w/Strt Sprx, Birds of Prey

Fri June 4, 2nd Avenue Pizza, 8 pm, $3 (all ages).

When it comes to Ryan Davidson and his two most recent bands, one question begs to be answered: What's the crazy deal with the irritating, damn near impossible to publish correctly, upsy-daisy spelling formation evident not only with his former band, eXBeSTFRIeNDS, but now his current project, SPIDeRBITeS? Turns out, Davidson says, it's a reference to the '70s PBS kids' show emphasizing reading and grammar (but apparently not writing), The Electric Company. "You know, they had the 'Silent E,' where 'can' would become 'cane' when they added the letter e? I think it was a cartoon, but I had the book, too, which came with a 7-inch of the song."

Okay, so now we all know. And something else everyone who hasn't seen SPIDeRBITeS play live should understand is that they make real rock, the kind that sounds like it could go off its rails at any moment, does just that, and then blazes right through the trees, plowing a new trail that makes for much more adventurous fun. EXBeSTFRIeNDS featured ceiling-singeing fire squalls, and SPIDeRBITeS illuminate the room with their invigorating pop-tinged songs that make audience members want to rush the stage, as witnessed not only at their debut at the Crocodile, but also a raucous show at the Comet, where Davidson, a Cobain doppelg...nger, brought the house down with an impromptu, unexpected (even to the rest of the guys in his band) cover of Nirvana's "Sliver." A dicey move, given his appearance, but if the Comet crowd roared with appreciation, what the hell's wrong with that?