This outfit takes its name from the ocular panther, a strange mythological beast that can apparently enter one's being through mere eye contact, "hypnotizing the mind and terrorizing the soul." The Rochester-based quartet hopes that its intelligent and progressive take on funk does the same amount of wreckage between your ears. The group's talented pair of guitarists, Mikey Pantano and Collin Jones, takes cues from old-school prog-rock as well as the modern improvisational jam scene, while bassist Jason Gilly and drummer Matthew Blauvelt constitute a formidable rhythm section that grounds some seriously smooth grooves. Put it all together and you've got an impressive musical animal with a predatory sonic approach.
Ocupanther plays Thursday, November 15, 9 p.m. at Abilene Bar & Lounge, 153 Liberty Pole Way. $4-$6. 232-3230, abilenebarandlounge.com.