Ratso's mugshot
Ratso's mugshot Credit: Courtesy of Ratso

A year and a half ago, Gossip Wolf reported that Chic-a-Go-Go puppet cohost Ratso—often seen in the company of Roctober magazine’s Jake Austen—was starting a garage band called Ratso & the Rabbits with clothing-optional punk Nobunny and Milwaukee drum freak the Rhythm Chicken, both of whom wear rabbit masks. They’re making their long-awaited debut on Fri 11/30 at the Roctober 20th-anniversary party at Bottom Lounge. Says Ratso: “Last year I started taking punk singing classes online from Phoenix University but ran out of money two credits short of my certificate. Since then I’ve been thrifty with my cable-access salary, and now I’m finally official!” Fellow masked band the Goblins and Chicago “sex beat” specialists Party Bat also play, and the first 100 fans get a free copy of Roctober‘s new 50th issue.

Chicago antifolk outfit Shiloh has recorded its second album, Mrs., with Rick Riggs at Handwritten Recording. Guitarist, banjoist, and vocalist Ryan Ensley shared a few new tracks, and this Wolf has taken a shine to the band’s warmly rustic sound. Mrs. is due early next year, but you can hear some of the new material when Shiloh plays the Empty Bottle on Sun 11/25 as part of Windy City Rock‘s Rock for Kids Charity Jam; Rambos, Panda Riot, We Repel Each Other, the Hecks, Massive Ego, and Tiny Fireflies round out the bill, and Alex White DJs.

Dark Fog are one of Chicago’s most underappreciated psych bands. Since 2003 they’ve been setting their controls for the heart of 1968, and this week they self-release their trippiest LP yet, The Seaside Sounds of Dark Fog at Doctor Officer Quimby’s House. It’s full of chunky MC5/Pink Fairies motorcycle rock, overdriven Hendrix-style wah-wah, and mushroom clouds of reverb. Dark Fog play a release party at the Burlington on Fri 11/23; Rabble Rabble and Killer Moon open.

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