Tuesday, February 28, 2006

New Releases Tuesday (2/28)

Trespassers William - Having (Nettwerk) Third full-length album from this L.A. band that sounds a bit like a cross between Mazzy Star and My Bloody Valentine. Having has some great tracks (especially at the beginning) and it socres huge hipster points for featuring production by Dave Fridmann, famous for his work with The Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev and Mogwai. However, the press release for the album also touts that the band has been successful in the "TV & film world" with tracks featured on "The OC," the WB's "One Tree Hill(?!?)," a John Travolta movie I've never heard of and a forthcoming Disney flick. I'd say that negates all of the hipster points gained from picking up Fridmann, but as I was reminded of last week, even The Flaming Lips had to stoop to promoting themselves on teen TV back in the day...remember their classic "live at The Peach Pit" performance on 90210? Rhett Miller - The Believer (Verve Forecast) Amazon.com sez: Already widely-loved for his work as frontman and main songwriter of the hard-charging rock 'n' roll quartet the Old 97's (of which he is still a member), The Believer takes its predecessor's achievements several steps further, with a dozen deeply felt, craftily melodic tunes that demonstrate the Texas-bred artist's knack for using accessible songcraft to address complex emotional issues. RFC.com sez: Haven't heard the new record, but Rhett Miller is a complete spaz. We saw him play solo a couple of years back at Metro and it was almost unwatchable. Miller put on the singer/songwriter/rock star schtick way too heavy and his songs sounded terrible live.

Monday, February 27, 2006

So many pledge drives, so little money

When I was in L.A., I was looking forward to being able to listen to KCRW in its full FM stereo glory, outside the confines of my headphones or those shitty little speakers inside my laptop. Unfortunately, most of the time I was out there, they were running their pledge drive. Annoyed by the constant talking and pitches, I ended up reverting back to my laptop and listening to WOXY.com. Commercial-free and pledge-drive free, WOXY was a perfect solution until, BAM!...they announced they were in financial trouble and becoming a "listener supported station." In serious need to raise some funds, WOXY has essentially been in non-stop pledge drive mode ever since. Now local indie station WLUW is in the middle of its pledge drive and I just heard that KEXP will be starting its drive on March 3rd. As annoying as they can be, pledge drives are a main source of income for most non-commercial stations and two or three weeks of fundraising pitches is certainly preferable to an entire year of commercial breaks. However, while all these stations provide great music and programming, I'm guessing most RFC readers out there are like me and simply can't effort to support every station's drive? So who should a local indie rocker on a limited budget support? KCRW and KEXP? These are easily the two best Internet stations nationwide in terms of both live programming and archived content. However, both also have significant local support in their communities via their FM signals and are backed by major organizations. KCRW has the advantage of also being an NPR affiliate and KEXP has been graciously funded over the years by the Experience Music Project. If you're a big fan of either station and have cash burning in your wallet, by all means donate away and you'll get some great pledge premiums in return. However, if your budget is tight, save your money. Trust me; these stations will be able to survive without your $50 pledge. WLUW? This would seem like the obvious choice because they're the local fledgling 100-watt community station. However, again I would have to recommend saving your money. WLUW isn't struggling financially because they're not raising enough money, they're struggling because their budget has been mismanaged. After Loyola decided to drop funding for the station, the station's two managers successfully lobbied that the only way that WLUW would be able to survive was to continue to employ them both on a full-time basis. Rather than waiting to see what the station could realistically bring in every year, and then offering full-time money to its management if enough funding became available, an extremely top-heavy budget was put in place, burdening the station with debt almost since day one. Not surprisingly, the station has continued to operate in the red ever since. You not giving WLUW $50 this week isn't going to cause it to go off the air, the deficit will just be picked up by management partner WBEZ. However, eventually they'll probably have to admit that the cost of two full-time employees is just too much for any 100-watt community station to sustain. WOXY.com Now here's a case where even your $10 pledge will make a difference. This Internet-only radio start-up spawned from the former alt-rock institution 97X (BAM!...The Future of Rock n' Roll!)is quite literally out of money and could very easily be off the air in a month or two. In an effort to stay afloat, the station is testing a subscription-based service that charges listeners $9.95 per month. In order to stay in business, they need to reach a level of 7000 subscribers, but as of today their pledge drive barometer graph shows barely a quarter of that reached. Similar to the criticism of WLUW's overreaching budget, one could also question whether a niche Internet radio station can really support a staff of three full-time DJs and a GM. Of course, it's also the live DJs that make WOXY.com stand-out from all of the other Internet radio stations out there and true fans of the station know that it really wouldn't be "WOXY" without Barb, Mike and Shiv on the air. March 6th has been slated as the "day of reckoning" for the station, at which time the management will evaluate how many subscribers they've reached and decide whether the new business plan is feasible. WOXY.com is a great station with a storied past and it would be a shame for it to just sputter away. If you want to help out a truly independent "mom-and-pop" institution dedicated to great music, this is were your donation should go.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Live Review: Sound Team @ Schubas 2/9/06

