Monday, February 28, 2005

Live Review: Luna@Metro 2/23/05

Prior to last week, I had seen Luna play live in Chicago at least 2 or three times before. I definitely remember two different performances at Metro...but had I seen them a third time? The third time would have also been at Metro, right? I don't think I've seen them play anywhere else...or have I? Was there a Double Door performance in there somewhere? Was I too busy ranting with friends about music at these shows? Maybe I was spending too much time at the bar? (I did go through a phase where I was going to Metro all of the time and ordering nothing but tall whiskey drinks...hmmm) Whatever the case, Dean Wareham and his cohorts were coming to this fine music venue for one last time as the band Luna, and this time I was determined to behave, stand quietly to myself and concentrate on every last quirky lyric and fuzzy guitar note. For the last show ever (in Chicago, at least) by a long-time indie/college rock institution, the crowd was amazingly thin. Not empty by any means, but hardly what I would call a full house. I felt a little bad for the band that their Windy City swan song wasn't in front of larger audience, but at least I would be able to find a good spot and devote my full attention to the stage. Luna started the set with "Fuzzy Wuzzy," from Pup Tent. Not really one of my favorite tracks, but a nice slow-builder to open up the night. Not long into this slow Fuzzy jam, it dawned on me why my previous Luna experiences had been so forgettable. It's not that they sound bad live (or that I always too knackered), it's that they have never been (or should I say were) a very commanding live presence. The band just kind of rocks out at their own pace. You could almost call them lazy, but a more accurate description would be restraint and reserved. Wareham never begs for your attention or pauses dramatically to soak up audience admiration...he just snarkily belts out his lyrics and idly noodles the guitar solos. The music speaks for itself, and if you're not impressed...well, it seems they could care less. Wareham seems like a take it or leave kind of guy...I don't think he's loses too much sleep on the tour bus if the kids aren't dancing from the rafters or the press isn't showing them with acclaim in every city. This is probably what I've always liked about the band. Always a bit cynical, never immersed in hype, and anything but hyper. Admittedly this isn't a great formula for a live rock show, but when actually concentrating on their show this time, I discovered that Luna are (were) a decent live act. Maybe I was felling a bit nostalgic, but overall I thought they sounded great. The set seemed to borrow a bit heavy from Penthouse, but I certainly had no is probably the classic Luna album and it was also my introduction to the band back in 1995. (the "chasing girlies...go home earlies" rhyme from "Chinatown" never gets old!) Even the material from the new album, Rendezvous, (which I was a bit disappointed with) sounded great. Wareham even gave old-school fans a bone by throwing in a classic Galaxie 500 song ("Blue Thunder") into the set. I especially enjoyed his anecdote afterward about the first time he played Metro back in 1989(actually known as Cabaret Metro back then, and apparently no one told Wareham that they've shortened the name since). He said that there were only 50 people there that night and some random guy kept harassing him all night and shouting "hey, you fagot!" Joe Shannon and the staff eventually booted the guy, and Wareham thanked Shannon for the help that night and all the years of hospitality at the venue. My only complaint during the night was the lack of Britta Phillips vocals. I thought she really infused some much-needed energy for the band when she joined around the time of Romantica and was looking forward to hearing her live. However, much like the latest record, her presence was barely noticeable during this show. Technically, I suppose she's only a footnote in the band's 13 years of existence, so I guess I shouldn't have expected to hear too much from her in a farewell performance of "greatest-hits." Nonetheless, it seemed like she should have had at least one solo vocal...or at the very least she could have contributed to the classic Luna cover of "Bonnie and Clyde." However, it wasn't to be... (There were rumors swirling around the time of Romatica that Phillips and Wareham had become an "item," but the lack of her voice on the latest record and this final performance makes me wonder if perhaps there was a falling out between the two). Despite the lack of Jem-worthy vocal contributions, all and all this was a good show and Luna will certainly be missed. However, I think it was a good time for Wareham to call it quits for the band before it became stale and predictable for both the fans and band members. I highly doubt this will be the last time we see or hear of Dean Wareham in the music scene and I won't hesitate to check him out next time he returns to Cabaret Metro.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Chicago Rocks this weekend...

