LIFE AND DEATH McCurdy whistling in the graveyard.

There are two big shows of note to squeeze into your stacked Cinco de Mayo social calendar this weekend, starting with the Vudu Sister album release show on Friday, followed by a stellar lineup of local acts covering '90s-era classics on Saturday when Girls Rock! Rhode Island presents "Cover Grrrls." How about Whore Paint handling the Breeders? Need I say more?

Bastard Children is the full-length debut from Vudu Sister, aka singer-songwriter Keith McCurdy who, with violinist Diane O'Connor and a handful of guests, has crafted one of our favorite albums of the year (see our 2012 Best Music Poll ballot). McCurdy has death and despair on his mind, yet sounds right at home sprawled out on an unkempt cemetery lawn, strumming warmly while looting a corpse on "Dead Man's Pockets." Influential friends came out in force for the disc, including Tig & Bean (Hecht and Costner's harmonies gorgeously complement McCurdy on "The Quiet Man"), drummer Alex Garzone and guitarist Sean Kennedy of the Famous Winters ("Underground" is a standout), multi-instrumentalist Michael Samos (known to sling the banjo and lap steel for local greats like Brown Bird, the Silks, and Tallahassee), and Joe Fletcher & the Wrong Reasons ride shotgun on "One of a Kind." McCurdy's pitch at times blends Bob Dylan, Gordon Gano, and John McCauley. "Daughter of the Woods" and "Wicked Man" are morbid folk beauties, and McCurdy's poetic and stark lyrics enrich Bastard Children.

Pick up a copy at the album release show, at In Your Ear Records in Warren, or online at ($13 for the disc, $10 for the digi-download).

VUDU SISTER + TALLAHASSEE + JOE FLETCHER & THE WRONG REASONS + THE FAMOUS WINTERS | Friday, May 4 @ 10 pm | $8, 21+ | 401.274.2121 |

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