Cinematic Stories with Tycho - Lollapalooza 2018

reppin: sacramento, ca // ghostly international // 2002 - present

sounds like: a collection of dreams within a bigger dream that is the story you want to read

scott hansen | photo cred: timeout.com

scott hansen | photo cred: timeout.com

latest album drop: epoch (2016)

featuring: scott hansen // live band - zac brown // ryan o’connor // billy kim

tycho | concord music hall, chicago | 8.1.18 | lollapalooza | @thefaakehipster

tycho | concord music hall, chicago | 8.1.18 | lollapalooza | @thefaakehipster

The one of a kind festival that is Lollapalooza has dropped itself in the middle of Chicago. The hot, humid sun has never felt so good. Being in the middle of thousand of people never sucked so good. And what matters the most...getting lost in the music..dancing your face off...letting your emotions come out like never before. But don’t forget. Lolla has spread itself like a virus throughout the city and at every venue, every night, there is another memory to be made. Enter Tycho. Concord Music Hall. August 1st.

tycho | concord music hall, chicago | 8.1.18 | lollapalooza | @thefaakehipster

tycho | concord music hall, chicago | 8.1.18 | lollapalooza | @thefaakehipster

Tycho aka ISO50 aka Scott Hansen hails from Sacramento, California and has been at the music making thing for nearly 20 years. And he sure as hell does not look 40. Scott started out solo and since Tycho’s inception he has released four ambient, chill, progressive, future-sound, lo-fi albums. Each its own little treasure. The downtempo vibe puts you in the mood to just open your mind and let the music in. Over the years he has gained a dedicated following, but even more so the music speaks for itself. He was nominated for a grammy with his latest effort, Epoch, in 2017.

So let’s set the stage for one of the kick off after shows of Lolla 2018. The venue is sold out. The anticipation throughout the crowd can be felt as the wait seems like forever. But once Scott comes out with his live band, the show kicks off. No need to talk, just let the music speak for itself. And that is much of the beauty as the set goes on. There is no talking, just playing. The tunes start slow and soft, happy and sweet. They reel you in as they move swiftly from song to song. You can see how focused they are on stage, each in their own little zone bringing the crowd every detailed element. Singing? I love a good voice, but the way these tunes are composed there is no need for one. There are no choruses and verses, just a beautiful cinematic approach to their set. The backdrop provides another layer to their show composed of designs and landscapes that match the music. And then it all comes together. Each song it’s own chapter. And all together, a whole story is told. A unique experience that you all need to go see in your own.

suggested listening experience: when you need to think // after a long day of work // hanging with the one you love

listens: awake // epoch // hours // a walk // daydream // melanie // division

tycho // fb // spotify // ig // twitter

Priests Is Only Praying For Raw Power

reppin: dc, usa // sister polygon records // 2012 - present

sounds like: anarchist planting flowers on a busy city block while it’s raining

priests | lincoln hall, chicago | 5.1.18 | @thefaakehipster

priests | lincoln hall, chicago | 5.1.18 | @thefaakehipster

latest album drop: nothing feels natural (jan 2017)

featuring: katie // daniele // taylor // gl

priests | lincoln hall, chicago | 5.1.18 | @thefaakehipster

priests | lincoln hall, chicago | 5.1.18 | @thefaakehipster

The DC music scene has been alive and well for some time now, giving us tunes of all sorts from house to hip hop to punk rock. Priests hails from this exact place and started getting some attention from the very close knit punk crew after releasing some pleasing 7” vinyls. They stitched together a few EPs that are super raw and more energetic (somehow) when Katie, their singer, spills out her organic emotions. After those few years of EPs, they released their debut album last year, nothing feels natural, to stellar response and reviews.

