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Tonight’s The Foreign Exchange show should probably get two separate previews: one for Phonte, one for Nicolay. As far as collaborations go, they’re practically parallel lines. Nicolay, a producer from the Netherlands, makes electronic music across all genres; Phonte, a rapper from North Carolina—and a member of the classic trio, Little Brother—is all about hip hop. Nicolay and Phonte crossed paths in 2004 on Questlove’s hip hop forum, Okayplayer. The buzz back then, when we were still amazed by the internet, was that the duo exchanged their beats and rhymes via the web, creating an entire album (Connected) without ever meeting in person. Then the buzz was about their Grammy nomination for Best Urban/Alternative Performance for the track “Daykeeper” (from their second album, Leave It All Behind). Today, it’s about their most recent album, Authenticity, which successfully weaves together Nicolay’s relaxed live instrumental beats and Phonte’s gritty working class raps. The Foreign Exchange performs at 8 p.m. at World Cafe Live; tickets to the show are $30-$40. —Dave Simpson

Also playing: Gruff Rhys + Y Niwl at Johnny Brenda’s (9 p.m., 21+, $12); Kaia Wilson + Jennifer O’Connor at First Unitarian Church (9 p.m., all ages, $10); Title Fight + The Menzingers, Touche Amore, Dead End Path at First Unitarian Church (8:45 p.m., all ages, $12); Elvis Costello at Tower Theater (8 p.m., $39.50-$65)

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