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Sunday, October 4

Gapers Block

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Preview Fri Oct 02 2015

Mike Krol with The Gooch Palms and Archie Powell and the Exports 10/7 @ Empty Bottle

Getting signed to Merge Records was a dream to Mike Krol. And in the late spring the power pop artist was signed, but it was only after a youth spent pursuing a graphic designer career and recuperating from a breakup with a long-term girlfriend.

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Colin Smith / Comments (0)

Interview Fri Oct 02 2015

The Graveface Autumn Pop-Up Spectacle is Coming to Chicago

graveface autumn spectacle.jpgIf there ever was a time to celebrate a music label like Graveface Records, it is definitely October. Much of the label's sounds and aesthetics are descended from the month's ostentatious Halloween. Ryan Graveface, the label's owner and soul, will be touring around the U.S. with his bands Dreamend and The Marshmallow Ghosts as part of The Graveface Autumn Pop-Up Spectacle. In addition to live music, these series of free shows will feature scary stories, free tattoos from Chloe Pinnock, and the Graveface Records & Curiosities Pop Up Shop. The Chicago stop of the tour will take place on October 23rd at 7pm in The Niche Lab, a newly opened multi-purpose science lab, artist studio, and makerspace located at 3328 W North Ave.

I had a chance to talk with Ryan Graveface about what exactly fans can expect from the the upcoming show and expanding our previous talk at Pitchfork with what he has in store for Graveface Records and Terror Vision in the coming months. You can listen to our previous conversation from Pitchfork here and our newest one below.

Interview with Ryan Graveface

Julian Ramirez / Comments (0)

Feature Fri Oct 02 2015

The Empty Bottle's Free Mondays: For The Love Of All That Is Rock

It's 7:30pm on a Monday night, and I've arrived far too early at the Empty Bottle. Besides me, the only people here are the bartender, a young couple engaged in giggling conversation over their beers, and the evening's entertainment: Lee Bains III and the Glory Fires, Pujol, and Chicago's own Flesh Panthers, who are sound checking.

"It'll start picking up around doors, which is at 8:30 or 9," the bartender assures me as I solitarily sip on a Revolution Rosa. Of course, she turns out to be right. It's a Free Monday, after all. This is the Bottle's weekly time to shine in the vibrant Chicago live music scene.

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Zach Blumenfeld / Comments (0)

Preview Thu Oct 01 2015

Preview: Bellfuries with Jessica Lee Wilkes 10/2 @ Schubas

The Bellfuries sound like they're resurrecting music from before the day it died. They got an upright bass, a semi-hollow guitar, and a big yelping vocalist to prove it. And it seems they're only a duckwalk or a hip shake away from the '50s.

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Colin Smith / Comments (0)

Contest Wed Sep 30 2015

Want To See Mucca Pazza?

Our favorite indie punk rock marching band group here at Gapers Block, Mucca Pazza, will be playing a show at the Metro on October 10, and we've got a pair of tickets to give away! Our friends over at CHIRP will be moving their online station to radio on 107.1 FM, and as a benefit, Mucca Pazza will be putting on a show alongside other standout acts. CHIRP Radio has remained solely volunteer-driven since its advent five years ago, broadcasting music from 6am through midnight daily from its North Center studio. In focusing on a diverse array of musical offerings, CHIRP also works to introduce us to local up-and-comers, cementing its status as an important arts fixture within the community.


To enter, comment below (make sure to use your email!) with your favorite Chicago artist (besides Mucca Pazza, of course). Winners will be announced Thursday, October 1, at 2 p.m have now been chosen. Happy entering!

Mucca Pazza will play the Metro on Saturday, October 10. This all ages show is $21 in advance, and $23 at the door, with the show beginning at 6:30pm. Mucca Pazza will be joined by support acts Brother Starrace, Jennifer Hall, and Spaces of Disappearance. The Metro is located at 3730 N. Clark St., (773) 549-0203.