The mixtures of sounds and rhythms that they bring to the table is just the start of what is a fun and wild package on stage. While they are rooted in punk they sprinkle tastes of west coast surfer rock, thrash punk and shades of alternative that give them such a unique feel to listen to. So when you throw them on it sounds like a riot in your headphones, which is exactly what they are going for. Taylor’s guitar is filled with delightful and dark riffs while Daniele tends to keep a blistering rhythm throughout, making you want to move your limbs all over the place, even in public.

Just this week, they rolled into warm (yes, that’s right) Chicago to fans at Lincoln Hall and gave us all a reason to live. I had heard how passionate and raw their shows are and they definitely did not disappoint. You can see every member of this band getting into it and giving it their all no matter how the crowd was responding. In all honesty, Katie just kind of lets go, not giving a shit, and will pour her heart and soul into the mic. With an album over a year behind them, it will be fun to see how their new tunes evolve as I am sure the fan base will be growing and growing.

suggested listening experience: day hanging with the friends // let off some steam // when you need to get moving

listens: jj // appropriate // nothing feels natural // nicki // pink white house // and breeding // no big bang

priests // fb // spotify // ig // twitter // bc

Post Animal and the Rock Revival

reppin: chicago, usa // polyvinyl records // 2014 - present

sounds like: a cut off black sabbath t-shirt making love with a trippy kaleidoscope while running around with a blindfold on

post animal | photo cred: consequence of sound

post animal | photo cred: consequence of sound

latest album drop: when i think of you in a castle (april 20, 2018)

featuring: dalton // jake // javi // wesley // matt // joe (not a full time member because he's on that show, uh, stranger things)

post animal | subterranean, chicago | 7.11.17 | @thefaakehipster

post animal | subterranean, chicago | 7.11.17 | @thefaakehipster

You look around for music on that internet these days and a disturbing trend sometimes pops up…”rock is dead.” I say fuck that noiseeeee. While rock music in general may not be as mainstream and appreciated, it’s making an under the radar comeback and that does no harm to any human ears. But why is this so important? Every genre of music deserves appreciation and love, but rock digs deep in it’s sound, lyrics and the overall experience of a live show. The energized and moshing crowd just waiting to crowd surf. The beauty and angst that is sang or screamed. The axe’s shredding and movement of bands. Enter Post Animal. Raised on some good ol’ Chicago roots, mixed with the psychedelic vibe of the 70s and hit over the head with heavy Black Sabbath riffs, there really is something special brewing here.

post animal | lincoln hall, chicago | 4.28.18 | @thefaakehipster

post animal | lincoln hall, chicago | 4.28.18 | @thefaakehipster

These dudes got together 4 short years ago, which turns out to be prime time to be alive and playing music as a band. Getting the stamp of approval from other chicago outfits like The Orwells, NE-HI, Whitney and Twin Peaks is not a bad start. And from the start, they have been on point with glorious tunes and some of the best album titles you’ll come across (“Post Animal Perform The Most Curious Water Activities” just to name one). Since that debut album back in 2015, they have signed to the amazing Polyvinyl Records, released their most recent album the other week and are on a massive country spanning tour throughout the states. They’ll be hitting the likes of Shaky Knees, Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza to name a few.

Their latest effort is anything to mess around with. If you want something upbeat and groovy, check out “ralphie.” If you want to get rockier and heavier, “gelatin mode” will blow your head off. But, if you like it soft and soothing, “special moment,” is for you. This album really has everything. On top of that, they just came back through Chicago and blew the lid off Lincoln Hall. Once you layer their music on top of seeing them live you’ll understand the amazing and positive energy flowing through the crowd and see how badly everyone wants to crowd surf. These guys are just getting started and you’ll be hearing more and more about them all summer long. Long live rock.

suggested listening experience: twist and burn // road tripping // new music for your parents if they were alive in the 70s

listens: ralphie // when i get home // special moment // gelatin mode // lonely jones // alabaster // tire eyes

pa // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // bc

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"