The backwards, lame and/or bizarre rock show crowd phenomena I witness in Chicago always seem to happen at Schubas. Bands can go an entire set without one person standing, they can play to a group that seems embarrassed to clap between songs, or they can play to virtually no one at all. You can tell as much about a band by how it handles imperfect situations as you can by what it does at its summit, when it’s surrounded by high energy and ravenous fans. One such phenomena and one such tell surrounded the Sound Team show on the night in question. We’ve all witnessed and participated in the ignoring of the opening band. It’s not an uncommon event. What is more rare is when the opening band garners more attention than the headlining act, and a packed club that seems to promise intensity and insanity fizzles out by the time the fellows with the name in bold font on the concert poster take the stage. Local buzz act Bound Stems provided the warm-up for the Austin sextet and also stole its sweat; a wall-to-wall crowd thinned out and Sound Team took over the stage with little notice and opened its set to a crowd that seemed less motivated and more lingering. But I’ve seen worse crowds in my days of concert-going, and if this slight exodus was somewhat insulting Sound Team was unfazed. With six members the band has multiple personalities, multiple ways in which to express its passion and the result is somewhat intriguing. By the end of the opening tune it was apparent that the loiterers were going to be won over. The sound wasn’t perfect but Sound Team’s demeanor was spot on. We could have used a little more volume on Matt Oliver’s mike but his charmingly modest disposition made his presence as a front man quite tasty. Outside wet flurries had accumulated to maybe an eighth of an inch on the cold sidewalks of Belmont, and this Texas boy confessed, “I think this is the fourth time I’ve seen snow fall. Thanks for coming out. You’re very brave.” While the “blizzard” outside was perhaps daunting, inside Schubas Oliver maintained a rock ‘n’ roll coolness; with his curly hair, rolled-up sleeves and rigid but sexy stance he could have been Buddy Holly incarnate, sans cat-rimmed glasses and goofy grin. Trying to upstage him was bassist Bill Baird, who with his happy dance would have been quirky enough, but adding the tissue sticking out of his ears and his stare-downs with nonchalant guitarist Sam Sanford, he seemed nothing short of bonkers. Sanford himself spent the entire evening propped up against a pillar, and behind this spectacle was the wild Jordan R. Johns, banging his long hair around as much as his drumsticks, and also the new wave virtuosity that is the dueling tambourines and electronics of Michael Baird and Gabriel Pearlman. The Schubas stage is small and it’s difficult to imagine that so much could be going on during one performance, but Sound Team seemed unrestrained without appearing cramped, except perhaps on songs like “No More Birthdays” when Oliver had to climb back to his electric piano and sing hidden behind his band mates. But his enthusiasm never waned, and the set gained momentum as it progressed through tracks from the band’s various e.p.s, ending in all-out Moog pop rock with closer “Movie Monster.” The crowd inched toward the stage, and at the end of the forty minute set Sound Team had at least one new obsessive fan who, by the sound of his hoots and the look of his pointing finger, was convinced of the group’s possession of all that is real and necessary in rock ’n’ roll. I don’t think the alcohol was impairing his judgment. Sound Team might not have the capability to reinvent anything in the modern indie music scene, but it does appear that they have the will and energy to put on a tight little rock show, as long as there’s a stage and electricity and a person or two willing to give them the attention they deserve.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