This weekend, local collective/record label Molemen Inc. presents Chicago Rocks, an annual event showcasing some of the best hip-hop acts in the city. Now in its third year, Chicago Rocks has expanded into a two-night affair, with performances tonight (2/25) at Metro and Saturday at the Abbey Pub. Day 1 of Chicago Rocks at Metro is an all-ages performance that kicks off at 5 tonight. Featured artists include Longshot, All Natural, Pacifics, Typical Cats and Psalm One. In between sets, DJs PNS and 33 1/3 will keep the beats bumpin. Day 2 at the Abbey kicks off at 10p and features Immortal Technique, Juice, Vakill, Mass Hysteria and another performance from Longshot. Spinning records in between will be DJs PNS, Chris Mix and Boy Wonder. Both nights will be hosted by Cosm Roks of WLUW's The Hip Hop Project. For more information and a complete talent line-up, visit

Thursday, February 24, 2005

RFC Interview: Plastic Crimewave

As posted here yesterday, this Saturday WHPK and the U of C Film Center will be presenting Pictures and Sounds 2005. One of the musicians providing auditory accompaniment to the event will be Steve Krakow, aka Plastic Crimewave. He'll be performing solo guitar drenched with interstellar effects to the first Sci Fi film ever made, Georges Méliès' A Trip to the Moon (Le Voyage dans la Lune, 1902). RFC recently caught up with Mr. Crimewave to learn more about his work and this upcoming performance... RFC: When hearing “Pictures and Sounds,” the first thing that comes to mind for me is a psychedelic aural and visual spectacle ala The Pink Floyd in 1967. However, the big differences here (besides the lack of LSD) are that: 1.Rather than random lights and slides, the music will be accompanied by complete video compositions and 2.The music will be improvised around the film rather than vice versa… Most people site The Floyd as being one of the innovators in bringing lights to live music, but who started the trend of improvising music around movies and film shorts? Plastic Crimewave: Well, shit-this feels like a quiz, but it would be impossible to gauge. Me thinks-since folks were twiddling along on piano without set scores to the very earliest films! RFC: This concept seems to be gaining popularity recently…(in the last few years, a couple of lounge/downtempo bands have released entire albums based on their improvising to old movies and locally, Califone did residency at Rodan last fall where they improvised to old films) …Is this your first gig like this? Or is it something that you’ve been experimenting with for a while? PC: My full band, Plastic Crimewave Sound did Pictures and Sounds a few years back to Kenneth Anger's Lucifer Rising. I've always been into the idea though, being a silent film buff, and seeing a great Knitting Factory show in maybe 1995, where avant garde types scored such films. RFC: So how do you prepare for a performance like this? I would assume you’re not going into it completely blind, and would have to have some ideas or themes planned? PC: Oh, i've practiced a little, keeping mental notes, like "spaceship taking off part" or "underwater sounds" or "crowd chaos part"...funny enough when PCWS scored Lucifer Rising, I was the only one who'd ever seen the film, and folks still asked how we managed to score it so tightly-ie-they thought we'd practiced it a lot and had distinct movements planned, when we never had! RFC: How or why did you choose Méliès' A Trip to the Moon for this performance? PC: It was actually chosen for me, but a fine choice indeed, that I OK'ed..... RFC: Anything else we should know about this performance? PC: I'll be utilizing treated guitar and electronics...and promise aural lift-off! also very excited that my ol pal Fur Saxa will be playing, she rules! RFC: Besides your performance at Pictures and Sounds, what else is on tap for Plastic Crimewave (and your band Plastic Crimewave Sound)? Future gigs? Album releases? International super-stardom? PC: This is going to be a sort of big year for me/us...Let's see- For PCWSound: a new double LP/CD due on Eclipse for summer; a split 12" w/Oneida on JagJaguwar; a track (and I did the artwork) on a UK 10" that is a tribute to "free-festivalers" Pink Fairies, Hawkwind, and the Edgar Broughton Band; a collaborative Lp w/Michael Yonkers; a west coast tour in May with the Ponys (also playing their record release show april 29 at the Double Door); also hoping to get to Europe/UK in the fall. On the personal front, I've been drawing a bunch of posters, ads and album covers, will have a new comic strip in the Reader, been writing for Stop Smiling and Arthur mags, and I will have a new double-sized Galactic Zoo Dossier magazine available in Summer on Drag City, also will have Million tongues festival #2 in fall at Empty bottle. whew.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

