Boyfrndz, Water House, Vaya, New Diet | Empty Bottle | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Boyfrndz, Water House, Vaya, New Diet Recommended Soundboard Image

When: Fri., Aug. 30, 9:30 p.m. 2013

Proceed with caution when spinning anything that people call “experimental noise-pop.” Though the likes of Fang Island and Chicago’s own Maps & Atlases work their mathy indie-pop with precision, tying together noodly guitar, fretboard tapping, and furious, meticulous drumming with a healthy helping of sing-along vocal melodies (or just letting the instruments do all the work), too many similar bands choose the overwrought-and-precious route with their vocals, cutesying up what ought to be mind-bending melodies and ridiculous rhythms until I want to barf. Luckily Austin band Boyfrndz stay closer to the first template. The recent self-released Natures EP flirts with the epic—only one track lasts less than four minutes—and the seven-minute opener, “All Get Out,” is operatic and theatrical enough that for the genre it practically counts as pyrotechnic arena rock. Guitarist-vocalist Scott Martin layers taut, swirling chords behind churning drums, and then the whole song changes course completely, breaking into a straight-up staccato beat. The rest of the EP is much more serene—albeit featuring hints of late-90s emo stridency—and relies more heavily on Martin’s vocals, which in both cases works just fine. But the trio sets the tone so well with “All Get Out” that you start missing the math rock halfway through. —Kevin Warwick Water House, Vaya and the New Diet open.

Price: $8

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