Blitzen Trapper Empty Bottle, Chicago Thursday, February 19, 2009 Which version of Blitzen Trapper do you prefer? The acoustic Dylan worshippers? The stomping students of Neil Young? The feverish punk rockers? The swampy psychedelic love child of a merger between The Black Crowes and Led Zeppelin?
The Submarines Schubas, Chicago Tuesday, February 17, 2009 Much like a Chicago summer, The Submarines breeze in and out with little fanfare, a heaping dose of sunshine, and the promise of wishful thinking turning into reality.
The Appleseed Cast Bottom Lounge, Chicago Friday, February 27, 2009 Back in college, The Appleseed Cast and me were best buds. We were into the jagged side of Sunny Day Real Estate, a land where bands like Mineral and Joan Of Arc made welts on their arms by tying guitar strings around them. That poppy […]
Burn Halo Allstate Arena, Rosemont Friday, February 27, 2009 I swear (by the moon and the stars and the sky), swear, swear, swear, that when I was plotting the angle of this “Stage Buzz” while listening to Burn Halo’s self-titled debut, I had no idea the group was opening for Avenged Sevenfold.
These Arms Are Snakes, All The Saints Subterranean, Chicago Saturday, February 28, 2009 Predictability’s not the first thing you look for in post hardcore bands, and it seems to have hit home with Seattle’s typically flailing These Arms Are Snakes.
Wolfy Elbo Room, Chicago Tuesday, March 3, 2009 Wolfy’s members aren’t French. Far from it, actually. They’re from Indianapolis. But neirth their home city nor country seems to have had the biggest influence on the band: It’s France.
The Low Anthem Oh My God, Charlie Darwin (self-released) All three of Rhode Island’s musicians joined forces three years ago, and after two albums containing a sweeping overview of Western civ, record three lands in time for Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday. Appearing: Saturday, February 28th at Martyrs’ in Chicago.
The Pretenders Riviera Theatre, Chicago Sunday, February 15, 2009 Most of the names and faces may have changed, but the one constant in The Pretenders is Chrissie Hynde, the rugged frontwoman who first cut her teeth on the late-’70s punk/early-’80s new wave circuits. Though those sounds categorized much of the band’s offerings up through the […]
Antony & The Johnsons Vic Theatre, Chicago Thursday, February 12, 2009 Antony Hegarty learned quickly that levity is a key ingredient to making his concerts enjoyable. While his operatic quiver has the power to decimate an audience — but, hanging on his vibrato, the weight of his compositions is liable to suffocate. He creates an […]
Anni Rossi Empty Bottle, Chicago Friday, February 20, 2009 You have to wonder if her label, the venerable 4AD, knew Anni Rossi would be buried under Joanna Newsom comparisons. It’s hard to ignore the familiarities, despite some rather fundamental dissimilarities.
David Vandervelde Schubas, Chicago Saturday, February 21, 2009 In a storybook world, David Vandervelde’s Chicago-to-Brooklyn-to-Nashville wanderlust would make him the ideal Dylanite troubadour. Sprung from the clutches of Holland, Michigan, he would crush our feeble intellects with a slapdash, rustic urbanity and cut a straight path through the hyper-media mire, grooming himself for a biopic […]
Aidan Moffat + The Best Ofs How To Get To Heaven From Scotland (Chemikal Underground) There was really nowhere for the droning, life-is-lost ache of Arab Strap to go. Aidan Moffat has accordingly hijacked his own sound and heaved it back into pop convention.
Vetiver Tight Knit (Sub Pop) There’s great temptation to disparage Devendra Banhart while exalting Andy Cabic, especially as one’s direction seems increasingly right while the other appears so temporary.
D. Rider Hideout, Chicago Friday, February 13, 2009 D. Rider isn’t M. Yellow, but former U.S. Maple backbone Todd Rittmann has toned down the approach for his solo album, Mother Of Curses, which releases this coming Tuesday on Tizona Records.
In This Moment Pearl Room, Mokena Sunday, February 15, 2009 If it weren’t for Maria Brink, In This Moment’s 2007 album, Beautiful Tragedy, would have been totally ignorable. Brink’s performance (she’s one of the few females in heavy music able to convincingly pull off “extreme” vocal techniques) single-handedly made an otherwise bland mall-metal record worth […]