////

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

JUNGLE: Day 27 - 30 Days in Chicago presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: london, uk // XL Recordings // 2013 - present

sounds like: walking upside-down in a disco ball in the middle of...you guessed it, a jungle

jungle | metro, chicago | day 27 - 30 days in chicago | 11.27.17 | @thefaakehipster

jungle | metro, chicago | day 27 - 30 days in chicago | 11.27.17 | @thefaakehipster

latest album drop: jungle (july 2014)

featuring: josh // tom // fraser // george // dominic // andro // rudi

IMG_20171130_165722_990.jpg

Landing at the Metro the other night was not your typical winter walk into the venue. Jungle was in town as the last gigs of 30 Days in Chicago were coming to an end and it was indeed a jungle in there. Plants, trees, lights and more set the vibe as we walked up the stairs to another sold out night. This band knows how to get you in the mood, put you in there world. And if you let it happen make sure you stretch because there is no way you are not moving during a set with Jungle. After the openers took the stage, the lights dimmed and it was time to grab someone and throw your hands in the air.

Jungle lands between funky disco and far-out rock. They move so fluidly from song to song as you can clearly tell how much fun they are having onstage. That energy is clearly pouring into the people. Any way you look the smiles are on faces and the feet are moving. Jungle consists of 7 members, each of which is one a mission to come together as one. And it is pretty sweet...they all sound like one big cohesive melodic setup, all knowing what they have to do. Hailing from London, you can hear bits of that England psychedelic rock, but what shines is the disco-funk and tropical beats. They are just enough disco to make it their own though, curating a solid, modern sound.

IMG_20171129_165114_761.jpg

The four that front the group on-stage all sound like once voice singing in unison, it really is something to see. They move together, hitting each note and blanket the crowd with their voices over the funky beat. As 30 Days comes to a close tonight, it is pretty unreal to look back and see what has been accomplished here. This wasn’t a month of rock or hip hop, it was a month of feels, experiences and reasons to want to live. When you look at how the crowd responded to every show I was at, look at the band, the atmosphere was contagious and the vibes were about togetherness. It was a damn good month.

suggested listening experience: party grooving with your friends // late night hangs // early morning commutes 

listens: busy earnin' // time // the heat // drops // julia // lucky i got what i want     

jungle // fb // ig // spotify // sc 

JACOB BANKS: Day 23 - 30 Days in Chicago presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: birmingham, uk by way of nigeria // interscope // 2012 - present // 26 years old

sounds like: walking around with crazy cool, mid-evil statues on each side of you buffering you from all the bad

jacob banks | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.22.17 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.22.17 | @thefaakehipster

latest album drop: the paradox (july 2015)

jacob banks | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.22.17 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.22.17 | @thefaakehipster

featuring: jacob

Rarely do we come across musicians that belt out truth and honestly like their lives depend on it on stage. There is a fine line when it comes to the difference between putting on a show and pouring your emotions and well being into a performance. Jacob Banks is on the right side of that, the latter of course and he is oh so smooth at doing it. Jacob has started to span the globe with his soulful voice and I have been lucky enough to catch him a few times, including a ridiculous performance at SXSW 2017. Yes, in that specific instance I inhaled some equally ridiculous California home grown bud, but in my defense, it was delicious. Chicago, which was built on blues and soul, was graced with Mr. Banks right before turkey time last week and those who made it to the sold out crowd were not disappointed.

As I mentioned in a previous post of JB, he is here on this marble for one reason: to save soul. His voice is powerful, the scratchiness equates to the passion and truth in what he sings. The band spans the spectrum of rock, blues and r&b, forming a well rounded band that will knock your socks off. Jacob took us from song to song, often breaking with a funny phrase or horrible joke that we all laughed at. One thing is for certain: he commands the stage and gets as close to our hearts as he can. Looking around the audience you could see some kids almost crying and at other moments letting it all go. You sure as hell could not just sit there silently.

