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Chicago trio Gosh Diggity sharpen their lo-fi pop sound on Runaway Rocketboy

Chicago trio Gosh Diggity have drawn a bead on the chemistry that gave a hard-to-pin-down magnetism to the solo lo-fi electronics projects—among them Say Hi and Casiotone for the Painfully Alone—that occupied a special place in 2000s indie pop. Gosh Diggity’s early EPs, 2019’s banana brains and 2020’s Bedtime for Bonzos, radiate skinned-knee shambolic glee […]

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Oakland’s Kowloon Walled City return after six years with a noise-rock masterpiece

Oakland’s Kowloon Walled City formed in 2007 as an intense postmetal outfit who tipped their hat to fellow Oaklanders Neurosis, who’d helped pioneer the fusion of hardcore and sludge. During the 14 years since, the band have slowly pulled back on the aggression and fury, settling into creeping, deliberately paced noise rock. Kowloon Walled City’s […]

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Austin doom outfit Monte Luna takes their dazed and heavy doom on the road

In 2016, Austin doom unit Monte Luna dropped their debut demo—a self-titled release with just one self-titled track more than 20 minutes long—and just a few months later followed it with their powerful first EP, The Hound. These served as appetizers for their self-titled 2017 full-length debut, which exuded confidence and showcased a trippy heaviness […]

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LOWERLIPDRIP’s brief catalog packs a lot of experimental hip-hop power

Experimental Chicago hip-hop duo LOWERLIPDRIP released four digital singles between 2019 and May 2020, each consisting of two tracks that overflow with freewheeling glee and unpredictable stylistic shifts. Those singles not only helped establish LLD as a local force to watch but also caught the attention of b4, a recently established imprint of venerable UK […]

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Chicago joins seven other cities on two continents to host the Catalytic Sound Festival

Avant-garde jazz musicians have been uniting to better control their opportunities to perform, record, and engage with their communities at least since the 1960s, when the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) first convened in Chicago and the shorter-lived Jazz Composers Guild (which included Carla Bley, Sun Ra, Bill Dixon, and Archie Shepp) […]

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Bummer’s noise-rock rippers provide a glimpse into their midwestern nightmare

Since 2013, Kansas City trio Bummer have been belting out full-tilt, bludgeoning sludge that’s heightened by their dark-humored taste for grim obsessions and disaffected existence. Over a handful of EPs and one previous full-length, guitarist-vocalist Matt Perrin, bassist Mike Gustafson, and drummer Sam Hutchinson have railed against the ennui of their dead-end daily routines with […]