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Local Licks

This week, we review Maus Haus, Whirr, Wake, and Night Hikes.

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Maus Haus, Light Noise EP

When a band compares itself to Kraftwerk, it's setting the bar high. That comparison may be a reach, but Maus Haus has built a large following for its heady, catchy songs, and its latest EP, Light Noise, brings a little more rock to its synth-heavy sound. Maus Haus mixes dance punk and garage rock on "No More Girls," the rawest song on the EP, but "You Made My Radar" plays it safe and stays within the spaced-out. (Lavish Habits)

At Rickshaw Stop (155 Fell St., San Francisco) on Saturday, Nov. 3. 8 p.m., $10, 12 

Whirr, Live at Part Time Punks EP

Shoegaze darlings Whirr have kept busy since the band's debut album Pipe Dreams came out in April, recently releasing a split record with the similarly droned-out Anne and finishing another split with legendary dream-pop band Monster Movie. Now it's got a new cassette of five tracks recorded at Part Time Punks in LA. "Junebouvier" is even better here than it is on Pipe Dreams. (Tigers & Daggers)

At Sub-Mission Art Space (2183 Mission St.) on Tuesday, Nov. 6. 7:30 p.m., $12 

Wake, The Fifth Finger EP

The follow-up to his debut EP, Oakland Blackouts, Mills electronic music MFA grad Matt Hettich (aka Wake) shows range on his second EP, The Fifth Finger. Fans of more mainstream funk, glitch, and Nineties hip-hop will find these tracks far more accessible than the abstract electronic compositions Wake has previously produced, but all of it is worthy of a listen. (Proximal Records).

Night Hikes, Prism Vision

There's no shortage of local singer-songwriters in the folk scene, and many tend to sound the same. At least the simple, guitar-based songs from Night Hikes (aka AA Rainr) sound modern and fresh. His debut album, Prism Vision, benefits from being under-produced and minimal with pensive songs that might convert some who don't usually listen to this genre. (self-released)

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