When: Sat., April 5, 9:30 p.m. 2014
Born in 1989, Memphis-based rapper Gavin Mays (aka Cities Aviv) is an admitted product of the “synth nation,” more comfortable with samplers and drum machines than with conventional rock instruments, and on the new Come to Life (Young One) he reps hard for the electronic, chopping up jagged, glitzy beats and pasting ’em back together into an otherworldy 90s dance party. Mays raps like he’s addressing a rally from a podium, forgoing the nonchalance so common in current indie rap in order to take a triumphant, in-your-face stand. The addictive beats can get raw and off-kilter, drawing lots of comparisons to Death Grips, but the second half of the album tapers off into experimental territory, almost like dark electro, with less of Mays’s vocals. The handful of songs toward the beginning of Come to Life, though, glitter and simmer, with a colorful, upbeat energy that not only demonstrates Mays’s confident command of the tracks but also his keen wit (“URL IRL”). —Kevin Warwick Weekend headlines; Cities Aviv and Supercell Mothership open.
Price: $12, $10 in advance