RFC adds West Coast affiliate

The Radio Free Chicago franchise has expanded to the West Coast with the launch of "Radio Free Silver Lake," a sister Blog covering the greater Los Angeles music scene. Leading the local coverage will be fellow live music junkie and fish taco aficionado Joe Fielder. Based in the hipster neighborhood of Silver Lake, Joe will be keeping tabs on the L.A. concert calendar and reviewing the best local bands and shows from the underground scene. While in L.A. recently, I got to experience a couple of Joe recommendations first hand. At this strange flamenco bar/restaurant called El Cid, I saw this great band known as Sea Wolf. Turns out the band is just a side project of one of the members of local favorites Irving(live at The Bottle 4/15), but you'd never guess it from seeing them live. The band sounded better than most main projects and if Irving ever breaks up, Sea Wolf alpha male Alex Church will definitely still have a career as a solo artist. The other Joe recommendation I checked out was Foreign Born. I checked out their songs on MySpace and almost instantly fell in love. Unfortunately their live show at The Echo turned out to be a bit anticlimactic. They didn't suck by any means, but I wasn't blown away by their live presence. Joe conferred that they were a bit off their game that night, so hopefully they'll embark on a Midwest tour sometime in the near future and I can give them another listen. In the meantime, I'd highly recommend checking out their recorded tracks "We Had Pleasure" and "Holy Splinter."

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Smoking Popes listening party

Monday night (2/27), AliveOne is hosting another fine CD release party, this time for the new Smoking Popes live release, Smoking Popes Live at Metro. The event starts at 9pm and the CD/DVD combo will be available for your purchasing enjoyment at midnight. Speaking of "live at Metro," there will also be ticket giveaways for the Smoking Popes return to Metro on March 11th and 12th. AliveOne is located at 2683 N. Halsted, right next to the gargantuan Lincoln Park Home Depot. Party starts at 9p, must be 21+ to attend.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

New Releases Tuesday (2/21)

Artic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am Thats What I Am Not (Domino) Oh snap! The debut record by 2006's most hyped band is in stores today. Watch out for long lines outside of Tower Records. Califone - Room Sound (Thrill Jockey) My favorite album from Tim Rutili and Co. has been reissued by Thrill Jockey. Originally from 2001, this record features the smash hits "Slow Rt. Hand" and "Bottles and Bones(Shade and Sympathy)" Chicago Underground Duo - In Praise of Shadows (Thrill Jockey) The ninth release from Rob Mazurek's "Chicago Underground" project (4th as the "Duo") features more great improvisational experimental jazz with drummer Chad Taylor. Eels with Strings - Live at Town Hall (Vagrant) I guess I wasn't the only one who thought this tour rocked, as it's now been immortalized on this CD/DVD combo release. Eliot Lipp - Tacoma Mockingbird (Hefty) Pushed back a couple of weeks, this fine instrumental hip-hop/electro is finally available for mass consumption. Check out our recent interview with Lipp here. The M's - Future Women (Polyvinyl) Sophomore release from Chicago's very own M's. Spin magazine hails that this record "contains gorgeous, sweeping three-part harmonies recollecting fuzzed out 60's era Brit pop and 70's era T. Rex, cut and reformed with a glimpse toward the future." Damn, busy week...check out these fine releases out today as well: Acid Mother's Temple - Starless and Bible Black Sabbath (Alien 8) Dilated Peoples - 20/20 (Capitol) Lying in States - Wildfire On The Lake (Flameshovel) Maximo Park - Missing Songs (Warp) Nick Cave & Warren Ellis - The Proposition [Sndtk] (Mute) Ray Davies - Other People's Lives (V2) Various Artists - All Natural, Inc Anthology (All Natural)

Monday, February 20, 2006

This Tuesday at Hey Cadets!

