Manchester Orchestra at Revolution, November 21
Skip the misleading name: This group is neither from any Manchester (England, New Hampshire, or elsewhere) nor particularly large or orchestral. However, this Atlanta-based five-piece does manage to write songs that sound intimate and wide-sweeping. Led by 20-something Andy Hall, the group specializes in the kind of almost painfully earnest "indie" rock that's smart enough for critical praise but crowd-pleasing enough to hit alt-rock radio and mainstream TV. In other words, Manchester Orchestra songs have scored "meaningful" scenes in shows like Gossip Girl and Skins but are still adult-friendly enough to land the band regularly on the late-night TV show circuit. Even when the group releases a concept album like its latest release, Simple Math, it's nothing too weird, still managing to land right at the sweet overlapping spot between indie cred and commercial viability.
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