Progressive Poptimists

Stockholm’s Miike Snow

Miike Snow
Miike Snow

Bloodshy & Avant, the production duo that takes up two-thirds of Stockholm’s Miike Snow, are known as some of the most forward-thinking producers in pop.

Their songs with Britney Spears — including the epochal “Toxic” and the Bridesmaids-immortalized “I’ve Just Begun” — are still head-scratchers even in today’s postmodern pop landscape. One would think that in their own band, free of the commercial expectations of writing for the world’s biggest stars, Bloodshy & Avant would let their ideas go completely off the chain.

But over three Miike Snow albums, culminating in March’s iii, they’ve honed a minimal, subdued form of pop with singer Andrew Wyatt (a veteran pop mercenary himself who’s written a few of Bruno Mars’ biggest hits). Think indie pop mixed with microhouse, the minimal, sample-oriented dance genre that dominated clubs and year-end lists around the turn of the millennium.

A typical Miike Snow track features clipped samples, percussive house chords and completely alien sounds. It’ll also likely feature rootsy piano, familiar chord progressions and catchy melodies.

It’s the kind of music that can move dance floors and get stuck in your head for days but still isn’t bad over home speakers, paired with incense and maybe a nice doobie (if you’re into that).

Such progressive poptimists may not strike one as old-fashioned, but the trio frowns on using laptops, preferring instead to hoard analog synths — some of them bought from none other than 76-year-old disco legend Giorgio Moroder. The trio also has its own custom-made synth — a hexagonal monstrosity called “The Blob,” which they’ll wheel out Aug. 6 at the Hi-Fi Music Hall.

Hayley Kiyoko, whom you may remember from Disney’s Lemonade Mouth, opens — proving that people in the pop music industry are a lot tighter than you might expect.

Miike Snow and Hayley Kiyoko perform 8:30 pm Saturday, Aug. 6, at Hi-Fi Music Hall; $25 adv.; $30 door. All ages. — Daniel Bromfield

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