WHPK presents Pictures and Sounds 2005

This Saturday (2/26) night, WHPK and the Film Studies Center at the University of Chicago present Pictures and Sounds 2005, an annual multimedia event pairing silent films with live musical accompaniment. This year's program features four nationally-known artists improvising to a century's worth of classic experimental cinema. Projected from 16mm prints, this year's films range from the classic works of Brakhage and Méliès to a modern piece created by local musician Tatsu Aoki. Besides Aoki, who will be providing his own musical accompaniment, the event will also feature local musicians Azita and Plastic Crimewave. Rounding out the bill is Philadelphia's Fursaxa. For the complete who/what/where and when, visit: The Film Studies Center at the University of Chicago is located in Cobb Hall, room 307, at 5811 South Ellis Ave. Cobb Hall, on the U. of C. campus Quadrangle, is located 1/2 block north of the Midway Plaisance. The building is directly across from the Hospital Brain Research Pavilion and just south of the Administration Building. Enter Cobb Hall on the north side. Ample free parking is available on the Midway and 59th Street. The show will begin at 7:00pm and will feature informal question and answer sessions with the musicians, moderated by film historian Ron Gregg, from the University's Committee on Cinema & Media Studies. This is a free, all-ages event, and the general public is welcome. NO FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY will be allowed. (Tomorrow on RFC...more on this event from featured artist Plastic Crimewave)

New Chicago-based zine launch party at Sub-T

From Swagger Launch Party In Chicago! If you're a WOXY.COM fan in Chicago, you may want to head down to Subterranean on 2011 W. North Ave this WEDNESDAY, February 23rd around 9pm. Swagger is a new zine in town and they're holding their launch party around 9pm. You can pick up your hot off the press copy of the first issue and have a chance to win prizes. If that isn't enough for you, some great bands including THE HIGH DIALS will be taking the stage. Cover is $7. When you pick up the issue, you'll see WOXY.COM taking up the entire back page! Related links: (the venue)

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

New Releases Tuesday (2/22)

Local and related: Bastro - Sing the Troubled Beast/Diablo Guapo (Drag City) Howling Hex - All-Night Fox (Drag City) Enon - Lost Marbles and Exploded Evidence (Touch & Go) William Elliott Whitmore - Ashes to Dust (Southern) Various Artists - Looking For A Thrill (DVD) (Thrill Jockey) Other Notables: Aesop Rock - Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives (Def Jux) Limited edition ep from underground hip-hop star Aesop Rock...comes with a 88-page book of lyrics that spans his entire career! Pick up this week's Reader for a complete review. Damon & Naomi - The Earth is Blue (20/20/20) The other 2/3 of Galaxie 500 are back with their first studio record since their brilliant 2000 self-titled release with Japanese psychedelic rockers Ghost. Ian Brown - Solarized (Koch) Domestic release of the The King Monkey's (ex-Stone Roses) latest solo effort. Check out Mr. Brown and his pal Noel Gallagher (bloody arse!) rocking out the new Solarized material Wednesday night on Conan. Ben Lee - Awake is the New Sleep (New West) Seems like this lovable little Aussie singer/songwriter and Evan Dando stalker has been around forever...yet he's still only 26! This is his 6th solo release and it features guest appearances by Har Mar Superstar and Jason Faulkner. Also... Thievery Corporation - Cosmic Game (Esl Music) M. Ward - Transistor Radio (Merge) Nicolai Dunger - This Cloud is Leaning (Overcoat)