Sarah Brooks / Comments (5)

Review Tue Sep 29 2015

A$AP Rocky Electrifies the Aragon Ballroom, 9/27


Photos by Rena Naltsas

The hazy stage lights of the Aragon Ballroom shut on at 7 p.m. on Sunday, but fans began waiting outside the locked doors nearly 4 hours in advance. The colossal crowd pushing to get in the sold-out 3,200-capacity venue were lined upside the building, back through the alley, and spilling in front of the bars along Lawrence, forcing the manager of the neighboring Uptown Lounge to emerge shouting at event security to maintain the chaos.

This is a much different picture of pre-show excitement for A$AP Rocky in Chicago than the last show he headlined in 2012.

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Emily Ornberg / Comments (1)

Review Mon Sep 28 2015

Destroyer: Dark Lyrics and Bright Melodies in Thalia Hall's Old Opera House


Once Jennifer Castle stepped to the front of the stage, she strummed her hollow guitar and crowed in a country-inflected voice. The audience, sipping their Lagunita's or Oberons, filed into Thalia Hall's old and restored opera house, and at once quit talking. Castle set a calm tone for a Sunday night and brought the listeners back to a quieter time -- and she wouldn't have been out of place at Greenwich Village in the '60s.

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Colin Smith / Comments (0)

Interview Mon Sep 28 2015

A Chat With The Internet's Syd tha Kyd


You're reading about The Internet on the internet right now. That's pretty darn meta (and that's definitely not a joke the band has gotten before). But unlike the lowercase "i" version, the six-piece neo-soul band is something you can actually see in the flesh when they roll through Bottom Lounge on October 4th.

The Internet is on tour supporting their June album Ego Death, a brooding, introspective modernization of lustful R&B. The production reminisces upon Frank Ocean's landmark codeine-laced 2012 LP Channel Orange--no surprise there, seeing as Ocean and The Internet are both associated with LA hip-hop collective Odd Future--and incorporates the funky bass lines, minimalistic beats, and swirling psychedelic elements that have risen to mainstream prominence over the past few years.

But what separates The Internet from its contemporaries is the work of vocalist Syd tha Kyd, who flows over the top of the music like a gently seductive river of syrup. I got the chance to speak with Syd about the process of making Ego Death, her development as a singer and songwriter, and the books she's reading on tour, among other things.

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Zach Blumenfeld / Comments (0)

Review Mon Sep 28 2015

Mad Decent Block Party in Review

Mad Decent Block Party 2015 (photos by Rena Naltsas)

"PROHIBITED ITEMS: Pacifiers; Unsealed tampons; Kandi bracelets; Masks of any kind; Stuffed animals or dolls; Laser pointers; Frisbees and/or any other projectile." Security guidelines for the touring Mad Decent Block Party in Cicero on Saturday were as strict an EDM version of airport TSA. Guests were patted down, clothes and bags were intensely searched, and shoes were sniffed out by a K-9 unit to prevent any illegal substances (or opened feminine products) to be snuck into the desolate parking lot of the Hawthorne Race Track. We've compiled a photo diary of the day, allowing you to take part in the electric energy present at Mad Decent Block Party.

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Emily Ornberg / Comments (0)

Review Sat Sep 26 2015

Twin Peaks and Wavves Punked Out at the Vic


Twin Peaks was showing off their Chicago (I was about to write Chitown but then thought about that Gapers Block button...) pride last night at the Vic. The fivesome of Midwestern punk rockers had as backing on the stage a banner flaunting a (rather pot-bellied) Benny the Bull with the four blue Chicago stars arrayed above him and a sleepy-eyed sun saying "'sup dog?"

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Celeste Mallama / Comments (2)

Review Sat Sep 26 2015

Noah Gundersen At Thalia: Doubting Faith Was Never So Fun


Last night was Noah Gundersen's fourth time playing in Chicago, by his own count. And though his performances at North Park and SPACE and Lincoln Hall surely must have felt special at the time, Thalia Hall felt like a tailor-made home for his music. The cavernous main floor reflected the hollowness of Christianity in his eyes, and the artfully preserved decaying aesthetic that radiates from the room's flaky-looking walls seemed like a metaphor for the decaying faith that forms the backbone of most of Gundersen's music. But it's those very traits that make Thalia beautiful--perhaps the most beautiful venue in the city--and Gundersen's eighteen-song set matched its setting in anguished beauty.

