Nick Valensi, most commonly known as a guitarist for The Strokes, likes to keep busy.

After releasing an EP with The Strokes earlier this year, he got right back to work with his side-project band, CRX. On Oct. 28, they released their debut album, New Skin. Now touring in support of the album, the band will be making a stop at U Street Music Hall in Washington, D.C., this Wednesday.

Produced by legendary American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer and actor Josh Homme, the album is an interesting combination of power pop and hard rock. “Ways to Fake It,” the first single dropped by the band since forming in 2013, received high praise and quieted any critics who questioned whether Valensi could make the transition to lyricist and lead vocalist.

Drawing inspiration from artists such as The Cars, Cheap Trick and Elvis Costello, New Skin weaves in and out of heavy metal, evident in “Monkey Machine” and more upbeat easy-to-dance-to tracks, like “Anything.”

“The truth is that at the onset of this project, it was a vehicle for me to get back onstage. I really missed playing,” Valensi said in an interview with Rolling Stone.

The fact that the album was conceived with the primary intention of being played live should lead you to believe this is a performance you will not want to miss.

Promising to be a high-energy set in an intimate setting at the basement dance club and live music venue, it’s hard to pass up an opportunity like this when tickets are only $15.

Opening for CRX, Streets of Laredo will look to bring their “rousing blend of gospel-tinged folk and psychedelic Americana” to U Street. The other opener, The Gloomies, described as “a cross between Warpaint’s Joshua tree adventures running headfirst into Kevin Parker’s mind-trip,” are sure to entrance the crowd.

Don’t miss your chance to see CRX, led by one of the most talented guitarists of the past two decades, rock U Street Music Hall with the debut album, New Skin.

Featured Photo Credit: Feature photo courtesy of CRX on Facebook.

Tommy Diehl is a freshman architecture major and can be reached at

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