Evan Mast (programming/various instruments) and Mike Stroud (guitar) make up Ratatat, a Brooklyn duo that shades the shape in the middle of the Venn diagram of dance, arena rock, hip-hop, and dub with nuanced and witty instrumental pop. With a sound musical footing, good songwriting, and a sly sense of humor, they construct playful, evocative instrumental pieces that are real songs with real catchiness, the perfect soundtrack for a drunken fog, acid trip, or even bill-paying. (Stoners, lushes, and people just high on America rack up hundreds of thousands of YouTube hits on their hilariously disturbing video clips.) Their wondrously eclectic new release, LP4, runs the gamut from the Perrey-and-Kingsley-in-Bombay tinged Bob Gandhi, to the chillout-talkbox funk of Mandy, to the chunky, jubilant Neckbrace, with its thick beats, clip-clopping wordless vocals, and sound bite by the incomparable Linda Manz. Onstage, they're low key but digging the music as much as the audience does, with live keyboards, guitar, and bass punching up the loops and samples. With Dom and Bobby Birdman. 18+. (Photo by James Kendi)
Sat., Sept. 11, 6 p.m., 2010

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