Of Montreal at U Street Music Hall Wednesday, Oct. 23

It’s easy to forget that Kevin Barnes, Of Montreal’s enigmatic leader, was once a twee-pop maestro. His recent records have been more purple spandex than cigarette-leg jeans, full of zany electro-funk songs à la Prince. The group’s new album, Lousy with Sylvianbriar, harkens sweetly back to the days of Cherry Peel and The Gay Parade, reemphasizing, for the first time in at least 10 years, simple guitars over glittery synths. It’ll be interesting to see how the change affects the band’s absurd live antics, which seemed to coincide with the band’s kitschy R&B phase. Few things are more entertaining than Kevin Barnes on a horse and smothered in body paint; then again, good pop music in a room, free of pomp, is pretty great, too. Of Montreal performs with Surface to Air Missive at 6 p.m. at U Street Music Hall, 1115 U St. NW. $25. (202) 588-1880. ustreetmusichall.com.

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