The last time Ra Ra Riot performed in Mohawk Place, the band’s music was driven by strings, its Baroque indie-rock powered by electric cello and violin, and its angular alternative roots buoyed by a skewed chamber pop sensibility. When the band returns to the same venue at 8 p.m. Wednesday, things will have changed abundantly. Cellist Alexandra Lawn has split with her cohorts, leaving Ra Ra Riot a lean, slightly more muscular quartet. Judging by “Beta Love,” the first single from the band’s forthcoming album of the same name (due in late January), Lawn’s departure has at least partly transformed the group from a chamber-pop outfit into a much more synth-driven, downright danceable collective – think Vampire Weekend crossed with M83.
– Jeff Miers