Thundercat effortlessly achieves a fusion of myriad disparate elements, one that anyone could find appealing. You could play this album in the car with your parents, and they would probably bob their heads and smile.
Onstage at the sold-out Brattle Theater, promoting his recently released sophomore novel, “Universal Harvester,” Darnielle was comfortable and charismatic, as genial as your Midwestern uncle and as thrillingly erudite as your favorite professor.
The feelings Mitski takes as her subject are both the most dramatic and the most universal; she deals primarily with heartbreak, unhappiness, and the quiet triumph of learning to live with both. Much of the joy of experiencing Mitski’s music, especially live, lies in hearing someone give voice to such feelings so eloquently and acutely.
Ramirez himself never fell short of captivating, bringing a presence and animal force to his set that exhausted him; he frequently wiped his face with a cloth, which sat on a nightstand beside Ramirez’s picture of “Groundhog Day”-era Bill Murray.
That single, “Lyk Dis,” is a step in the right direction. .Paak continues to behave as though there’s nothing new under the sun, rap-singing about morning sex and milking the subject for all its worth. Yet he brings a sense of melody that only appeared in glimmers on “Suede.”
The getups are in fact amusing, and the actors are capable, charismatic improvisers—but it’s all in service of nothing. “Masterminds” makes for a diverting hour and a half, but it comprises little else but dumb, awkward spectacle.