Music » Livewire

Grand Buffet

With Gil Mantera's Party Dream and Girl Talk. Saturday, September 27, at the Grog Shop.

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Before cult figures Wesley Willis and Sole handpicked the band as tour support, Pittsburgh's Grand Buffet kept busy building a 30-foot android (allegedly), fronting the NYHC-inspired live-band side-project Wesley Sniper (definitely), and cutting karaoke renditions of album-rock classics (hilariously). More recently, the alt-rap duo beat De La Soul to the finish line, completing hip-hop's first trilogy with "Pittsburgh Hearts." Like the rest of the band's catalog, the hawkishly whimsical and impeccably engineered EP stands unique, even in the no-limit world of indie hop.

Grand Buffet name-checks Fraggles, praises candy bars, and employs black magic to give its youth-league baseball team a competitive edge. Birthing new, increasingly out-of-touch-with-reality personas for each release, the suburban rappers follow esoteric trails of thought to an arena where wordplay becomes a blood sport: They variously describe themselves as "playing the role of the unemployed minotaur-wrangler entangled in anger-management books" and as "security-blanket brandisher/hot-cigar handler/road-atlas examiner/compulsive gambler/consulting Ayn Rand." In the '80s-style synth-funk masterpiece "Murderfuck," aggressively dispatched keyboards lope around blunt-trauma bass and blackjack beats. It's the kind of track that special guest Gil Mantera's Party Dream didn't write, but definitely could have.

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