Even though Jacob is a soul singer, he looks like a rock star out there, especially when he picks up the axe. His roots in Africa and Europe as shown throughout his tracks and you can feel the culture hit you in the live show. Cait and I were grooving all night and the whole audience was feeling it. No matter where you are located you can expect a show full of feels and musical treats that will leave you satisfied.   

suggested listening experience: making sweet sweet love // cruising along on something with wheels // getting ready for the evening

listens: unholy war // worthy // chainsmoking // silver lining // monster // sink or swim // mercy

jb // spotify // fb // twitter // sc // ig

AMINÉ & PELL: Day 18 - 30 Days in Chicago presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: amine - portland // republic records // 2014 - present //// pell - nola, usa // independent // 2013 - present

pell | metro, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.18.20 | @thefaakehipster

pell | metro, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.18.20 | @thefaakehipster

sounds like: amine - a bubble bath in the middle of a clam city intersection // pell - the smartest kid in the classroom who's into the coolest tunes and then snatches your girl

last albums drop: amine - good for you (july 2017) // pell - LIMBO EP (nov 2015)

featuring: amine - adam // pell - jared

you’re beautiful...i know!

The chanting back and forth between the hyped Amine and engaging crowd was almost a euphoria of what a concert should entail. The Sound Select scene was in full force again at the Metro and it is safe to say that the energy in both the performers and diverse crowd was on top display. Another sold out house of all ages just ready to dance their faces off all night. It was not just a show about the hip hop sound, but infused with jazz, rock, soul, funk and much more. Cait and I just arrived in time to see Pell take the stage as you could feel the crowd was ready to bust out their dancing feet and let the good times roll.

amine | metro, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.18.20 | @thefaakehipster

amine | metro, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.18.20 | @thefaakehipster

First up was up and comer Pell who is the perfect example of how you mix hip hop with the sounds of your hometown. The foundation of his music spans the spectrum in what New Orleans music has to offer and when he put his flow on top of it, it is quite salivating. Having bused out into the scene in 2014 with an incredible album, “floating while dreaming,” he has since dropped track after track that make you move in different ways. There is one theme to it all...the positive energy, no matter what the lyrics, are spun into an energetic and close-knit kinda set. Whether it was his new track “chirpin,” the dancy and funky “queso,” or the poplar “Eleven:11,” he nails every note as he runs side to side on stage. Not many artists can command a stage as he does with just a drummer. Jared is truly a young, unique musician with a ton in front of him and my favorite part about him is that he is always level with his fans, feeding off their energy.

No matter how you try to pronounce Amine, he is still going to blow your ears away with his unique style, stage presence and ability to get a crowd moving. Much like Pell, being hip hop first, there is so much more in types of sound beneath the surface. His honest and happy vibes can be felt throughout and it is so apparent how much the crowd responds to each one of this tracks. If you can tell how much fun that artist or band is having up there, then it is almost impossible for the audience to not match that. Backed by a DJ, drummer, guitarist and keyboardist, Amine takes you on a honest journey through honest and confident lyrics. At one moment you think it is a Sublime cover as his guitarist adds a whole other dimension, but then the next he goes R&B and starts belting out those high notes. A true rapper and singer, he’ll keep you on your toes dancing. You can tell that everyone in that building was surrounded by the emotion of his tracks the whole set. One of the better nights of 30 Days so far.

suggested listening experience: party down time // road tripping with friends // weekday pick me up

listens: amine - caroline // spice girls // veggies // yellow // wedding crashers // heebiejeebies // squeeze //// pell - eleven:11 // got it like that (remix) // queso // basic beach // chirpin’ // patience // monday morning

amine // fb // spotify // sc // ig // twitter //// pell // fb // spotify // sc // ig // twitter

