Naytronix: Show Preview

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Naytronix plays with fellow East Bay electro-weirdos Yalls and Mwahaha on Thursday, May 17, at Hemlock Tavern. 9 p.m., $7.

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Oakland's tUnE-yArDs have become a critical favorite and an international sensation, but the group's bassist (and band leader Merrill Garbus' boyfriend) Nate Brenner isn't stopping there. In addition to Beep, his avant-jazz outfit, Brenner leads Naytronix, which describes itself as an "evil dance band ... from the future." Rendered in quasi-robotic tones out of synths, bass, horns, and Brenner's processed vocals, Naytronix's first, free EP finds a sweet spot between the skeletal electro-funk of tUnE-yArDs and the warm glow of Sly Stone's late-'60s psych-soul. A smoky, almost dub-like cover of Janet Jackson's hit "What Have You Done For Me Lately" — with both Brenner and Garbus on vocals — leaves one eager for Naytronix's first full album, which is due in August.

 
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