Tokyo psych band Kikagaku Moyo bring their far-reaching sound to Chicago | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Tokyo psych band Kikagaku Moyo bring their far-reaching sound to Chicago

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Tokyo-bred psych band Kikagaku Moyo have developed their music while focusing on a different aspect of the genre on each album. They started by exploring folksy strains on their 2013 self-titled first record, before engaging with flower-power bounce on Forest of Lost Children the following year. In 2016, they took a laid-back stance on House in the Tall Grass, and on their upcoming Masana Temples, due out on Guruguru Brain in October, they’ve gone relatively slick. The quintet’s musicianship has been readily apparent from the start, but on the new record they embrace their most impressive compositional voice to date. “Dripping Sun” is related with precision, and its disparate parts—wah-wahed funk, a pastoral break, and fuzzy finale—starkly outline their musical infatuations. The album also portrays a side of the band that’s better capable of practicing restraint—their gnarled guitar theatrics are less commonplace here than on previous efforts. The band slyly incorporate a sense of jazz wonderment into “Orange Peel” as a xylophone wobbles into the song’s final portion, and the following track, “Amayadori,” brims with beauty, with synthesizer washing across its plucked-strings melody. The ensemble are set to play in the round tonight at Thalia Hall, with the crowd encircling the musicians as they perform. That’s likely to give the audience a vivid view of a band stretching out to reach distant corners of their genre and enjoy at least a bit of the Motorik psych they trucked in on earlier recordings.   v

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