PARQUET COURTS & BUILT TO SPILL: Day 15, 30 Days in Chicago presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: bts - boise, id // warner // 1992 - present //// pc - brooklyn, usa // 30th century // 2010 - present

sounds like: bts - the most rock n' roll inspector gadget // pc - a funky fine dining table with the most unique centerpiece

parquet courts | empty bottle. chicago | 11.15.17 | 30 days in chicago

parquet courts | empty bottle. chicago | 11.15.17 | 30 days in chicago

last album drop: bts - untethered moon (april 2015) //// pc - milano (oct 2017)

featuring: bts - doug // steve // jason //// pc - a savage // austin // sean // max

*photos by Koury Angelo

meat wave | empty bottle. chicago | 11.15.17 | 30 days in chicago

meat wave | empty bottle. chicago | 11.15.17 | 30 days in chicago

When the cold sets upon the busy streets of this city, there are few safe havens we feel good at. Towards the of that list for Cait and I are sweaty rock clubs. The atmosphere is bubbly, the cheap beers are always flowing and the music is good and loud. Empty’s only 30 Days show was already a doozy and it got better with the last minute addition of indie rock legends Built to Spill. And oh boy oh boy was there a rock storm a brewing last night. The convergence new and old punk and indie rock was felt through the music air waves, bringing the cold night to life. After arriving and weaving our way through the sold out house to snag a few beers, Built to Spill (maybe the best band names around) graced the stage.

Doug, their lead singer and vocalist has been around the block a few times, writing all sorts of music and playing all sorts of gigs with numerous members over the 25 year life span of the band. You better believe they know how to go about their business, shifting from song to song with ease so our ears can continue to be dazzled. The technical rock sound is progressive and was way ahead of its time back in the day, but at the same time they know how to make it sound smooth. The next thing to stand out is Doug’s creamy and delightful voice, surprising yet blended just right with their sound. Those early 2000s indie punk vibes still ring modern and current as Doug solos throughout just about every song. The shredding, riffs and tempo of each song makes your body move in so many different ways, sometimes making you want to straight up dance. Who knows how much longer these guys will be performing, so get out and catch them before it is too late.

Bringing the night to a close was the 4 piece rock outfit from Brooklyn, Parquet Courts. The songs are intricate and compiled of a vast arrangement of song structures, keeping you on your toes for what is next. The hilarious dudes were quite entertaining between sets, bringing a friendly vibe to the crowd and good laughs in between songs. Their riffs are The vocals range from talking to singing to screaming, allowing the audience to get moving in a moshpit when needed or simply just wanting to groove. While the sound is very much a modern indie one, you can see influences from the early 60s psychedelic era and even all the way up to late 70s punk, rock n roll. Every track truly sounds different and it is special to watch. A packed house, free pizza, solid beers and better people made for a great night. Next up: Amine and Pell @ the Metro.

suggested listening experience: walking around town from spot to spot // saturday sunny hangs // chill nights

listens : bts - carry the zero // living zoo // liar // car // goin’ against your mind // else //// pc - human performance // uncast shadow of a southern myth // dust // outside // berlin got blurry // soul and cigarette

bts // spotify // fb // twitter //// pc // spotify // fb

MIYA FOLICK: Day 7, 30 Days in Chicago presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: la, usa // interscope // 2014 - present

miya folick | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.7.17 | 30 Days In Chicago | photo cred: Jules Ameel

miya folick | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.7.17 | 30 Days In Chicago | photo cred: Jules Ameel

sounds like: dancing through a flat prairie field as the sun is setting seeing miles each direction

last album drop: give it to me EP (nov 2017)

featuring: miya

miya folick | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.7.17 | 30 Days In Chicago | photo cred: Jules Ameel

miya folick | lincoln hall, chicago | 11.7.17 | 30 Days In Chicago | photo cred: Jules Ameel

Good things come to those who go see music live. Another sold out night was upon us at the beautiful Lincoln Hall in the heart of Lincoln Park, Chicago. The mood was set for an intimate evening of female fronted bands, all bringing their twist to a rock concert. While Hazel English brings soothing lo-fi rock and Mitski has a deeper, piercing sound, my favorite of the evening was Miya Folick. The young Miya was raised as a Buddhist, something that you can feel through her tunes, tired to find her calling in sports, but was just not into it. So, it was then time for college at NYU, and again, it wasn’t her thing. Finally, she returned home to LA, picked up an axe, started learning and found her band on Tinder. Pretty traditional, “how my band started,” story eh?

