Shugo Tokumaru, Tara Jane O'Neil
830 E Burnside St.
[TOYBOX POP] At South by Southwest this year, I sat on the porch of some downtown Austin bar and heard Shugo Tokumaru play a cover of "Video Killed the Radio Star" on ukulele, kazoo and glockenspiel. It, uh, wasn't exactly my thing. Thankfully, not all of the Tokyo-based songwriter's material is quite as cloyingly precious. In Focus?, his fourth album, released in January, is full of sunbeam-sharp melodies, and his employment of marimbas and toy pianos and other whimsical elements feels more mischievous than twee, like Os Mutantes let loose in a Toys R Us. It's still not a sound for everybody, but the detailed construction and sense of exploration are hard to dismiss. At least, they are when you're not trying to stave off exhaustion on a cool Texas night.
Where: Doug Fir Lounge
Address: 830 E Burnside St.