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Snarky Puppy plays Variety Playhouse Feb. 14-15

The genre-defying large ensemble returns playing songs from ‘Culcha Vulcha’ and more

Snarky Band Shot 2016
Photo credit: Courtesy of Snarky Puppy
Snarky Puppy

It’s tempting to label Snarky Puppy simply a jazz band and leave it at that. However, that classification would obscure not only the particularities of the group’s sound but an understanding of why the Denton, Texas-bred and New York-based supergroup continues to sell out shows around the world. “Tarova,” the opening track from the band’s 2016 album Culcha Vulcha, is a perfect case study. The song starts out simply enough with bombastic percussion and bluesy organ improvisations. Yet over the course of three minutes, a torrent of horns, guitars, and drums build to a climax that stretches far outside the boundaries of jazz. Instead, Snarky Puppy swallows up bits of rock, pop, and fusion, and spits out a genre-defying concoction that has earned the group a ravenous fanbase in the jazz world and beyond.

With Forq Wed., Feb. 14. With Alina Engibaryan Thurs., Feb. 15. $37-$50 each night. 7 p.m. Variety Playhouse. 1099 Euclid Ave NE. 404- 524-7354. www.variety-playhouse.com.

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