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Wednesday, Nov. 21 @ Mac’s Bar, 2700 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing. All ages, $7, $5 adv., 8 p.m.
Ten years ago, The Hat Madder released its debut experimental-pop LP, “Friend of the Devil.” Since then, the Lansing-based outfit has released a stack of other synth-laden indie-rock LPs, including 2017’s “Rotting on the Vine” via GTG Records. Nov. 21, the band celebrates the 10th anniversary of its debut LP at Mac’s Bar — openers are Cavalcade and Scary Women. “We’ve got our old drummer, Mark Jagmin back at the kit and we’re going to play the whole first record,” said Hat Madder guitarist/vocalist Isaac Vander Schuur. “We also recorded a bit of a reboot — a repackaged version of the record which we’ll have at the show and online.” Over the past decade, The Hat Madder’s distinct sound has drawn comparisons to Shudder to Think, Devo and Archers of Loaf, but the local group has
also never repeated itself. “We’ve absolutely evolved, or devolved, depending on how you look at it,” said Vander Schuur, the band’s chief songwriter and sound engineer. “The band has grown from a three-piece, to a four-piece and now a five-piece. We’ve really allowed ourselves to spread out sonically and I think our new approach to the earlier tunes showcases that.” Looking back at 2018, Vander Schuur said it was a rewarding stretch. “We’ve been touring a good deal this year,” he said. “We also started the writing process on some new tunes and did basic tracking for one new song. I think our plan in the next batch of tunes is to work in a bunch of different studios with some people we admire to help influence our decisions during the process.”
Saturday, Nov. 17 @ UrbanBeat, 1213 Turner St., Lansing. 21 , $10, 7 p.m. Since its 2014 formation, Tell Yo Mama has steadily gained momentum, especially in late 2016, after the band’s co-vocalist Lucas Holliday went internationally viral with a video of him belting out a Maxwell tune acapella while working at a Dollar General store in Lansing. Holliday then appeared on a “Good Morning America” segment and was a contestant on NBC’s “The Voice.” This year, Tell Yo Mama toiled over its new EP, “Enjoy Yo Self.” Saturday, the band celebrates its release at UrbanBeat. “We started the band to be funky, soulful and a little bit of R&B,” said Raymond Crane, the band’s drummer, co-vocalist and manager. “We've tried to hone our groovecentered sound.”
Being a seven-piece band, the danceable group’s list of influences remains wide-ranging. Each member also co-writes each track, making for varied lyrical stimuli. “The lyrics tend to have a street-wise message with an intellectual tinge,” Crane said.