Monday, February 21, 2005

The Singing DJ returns to Chicago

Much to the disappointment of procrastinating fans, Tuesday night's Kings of Convenience show at Double Door has already sold out. If you're a fan and didn't get tickets to this performance: 1. Shame on you!! How dare you doubt the drawing power of Erlend Øye? 2. You're not completely screwed...there will be a Kings of Convenience DJ set at Sonotheque following their live Double Door set. The live set at Double Door starts at 9pm, so I'm guessing the DJ set at Sonotheque will start about midnight? I don't know about Erik Glambek Bøe's DJ skills, but the other half of Kings of Convenience, Erlend Øye, dropped one of the hottest dance mixes of last year, with his 2004 contribution to the DJ Kicks series. Admittedly poor at beat matching, Øye makes up for lack of skills behind the 1200s by improvising lyrics over breaks and occasionally adding lead and background vocals to the mix. This technique probably sounds a bit corny, but somehow Øye pulls it off. I had a chance to experience the "The Singing DJ" myself last year at a one-off SmartBar performance and it was a complete riot. Subsequently, his DJ Kicks album has been universally lauded by dance fans, electronic heads and indie-rockers alike. Not a complete substitute for Tuesday night's quiet (aka "the new loud") and intimate set at Double Door, but the Kings of Convenience DJ set at Sonotheque is certainly worth checking out for fans who want to hear what the Norwegian duo listen to after-hours when the acoustic guitars are put away.

The Wizard returns!

from the Chicago Independent Media Center... WZRD (88.3 FM) is back on the air! WZRD 88.3 FM is the radio station of Northeastern Illinois University, which airs a number of progressive radio programs (including Democracy Now! twice daily). WZRD had been off the air for a number of weeks because of licensing problems with the FCC. However, at about 6pm this evening (February 18), the FCC granted WZRD a temporary authorization to resume broadcasting. Hopefully, WZRD will continue the process to file for a full license during the term of this temporary authorization (which is six months).

Friday, February 18, 2005

Celebrate Black History Month at Sonotheque

For this month's edition of Africa Hi-Fi at Sonotheque, Ron Trent and Co. will be a dedicating the night to the celebration of Black History Month. "FEBRUARY is BLACK HISTORY MONTH and we are dedicating this night to all who have been a part of the struggle, advancements in society, and positive perseverance. PEACE,LOVE,RESPECT ALWAYS." The celebration takes place tonight at Sonotheque, from 9p to 2a. (the line to get in should be significantly more tolerable than the insanely over-booked Scion events) World renown DJ/Producer/Remixer Ron Trent will be providing the soundtrack. Here's more about the monthly event from the Sonotheque website: This monthly event will be a musical tribute of respect to Africa and all that it has touched and influenced in World music and culture. AFRICA HI-FI will fuse music and social consciousness with art and dance. The evening will be geared toward educating people about Africa as the birthplace of music that we all listen to and love, whether it be Jazz, Dance, World Music or Hip Hop. Africa HI-FI is being presented as an open forum that will tap into the creative energy of the Motherland to help elevate the consciousness of all people, thereby creating a positive collective community. Sonotheque is located at 1444 West Chicago, for more info call 312-226-7600

Thursday, February 17, 2005

?uestlove show sure to be another ?uest to get in the door

The Scion marketing machine is back again to present another fine hip-hop artist behind the decks at Sonotheque. ?uestlove, drummer/producer extraordinaire from the Roots, gets this nod this month with Twilite Tone and Tone B. Nimble again serving as openers. Nothing against ?uest...but I probably won't be making it out tonight, the lines for these Scion events are just too obnoxious. Last month, I was geniuinely looking forward to seeing Scion's free MF Doom set. I even made a point to try get there early to avoid the inevitable lines. However, one thing lead to another and I didn't get over to Sonotheque until 9:30p. (which is still a bit early in my book) And, sure enough, the line was already backed up all the way down the block. As much as a free night at Sonotheque with MF Doom providing the soundtrack sounded great, it just wasn't worth the wait. Besides waiting outside in the freezing cold for at least 30 minutes, I knew there would probably be at least another hour or two wait once inside before Doom's set would begin. This hour or 2 wait would also mean numerous trips to the bar, resulting in a night that would end up being anything but "free." The people at Scion are putting together some great shows and probably reaping some great PR, but unless you have all night to kill and have a huge hole burning through your wallet for drinks, I'd recommend resisting the temptation of checking out these "free" events.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Scanning the dial...Gap the Mind

