Most of us don't appreciate how lucky we are to live in a city where the Cheater Slicks perform on the regular. I was reminded of their scope of influence last week when I was interviewing Mudhoney's Mark Arm and he mentioned the band had covered a Slicks song on their final major label LP. Veteran rockers are always citing the Slicks' gnarled, raw garage punk as a major inspiration, and a return listen to last year's Walk Into the Sea or a stop tonight at Carabar, 115 Parsons Ave., should serve as a sufficient reminder why.

This music, a dirty, dejected, brutally honest heart-on-sleeve affair, strikes a powerful chord with a certain kind of listener. It's not for everybody, but those who get it swear by it. In an interview last month, local rabble rousers The Unholy Two talked about how the Slicks always channel their present emotional state into their brutal stage show; show up tonight to find out what kind of day Tom Shannon had. A couple of touring bands, the superb garage pop combo The Golden Boys and a Silver Jews-sounding cowpunk crew called Spider Bags, will also perform. The 10 p.m. show is free free free.