I’ve long admired Chicago indie label Star Creature Universal Vibrations for its efforts to push the synth-heavy sounds of boogie and modern funk and bolster the international underground community that loves them. The label focuses on contemporary artists and releases, but it also maintains an indispensable archival project in the form of its ongoing Chicago […]
It’s a common misconception that true, filthy rock ’n’ roll died in the early 80s after being eclipsed by new wave, whose shiny commercial sound piled on the gated reverb, drum machines, keytars, and New Romantic vocals. In fact, noisy rock and garage punk flourished underground during that era, thanks to the likes of the […]
Chicago-based, Taiwan-born bedroom-pop auteur Layton Wu blurs boogie, yacht rock, and sun-kissed 60s pop into a calming sound that helps dial back my anxiety when every scrap of news cranks it to “high.” He released the luxuriant Summertime Mixtape (Sunset Music) four days after the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, and since I first listened […]
Toronzo Cannon’s 2016 breakout debut album for Alligator is titled The Chicago Way, but it doesn’t include a song of the same name. Since that release, the homegrown bluesman has become so enamored with the phrase that he wrote a song around it in time for his next album, The Preacher, the Politician or the […]
Star Creature Universal Vibrations starts 2020 with a bundle of boogie, Elastic Arts debuts a 16-channel overhead sound system, and more.
Current musical obsessions of hip-hop producer Mike Jones, rapper and producer Pete Sayke, and Reader staff writer Leor Galil
Plus: Bric-a-Brac celebrates five years with a stacked in-store show, prog-punk brothers Avantist keep the hits coming on a new EP, and more.
Current musical obsessions of Sick Muse editor Sasha Tycko, Central Air Radio host Jared Brown, and Reader writer Leor Galil
DJ and collector Mark Grusane, cofounder of defunct south-side shop Mr. Peabody Records, talks about the insanely rare and sought-after tracks he’s sharing on his new compilation.
Tim Zawada and Ben Van Dyke’s label, Star Creature Universal Vibrations, helps turn the far-flung fans of this resurgent postdisco dance music into an evolving community.
The duo discuss their history and their 2001 album Pound for Pound for the album’s 15th anniversary; Hagerty also plays a free solo show at the Owl tonight.
An insightful box set reconciles disco’s old reputation as a popular plague with its new one as a mystery cult.