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Grand Buffet 

With Gil Mantera's Party Dream and Girl Talk. Saturday, September 27, at the Grog Shop.

Before cult figures Wesley Willis and Sole handpicked the band as tour support, Pittsburgh's Grand Buffet kept busy building a 30-foot android (allegedly), fronting the NYHC-inspired live-band side-project Wesley Sniper (definitely), and cutting karaoke renditions of album-rock classics (hilariously). More recently, the alt-rap duo beat De La Soul to the finish line, completing hip-hop's first trilogy with "Pittsburgh Hearts." Like the rest of the band's catalog, the hawkishly whimsical and impeccably engineered EP stands unique, even in the no-limit world of indie hop.

Grand Buffet name-checks Fraggles, praises candy bars, and employs black magic to give its youth-league baseball team a competitive edge. Birthing new, increasingly out-of-touch-with-reality personas for each release, the suburban rappers follow esoteric trails of thought to an arena where wordplay becomes a blood sport: They variously describe themselves as "playing the role of the unemployed minotaur-wrangler entangled in anger-management books" and as "security-blanket brandisher/hot-cigar handler/road-atlas examiner/compulsive gambler/consulting Ayn Rand." In the '80s-style synth-funk masterpiece "Murderfuck," aggressively dispatched keyboards lope around blunt-trauma bass and blackjack beats. It's the kind of track that special guest Gil Mantera's Party Dream didn't write, but definitely could have.

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