When Battles play live, people usually leave the show talking about the drummer. As they should: John Stanier is precise and powerful behind his bright yellow set, seeming not to break a sweat as he lays down complex polyrhythms and strains to reach his ceiling-high crash cymbal. Such technical prowess is a prerequisite for membership in Battles, whose other members—guitarist/keyboardist Ian Williams and bassist/guitarist Dave Konopka—are alumni of bands like Don Caballero and Lynx and can more than hold their own with Stanier on stage. The band saw the departure of frontman-of-sorts Tyondai Braxton before recording their forthcoming sophomore album, Gloss Drop, but the output remains largely the same: tightly wound math-rock odysseys that few other bands have the chops—or the audacity—to try and pull off. ANDREW GOSPE

Thu., May 5, 8 p.m., 2011

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