2016 Wrap-Up: Best Local Releases

December 29, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

2016 was rough, there’s no denying it. Nationally, we lost some of music’s biggest icons and innovators and the country hopped the fast-track to fascism while locally there was a record number of shootings and violence prompting numerous (and necessary) acts of protest and civil disobedience. But 2016 also happened to be an amazing year […]

Holy Wave @ Schubas

November 10, 2016 · Posted by Derrick Alexander

It’s difficult thinking back on this show, knowing it was enjoyable, but having the weight of a pivotal election in the back of my mind. The energy at the beginning of the show was generally positive, it was 8 o’clock, polls had just closed, and local boys Soft Candy were opening. Divino Nino, to no […]

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Death from Above 1979 + Deap Vally @ House of Blues

October 27, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

San Francisco, Cali.-based Black Rebel Motorcycle Club graced Chicago’s House of Blues Thursday, October 13 with Death From Above 1979 and dynamic-duo, Deap Vally for a night of ear-splitting rock and roll. Deap Vally, probably best-known for providing the theme song to Vh1 series “Mob Wives” kicked things off. The band’s most recent release “Femejism” […]

On Our Radar: Solo Sam — “Happily Alone”

October 13, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

When done the right way, musical fusions and genre-bending make for much more interesting, fresh tunes. Case in point, West Loop rapper Solo Sam and his standout track “Happily Alone.” With rhymes that glide along a simple guitar riff elevated only by Sam’s Busta Rhymes-esque control of his delivery, “Happily Alone” is both blues and […]

Angel Olsen + Rodrigo Amarante @ Thalia Hall

September 28, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

“I dare you to understand what makes me a woman,” Angel Olsen echoed during her encore at night one of a two-night, sold-out stint at Thalia Hall in Pilsen. Those lyrics seemed to capture the entire evening though, for her 90-minute set crossed the bridge from female infatuation and memorable “firsts” to that of a […]

First Listen: The Avantist — ‘AVANTIST’ LP

September 28, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

The Avantist’s self-titled LP is a wonderfully furious journey through one hell of a relationship (either with another person or with oneself). The 12 tracks, from “classics” like the surf-rocker “Tidalwave” and glossy, indie-tinged “Truth in Light” to stunning, soaring choruses on new compositions “Deep Red Love” and “Medi-Demi” show how the Arias brothers bit down […]

Interview: Beat Drun Juel, hard, loud, and in your face

September 22, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

Beat Drun Juel is one of Chicago’s best bands— you just wouldn’t know it because of the current garage-rock boom eclipsing the city’s scene. Just beneath that catchy, jangling power-chord surface though, are many scenes and bands who don’t know where they fit and don’t really care to. There you’ll find Beat Drun Juel, showing […]

Riot Fest 2016 Photo Gallery

September 20, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

Riot Fest 2016: Day-by-Day Recap

September 19, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

Riot Fest returned to Chicago’s Douglas Park, toting a three-day weekend entrenched in pure nostalgia- rock n’ roll and otherwise. Yes, the “Original” Misfits reunited (we’ll get to that later), Deftones blew everyone away, and Bad Religion reminded folks why it’s synonymous with “punk.” The Specials had thousands of folks dancing in the balmy, midday […]

Beat Drun Juel – ‘Suppressor’

July 22, 2016 · Posted by Jessi Roti

Beat Drun Juel is one of Chicago’s best hard rock bands, if not the best.  The trio’s debut EP, Off Your Face was a haunting collection of meandering riffs and rumbling bass before singer Pasty Face’s knockout growl crashed against the busiest of drum cymbals. Suppressor picks up where Off Your Face left off and takes it to the dark […]