Ra Ra Riot
Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot, The Morning Benders, Walter Meego

"I know yesterday's gone, and tomorrow, it'll never come" is about as deep and original as Chicago duo Walter Meego allows itself to get. So it helps that profundity isn't the point. What singer Justin Sconza and multi-instrumentalist Renaissance dude Colin Yarck seemed to be going for on their May-released debut, Voyager, was some unholy fusion of The Beatles, European dance music, general New Wave and—of course—Daft Punk.

So, as one might imagine, the borg beats and pop rushes are of the synthesized variety, and the vocals come slathered in played-out vocoder goo. At moments—precious, precious moments—the duo's runway-DJ-friendly pablum evokes the hair-shirt goth nostalgia found on TheFutureEmbrace, Billy Corgan's 2005 solo album. But soon enough it's back to the chemically euphoric club shit that, somehow, never quite falls out of fashion.

Lucky then, that there's some substance to be found elsewhere on the bill: Oakland's The Morning Benders and Syracuse's Ra Ra Riot each offer pleasant updates on the tried-and-true indie-pop models of yore, though, granted, each approaches that model a little differently.


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