The music madness continues this Tuesday night at Hey Cadets! in Bridgeport. Check out the wicked sounds of: Mudboy - Direct form Providence, RI, Mudboy is a delicious blend of circuit bent church orgonomics and smoke machine-surroundsound. Yomul yuk- Guitar and drum duo from Montreal that's ear splitting hellraising. Plus, local favorites Gut Rehab (freaky electronical noise action) and Black Bear Combo (saxy art rock sounds). Festivities begin at 8pm, Hey Cadets! is located on the first floor of 3012 South Archer, just below the Texas Ballroom. Get there via the Ashland stop on the Orange Line or the #62 Archer bus.

Friday, February 17, 2006

RFC Night...now with 20% more rock!

This just in...The Oaves have joined the bill for this Saturday's Radio Free Chicago Night. They'll be performing an exclusive intimate acoustic performance that's sure to be prime bootleg fodder. Once again, here's the essential details for the action this Saturday: Radio Free Chicago Night Saturday, Feb. 18th, 10pm Big Horse Lounge 1558 N Milwaukee Music by: Typewriter (Terry Plumming) Konrad (Deep Elm, Radical Turf) The Oaves Hay Perro Plus, Post-show dance set by DJ Lucifer Sam Must be 21+, $5 at the door* *greasy burritos sold separately

Thursday, February 16, 2006

RFC Interview: Konrad

"Konrad" is just one of the many performance monikers of Radical Turf Records founder and Deep Elm recording artist Jeff Konrad. Based in the small town of Rock Island, IL (just about 3 hours west of Chicago) Jeff invests all the money he saves on rent into fueling the diverse electronic and underground sounds of Radical Turf as well as his other musical projects like RobotUSA and Light Body Vehicle. This Saturday, Jeff will be making his live Chicago debut at the Big Horse as a part of Radio Free Chicago Night. RFC recently caught up with Jeff to discuss more about Radical Turf, the music of Konrad and this Saturday's show. Radio Free Chicago: What inspired you to start your own record label? Jeff Konrad: Just like wanted to do my own thing and hype my friends stuff. RFC: Radical Turf is mostly an electronic label, what are your thoughts on the current state of electronic music? JK: Electronic music is hot corn in the popper. Just not now. It all comes around...needs more grease... RFC: Where/how do you find artists for Radical Turf? JK: It's called the exponential factor: A friend hears a friend who hears a friend who hears a friend who hears an etc..etc. The US is full of ripe sounds. It's effortless to find musical brilliance in Midwest America 2006. It's like shooting quail in a covey. RFC: What's it like balancing your own musical career while also managing a label? JK: It sucks. Seriously. I would not advise it. RFC: Tell us about your upcoming show this Saturday at the Big Horse: JK: My 3 piece band "Konrad," which is myself (guitar and voices), Ben Crabb (drums, vocals) and Chris Boley (bass), will be playing a traditional set of indie rock. This is the first time in a year I've played with a band live so it should be fun. I'd been using laptops, drum machines and circuit-bended stuff recently and this set is the OPPOSITE of that. SPEED ROUND RFC: Do you like robots? JK: No. My left arm can prove it. RFC: MySpace..great networking tool, or huge waste of time? JK: Both. Great place to talk about nothing/everything with everybody/nobody. RFC: Is Rock Island a radical place to live? JK: Rock Island has the oldest library in the state of Illinois. I find that sorta' radical. RFC: What do you like on your tacos? JK: Pico de gallo. RFC: Record you listened to most in 2005: JK: Not sure. I only listen to frequency scanners: Uniden (800xlt) and Radio Shack (pro52) Ham-band, Po/air/citizen Scanners (30-800 mhz), Citizen Band Radio/CB (26-28 mhz)...Uniden Trunk-Trackers II...All-Band Magnetic-Mount Radio Shack 25 to 1300MHZ..... For more information on Konrad, visit www.RadicalTurf.com or www.myspace.com/radicalturfrecords.com. Don't forget, Radio Free Chicago Night featuring Konrad, Typewriter, Hay Perro and DJ Lucifer Sam is this Saturday at The Big Horse, 1558 N. Milwaukee. Audio Sample: Konrad - "Flip Light Switches / Spin Cycle"

