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You’ve made it through your first exams, enjoyed the year’s first Suicide Prevention Day, and tooled to your heart’s content — or at least tooled to your professor’s heart’s content. But something’s missing. You crave a break from the weird and angular buildings that grace Massachusetts Ave. and its surrounding areas. You seek reprieve from the barely audible but somehow grating hum of your forever-in-use laptop. You desire dark venues with flashing lights and attractive strangers who share your tastes in music. Well, kiddo, I’ve got your prescription — get out of your dormitory and see some live music this October! Your brain will thank you for the break.

As always, those of special interest are noted with stars, and you can submit your suggestions for listings to arts@tech.mit.edu.

Monday, Oct. 1

The Brunettes

Middle East (Upstairs), 18+, $10adv/$12dos

This New Zealander band signed to Sub Pop can have as much fun as Debbie Harry — maybe.

Tuesday, Oct. 2

The Good Life *

The Middle East (Downstairs), 18+, $12

Cursive frontman Tim Kasher will surely sing songs about divorce, heartache, and all the usual Saddle Creek stuff, except tonight. It’ll be soft. Real soft.

Nelly McKay

Paradise Rock Club, 18+, $15

Rumor has it McKay is on a Broadway-tinged streak ever since her appearance in The Threepenny Opera. Though her new album is laced with theatrics to the extreme, perhaps the new songs will carry over well to a live setting.

Wednesday, Oct. 3

Arthur & Yu

Middle East (Upstairs), 18+, $9adv/$10dos

This cute boy-girl act is as weird as it is wonderful. Expect out-of-place instrumentation, obvious harmonies, and trippy electronics throughout the show.

Friday, Oct. 5

Blitzen Trapper *

Middle East (Downstairs), 18+, $12

Every member of the press and every member of the press’ dog has made a comparison between Blitzen Trapper and either Pavement or Neutral Milk Hotel. Though they fail to live up to either of the aforementioned greats, this is a neat act to check out, and I expect they’ll bring lots of energy to their live performance.

Caribou

Middle East (Upstairs), 18+, $10

No longer Manitoba, this appropriately Canadian band hits up Boston in support of their recent release Andorra, which at times sounds like it could have come out of the ’60s. Check out the gorgeous track “Melody Day” on their MySpace for a great example of these lo-fi rockers.

Sunday, Oct. 7

The Donnas

Paradise Rock Club, 18+, $15

What’s that lyric again? Forty boys in forty nights? This femme fatale foursome will surely play sultry punk-pop and maybe wear matching outfits. This show is recommended for aspiring male groupies.

Thursday, Oct, 11

Hot Hot Heat

Paradise Rock Club, 18+, $19.50

Now graduated from the ever-so-catchy hit “Bandages,” Hot Hot Heat are making critics’ A-lists and touring in support of a brand new album of indie rock.

Friday, Oct. 12

!!! (aka Three Exclamation Points)

Paradise Rock Club, 18+, $15

It’s pronounced chk-chk-chk, but if you didn’t know that, you probably aren’t cool enough to get in. Just kidding. I’m sure you’re plenty cool. Attend if you like noisy disco funk with a heavy heap of rock thrown in.

Of Montreal

Roxy, All Ages, $20

This is an American indie pop band. Read: American. Titularly false, but enjoyable all the same.

Saturday, Oct. 13

Architecture in Helsinki

Paradise Rock Club, 18+, $15

Staff writer An dy Lee is a big fan of these Australian musicians, and staff writer Andy Lee knows his stuff. Last time they came through Boston they supported Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Now they’ve hit it big, so arrive early to beat the crowds.

Saturday, Oct. 20

Del tha Funkee Homosapien *

Middle East (Downstairs), 18+, $22

Did you know he’s Ice Cube’s cousin? And also a blue cartoon ghost in animated band Gorillaz? Make sure to check out this far-from-mainstream MC, noted for his excellent lyricism.

Imperial Teen *

T.T. the Bear’s Place, 18+, $15

They’re twice my age and playing way past my bedtime. You might remember them from the soundtrack to the semi-popular mid ’90s film “Jawbreaker”; re-remember tonight at a quarter past midnight.

Monday, Oct. 22

Art Brut

Roxy, All Ages, $20

So what if they’re opening for the (less talented) Hold Steady? In my book this night is all about Art Brut, top of the pops — British punk with an intelligent and snarky attitude that calls to mind a cleaned-up version of The Sex Pistols.

Blind Melon

Harper’s Ferry, 18+, $12

Blind Melon reunion tour minus Shannon Hoon. If you lived through the ’90s or have a taste for modern spins on classic rock, check out this show.

Wednesday, Oct. 24

Land of Talk

T.T. the Bear’s Place, 18+, $8

I saw these guys open for Menomena last spring which just about makes them golden in my book (and your newspaper). They play weird instruments and dress in cool outfits and you’ll want to be them. Oh, and Small Sins are playing that night, too, which is another reason to go, I guess.

Saturday, Oct. 27

Big D and the Kids Table

Roxy, All Ages, $15

You know you still secretly love ska. Bring out the kid in you and celebrate Halloween early at this show.

Sunday, Oct. 28

The Dead Trees

Middle East (Upstairs), 18+, $9adv/$10dos

I recently interviewed Newton band The Craters, who play with this band’s drummer. They’ve just come off tour with Albert Hammond, Jr., so welcome them back to Boston at this end of October show.