Dave Ballou at Union Arts DC Wednesday, Jan. 8

It’s been almost 30 years since Cuneiform Records released its first LP, R. Stevie Moore’s weird-wave What’s the Point?!! And the Silver Spring specialist in all things experimental continues to release music that challenges not only listeners but easy genre classification. Two Cuneiform artists—local guitar-and-cello duo Janel and Anthony and Portland, Ore., quintet Blue Cranes (shown)—fall under the spotlight at tonight’s show at Union Arts. The evening’s opening act, trumpeter and Towson University associate professor Dave Ballou, hasn’t recorded for Cuneiform, but he’s made numerous challenging yet inviting records. In many ways, tonight’s lineup is a perfect representation of Cuneiform’s aesthetic: Ballou’s accessible out-jazz finds kindred spirits in Janel and Anthony’s chamber drones and Blue Cranes’ melodic improvs. It’s a bit of everything, as long as everything is unique. Dave Ballou performs with Blue Cranes and Janel and Anthony at 8:30 p.m. at Union Arts DC, 411 New York Ave. NE. $9. (202) 607-5437. unionartsdc.com.

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