Friday, March 30, 2007

April Fools!

TMT played a little early joke today if you haven't heard . . .

Even weighed in!

The reaction has been hilarious. The joke even had to be revealed ridiculously early (like, 11AM) to calm everyone down, haha.

Neko rules my world

Neko Case and I should totally be friends. If she lived in Chicago again, we'd totally hang out, hot glue-gunning Peeps to gang members cars all over town.

Meanwhile, Kirstie has a great review of the Menomena show on RFC, along with pictures. It's nice to see reviews from other people who aren't as freakishly obsessed with them as I am :) Prolly a little more objective and all.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Neko Case tonight, y'all.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Here's something fun, and the deadline is tomorrow:

WLUW is proud to be a sponsor of I-Go Car Sharing's "Audio Emissions" program. I-Go is asking local bands to submit up to two song samples (3MB, 1 minute) to be
considered for inclusion on their "Audio Emissions" CD. The disc will be included in every I-Go car, and 1000 copies will be given away at a kick-off concert
on May 31st at Metro. This is a great chance to increase your band's visibility. Artists submitting tracks must have a direct Chicago connection, and the
songs should be lyrically "family friendly." The deadline is coming right up - March 29th. Submit your tracks today to

Tracks will be chosen by voters on the IGO site between April 1-15.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Sigh . . .

Well, I made sure I set the recorder last night to tape my show, but I forgot to turn on iTunes. So I recorded two hours of . . . nothing! I need to make myself a checklist before I leave for the show.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Banco Unpopular

If my neighborhood can't have fried twinkies at 3AM or hipsters sending each other missed connections while in the same room, then I don't want to be a part of that neighborhood anymore.
Update: Bjork tickets for the May 12 show at the Auditorium Theatre now go on sale this Friday at 5pm.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Right wing, left wing, chicken wing

The new Modest Mouse album is pretty great. I think it's better than Good News for People Who Love Bad News, though of course not as good as Lonesome Crowded West or Moon and Antarctica. Which is fine with me, because if they made an album that was better than Moon and Antarctica, it would probably make my head explode upon hearing it.

Man, how awesome would it be to see Modest Mouse play Moon and Antarctica live from beginning to end? I think hearing that might make my head explode too.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Last night I watched Half Nelson. It was really good, and the soundtrack was almost entirely made up of songs from Broken Social Scene's You Forgot It In People. Very cool.

Thursday, March 22, 2007


Wait, Fujiya and Miyagi are opening for Peter Bjorn and John on their tour? SO EXCITED!!!! That makes buying that ticket right away extra worth it.
So does reporting on a Slint Don't Look Back appearance in New York mean they won't be playing at Pitchfork, or are they teasing us before announcing it? Those NY dates are conveniently close to the festival dates . . .

Armchair Apocrypha

I wrote a review of the new Andrew Bird album. Here it is.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Menomenahhhhhhhhhhhhhh . . .

I'm not even going to bother writing up a review of the Menomena show last night, because it would be pretty much exactly the same as the last review I wrote for them, except you can insert virtually every song off Friend and Foe except "Air Aid" to the playlist. Also, Brent stood behind his keyboards instead of sat. Oh how I love this band.

Yesterday I told one of the auditors at work he should check Menomena out. This morning I came in and heard him whistling "Wet and Rusting." The Menomena pull is strong, my friends.

I also found it funny that during the Field Music set, the quaint British singer said "the headlining band is up next. I say that because I still don't know how to pronounce their name." Meh NAH Meh Nah, people.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Let the rumor mill continue . . .

Slint performing Spiderland at the Pitchfork Festival's Friday lineup?
Finally! Bjork's coming to the Auditorium Theatre on Saturday, May 12. Tickets go on sale this Friday at 5PM, and apparently ticket prices range from $44 to . . . $134???

