In the pandemic, performing artists took care of each other. We should take better care of them.
Few recordings transport me directly to a time and place like Dusted, the 1987 album by foundational New York noise-rock band Live Skull. Founded in 1982 by guitarists Tom Paine and Mark C., Live Skull were a buzz saw of guitar-led postpunk that combined art-rocker sensibilities with leather-jacket sneer, almost perfectly encapsulating the early-80s Lower […]
Renaming the landmark for Chicago’s Black founder would be a game-changer, but we can still also refer to Lake Shore Drive by its iconic appellation.
Fleetwood-Jourdain spearheads a new collaboration “Celebrating Life, Community and the Arts.”
Kokomo Arnold’s recording career lasted less than a decade, but he changed the world by influencing the likes of Robert Johnson and Elmore James.
For example, it can “involve disagreeing about how many coats of paint are needed on a bathroom wall.”
I tried to tally up the total number of releases by noise wizard Masami Akita, better known as Merzbow, and polymorphous metal trio Boris before I started writing about their new joint album, but it proved to be a fool’s errand. These Japanese artists are among the most prolific musicians in modern history, and their […]
Melissa Leilani Larson and Lavina Jadhwani reimagine a classic for BIPOC voices.
In their hip-hop duo Local Nobodies, Chicago rapper Sulaiman and funk multi-instrumentalist Chris Mathien (who also leads the band Mathien) unlock each other’s debonair charms in song. On their self-released second album, the new See What Happens, they embellish their grooves with sophisticated flair, and Mathien’s smooth, subtle production leaves Sulaiman plenty of room to […]
Mark Lanegan has made an album to satisfy the yuletide yearnings of those who find holly and hellfire equally enchanting. Even before his old band Screaming Trees hung it up in 2000, the singer-songwriter had begun his career as a serial collaborator—highlights over the past 20 years include his work with Queens of the Stone […]
Since Chicago footwork producer and Teklife member DJ Earl dropped his breakthrough 2016 debut, Open Your Eyes, he’s traveled far outside the city and branched out into different sounds. In 2017, Earl dropped a genre-splicing dance full-length called 50 Backwoods with in-demand Brooklyn producer Nick Hook, and this year his collaborations have included the hip-hop […]
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COVID-19 hospitalizations at Illinois corrections department leave incarcerated peoples’ loved ones with questions
Chicago composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist Cam Be draws on his community to invigorate his already bold musical ideas. On his new second album, Summer in September (on his own Camovement label), Cam and an ensemble of friends create immediately gratifying fusions of soul, funk, hip-hop, and R&B. Feel-good jam “Fade Away” opens with 16 people […]