This Microwave World

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TMW frontman Sean O'Neal
TMW frontman Sean O'Neal (Photo By Mary Sledd)

This Microwave World

Chuggin' Monkey, Wednesday, March 16

This Microwave World is a fivepiece from Austin, often accused of being New Wave and having great haircuts. Nestled caddy corner at Chuggin' Monkey's ground floor, the group of guitar, bass, two synths, and drums consistently exploded into each song with a wall of neat noise. And they kept it that way, driving start to stop like a Nineties-era Ministry bridge – loud, powerful, in-your-face, forever danceable in a (gasp) electroclash way with verses and choruses clearly secondary to their celebrated visceral din. Tickling the ivories, Evan Lawrence and Erin Mikulenka – coiled with sideburns of glue and streaked stylishly with blonde respectively – could've pumped up the volume a bit more toward the complexity their instrumentation invites. Synths add texture, a texture this local band, which has toured with Spoon and opened for the likes of the Rapture, could be known for, if the mixing's done right. Despite their mutedness, the keyboards moved in tight lockstep with the guitar, played by frontman Sean O'Neal. But it was the rhythm section that moved everything along, dominating the sound and stage presence and causing the shoulder shaking and head nodding that could be found in pockets throughout the asthmatic venue. The tightly drummed (Kevin Bybee) and bass-driven (Brandon Loe) sound certainly kept everything steady. When that happens, you've got something to dance to. Regardless of where the music's going, you'll be in the mood.

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