TOMORROW NEVER KNOWS FEST 2018: a recap

reppin: chicago, usa // 5 days of music and comedy // jan 2018

sounds like: a winter urban wonderland with a side of beer 

featuring: ron gallo // diane coffee // rayland baxter // hinds

Hey Chicagoans..we are some lucky humans when it comes to the want to explore music in this city. On any given night there are nearly two dozen shows of touring bands around town amongst the thousands of local outfits that stretch to the suburbs. This city overflows the brim of pint glasses with music and we can’t get enough of it. Nothing could be more apparent as Tomorrow Never Knows Fest came back for another killer year in the dead of winter. Not often do you hear the word “festival” during this time of the year...in fact, few dare to put together such a stellar event in January, but the Music God’s answered for this one. Schubas and Lincoln Hall have been pouring live music into our ears for years (Schubas just kicked off their 30th year) and they are way up their on the finest venues in the city list. For a decade now, TNK has brought us up and coming indie artists and bands, comedians and a hell of a fun time for a few days. This year was no different and probably one of the bigger ones as nearly every venue was sold out on the nightly.

tomorrow never knows fest // lincoln hall, chicago // jan 2018 // @thefaakehipster

tomorrow never knows fest // lincoln hall, chicago // jan 2018 // @thefaakehipster

I was fortunate enough to catch the latter half of the festivities, planting my booty over at Lincoln Hall for three incredible, yet very different shows this past weekend. In short, we saw two upbeat, moving around type of shows sandwiched in between a nice chill one. Earlier in the week, the likes of Allan Raymond, Yumi Zouma, Cuco brought some music love to our ears as I sadly could not attend. However, the weekend capped off the fest in all the right ways.   

 

Ron Gallo // Diane Coffee

ron gallo // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.19.18 // @thefaakehipster

ron gallo // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.19.18 // @thefaakehipster

Friday night featured two rocking talents, Ron Gallo who shreds the guitar and has funnier jokes than you followed by the eccentric Diane Coffee.  I’ve written about Ron before, as he has frequented Chicago over the past year and he gets better and funnier every time he comes through. His rock n’ roll presence, given his personality, is almost funny since he is, well, a pretty hilarious dude. Having no recognition for the norm, he hops around stage, shreds the guitar and gives the audience a ton of energy. The heavy distortion and overalls attire round out a killer set every time. Diane Coffee closed out the night with his band and trio of chorus singers. Man does this dude have a wide range of vocals coming from his mouth hole, Flamboyant and eccentric, there is never a dull moment with him. It is even hard to put his music into one genre, but it is a ton of fun to watch.

rg // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // start with "Young Lady, You're Scaring Me"

dc // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // start with "Hymn"

Rayland Baxter

rayland baxter // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.20.18 // @thefaakehipster

rayland baxter // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.20.18 // @thefaakehipster

The meaty part of the sandwich was the one and only, the chill, Rayland Baxter. Armed with his guitar and two of his friends on the drums and keys, he gives off a sing-a-long type of vibe that casts a happy spell on you. His alternative/indie/folk is persistent and loud, yet relaxing at the same time. He really set the tone by opening with the classic, “Ol’ McDonalld” which garnered a few laughs. Hailing from Nashville, you can even hear a tad of country twang in him, but is unique and sets himself apart when it comes to the songwriting. It was a true delight to watch and hear Rayland play, especially with some tracks off the killer album, feathers & fishHooks, his debut from 2012. His latest album, Imaginary Man, although a few years old, is still a super ear friendly listen. If you got to check out No Age or Typhoon that night by the way, I salute you for hitting up an equally as dope show.

rb // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // start with "olivia"

Hinds

And finally, to cap off the weekend, Hinds jetted over from Madrid to have some fun with us Chicagoans. They may as well call this city their second home having played here numerous times in such a short timespan the past year or two. They also befriended Chicago’s own Twin Peaks while touring with them which will get the green light of approval just about anywhere on the music spectrum. Four fun chicks who can party better than you do come out onto the stage and the smiles are infectious. Their messy grungy sound blends so well with the layered vocals, their personality and ability to work the stage. The blanket of happiness is felt throughout the crowd as the constant jumping up and down means, yes, I like this and am having fun. They have a new album coming out April 6th, I Don’t Run (pre-order), and I have sneaky suspicious feeling that we will all be hearing a lot more from these ladies in the months to come.

