Once a rival anti-festival, infamous local promoter Dan Burke's NeXT showcases (June 17-19, Silver Dollar and Comfort Zone) are now a firmly entrenched element of NXNE. Unsurprisingly, they're also one of the highlights. A risk-taker, Burke has filled this year's lineup with local talent, up-and-comers and a few off-the-wall international acts.
Headlining three nights at the Silver Dollar are Rough Trade garage rockers the Strange Boys (June 17 and 18, 1 am; June 19, 2 am), whose throwback mix of R&B, psych and blues has brought them to the verge of breakout. Stellar opening support fleshes out all nights, the strongest coming Thursday with the teenage soul of Modern Superstitions (10 pm), weirdo UK punkers Turbogeist (11 pm, and also June 18, 1 am, at Comfort Zone) and lo-fi luminaries the Bitters (midnight).