mae, et. al., Sept. 3, the Venue 

In part two of "The Venue is the Place to Be This Week," we turn to a little lighter side of music with mae (no, the m is not capitalized).

Singularity, the latest release from Virginia Beach-Virg. based mae entered the Billboard's Top 200 Album Sales chart at No. 40. Guitarist Zach Gehring said, "I don't know what that means any more, but I'll take it as a good thing." What it does mean is that I'm not the only one who thinks this album rocks.

The band's sound is a kind of contemporary pop-rock, with a '90s vibe that Gehring says comes through in mae's sound but which they are certainly not limited to. "Our approach to our lyrics and music have changed so much in the last 15 years or so, [but] I still listen to bands today that were in their heyday back then. The record might hint at that because that's what we grew up with but we want to avoid being trite."

Singularity is like a shift from mae's usual sound—maybe in an attempt to avoid the dreaded triteness.

"Being in the band, it's hard to have and objective outlook or approach to the record, but I don't think it's that different. Everglow [2005] was more of a rock record than Destination: Beautiful [2003] and I think Singularity continues in that direction. We tried to get our point across in a more focused and succinct manner. The other records had a lot of melodies in every song and sometimes the one melody the song was based on wouldn't show through just because of all the layers. As a band, we made an attempt to strip it down."

I have it on good authority their shows are always high-energy events and definitely worth being a part of.

Doors at 6 p.m., $15 advance, $17 door. The Venue, 521 Broad St., Boise.Venue.com. For more information on mae, visit WhatIsmae.com.

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