The Yeahs burst onto the scene as fire-breathing garage-rock revivalists, exulting in the lusty pleasures of a raging guitar, crashing drums, and a howling singer. Arty aspirations quickly spawned evolutionary changes, so the trio's current release, It's
Blitz!, is light years removed from those origins, with a sound dominated by vintage synths and a vibe that's less raucous, more atmospheric, but also more ambitious. Much of the new material has an essentially introspective spirit, reaching extremes on "Runaway" and "Little Shadow," quiet, even gentle ballads on which Karen O croons dreamily among billowy electronic clouds. O, guitarist Nick Zinner, and drummer Brian Chase tackle this reserved temper with consummate assurance, however, and there's no shortage of adrenalin elsewhere, as power rock melds with power pop; spiky guitar fuses with edgy, new wavey, percolating synths; and O yelps provocatively, demanding "dance till you're dead" at the end of "Heads Will Roll." Yeah, the band continues to change. Is it still cool? O, Yeah. With Grand Ole Party. All ages.
Sat., May 30, 6 p.m., 2009