The rapid evolution of Way Yes has been one of the most satisfying musical stories in Columbus music this year. On stage, they've graduated from tentative first steps to satisfying and playful exploration, adding just enough personality and organic elements to their sample-heavy setup to keep the mood lively, even after drummer Dylan Meister departed.

The rapid evolution of Way Yes has been one of the most satisfying musical stories in Columbus music this year. On stage, they've graduated from tentative first steps to satisfying and playful exploration, adding just enough personality and organic elements to their sample-heavy setup to keep the mood lively, even after drummer Dylan Meister departed.

Their progression on record has been just as satisfying. Debut EP "Herringbone" was quite the quirky calling card, a unique alchemy of Vampire Weekend's collegiate exotica, Animal Collective's wild-eyed electro-organics and Islands' cartoonish goofball glee. Now they cap their year with "Walkability," a second EP that finds them adept at exploring darker themes.

The Adult Swim zaniness that balanced out the melancholy undercurrents in "Herringbone" has been tempered here in favor of transcendental textures and a more serious palette. No more cutesy stories about nature getaways; this time Glenn Davis and Travis Hall are fixated on aging, death and isolation, though they keep the music buoyant enough that you can still listen with a skip in your step.

And if "Ties" is a bit too blatant in its Animal Collective worship, "Important" is a fine reminder that Way Yes is still busy staking out its own sonic territory.

Max Lewis (Central City Recording, New City Gypsy) will join the band on stage for Friday's release show at Kobo, also featuring Maza Blaska, Old Hundred and The Receiver.