EDIT: Ok, for some reason that link isn't working anymore . . . I'll be sure to update when ticketmaster reposts it.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Of Montreal w/ Walter Meego and the Grand Buffet @ the Metro, 3/15/07

Touring with Of Montreal was the Grand Buffet, a couple of white guy rappers from Pittsburgh who were pretty hilarious, if not a bit of a novelty, especially after they brought out a stuffed animal called "motorcycle dog" to sit on a mike stand during their final rap. Regardless, they seemed to be having a lot of fun, as did the audience when I walked in with a couple songs to go. Chicago band Walter Meego played their brand of electro-rock second; this is a local band that I think has a lot of potential to go places. Before they do though, I think singer Justin Sconza needs to perfect his falsetto first; his vocals wavered from spot-on to a little dicey. All in all, I enjoyed them, especially when Justin and Jarrett bobbed up and down to the beat in front of their keyboards. Justin also gets big props for wearing acid-washed jeans straight out the '80s.

In between sets, I took note of the small group of youngin's who glammed up for the show, clearly getting there just as the doors opened in order to park themselves right up front and center. One young man especially went all out, sporting a teased and glittery hairdo, gold eye makeup, gold necklaces and some sort of velvet dress with gold threading. Where were these kids when I was in high school?

I'd been prepared for what to expect from Of Montreal's stage show, and they surely did not disappoint. After Thax came out to do a poem joined by someone dressed as Darth Vader, the band came out in full costume and makeup, with frontman Kevin Barnes's sporting a chinese shirt and red pants to go along with his bronzed face and blue eyeshadow creating a mask around his eyes. Meanwhile, three video screens pulsed with light shows, photographs and various cartoon imagery. After timidly launching into "Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse," the band gained traction with each song and each costume change. After ripping the Chinese shirt during "Cato As a Pun" to reveal a glittery tiger t-shirt and putting on a large lobster claw for a fwe minutes, Kevin eventually went backstage as the band played an extended instrumental, returning in hot pants and fishnets to do an intense version of "The Past Is a Grostesque Animal." As the band played through most of Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? and much of Satanic Panic in the Attic, he eventually climbed a ladder into a giant dress and then stripped down into a leotard with poofy ruffles on the side. Glam-a-rific!

Aside from the visual spectacle, the band sounded great, everyone seeemed to be having a blast, and the glam kids up front got some personal contact with their idol when Kevin got on his knees to do a guitar solo for them at the front of the stage. Other than the extended instrumental, Kevin's costume changes were pretty seamless, so the show flowed quite well. I think Hissing Fauna is undoubtedly their best album yet, so I wasn't sad at all to have it be the primary focus of their set list.

Check out the photoblog to see pictures; the various costumes are best seen rather than described. Stupid blogger isn't letting me post a pic directly, so it's your only way to see it!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Did anyone not think Sonic Youth was going to be playing Daydream Nation at Pitchfork this summer?

"I am on such a bad date . . . "

The Of Montreal show last night (which I'll post pics of and write about this weekend) proved to be hilariously awesome before the band even made it on the stage. I was standing next to this guy and girl who appeared to be together, and she was totally wasted at 7PM. During Walter Meego she also proved to be a terrible dancer- she clearly didn't know what to do with her arms, so she kept grabbing her chest. Watching her was funny enough, but I couldn't contain myself when I looked over to the guy she was with and saw him texting to his friend, "I'm on such a bad date." AWESOME. Then later after she slumped over on to him and then finally on to the stage, security asked him to take her out. I have never seen anyone look so pissed. I hope he at least dumped her in a cab and came back in to catch the show!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

I'll be checking out Of Montreal tonight for their early show at the Metro, and I'm pumped. Hopefully this weekend I can get up pics from TV on the Radio and Of Montreal, along with some words. That is, if I haven't had too much green beer.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Been Howling Forever . . .

I saw TV on the Radio last night. Seriously, how awesome is "Wolf Like Me"? Pretty freakin' awesome.

I'll post pics (if they turned out, my camera ran out of batteries in the middle and was working pretty slowly up until that point) and a review later this week if I get a chance.

Also, I added titles to the blog. Woot woot.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I read today in my latest issue of Wired about Radio Sass, "an experimental radio protocol currently in development that takes classic tunes and whittles them down to about two minutes". Andrew Whiteman of Broken Social Scene apparently begs to differ. Listen up and decide for yourself if any song sounds better cut to their poppiest moments.

