Marc Bianchi had been quietly exploring the galaxy of electronic music with his flagship project Her Space Holiday from his little home studios. But after eight albums of quirky computer-pop, the bedroom DJ found himself lost in space. “After the release of [2005’s] The Past Presents the Future, I was becoming more and more overwhelmed with the idea of making another record,” he admits. “I felt like my music-making process was becoming more about editing samples and less about songwriting. So rather than using samples and edits, I began to rely solely on real instruments.” Acoustic guitar, banjo, tambourine, drums and keyboards are just a few of the new accoutrements Bianchi plays on Her Space Holiday’s latest album, XOXO, Panda and the New Kid Revival. Songs like “Four Tapping Shoes and a Kiss” and “No More Good Ideas” are all new territory for fans, sounding less techtronic and more like sugarcoated, lo-fi rock. In fact, the best tunes are mostly just Bianchi, his guitar and his new vocal range (check out the ballads “My Crooked Crown” and “The Boys and Girls”). “I think I found my voice or at least my will to sing,” he says. “Up until this new album, I didn’t realize how restricted and almost emotionless the older vocals were. What sounded like Bryan Ferry in my head sounded like Cleveland from Family Guy to the rest of the world. Self-perception is a hell of a thing!” Dumping samples, playing instruments and rediscovering his voice — Bianchi will complete his transformation into Rock Star with a full backing band onstage. “This lineup will be like a dysfunctional parade,” he says. “The live set will be different each time, depending on which of my friends are available for touring duty. But the atmosphere will be fun with a tiny element of not knowing exactly what is going to happen next.” Her Space Holiday lands at the Grog Shop (2785 Euclid Heights Blvd., Cleveland Hts., 216.321.5588) at 8 p.m. with City Light and Justin Markert opening. Tickets: $8. — Keith Gribbins
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