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CD Review: The Syllable Section

After a full day of drinking coffee and thinking about the ending of LOST. I sit down to listen one more time to The Syllable Section, a two-piece experimental group from Chicago, and their album "Linear Views". From the first track entitled "Lazy Life", one would be convinced that this is a band that is meant to be "chilled" with. A little listening to their stuff and you will soon realize that you would have to be on many illicit drugs to relax or even understand this band.

The album moves at an unpredictable pace with some of the most random, and at sometimes gratuitous, time signature changes. The best way to describe it would be a high school prom where everyone was loaded with Dramamine. Most of the instrumentation is done by conventional instruments, drums, guitar, bass etcetera. However they also include instruments that sound like you are walking through a strange amusement park of a time long gone. I'll admit this is creative but not what I expected in any way shape or form.

There is one song on the album (Direction and Go) that it is so discordant at times that I honestly had to stop it and take a break. It does set a perfect example for how the rest of the songs flow, parts that sound like they are going somewhere followed by curveball changes ala Mars Volta and early Modest Mouse.

In the end the songs would be enjoyable only on certain aforementioned substances. If you are looking for a band that delivers predictable music, or you want songs with distinguishable rhythm I would stay away from this band. You would have to appreciate music on another level to like this band, and I really mean another level. - Nick Coamey


Fair & Kind “Live”

The dream-pop duo of Fair & Kind will be performing the first ever on-line concert via ustream tonight starting at 8pm. The band is excited and a little nervous. They recommend checking their twitter feed for updates about the show. Fair & Kind released the latest full-length A Little Past Twilight back in 2008 and have been working on new music ever since. You can stream their album at their website to prep yourself for their on-line free show tonight. You can view the concert here.



Last week Empires launched a massive East Coast tour that will last will into June and will find them playing with bands like TV/TV, Lights Resolve, and Motion City Soundtrack. “Damn Things Over” is a pure rock anthem and will hopefully bring some new fans to their shows, and is one of the best tracks from their new ep Bang!.

Empires will be performing at Subt on June 6th with Lights Resolve and Harvard.



There is a new record store in town, the first in West Logan Square, and it will be celebrating its grand opening this weekend. Saki is owned by Patrick Monaghan of Carrot Top Distribution, Ltd. and Carrot Top Records. The store will carry vinyl, CDs, books, magazines, toys, and turntables, while welcoming bands for in-store performances on its modular stage. For the opening weekend they are bringing in a bunch of talented bands to perform including White Mystery, Poison Arrows, Love of Everything, Daniel Knox, Jim Becker, and a bunch of celebrity dj’s from labels like HoZac, Drag City, Kranky, and of course Carrot Top. In addition, there will be performance throughout the week from Hollows, Sadhu Sadhu, Astronomer, and Jon Landford. You can visit their events page for dates and times, but it kicks off this Saturday, May 29th at 12pm. 

Located at 3716 W Fullerton Ave., Saki is clearly launching big and with the support of the music community and has a strong future ahead of it.


Jay Bennett Foundation

This Tuesday, May 24th, marks the one year anniversary of the passing of Jay Bennett. He is most widely known for his work with Wilco, but around the city he is known for so much more. A producer, collaborator and solo artist, Jay has been missed, and now there is a way to remember him and help continue his work and legacy. The Jay Bennett Foundation will launch on May 24 on JayBennett.org, on Facebook and at Twitter. On July 10, fans will also be able to support the JBF by downloading the album Jay was completing at the time of his death. The download of Kicking at the Perfumed Air is free, but donations are accepted and will benefit the foundation or one of its partner charities. Kicking at the Perfumed Air will also be available to purchase as a CD via the site on July 10, with a percentage of the proceeds going to the Foundation. “M Plates” is a track from this new album.


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