Monday, March 12, 2007

After finishing Six Feet Under yesterday, I went to read what my favorite writer, TV critic Heather Havrilevsky, had to say about the finale when she wrote about it back in '05. In her reaction, which pretty much echoed mine, she says:

"And then, something comes along and shakes you awake: You fall in love, hear some heart-wrenching song, experience some tragic event, or read an incredible book, and what was once a mundane world changes into an incredible, glowing, rich, exquisitely sad, humbling, beautiful place. Art is designed to have this effect: to inspire us and wake us from the stupor of day-to-day life. The very best art feels incredibly personal, highlighting our most treasured memories and dredging up our deepest sorrows and pointing us toward a more passionate future. Each of us has a different collection of cherished items that we hold close to our hearts. My own messy tangle of favorite things includes REM's "Reckoning," the Rabbit series by John Updike, Charlie Kaufman's "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," "The Corrections" by Jonathan Franzen, almost any Sufjan Stevens song, the last chapter of Wallace Stegner's "Angle of Repose," and Alan Ball's "Six Feet Under."

This got me thinking about what cultural items I would put on a similar list. I'll steal "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and now "Six Feet Under" from Heather and add every Todd Solondz movie, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince", "I'll Believe in Anything" by Wolf Parade, "Lord of the Flies," the Dismemberment Plan, Goya's "Saturn Devouring One of His Children" and the 2004 Coachella Music Festival. You know when something unexpectedly gives you nightmares (Todd Solondz's "Storytelling"), puts you in a daze for a week ("Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince") or causes you to cry unstoppably for two hours (the "Six Feet Under" finale), something's going right.

Feel free to post your own list! I've already picked up a copy of "The Corrections," so I'd love to hear about what other life-altering experiences I could be having.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

I've mentioned here a few times before how I've been Netflixing Six Feet Under. After a few months of obsessive watching, I finally made it to the season finale. It's interesting how watching an entire series over the span of two months instead of 5 years, I became so incredibly invested in the show and its characters. Anyhoo, after a few hours of mourning, I went and looked for the amazing song that played during the show's unbelievable final minutes. Turns out it's "Breathe Me" by Sia, who I saw sing with Zero 7 last year. Gorgeous song- get it here.
This is really cool- download this itunes plug in, and it pulls up a calendar on itunes of all the shows coming up from bands in your library.

Friday, March 09, 2007

A cool benefit show coming up: I've heard good things about the Panda Band.

Chicago,IL - March 2nd, 2007 - RadioFreeChicago.Org and Mary-Arrchie Theatre Co. is proud to welcome fresh from a SXSW tour of duty, Australian's THE PANDA BAND with SLINGS & ARROWS, and DAVE FISCHOFF. There will be a raffle to support The Mary-Arrchie Theatre Co, a Chicago Theatre staple since 1986. Help Keep This Theatre Open.

Sunday, March 18th, 2007 @ Martyrs'


THE PANDA BAND (Perth, Australia)

Martyrs' | 3855 N. Lincoln, Chicago, IL 60613
21 & Over | $10 | Doors 8:30 PM - Show 9:00 PM
Advance Tickets will be available on
Check out my review of El Perro Del Mar, with Kirstie's pics, here on RFC.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

I got the email today about the secret Lollapalooza ticket sale. This year their up to $60 (last year they were $45, the year before $35). I clicked through and have been waiting in the virtual waiting room for almost an hour. I don't think I'll be getting them! I'm not sure I even want to go, but they sure would be easy to sell!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

El Perro Del Mar was heavenly. She is a goddess. Review forthcoming.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Super excited for the El Perro Del Mar show tonight at the Lakeshore Theater. Also excited that 1) It's at 8PM, and 2) I can sit during it. Yay for getting old! Fellow RFC writer Kirstiecat and I will have pictures (by her) and a review (by me) on RFC later this week.