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

John Zorn live at U of C

Avant-garde composer and saxophonist John Zorn will be on the campus of the University of Chicago tomorrow for a night of music discussion and live experimental jazz. Zorn will be performing with his Acoustic Masada quartet, which the New Yorker describes as a "mix of straight-ahead jazz, film-noir melodrama, free improvisation, twisted blues and bittersweet balladry." If you've been in a musical rut lately and feel like everything sounds the same anymore, this show may just be the remedy you're looking for. The show starts at 7pm and will be held at U of C's Mandel Hall, 1131 E. 57th Street. General admission is $15, students get in for a cool five bucks. For more information on Zorn and this performance, click here. Technorati:

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Be Mine

Happy Valentine's Day from Jed James and everyone at Radio Free Chicago

New Releases Tuesday (2/14)

Magnet - The Tourniquet (Filter Recordings) Formerly of the band Libido, Norwegian singer/songwriter Even Johansen returns for his second full-length as Magnet. As a sucker for "sad bastard" music, I was totally obsessed with Johansen's 2001 solo release, Quiet & Still, which critics described as "Thom Yorke trapped in a David Lynch movie." The Tourniquet finds Johansen a bit more optimistic and pop-friendly, but his trademark meloncholia still shines through. I'd still recommend Quiet & Still first, but The Tourniquet is worthwile listen if you dig dreamy singer/songwriter pop. Sergio Mendes - Timeless (Concord Records) Seminal Brazilian bossa nova king Sergio Mendes teams up with Will of the Black Eye Peas for a brand new record featuring guest appearances by the likes of Stevie Wonder, John Legend, India.Arie, Black Thought and the rest of the Black Eyed Peas crew. The Subways - Young for Eternity (Sire) Domestic release of the debut album from the band that won the Best Unsigned Band award at the 2004 Glastonbury festival. Features production from Ian Broudie, the former lead singer of The Lightning Seeds. Sing-Sing - Sing Sing and I (Reincarnate Music) Domestic release of the latest album from the British band featuring former Lush guitarist/vocalist Emma Anderson.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Radio Free Chicago Night this weekend!

This Saturday at The Big Horse... Radio Free Chicago Night returns with live bands, cheap booze and a post-show dance party DJ set by yours truly (aka DJ Lucifer Sam). Here's the official details: Radio Free Chicago Night Saturday, Feb. 18th, 10pm Big Horse Lounge 1558 N Milwaukee Music by: Typewriter (Terry Plumming) Konrad (Deep Elm, Radical Turf) Hay Perro DJ Lucifer Sam more details to come...

Friday, February 10, 2006

Support Local Media

Local upstart rag Skint Magazine is hosting a fundraising night this Saturday at the Empty Bottle featuring music from local artists Johnny Rumble, The Collection, David Safran, Lying Delilah and Curtis Evans. Your $8 donation at the door will go to help keep alive Chicago's "first art and music magazine dedicated solely to the broke artists of our lovely city." Festivities begin at 9:30pm.

Weekend Schedule

Fri 2/10 Saturday Looks Good To Me/ casiotone for the painfully alone @ University of Chicago:IDA NOYES 3rd Floor Theatre - FREE The Bad Plus @ Old Town School Of Folk The Wrens @ Northwestern The New Standards @ Schubas Sat 2/11 Mute Math @ Schubas The Polkaholics @ Subterranean Handsome Family @ Old Town School Of Folk High on Fire/ The Bronx @ Double Door On Sale Saturday: Via Ticketmaster 4/21 John Acquaviva @ Smart Bar 3/31 Neko Case / Martha Wainwright @ The Vic 4/1-2 Ray Davies & Band @ The Vic 4/19 Death Cab for Cutie / Franz Ferdinand @ Aragon Ballroom 4/14 Galactic / Rebirth Brass Band @ The Vic 2/26 Kiddo @ Smart Bar 4/22 Lotus @ Schubas 2/13 Morningwood @ Double Door 4/21 Josh Ritter @ Double Door 3/17 Tossers @ Metro 4/5 Matt Wertz @ Park West VIA Ticketweb 3/31 Mic One @ Abbey Pub 3/9 Grace Potter & The Nocturnals @ Abbey Pub 3/25 Scotland Yard Gospel Choir @ Abbey Pub 3/6 Wordsworth / Percee P @ Abbey Pub