Probably one of the greatest compliments to a radio station or DJ is when you find yourself listening to (and even enjoying) a show that features a style of music that you would otherwise never listen to. Lately, I find myself doing this all of the time when tuned to "The Pride of the South Side," WHPK-FM (88.5). For example, I can't say that I'm a big fan of bluegrass and folk music, but I find myself listening to "Come All Ye Coal Miners" (a program featuring old time, traditional, and hillbilly music) and "Honky Talk Hardwood Floor" (country, bluegrass, and folk music) almost every week. However, one of my favorite discoveries on WHPK recently has been a new show called Gap the Mind. According to host Jeff Rufo, Gap the Mind is a "weekly trip from Classic to Acid Folk, instrumental freakout and all points in between." To be honest, I didn't even know there was a genre called "acid folk," but no matter what you want to call this music, I absolutely love it. While the "acid folk" moniker is a new one to me, not all of the artists played are. Jeff throws in a nice blend of classic folk from the likes of Nick Drake, Bob Dylan and Donovan; psychedelic and experimental folk-tinged music from artists like Syd Barrett, John Cale and Nico; and stark modern folk from Bonnie Prince Billy, 6 Organs of Admittance, Devendra Banhart, etc. A bit folky, a bit psychedelic, a bit mellow...but always very cool. Check out Gap the Mind every Wednesday from 4p-5p on 88.5 FM on the South Side. Below is a sample playlist from a recent airing: Band / Song / Album (Label) -Incredible String Band/ Chinese White/ The 5000 Spirits or the Layers of the Onion (Island) [from Jeff: "this is kinda like the theme song for the show"] -Simon Joyner/ Obituary/Heaven's Gate (Brinkman) -6 Organs of Admittance/ Manifestation side A (Strange Attractors) -Billy Nichols / Feeling Easy / ? (?) -John Cale/ Amsterdam / Vintage Violence (Sony) -Nico / I'll Keep it with Mine / Chealsea Girl (Polydor) -Nick Drake / Fly (unreleased version) / Second Grace (Nick) -Faust / Lieft.../ IV (Caroline) -John Fahey / Dance of Death / Dance Of Death & Other PlantationFavorites (Takoma) -Bee Gees / Odessa / Odessa (Polydor) -Trad Gras och Stenar / ? / Trees, Grass And Stones (Silence) -Ghost (w/Damon and Naomi) / Tanka / ST (SubPop)

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

New Releases Tuesday (2/15)

Really slow week for new releases...I guess the music industry doesn't want to compete with Hallmark. Nonetheless, here are a couple of notables that slipped through the cracks: LCD Soundsystem - s/t (DFA/Capitol) After listening to this record briefly, it's pretty clear that James Murphy's career as the one-man dance/rock machine known as LCD Soundsystem will never overshadow his work as a producer and indie-label proprietor. That being said, this record doesn't completely suck...and when Murphy sticks to the ironic dance-punk that he does best, it's a riot. In fact, unless there are plans to release it as a 12" single, the track "Daft Punk is Playing At My House" is almost worth the price of the entire CD itself. Speaking of 12" tracks, the classic LCD jams "Losing My Edge" and "Yeah" are also included in this double CD release. If you don't own these already (or...[gasp!] haven't even heard these tracks before) this record is easily worth the $13.99, no matter how bad the filler tracks may be. They Might Be Giants - Here Come the ABCs (Disney Sound) According to, this record "offers up twenty-five alphabetically themed songs. However, as is their charming way, the two Johns (Flansburgh and Linnell), use the letters as merely the connective tissue, allowing them to pursuit intriguing flights of fancy that consider everything from the relative power of letters and sounds to animal hijinks." Don't worry, these guys haven't completely flipped, this record was purposely made for kids. Electric Six - Senor Smoke (WEA) Danger, Danger...this band's 15 minutes are up! (available on import only)

Monday, February 14, 2005

Happy Valentine's Day from Chicago!

