You wouldn't guess it by listening to Palm, but the members of this complex prog-rock band taught themselves how to play from scratch while in art school. The bandmates met while attending Bard and took a Devo-esque turn, ditching their pens and paper after graduation for a new art form: rock 'n' roll. Singer-guitarists Eve Alpert and Kasra Kurt admit that they didn't set out to make any particular style of music when they enlisted Hugo Stanley on drums and Gerasimos Livitsanos on bass. Palm's lack of initial structure is what allowed them to build a sound that is new and different from the ground up. Their sophomore album, "Rock Island," plays out like a newfangled contraption, with different gears spontaneously switching, creating unpredictable movements and patterns of sound. All the while, Alpert and Kurt's voices swerve and hover over the rocky terrain of chorused-out guitars and strange meters. Both in its live set and on record, Palm knows how to ride on the verge of chaos while coming back to something pure and saccharine, as if finding its way to the end of a labyrinth.