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Zach Blumenfeld / Comments (0)

Review Fri Sep 25 2015

The Fratellis Brought the Heat at the Vic

It must be somewhat odd for the Fratellis to come to Chicago. A discography dating back to 2006, almost a decade of touring together, a well established band with a well established catalog and yet they're most famous in Chicago for approximately 10 seconds of the opening lines of one song from 2007. Weird. Even after extensive research (aka I Wiki'ed it), and reading up on Rocky Wirtz's adoption of the song in 2010 as the Blackhawk's scoring song in order to attract a younger fan base, I still don't entirely understand how that happened.

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Celeste Mallama / Comments (1)

Review Thu Sep 24 2015

Man Man Got Weird with Lincoln Hall

I was having a conversation recently about lead singers who play unique instruments where the bass and the drums were cited as the most unusual instrument we'd ever seen a lead singer play. Lead singer Shilpa Ray who fronts the band of the same name blew that out of the water yesterday when she showed up on Lincoln Hall's stage pumping a harmonium.

Ray, who previously fronted the rock outfit Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers, brought her huge, haunting, scorching vocals to front stage as she opened for Man Man. It was a good pairing -- not only are the vocal stylings of the two groups somewhat similar, but Ray's style of singing gave her the stage presence necessary to be memorable -- not an easy task when you're followed by the onstage antics of Honus Honus.

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Celeste Mallama / Comments (0)

Music & Film Wed Sep 23 2015

Le Révélateur Cruise the Back Alleys of Retrofuturism @ Siskel Center

For the inauguration of its 19th(!) year of programming cutting-edge experimental music events in Chicago, Lampo is hosting a rare weeknight event Thursday, Sept. 24 at the Gene Siskel Film Center. As part of its Conversations at the Edge series, the Siskel will host Le Révélateur, the duo of video artist Sabrina Ratté and Godspeed! You Black Emperor/Fly Pan Am's Roger Tellier-Craig.

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Chris Sienko / Comments (0)

Review Wed Sep 23 2015

Years and Years Electrifies Park West


The last time I saw Years and Years, the young British electro-pop trio was headlining legendary London club Heaven, their hit single "King" was about to top the UK charts, and they had never played a show in America. They had the look of a band that couldn't believe their rapid ascent to fame as frontman Olly Alexander breathlessly bounced around like a kid in a candy store. "This is the first time we've had lasers at our show," I remember him saying.

Six months later, the excitement is still there--this is Years and Years' first American tour--but the now-seasoned veterans of the stage have tamed the thrill and shaped it into a confident and enthralling performance. Last night, the atmosphere at the group's Park West show could only be described as brilliant pop ecstasy.

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Zach Blumenfeld / Comments (0)

Feature Fri Oct 02 2015

The Empty Bottle's Free Mondays: For The Love Of All That Is Rock

By Zach Blumenfeld

"It'll start picking up around doors, which is at 8:30 or 9," the bartender assures me as I solitarily sip on a Revolution Rosa. Of course, she turns out to be right. It's a Free Monday, after all. This is the Bottle's weekly time to shine in the vibrant Chicago live music scene.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
Congress Theater
Cubby Bear
Double Door
Elbo Room
Empty Bottle
Green Mill
The Hideout
Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
Kingston Mines
Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
Kranky Records
Laurie's Planet of Sound
Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records


Sun Oct 4 2015
Genevieve @ Subterranean

Sun Oct 4 2015
Cajun Dance Party @ Empty Bottle

Sun Oct 4 2015
Rocktober Beerfest

Mon Oct 5 2015
Chicago Sinfonietta "Tap In. Turn Up."

Tue Oct 6 2015
Mew @ Metro

Wed Oct 7 2015
Mike Krol @ Empty Bottle

Wed Oct 7 2015
Hot Mix Lunch @ Daley Plaza

Thu Oct 8 2015
Tobias Jesso, Jr. @ Empty Bottle

Fri Oct 9 2015
Fall Fest: Harvest Hopdown @ The Plaza

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Transmission is the music section of Gapers Block. It aims to highlight Chicago music in its many varied forms, as well as cover touring acts performing in the city. More...
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