Friday, February 11, 2005

Weekend Music Outlook

Friday (2/11): Low with Pedro the Lion and Tim Rutili at Metro I'm still a bit torn on this one...I've already seen Low a few times here in Chicago and I have mixed feelings about the new album (The Great Destroyer). That being said, I've always been a fan of the band and they are always surprisingly good live. An opening solo set from Tim Rutili (Califone, ex-Redd Redd Meat) is a nice bonus, but sitting through a Pedro the Lion set isn't exactly my idea of a fun Friday night. Saturday (2/12): The Perceptionists at Abbey Pub (late) After an early show featuring Dutch indie-rock veterans Bettie Serveert, underground hip-hop group The Perceptionists take over the stage for the late show at the Abbey. (I'm guessing there won't be much audience overlap between shows) Actually more of a side project than an established group, The Perceptionists combines Def Jux solo artist Mr. Lif with fellow Boston native Akrobatik on the mic and DJ Fakts One behind the decks. Much like the Friday night Low show at Metro, I'm also a bit torn about whether this show is worth seeing. I think Mr. Lif is amazing...his 2002 solo album, I Robot, was an outstanding record that I would recommend to any hardcore hip-hop fan. Akrobatik on the other hand...well, he's alright...but I can't say that I've ever been blown away by his work. Furthermore, the Perceptionists' debut album doesn't drop until March, so I have no idea how this new collaboration sounds. This show's a bit of a gamble...but then again nothing beats discovering a new band live first before hearing their record.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

John McCain sez: "Corporate radio, you suck!"

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

McCain continues fight for community radio

While the future of Chicago's only 100% free-form radio station, WZRD-FM, is still in limbo, there was some promising news from Washington this week that could potentially lead to space for more stations like WZRD on your radio dial in the future. (from, Sens. McCain, Maria Cantwell and Patrick Leahy yesterday (2/9) introduced the Local Community Radio Act, which would allow additional low-power FM radio stations to go on the air and stop further studies on how LPFMs may interfere with existing FM stations. McCain said, "While low-power FM stations were authorized five years ago, implementation has been severely hampered by commercial broadcasters' flagrantly exaggerated claims of interference. The most recent obstruction, a two-year study conducted at the behest of broadcasters, cost taxpayers over $2 million and proved what the FCC and community groups have known for years: Low-power FM stations will not cause significant interference to other broadcasters' signals. It is time for broadcasters to stop hiding behind false claims of interference when they are really afraid of the competition from truly local broadcasters." Cantwell's statement added that “large broadcasters have tried to block access for low power FM stations using tired arguments that don't hold up to reality. This is an important fight to ensure that these affordable, community-oriented radio stations are allowed access to our nation's airwaves.” Leahy's quote says that "(f)or too long now the number of low power FM stations the FCC could license has been limited by unrealistic and unnecessary rules requiring these smaller stations to search for available frequencies far from any full-power broadcaster. This bill will open up the airwaves to truly local broadcasting while protecting full-power broadcasters from unreasonable interference and preserving important services such as reading services for the blind.”

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

For those about rock...(Low salutes you)

Concert preview: Low

If you're planning on seeing Low this Friday at Metro, you can get a sneak preview of how their new material sounds live Wednesday afternoon at (aka "97X, [BAM!] The Future of Rock and Roll"). The Duluth slowcore trio will be rockin' the 97X Lounge tomorrow at 2pm Chicago time and will undoubtedly be playing quite a few tracks from The Great Destroyer, which just hit store shelves two weeks ago. Unfortunately, 97X currently doesn't archive any of their past shows or live performances, so you'll have to have your WinAmp or Real player locked in to 97X at 2pm sharp.

Chicago's Ben Vida, aka Bird Show

New Releases Tuesday (2/8)

Local and Related: Bird Show - Green Inferno (Kranky) Outhud - One Life to Leave (12") (Kranky) Andrew Bird - Mysterious Production of Eggs (Righteous Babe) Other Notables: Boom Bip - Blue Eyed in the Red Room (Lex) Sage Francis - A Healthy Distrust (Epitaph) The Frames - Burn the Maps (Anti) Apparat - Silizium (EP) (Shitkatapult) Mia Doi Doi Todd - Manzanita (Plug Research) Hood - Outside Closer (Domino)

Monday, February 07, 2005

The Wizard is silenced!

