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It’s a cacophany that has to be experienced firsthand to best be enjoyed. You can’t argue with the sweet racket and excitement caused not one, but a few, cymbal solos.  Micachu and the Shapes is a UK band that has never been short on the element of surprise. No wonder their 21-year-old band leader/singer and composer, Mica Levi, is known as the ultimate musical Renaissance woman.  She’s classically-trained, but that doesn’t stop her from singing at feverish, yelping pitches.  This girl likes her musical edges rough, not polished, after all.  Meanwhile, she plays her guitars and pulls out all the stops to bring her band’s devoted fans to their knees.  Seeing this band is like a jolt of funhouse dissonance, and so beloved by the crowd.  The audience tonight hung to every note, on a scale not seen since the likes of Dirty Projectors’ earliest shows.

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Micachu’s is a sound that is quirky and experimental, with songs, such as “Lips,” “Hardcore,” “Guts,” “Wrong” and “Turn Me Well,” at times blending trip hop beats, garage and art rock, often with staccato and high end guitar notes.  Percussion parts are made all the more unique with the addition of cowbells and, oddly enough, a vacuum cleaner (on the recording of “Turn Me Well”) and wine bottles.  More wine bottle, please!

The Shapes, aka band members Raisa Khan on keyboards/backing vocals and Marc Pell on drums/backing vocals, are the strong musical spine supporting Levi, adding to the spectacle with their heady, experimental sounds and silly stares.--Madeline Virbasius/photos by Teresa Sampson