The sounds of sadness

The cliche whenever Chan Marshall, aka Cat Power, rolls intotown is: Will she have a complete breakdown on stage this time orwon’t she?

Regardless of her spotty stage antics, at least since therelease of 2003’s You Are Free, Marshall has firmly planted herselfas the queen of lo-fi indie uber-depression.

When she’s on, Marshall’s melancholic, layered vocals make eventhe most sentimental of pop hooks seem heartfelt and herstripped-down lazy guitar and piano always give the feeling ofsomeone who is too busy being sad or angry to worry about missing afew notes.

Despite her sometimes-uncomfortable emotional outpourings inboth her stage presence and recordings, Marshall brings a level ofnaked honesty to her music that is rarely seen and that in an oddway makes her more accessible to an audience outside chain-smoking,hard-drinking indie types.

It sucks that no smoking is allowed in the Aladdin Theaterbecause, assuming Marshall makes it through the show, any softspots you might have about lost lovers or life dreams drowned awayin whiskey-soaked mediocrity are likely to get poked a bit.

Cat Power
Aladdin Theater
8 p.m. Friday, all ages