Mogwai, with Xander Harris; Tuesday, Nov. 28, 8 p.m.; ogdentheatre.com
f all the hair-splitting rock subgenres, it’s not a stretch to say “post-rock” is one of the least descriptive. Is it an attempt to say that the music exists beyond rock music? Is it a broader application of “post-punk” or, being a genre that emerged in the mid 1990s, is there something with hints of “the end of history” happening here? In the case of Scottish act Mogwai, one could really argue all of the above. The mostly instrumental quartet is considered an exemplar of the genre, although they’re not overly fond of that label — with bassist Dominic Aitchison calling it stupid, pretentious and lazy. Mogwai deals in sprawling, guitar-based rock ’n’ roll music filled with extreme dynamic contrast, subtly shifting textures, and often-driving rhythms that exist somewhere between the minimalist classical music of Philip Glass and ‘70s krautrock. Recently, the band has taken to integrating a greater use of keyboards and synthesizers to add further contrast to their already-expansive sound, and their most recent LP, Every Country’s Sun
, is no exception. Mogwai’s music can be tense and unsettling (see their soundtrack for Les Revenants
) and almost unfathomably emotional (their live score for the documentary Atomic, Living in Dread and Promise
). And while it may not be obvious from their music, any band that titles an album Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will
also has a pretty great sense of humor.