Horse the Band, with Fall of Troy and Tera Melos.
Sunday, August 26, at the Grand Emporium.
Horse the Band boasts a diverse yet categorically lethal sonic arsenal. Its songs vary like the android bosses in Mega Man, the video-game franchise the quintet from California references with its signature tune, "Cutsman." Horse the Band's August 28 release, A Natural Death, ranges from vocoder-narrated disco to surreally chipper pop to dire guitar instrumentals, while reserving several tracks for the group's patented "Nintendocore" sound, which merges eight-bit synthesizer effects with hyperactive hardcore. Live, keyboardist Erik Engstrom recalls James Dewees' spastic acrobatics during Get Up Kids shows, and the rest of the group bounces giddily as if the stage were a moonwalk tent.
Birdo by Horse the Band, from The Mechanical Hand: