Trippy NYC duo Cults brought their dreamy hybrid of 60s girl groups and psychedelic pop to the Theatre of Living Arts last night. Guitarist Brian Oblivion and singer Madeline Follin record as a duo but onstage they are augmented by a bass player, a drummer and a guitar/keyboard/xylophone player. Live the music has more teeth – clanging guitars, gut-rumbling bass and some primal drumming give the music more punch and aggression than their recordings would lead you to expect. Follin hung on the mic all night, giving the crowd intense smoldering stares as her powerful baby doll voice cut through the din behind her and echoed beautifully through the hall. The band briskly tore through fifteen songs including most of their current, excellent Static album and one cover song, much to the delight of an enthusiastic crowd. Behind the band were eight small video screens showing a constant stream of eye-dazzling fractals, kaleidoscopic static, and surrealistic stock footage — heavy rain, water dripping upside down, Day-Glo amoebas. Highlights included the barreling roadhouse piano work and driving rhythms of set-opener “High Road” and a beautiful country-ish “Always Forever.” Late in the set the show really took off with a “So Far” that felt like a warp speed junk-shot through the cosmos followed by a “Bumper” that featured Follin and Oblivion trading vocals and a roar of approval from the crowd in the space between one of the verses. They closed out their main set with a knockout trio of tracks. First up was the swirling keyboards and desperate vocals of should’ve-been-a-hit-in-2013 “I Can Hardly Make You Mine.” They followed that with a cover of The Motels “Total Control” that bettered the original with a light/shade arrangement that alternated between a hail of church-like organs and thundering drums and then the band would drop out and leave Follin’s ethereal voice floating mysteriously above the drum and basslines. They closed their main set with a stomping sing-along to “Rave On” that featured some metallic guitar work from Oblivion and ended in a black and white explosion of light and sound. — PETE TROSHAK