In radio show news, hopefully I'll have time to upload last night's show after getting back from El Perro tonight. I'll be taking next week off from the show to rest up for TV on the Radio and Of Montreal next week. My, how much easier it is to get a sub at 8PM instead of 6AM!

Monday, March 05, 2007

I've been hearing that the new Arcade Fire album (which we have in the studio and I played a track from tonight on the show) was named after a John Kennedy Toole book. Having just read Confederacy of Dunces for the second time, I was under the impression that that was the only book he'd ever written before committing suicide. After some research, I learned that was sort of true; however, he did write a book called Neon Bible when he was 16 years old that was eventually published after Confederacy won the Pulitzer posthumously. (Of course, the amazon reviews in that link are already referencing the Arcade Fire album).

Anyhoo, if you haven't read Confederacy of Dunces and enjoy the absurd, go read it now.

Saturday, March 03, 2007


What happened to Hutch Harris? Last time I saw the Thermals he was ragingly shy, hiding behind long, shaggy hair, racing through his songs like he couldn’t wait for the show to end all the while staring at the back of the wall of the Fireside Bowl as if he was trying to forget there were actually people watching him. Fast forward two years and suddenly he’s a frontman. Gone is the hair and gone is the timidity; maybe the fact that he’s now playing the best material he’s ever written has him energized and renewed? Last night at Subterranean, the Thermals were in top form, with Hutch leading the charge. The band still raced through their songs, but this time it was with conviction instead of anxiety. Hutch was all big smiles and expressive features, especially during the songs from The Body, the Blood the Machine, when he’d put down his guitar and preach from his pulpit, waving his arms in the air and shaking his fingers at the audience to emphasize his messages of apocalyptic doom (and actually pantomiming holding a baby every time he sang “I carry my baby” during "A Pillar of Salt").

The band came out on stage and immediately blasted through the first three songs of TBTBTM, “Here’s Your Future,” “I Might Need You to Kill,” and “An Ear for Baby” before even stopping to take a breath. Bassist Kathy Foster hopped around the stage virtually non-stop throughout the performance, her fantastically wild, curly hair bouncing to the beat. Hutch, Kathy and Co. then managed to squeeze 20+ songs into an hour, reminding me just how short and fast their songs really are; they razed through virtually all of both More Parts Per Million and Fuckin’ A, sprinkling the new songs inbetween before capping the night off with “A Pillar of Salt” and “Returning to the Fold”.

It’s been awhile since I’ve found myself at an all-ages show, so I shouldn’t have been quite so surprised when a couple punk kids tried to start a mosh pit from the moment of the first guitar riff. It didn’t work too well, as no one around them wanted to participate and Subterranean is a little too small to get much going, but that didn’t stop them from thrashing around the entire show. I guess by “them” I should really be referencing “that kid in the green track jacket who kept yelling to the bands about how drunk he was, crumpled to the floor at one point, magically got a second wind once the Thermals came on, and eventually tried to body surf to no avail”.

See the full photoset here.

Friday, March 02, 2007

According to the Redeye this morning, ticket brokers are already pushing tickets to the sold out Arcade Fire shows (11,000 tickets sold!) at prices ranging from $115 to $999. Seriously? Who would pay $1,000 to see a band with one album?
I walked past a new store on Milwaukee yesterday (across from Lava, incidentally) called "the Boring Store" and was so utterly confused. Now all is revealed.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

I was walking up Milwaukee Ave. after work today and noticed a new bar; lo and behold, it turns out the Lava Lounge has relocated to 1270 N. Milwaukee since closing at it's old Damen location last year. I peeked in, and it's pretty slick looking, not like the dingy Lava I remember.

p.s. I'm too lazy to get my Thermals pics up right now; I've got the final season of Six Feet Under to make it through first (the last episode found the Fisher's partying for Nate's 40th birthday to the sounds of the Arcade Fire). I'll get them up with a review this weekend.
OH MY GOD. Someone book me a ticket to DC, quick!!!
What's this? Courtesy of Radio Free Chicago, it appears Air is streaming their entire new album, Pocket Symphony, on their myspace page. Fabulous!