Mutemath, appearing at the Tractor Tavern Friday, Oct. 23, makes accessible rock with a twist.

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Mutemath — playing Ballard’s Tractor Tavern Friday (Oct. 23) — plays accessible alternative rock that works great in TV commercials, as bumper music on sports broadcasts and even gets Grammy nominations (2007 single “Typical”). But it also has an exploratory spirit and a killer set of influences (Police, Tortoise and Tame Impala fans take note) that helps separate the New Orleans foursome from other radio-rock bands. So does percussionist Darren King, a budding drum-nerd god known for rocking out so hard onstage he duct-tapes his headset mic to his face so he doesn’t lose it mid-show.

The fourth Mutemath album “Vitals” arrives in November, a full four years since the last one, “Odd Soul” — an eternity in these times. But the layoff hasn’t seemed to hurt the band’s draw — not just Friday’s show but the entire tour has been sold out for months.

Quiet Entertainer opens. 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23, at the Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle; sold out (206-789-3599 or