "I remember asking the guys, 'What would you think about me trying to step up and sing?' It was definitely a memorable moment." Live: We Barbarians close out their residency Monday at the Silverlake Lounge; they also play Mondays in February at the Detroit Bar. ALSO CHECK: One of the forerunning shoegazers, Rob Dickinson (Catherine Wheel), plays the Viper Room tonight, while Black Rebel Motorcycle Club plays to a sold-out Key Club down the street. BRMC has another show Friday at Safari Sam's. . . . Steve Poltz plays the Mint on Friday to mark the release of his latest album, "Traveling." . . . And Alissa Moreno celebrates the release of "In Your Wake" on Saturday at the Hotel Cafe. More: latimes.com/buzzbands

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-- Kevin.Bronson@latimes.com

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