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Embrace Local Music

Mark your calendars for another upcoming evening of intriguing local experimental music, sponsored by Northwestern's WNUR-FM (89.3). Saturday, February 11th Mr. City, 1133 W. Fulton 8 PM Bird Names Scalpels The Genders Lee Marvin Computer Arm Toby Driver

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

New Releases Tuesday (2/7)

Belle & Sebastian - The Life Pursuit (Matador) Stuart Murdoch continues to push B&S from an introspective indie collective to a one-man pop juggernaut. Electric Six - Senior Smoke (Metropolis) The domestic release of the Detroit ironic rockers sophomore effort comes a full year after it was released in the UK. Minus 5 - S/T [The Gun Album] (Yep Rock) Scott McCoughey of Young Fresh Fellows and REM returns with another installment of his Minus 5 project. As usual, Peter Buck is along for the ride...along with guest contributions this time around from Wilco, Colin Meloy, John Wesley Harding and Kelly Hogan. Beth Orton - Comfort of Strangers (Astralwerks) Recorded in just two weeks with Jim O'Rourke at the controls as producer, this album takes a much needed step back to basics after her overly glossy and bland 2002 release, Daybreaker. Prefuse 73 - Security Screenings (Warp) Not a proper follow up to last year's Surrounding by Silence, but rather a shorter "transitional" record of new material to hold you over while Scott contemplates the direction of his next full-length opus. Various Artists - Run the Road, Volume 2 (Vice) No Dizzee, Skinner or S-O-V this time around, but there are two tracks with Kano. If this is half as good as the first, I'll be happy. Various Artists - To: Elliott From: Portland (Expunged) New Eliott Smith tribute featuring covers by The Decemberists, The Helio Sequence, The Thermals, Dolorean and more.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Future of Rock n' Roll on the ropes again

BAM! It looks like "The Future of Rock n' Roll" (aka the former 97X in the 'Nati) is in jeopardy once more. Here's the omnious message today on the front page of WOXY.com: Beginning today, WOXY.com is becoming a listener-supported operation... Unfortunately, at the moment, advertisers just don’t know what to think about us. Are we a website or a radio station? Is our audience local or (inter)national? How do we track who’s listening? Everyone is intrigued by what we're doing, but advertisers are not quite ready to throw enough ad dollars our way to make it work. We have always prided ourselves on being a free radio station. No matter who you are, whether you’re a starving student or multi-millionaire, each day we bring you the best music we can find on the planet, and serve it up with live DJs to boot. We think we’re doing something pretty special, and don’t want anyone to miss out on the party. Unfortunately, until technology catches up and advertisers know how to quantify us, we have to find a way to sustain ourselves. For that reason we’ve decided to make the move to being a listener-supported operation... Starting today, we will begin offering our premium service. For the bargain price of $9.95/month we will be offering 24-hour, true broadband, CD-quality streams to subscribers...And for those of you who just can’t afford to pay one more bill each month, we’re keeping a low bandwidth stream. It may not be the best quality, but you can still tune in for free. But just because you can’t pay a monthly fee, we hope you’ll find a way to make a smaller financial contribution to keep us up and running. To ease the transition we’ll leave our 64 kbps streams running until February 13th. While it's sad that WOXY.com won't continue as a free service, I guess it's not a complete shocker, either. With just a few banner ads and no on-air commercials outside of the Budweiser plugs during the daily "new music break," I know I wasn't the only one who had occasionally pondered, "damn...how these guys paying the bills?" We're all huge fans here at RFC, so we sincerely offer our best wishes to everyone on the WOXY.com staff on the new business model. If you're a fan of the station as well, be sure to sign up and show your support.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Shameless Hollywood Plug

