Posted inMusic

Experimental musician Marina Herlop beckons listeners into her world of language and sound

Marina Herlop’s primary interest is aesthetics. She’ll say her songs aren’t autobiographical, and the pianist’s penchant for dropping made-up language into digitally manipulated audio environments can make it difficult for listeners to ground her work in something familiar. But with enough scrutiny, you can follow clues that situate her evolving output within a number of […]

Posted inMusic

Chicago’s Viva Acid fest brings Eris Drew back to town

Eris Drew’s debut album, 2021’s Quivering in Time, embeds lots of attention-grabbing details in its collagelike, psychedelic-tinged dance tracks—among them sounds of turntable scratching. There’s one near the end of “Time to Move Close,” after a slyly funky and somnolent synth melody guides listeners through six minutes of Hi-NRG percussive loops and several divergent synth […]

Posted inThe Secret History of Chicago Music

All-girl garage band the Same got short-changed by the grown-ups in the room

Sometimes you have to play the long game. I’ve been trying for years to get the story of local 1960s girl group the Same. My interview requests didn’t lead anywhere, and I couldn’t track down much info about their only release—the 1967 single “Sunshine, Flowers and Rain”—or about the women who’d created it.  Thankfully, Chicago […]

Posted inGossip Wolf

Future Rootz teams up to reissue a rare album of trippy 70s Afro-Cuban funk

Last week, Chicago Latinx artist collective and label Future Rootz teamed up with Toronto counterpart Canal Sounds to reissue Yoyi, a trippy Afro-Cuban album that Cuban multi-instrumentalist Jorge Soler León released under the name Grupo los Yoyi in 1977. Yoyi originally came out on the Areito imprint of EGREM, which for decades was Cuba’s only […]

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Scottish hip-hop group Young Fathers embrace their light on Heavy Heavy

Update Tue 9/27: Young Fathers have postponed this show till April 11, 2024. The new date is also at the Vic, and all tickets already bought will be honored or refunded. For about a decade, Scottish trio Young Fathers have been releasing subterranean-sounding experimental hip-hop songs whose strange arrangements combine brawny percussion, squeaky synths, polyphonic […]

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Thantifaxath and Sunless explore two different realms of metal

Toronto-based black-metal trio Thantifaxath (whose members are deliberately anonymous) released a startling, unusual debut album, Sacred White Noise, in 2014. Since then, though, their recorded output has been tantalizingly sparse: just one EP in 2017. So their second full-length, Hive Mind Narcosis, which they released in June on Dark Descent, had plenty of time to […]

Posted inMusic

The Hyde Park Jazz Festival’s richly varied program opens doors to musical growth with new alliances

The Hyde Park Jazz Festival may bear the name of a single neighborhood, but it’s a world-class event. The programming draws heavily from local talent, but Chicagoans such as saxophonist Ari Brown and vocalist Dee Alexander have earned international profiles. And the performers from elsewhere include the likes of Detroit drummer Louis Hayes and Philadelphia […]