FUTURE ISLANDS Maybe the most depressing trend of this era’s retro-mania is how little today’s synth-happy pop bands even pretend to sound different from the initial ’80s wave of wet snares, pulsing bass lines, synthentic keys and melodramatic narratives. Fortunately, there is this trio of N.C. expats who’ve taken the basic elements of that era and stretched them into compellingly dreamy and graceful new shapes. Frontman Samuel T. Herring’s unique croon certainly helps, but their 2011 LP, On the Water, was another fine example of their ability to echo an era without aping it. With Ed Schrader’s Music Beat and locals Blossoms (who should really send us their CD). $10-$12. The Milestone.