So I hope everyone got my sarcasm before...I'm sure as hell not taking any star tours or visiting wax museums while I'm in LA. I'm actually helping out RFC founder Jed James on a film he's working on out here called "My Suicide," starring David Carradine, Muriel Hemingway, Joe Montegna, Tony Hale and some punk ass kid named Gabriel Sunday. Yes, Jed traded in his Chicago headphones a little over a year ago and has been trying to break into the "business" out here ever since. Besides the My Suicide project, he also just officially closed the books on his first film project as a producer, a Josh Evans story called "Jake Lead." Jed says, "it will probably be a direct to DVD foreign market affair," so the odds of seeing it in Chicago are pretty slim unless "some magic happens in post." However, if you happen to be in the Los Angeles area in March, it will be screened at the Hear Gallery in Echo Park on the 11th.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Weekend Schedule

Here’s a list of what’s going on this weekend, from Oh My Rockness: 2/03 Headache City, Busy Signals @ Empty Bottle 2/03 Captain Yonder, The What Four @ Hideout 2/03 Seth, Alphabet, High Hawk @ Martyr's 2/03 Richard Buckner @ Schubas 2/03 Aya Sofia, Tuffy UK @ Subterranean 2/04 Honorary Title, Limbeck, Koufax @ Beat Kitchen 2/04 The Methadones, The Bomb @ Beat Kitchen 2/04 Mi and L'au @ Empty Bottle 2/04 Freakwater @ Hideout 2/04 Catfish Haven @ Subterranean 2/05 Minsk, Bible of the Devil @ Empty Bottle And a few shows of note go on sale tomorrow, all through Ticketmaster: Billy Bragg @ Double Door 3/20 The Cult @ The Vic 3/17 Pretty Girls Make Graves/Giant Drag @ Metro 5/5 In other news, the Plug music award winners were announced. Sufjan Stevens took best album and best male artist of the year. Bright Eyes took artist and song of the year honors. Remember, you can’t complain if you didn’t vote.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Version '06

The annual Version fest has returned for 2006 and will take place April 20 to May 6 across Chicago, bridging the gap between art, technology, and social activism. The Version crew is currently accepting proposals from those interested in participating in the festivities. More information from the Version website: Version>06 :: Parallel Cities April 20- May 6, 2006 Chicago U$A DEADLINE FOR PROPOSALS: FEB 28, 2005 Version is a hybrid festival focused on emerging discourses and practices evolving between art, technology and social and political activism. Version examines the activities of local configurations and external networks that use visual and conceptual art strategies, innovative social practices, creative uses of new technologies, organizing strategies, emerging activist/artist initiatives, campaigns, public interventions and DIY projects. Version presents a very diverse program of activities featuring an experimental art exposition, artistic disturbances, exhibitions, networked urban events, screenings, interactive applications, performances, street art, presentations, talks, workshops, art rendez-vous, parties, and action.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Festivals and Festivals and More Freakin' Festivals....

So the Coachella lineup is unofficially officially released, sans Smashing Pumpkins; but don’t fret my Corganophiles because now they’re being rumored to appear at Lollapalooza this summer. According to Billboard Lollapalooza will definitely be returning to Grant Park in August. It’s unclear where these Smashing Pumpkin rumors come from, whether Corgan’s actually mentioned anything or if promoters are just lusting. And the lineup for Tennessee’s Bonnaroo Festival has been announced, with Radiohead leading the way. The festival will take place June 16-18 and tickets go on sale Saturday, February 11. And finally, as I reported last Friday, news is swirling around about Pitchfork’s Intonation Festival 2006. Now the Sun-Times is reporting that the festival will branch into two separate events, The Intonation Music Festival and the Pitchfork Music Festival, to take place in June and July respectively. No details yet on performers, but with all the other festival buzz this week, perhaps someone will accidentally on purpose start some rumors.