hinds // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // start with "Bamboo"

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As a super fan of music, I always think about what I want out of getting to show. These type of weeks it is clear that a diverse schedule of musicians and bands can bring together a diverse group of people who all have a common goal of feeling something, forgetting something, remembering something. Whatever it is for you, it is one of the best feelings in the world. Cheers to Tomorrow Never Knows.

hinds // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.21.18 // @thefaakehipster

hinds // tnk fest // lincoln hall, chicago // 1.21.18 // @thefaakehipster

concert shenanigans: THE ORWELLS - A look into a pair of shows @ 1st Ward dubbed "The Midwest ShitFest"

THE ORWELLS

also featuring: The Symposium, Post Animal, Joe Bordenero & The Late Bloomers

the orwells | 1st ward @ chop shop | 8.12.16 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

the orwells | 1st ward @ chop shop | 8.12.16 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

reppin: elmhurst, il // canvasback music

sounds like: that proud moment when you feel good about giving the middle finger to someone with a big smile

next album drop: fall/winter 2016 release will follow up "Disgraceland"

featuring: matt o'keefe // henry brinner // matt brinner // dominic corso // mario cuomo

First...a brief history

Let's catch you slackers up on what the awesome dudes known as The Orwells have accomplished before most of us have even graduated college. All five guys grew up in suburban Chicago, Elmhurst to be exact, and formed in 2009 in the early stages of high school. It only took a quick 3 years to get discovered, signed and release their first album, “remember when” in 2012. Whether it was from within, or trusted sources, there was something special there so they graduated early, hit the festival circuit, wowed Letterman and earned the hearts of fans everywhere. Shortly thereafter, they released their follow up, “disgraceland.” While the journey for them had already been incredible, this beautifully crafted garage rock album received not only praise from the music folks out there, but an enormous, positive reception from the fans. Oh, and these goofballs are only 21/22 years old as we jump to the present.

fast forward to right meow

In any aspect of life, there is something special when humans get together to create a masterpiece. I wholeheartedly believe that these five young dudes will forever have that “special sauce” from being so close to one another at a very young age. We mold our personalities and values as we grow through high school and beyond, and they were able to do it as one entity with five different, laid back personalities. A majority of musicians out there will go their whole career without gaining even a dedicated local following...already veterans on the show front; hanging with them I immediately felt a vibe of humility. So easygoing, connected to one another and welcoming to the newbies (like myself) to take in a slice. Flicking beers and tequila back like it’s nothing, laughing, taking cracks at one another and living in the moment are all key aspects to preparing for a killer show

Now, the crowd is getting more and more anxious and the guys are ready to take the stage in Chicago for the first time in awhile. Before them, three local, talented acts warmed everyone up. There are no nerves...just anticipation to engage their fans and have probably more fun than they are. That middle finger (or the toilet plunger that Mario found) are raised high in the sky...they don’t care what you think of them; all they want is to bring out that emotion in every fan through their rock n’ roll. You may call it chaos. I call it an organized, sweaty good ass time (speaking of butts, Mario was not shy in mooning everyone). Both nights, moshing and crowd surfing were at the max despite a sign every 15 feet clearly reading: “No moshing or crowd surfing.”  I still see the energetic youth in The Orwells much like I still try to cling onto what’s left of mine. However, there is a level of maturity with Matt, Grant, Mario, Henry and Dominic; they not only understand and vibe off their audience, but they understand each other. That magical formula is going to lead to countless masterpieces to come. Much love to these guys for the opportunity to kick it this past weekend.

suggested listening experience: anytime you need to smile and forget about about shit // any house or backyard party // trying to build the courage to tell your ex to fuck off

listens: the righteous ones // mallrats (la la la) // who needs you // let it burn // in my bed

to // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // canvasback