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The Magnetic Fields 

When: Sat., March 24, 8 p.m. 2012
Price: $35

Stephin Merritt has gone on record saying he loathes touring -- which, weirdly, helps to illustrate exactly why you should definitely go see him and the rest of the Magnetic Fields on Saturday, March 24 at the Fox Theater (1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland). Because that's the thing about bracing honesty: Merritt is a remarkably candid songwriter and a notoriously clumsy stage banter-er, but he's also one of the great songwriters of his generation, prolific and clever and, most importantly, unrelentingly genuine. His new album, Love at the Bottom of the Sea, is one of the Magnetic Fields' best, stripped of Merritt's occasionally-gimmicky impulse toward theme records, and instead offering unvarnished, electro-indie pop of the kind you'll have stuck in your head for days. You're guaranteed to have fun -- even if the band doesn't. 8 p.m., $35. TheFoxOakland.com

— Ellen Cushing

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