Local Licks 

This week we review Great Apes, Toby Oler, Lost Dog Found, and Generalissimo.

Great Apes, Great Apes

Great Apes, featuring alumni of local punk bands Olehole, Hanalei, Monster Squad, Burial Year, and The Ghost, is a straightforward, pop-oriented project, but its songs are refreshing. Of the three tracks on this seven-inch, "This Is a Trans World" is the highlight, both in energy and lyricism. This is the first of three seven-inches it plans to release in 2012, and if the next two records are as good, Great Apes is in for a great year. (Say-10 Records)

At Thee Parkside (1600 17th St., SF) on Tuesday, Apr. 24. 8 p.m, $10

Toby Oler, OVTOV

Young musicians are often either derivative or wildly experimental. Toby Oler makes good on the latter, yet OVTOV isn't experimental in a pretentious or abrasive sort of way. Instead, it's a vivacious and unpredictable amalgam of American song. And the great cadre of local musicians Oler recruited for the project reflects that. (self-released)

Lost Dog Found, The Jump Start Scandal

Loving life and maybe a little liquored up, Lost Dog Found is party swing. Bandleader Stevie Mac has worked to update the big-band sound for modern times, like what Brian Setzer did in the Nineties. Complete with stand-up bass, horns, and a lot of charisma, the band celebrates the wiles of wine and women in a distinctive combination of jump blues and new swing. (Lost Dog Found)

At The Starry Plough (3101 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley) on Saturday, Apr. 21. 9:30 p.m., $7, $10

Generalissimo, Love Without Mercy

Generalissimo is anything but understated. The Oakland post-punk group, whose name refers to the highest authoritarian rank, describes Love Without Mercy as a "kinder, gentler" record. More melodic than the band's previous releases, its message is no less overt. Radical statism, adorned with brutalist aesthetics, is the name of the game. The members perform in outfits worthy of a stiff salute. (self-released)

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