With the band ready to roll and Miya taking the stage, you could immediately feel her presence surging through you. She lands somewhere in the middle of the two providing us humans with an imaginative space to go into and at the next moment, shattering our world in the right way. As the drums slowly began and the guitars moved through the amps, we were taken over by a dreamy rock sound sprinkled with some Cali surfer vibes. The chord progression is fun whether you are swaying side to side or jamming out, just so smooth. Miya’s voice can wale better than most and what makes it a treat is that she is always matching the aggression of the song. She steps it up a notch as her body speaks as much as her voice, drawing you in even closer.

The best thing about the entire set was the silence of the audience, waiting and anticipating the next song to take them out of reality. Miya has an incredible way to command a crowd and hands down is just a true performer out there. She can take you to a dream like state one second then have you wanting to start a mosh pit the next. Let’s just thank the music gods that Miya didn’t end up a basketball player because for one, I can’t wait to see her again.

suggested listening experience: rainy dark night hanging with yourself // out on the open road // the work commute

listens: talking with strangers // strange darling // i got drunk // god is a woman // trouble adjusting // oceans

mf // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // sc

POLIÇA: 30 Days in Chicago, Day 5 presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: minneapolis, mn // mom + pop music // 2011 - present

sounds like: up in the clouds in a protective happy bubble with the dark and stormy surrounding you

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster 

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster 

last album drop: untitled crushers (march 2016)

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

featuring: channy // chris // ben // drew // ryan

As the cold really set in this past weekend, a lucky crowd was provided a warm environment both in temperature and feels in the brand spanking new House of Vans. Opening earlier this year, I’ve been fortunate enough to attend a few shows, but things really came full circle as Poliça took the stage. Prior to their dreamy and dark performance, record lovers were shuffling through the record fair and enjoying all the beers Goose Island could feed you. A skatepark by day, the place transforms into a “southern vibes” Austin-like venue. A big warehouse, tall ceiling, a clear view to the stage forming a truly intimate setting. After Ohmee got some music in us, the synth-pop act, Poliça, hailing from the true midwest in minneapolis, made you smile while giving you goosebumps at the same time.

Poliça features the soft voiced Channy along with two drummers, a bassist and a producer that creates a balanced dream like pop and a deep dark synth vibe. The band has worked with the likes of Bon Iver and Doomtree through their existence, most likely contributing to the wide range of sounds and feels they’ll spill into your system. Off the bat, you can get a feel for Channy’s luscious and soft vocals, often adding effects to add depth to each tune. One song is uplifting, putting you in a more imaginative, uplifting sort of mood while the next may put a dark dagger into your spine and lift the arm hairs on you. There is pretty much no choice but to put your attention forward and let them pull you into their world. I love how they move from song to song, often with little chit chat, so you can become fully engulfed in the show.

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

poliça | house of vans, chicago | 30 days in chicago | 11.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

The balance of synth, R&B and electronic sounds is pretty mesmerizing, and put me in a slow groovy kind of mood. The lyrics are powerful as well, balancing between being pretty straightforward, yet metaphorical. “Flic flac, you’re a habit to me” is one of my favorite’s from their track, “lime habit” off their latest release. Songs like that inject you with the dark side of life, but more of an uplifing beat at the same time. The constant pull in each direction makes them such a unique act overall and one you should definitely check out when you have the time. Next up: Mitski and Hazel English tomorrow.