Northeastern Illinois' community radio station, WZRD-FM (88.3), aka "The Wizard," is off the air. The transmitter has been shut down and station volunteers have been locked out of the studios. UDATE (2/7) The saga continues... Alyssa Joy Coiley has resigned from her position as station manager of WZRD, effective last Thursday. The station continues to be off air. UPDATE (2/3) Still no "official" word on how or why WZRD's broadcast license was allowed to expire. There has been very little information released because, according to WZRD music director Dave Pecoraro, the station is trying to keep coverage of the incident to a minimum so that other broadcasters don't try to take advantage of WZRD's situation and try to apply to take over their frequency. (dial space in a market as crowded as Chicago is extremely valuable...thus, word of an opening on that dial would cause any current and would-be broadcasters to swarm on the vulnerable license like sharks) Like station manager Alyssa Joy Coiley, Pecoraro also notes that everyone at the station is working hard to get back on the air as soon as possible. We'll keep you posted here on RFC... UPDATE (2/2): According to an email sent to WZRD volunteers by station manager Alyssa Joy Coiley, station management had recently contacted the FCC about the status of their license and found out that the WZRD was currently operating without a license. This, of course, is in violation of FCC rules and the station was advised to cease broadcasting immediately until the issue is resolved. Coiley then went on to say that they are currently in the middle of an appeals process with the FCC in an effort to restore compliance and legally return to the air. It's not clear at this point whether the station's license had expired due to negligence by WZRD staff or whether the problem occured at the FCC's end.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Qwel, of Typical Cats

WNUR Hip-Hop Showcase this Sat. (2/5)

Contrary to popular belief, there is more to the Chicago music scene than just indie-rawwk... This Saturday, WNUR-FM (89.3) presents a Hip-Hop showcase at the Abbey Pub highlighting some of city's finest talent. Headlining the show is Qwel, MC for Galapagos4 recording artists Typcial Cats. Also on the bill is Daily Plannet from All Natural Hip Hop, Qwazaar from Galapagos 4, Jah Safe of Frontline, Rusty Chains and Matlock, Keith Gamble, and Wordz. WNUR's very own DJ Deluge and DJ Verbatim will host the event. Doors open at 8, and the show begins at 9. Tickets are $10 in advance, or $12 at the door. This is an 18+ event. The Abbey Pub is located at 3420 W. Grace.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

New Releases Tuesday (2/1)

A slow week overall, and just about nothing local related...unless you count Bloomington, IN- based Secretly Canadian, who have two releases out this week. Check it out y'all: Local(?) and Related: Antony and the Johnsons - I Am A Bird Now (Secretly Canadian) Impossible Shapes - Horus (Secretly Canadian) Other Notables: Brazilian Girls - s/t (Verve Forecast) Dalek - Absence (Ipecac) Ed Harcourt - Strangers (Astralwerks)

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

SmartBar debuts The Reel Deal

Starting tonight, SmartBar debuts a new theme night called "The Reel Deal." Every Tuesday, two classic films/DVDs will be screened downstairs in the hippest basement in Wrigleyville. And of course, SmartBar's friendly staff of bartenders will be standing by to serve up a wide range of tasty beverages to add to your viewing pleasure. Showing movies at local drinking establishments certainly isn't a new concept, but unlike the Vic's Brew n' View, you may actually want to watch these films rather than belligerently yelling obscenities and throwing popcorn at the screen. Check out this stellar line-up: -Tuesday February 1st - Rushmore, The Royal Tennenbaums -Tuesday February 8th - 24 Hour Party People, The Clash: Westway To The World -Tuesday February 15th - Office Space, Spinal Tap -Tuesday February 22nd - American Beauty, The Usual Suspects -Tuesday March 1st - Monty Python and The Holy Grail, Monty Python's The Meaning Of Life -Tuesday March 8th - BBC's The Office - All Night Long -Tuesday March 15th - The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy -Tuesday March 22nd - Donnie Darko, Blade Runner -Tuesday March 29th - Brazil, A Clockwork Orange -Tuesday April 5th - The Decline Of Western Civilization, Another State Of Mind -Tuesday April 12th - Amelie, Run Lola Run -Tuesday April 19th - Trainspotting, Lost In Translation -Tuesday April 26th - Before Sunrise, Before Sunset (The first film begins at 8:15pm, the second at 10:15pm) SmartBar is located at 3730 N. Clark, right next to (actually just below) Metro. As always, you must be 21 & over to enter.