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OK Go Brings Big Fun to the Troubadour Concert Review

Best known for wild viral videos, OK Go is unifying its zestful live approach with a tightened sound for its next record, due this fall.

Finally, four years after a confounding third album and a few months before the arrival of what could be a career-high fourth disc, the odd wrinkles in OK Go's ambitious, meticulous plan are beginning to get ironed out.

When Of the Blue Colour of the Sky surfaced to wildly mixed reviews at the start of 2010, its leadoff track couldn't have been better named: "WTF?" Surely that was the reaction among many fans who a half-decade earlier had come to love the L.A.-via-Chicago group's deceptively sunny power pop, often cleverly packaged in eye-grabbing, how'd-they-do-that viral videos, like the treadmill choreography clip that scored them their first Grammy in 2007.

In place of more hook-driven glee on the order of "Here It Goes Again" or the earlier hit "Get Over It," however, was a collection as distant and diffuse as it was sonically adventurous and teeming with not-so-subtle nods to Prince at his most hermetically funky. Producer Dave Fridmann, long known for distinctively icy productions for the Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev and others, had seemingly sucked the joy out of OK Go with the band's full consent.

But now, based on four cuts from the band's forthcoming effort Hungry Ghosts (due in October from Paracadute) that were recently released as an EP - as well as the quartet's terrific, confetti-showered set Tuesday night at the Troubadour - the post-breakout pieces of this modernist gem of a group are starting to fit. First single "The Writing's on the Wall," reminiscent of MGMT's debut material and powered by a winsome bass line unabashedly stolen from New Order, is an ideal example. OK Go Party With the Muppets (Video)  One attempt at illusion, for "I'm Not Through,"had to be abandoned because the signature sign above the Troubadour's stage couldn't be turned off. But there was all that confetti, enough to rival what the Flaming Lips take on tour - furious flurries of the stuff, which for song after song blanketed the room, until red-white-and-blue mounds of it high as anthills remained when the house lights came up. "I promise you will have this (stuff) in your underpants for three weeks,"the singer insisted. Consider it OK Go's way of reminding just how much fun they provide. Source linkÂ

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