Things are about to get weird—the original lineup of Chicago slowcore trio Pinebender has reunited, and will play the Empty Bottle on Sunday, September 23. Matt Clark (also of White/Light) left the band in 2002, but he’s back in action on baritone guitar, joining singer-guitarist Chris Hansen and drummer Stephen Howard, who’s been covering for Clark on baritone for 16 years while Dennis Stacer played drums. Stacer has moved away, so this new/old arrangement is full-time—or as full-time as it can be, given the group’s intermittent schedule! Pinebender’s Sunday set will draw from the three releases with this lineup: Too Good to Be True (1998), Things Are About to Get Weird (1999), and The High Price of Living Too Long With a Single Dream (2003).
Chicago underground rapper Freako has been busy: in June he dropped Lean and Bacon, an EP with rapper Kush Worthy that shows off his melancholy, drowsy flow, and on Friday he releases the mixtape ADHD. On Saturday, September 29, he hosts Freako’s Fye Art Show at Bru Chicago (1562 N. Milwaukee), which features work by eight visual artists and short sets by two poets, two singers, and 12 rappers, including Isaiah G, Adot, and HateSonny. Tickets are $15, $10 in advance.
Locals Ivy Dye made their album debut in 2016 with the hooky, walloping alt-rock of Regality. On Friday, September 21, the band follows up with the cassette EP Diminish (on 1212 Records), and judging by lead single “Skin Your Knees,” Ivy Dye are hardly diminished—they remind this wolf of 90s college-radio faves Buffalo Tom and Bettie Seveert! On Saturday, September 22, they play a release show at Cole’s.
In May, Jack Armando of My Gold Mask dropped a self-titled darkwave album as Panic Priest, and fans of early Tears for Fears and Peter Murphy’s Deep should love its moody grooves, dark romanticism, and chilly synths. Panic Priest performs at Beat Kitchen on Monday, September 24. v
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