Local Wire

Mahjongg

Club crowds are more than willing to accept avant-garde experimentation, as long as it comes equipped with chant-along choruses and wicked dance beats. Mahjongg, a self-consciously kooky collective whose members hail from Chicago and Columbia, Missouri, enjoys obtuse word play, overlapping vocals and inscrutable song structures, but it also breaks barriers through the sheer sonic force of its seismic rhythms. The groove-driven group draws comparisons to Talking Heads, not only because it's a white co-ed band that incorporates Afro-pop elements without embarrassing itself, but also because of its punk-damaged funk chops. Monday's show, studded with songs from the upcoming release Raydoncong, should generate more booty-shaking action than any gig in town, combined with so much compositional complexity that listeners should receive course credit in music theory as they march out the door at the end of the evening.
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Andrew Miller