Friday, November 4; Off Broadway (3509 Lemp Avenue)

Nov 2, 2005 at 4:00 am

The title of Marah's fifth album, If You Didn't Laugh You'd Cry, might refer to sales of their previous effort, 20,000 Streets Under the Sky -- or it might describe urban wastelands that feel like paradise when filtered through Marah's brand of rock & roll romanticism. They call themselves "folk-punk," but that's twice wrong; Marah is too rhythmically promiscuous for folkies and too idealistic for sneering youth. And their punch-drunk narratives and rockabilly pianos will no more endear them to indie fashionistas than will the commingled sweat and table-top dancing of their shows. If you've never caught one of Philly's finest bands, don't expect to laugh or cry. Shaking it like a tambourine, however, is a real possibility.

Show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10; call 314-773-3363 for more information.