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What? For more than a decade, Southwestern indie-rock outfit Calexico have been scoring back-porch barbeques with their versatile mix of native sounds and universal melodies. After collaborating on the soundtrack to last year’s arty Dylan biopic I’m Not There with notable talents such as Stephen Malkmus, My Morning Jacket’s Jim James, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O, Calexico are set to return with their sixth full-length, Carried to Dust, on October 9 via Quarterstick.The new set finds principal songwriters Joey Burns and John Convertino expanding the more streamlined modern rock sound first explored on 2006’s Garden Ruin, while still retaining the arid, mariachi-flecked vibe established earlier in their career.

Who? Burns and Convertino first met in 1990 while playing with like-minded songwriter Howe Gelb in Giant Sand, but waited until 1996 to release their Calexico debut, Spoke. As Calexico’s popularity increased, the duo eventually left Giant Sand, last appearing on 2001’s Chore of Enchantment. While Calexico has released six critically successful full-lengths, they are also well-known for their collaborative efforts with a wide range of artists — most notably, with hushed folkie Iron & Wine on 2005’s In the Reins EP.

Fun Fact: In late May, Calexico’s “Crystal Frontier,” from their 2001 EP Even My Sure Things Fall Through, was selected to wake the crew of the Space Shuttle Discovery, who were on mission at the International Space Station.

Now Hear This: Calexico, “Two Silver Trees”(DOWNLOAD MP3)