Posted inArts & Culture

Nights of the Blue Rider

Other festivals run one weekend, maybe two or three; but this one, hosted by the Pilsen area’s Blue Rider Theatre, runs three months–through December 17, with shows Fridays-Saturdays at 8 PM and Sundays at 7 PM, as well as children’s matinees on selected Saturdays and Sundays at 3 PM. Most evenings feature two or more […]

Posted inMusic

Spot Check

TRULY 9/15, METRO This Seattle trio featuring former Soundgarden bassist Hiro Yamamoto and original Screaming Trees drummer Mark Pickerel could be a supergroup–if anyone had ever heard of them. On their debut album, Fast Stories…From Kid Coma (Capitol), these castoffs sleepwalk through the detritus of the postgrunge era, propping up riffs, licks, and sounds that […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Fontella Bass

Fontella Bass’s torrid “Rescue Me” on Chess Records’ Checker subsidiary in 1965 established her as a major R & B figure, despite her relatively brief tenure in the limelight. All in all, Bass charted seven times for Chess. After leaving the label in 1968 she toured Europe for a while with the Art Ensemble of […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Menahem Pressler and Ying Quartet

This recital, which opens the fifth season of Oak Park’s well-received Concerts Under the Dome chamber series, felicitously pairs a seasoned veteran with a quartet of emerging talents noted for their interpretive acumen and enthusiastic playing. Menahem Pressler, the distinguished pianist whose career stretches back to the late 40s and who’s achieved wide renown as […]

Posted inArts & Culture


Tricky’s prophetic debut album, Maxinquaye (Island), is an aural ripple unlike anything you’ve heard before. Emerging from the much-hyped if feebly named Bristol, England, trip-hop scene, which has also produced Portishead and Massive Attack, with whom Tricky (aka Adrian Thaws) first recorded, he sumptuously twists hip-hop rudiments into a slippery, dense collage of sound. On […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Extra Glenns

John Darnielle, singer and songwriter with the Extra Glenns, is a man in love with language. Flush with vividly evocative phrases and economically rendered narratives, his songs may seem a bit out of sync with the times: in an age when the self-conscious deployment of obscenity is a viable marketing tool, he makes old-fashioned phrases […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

While leafing through my Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock ‘n’ Roll, I came upon the horrifying fact that Chuck Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode,” the song that started rock, peaked at number eight in 1958. What seven forgettable songs were deemed better than this classic? –Tim Ring, Montreal Cecil loves the classics as much as […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Story In March police in New York City charged salesman Joel Levy, 32, with assault. According to police, Levy’s live-in girlfriend arrived home unexpectedly just after Levy had ordered a call girl. Levy improvised a plan to intercept the call girl in his building’s lobby, have a liaison, and then to dash back upstairs […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Roy Montgomery

For a long time it seemed that guitarist Roy Montgomery would be remembered, if at all, simply for playing on the first record ever released by New Zealand’s renowned Flying Nun label. Though he and his band Pin Group put out two more singles after that historic 1981 release, in 1983 Montgomery went into semiretirement […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Headlines we were afraid to read beyond: “Toothbrush manufacturers bristle with activity” (Chicago Dental Society news release, August 16). Infant-formula marketers “are like tobacco companies–unethical and harmful,” Karlyn Sturmer of the International Baby Food Action Network tells Linda Baker, who writes in the Chicago-based biweekly In These Times (August 21), “In the United States, bottle-fed […]