Annie Fish looks directly at the camera, wearing glasses and dyed red hair, against a blank backdrop lit in red
Annie Fish Credit: Courtesy the artist

On Friday, September 16, Chicago singer, songwriter, and cartoonist Annie Fish will drop Weird Like Me, an album so steeped in classic alt-rock you’ll half believe Fish recorded it with Flood in 1993. Weird Like Me is a concept record about Fish’s childhood rock dreams, which she says she abandoned after seeing how the “powers that be” treated Billy Corgan and Courtney Love. She’s presenting it as the reissue of a long-lost album, for which she’s constructed an elaborate mythology, even posting an oral history about her fictional 90s alt-rock fame. Fortunately, you don’t need time travel to hear these songs live: on Saturday, September 17, Fish celebrates the album’s release at Cole’s Bar.

In the fictional 90s, Annie Fish were a band, but in real life, Fish recorded every instrument herself.

Gossip Wolf knows Nick Butcher and Nadine Nakanishi of multi-media studio Sonnenzimmer mostly for their top-notch concert posters and their clever releases of their own music (Butcher’s 2020 album Saccadic consists of two cassettes—one filled with music, the other with concrete). In 2020, Butcher and Nakanishi began working with local composer Ryan Norris, aka Coupler, on Cat Pose, which they call a “tone poem” or “audio-imaging exploration.” Its graphic score is based on 33 “slices” through an image of Norris’s late cat Jericho, which created loops analogous to audio loops. Through spoken word and drifting electronics, Cat Pose embodies a curious feline climbing and frolicking in an empty apartment. On Saturday, September 17, Butcher, Nakanishi, and Norris perform the piece twice at Sonnenzimmer’s studio (4045 N. Rockwell), at 11 AM and 4 PM. Pianist Mabel Kwan opens both shows. They’re free, but you must RSVP.

Making Cat Pose involved mapping audio loops onto ellipses created by imaginary cross sections of a cat.

Last week, Monobody bassist Steve Marek self-released the self-titled debut album by Holy Western Parallels, which fuses gentle electronics, arty prog, and hip-hop. Holy Western Parallels features contributions from his Monobody bandmates as well as V.V. Lightbody, Udababy members Davis and Joshua Virtue, and more!

Holy Western Parallels is Steve Marek’s project, but it involves a dozen musicians.

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