If you're a follower of pop music, you know that Danger Mouse can't be left to his own devices—he gets into too much trouble. After the Grey Album legal debacle that directly contributed to Mouse's fame, the bushy-haired beatsmith took on a number of collaborators, forming unlikely pairs that explored the landscapes of pop, rock, and hip hop. Working with Cee Lo Green (as Gnarls Barkley), MF Doom (as Danger Doom), and Damon Albarn (as the producer of Gorillaz's massive Demon Days) proved that Danger was truly versatile, not just another dilettante out to make a buck. March saw the debut from Broken Bells (surprise!—it's yet another duo), comprised of Danger and James Mercer, ex-frontman for indie darlings the Shins. It's a surprisingly melancholy outing for both artists, yet it still manages to maintain a convincing facade of winning hooks and big drums; the sound smiles just wide enough to hide its pain. Given how short-lived some of their other groups have been, you should catch them while you can. With Maps and Atlases. 18+.
Mon., Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m., 2010