suggested listening experience: getting cozy during a cold, dark night // making sweet, sweet love // twisting one up

listens: lime habit // lately // lay your cards out // amongster // dark star // wandering star

poliça // fb // spotify // ig // twitter // sc

30 DAYS IN CHICAGO Preview presented by Red Bull Sound Select

reppin: chicago, usa // red bull sound select

sounds like: a mountain bike race - strap yourself in for a wild time, but stop to enjoy the view here and there

Music is such a beautiful part of life. It is worldly, it brings us together and spans the spectrum amongst the types of feels it gives us humans. That amazing principal of life is going to shine here in Chicago during the cold month of November. Summer is over and the leaves are changing colors, which usually can bring a cloud of “shit, I have to be inside for 5 months now” kind of thinking. Fuck that. In this city, we are strong souls who deal with winter to embrace summer, but staying inside is just not an option this month.

rbss_chi_facebook_keyart.png

It is time to embrace what music has to offer this month. Red Bull Sound Select is taking over just about every venue in Chicago with genres spanning the spectrum. It is an amazing chance for any music lover, no matter what level you are, to come together and be amazed by some of the best up and comers this country (and a few international) have to offer. Along with myself, my beautiful, singing girlfriend Cait and some close friends will be covering just about half of the shows.

So, if you have been closed minded about some new tunes, or simply have not had time to listen, open your ears. If you have never floated your ears into a genre, it is time to explore the unknown. And what I feel is above all, if you feel like you have not felt something in some time, take a chance on experiencing your emotions in the live setting.

To sort through the wide range of talented artists, here is your key:

Rock Out // get ready to have your face melted

Fuck You, I Just Want To Dance // Time to sweat your face off

Twist One Up // Get ready to have your face lifted

Netflix & Chill // I just want to sit down and not do anything with my face

 

whitney // NE-HI // mt. Joy // nov 2 // metro // sold out // whitney blog post, nov 2016

reppin: chicago // chicago // phili

whitney | photo cred: noisey.vice.com

whitney | photo cred: noisey.vice.com

netflix & chill

What to expect: overall, one of the more solid lineups of the month from bottom to top. Groovy folk and indie rock beats, delicious vocals all around. While Whitney wowed the world with a nearly perfect album last year, get there early to check out fast rising Mt. Joy and drown in there swaying folk rock. NE-HI will step it up just a tad and get those feet moving over their lo-fi indie rock

spotify: whitney // NE-HI // mt. joy

kehlani // nov 3 // the riviera // sold out

reppin: oakland, ca // atlantic records // 2009 - present

fuck you i want to dance

From the start of every track, kehlani’s voice takes over in such a natural way over just about any beat. Having spent some time in the teen group, Poplyfe, she has matured extremely quickly at the young age of 22. Mixing pop with R&B and soul, she is so worth the watch

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

mitzki // hazel english // nov 7 // lincoln hall // sold out

reppin: nyc // oakland, ca

twist one up

Soothing indie and lo-fi rock at its finest from some stellar female fronted groups will be rocking out at lincoln hall next week. This gig features some incredible song writers that will have you closing your eyes and begging for more. Miya Folick will also be performing so be sure to get there for the openers!

spotify: mitski // hazel english

hazel english | photo cred: newsickmusic.com

hazel english | photo cred: newsickmusic.com

ibeyi // nov 10 // metro // tickets

reppin: cuba, venezuela & france // XL recordings // 2013 - present

twist one up

These sisters smother you in a dark poppy sound against their melodic soft vocals. Having lived in so many different places, they offer a wide range of influence and sing in numerous languages. They have certainly separated themselves from the pack and will be a sight to see at the legendary metro.

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

sabrina claudio // nov 12 // schubas // sold out

reppin: la, usa // sc entertainment // 2016 - present

netflix & chill

The mixture of pop, indie and r&b/soul will have you at your knees. And holy shit, sabrina’s voice stands out from the rest. The music makes you sway side to side giving you positive and upbeat feels. It will be an amazing setting in the intimate schubas venue as we approach the halfway mark of the month

pell | lincoln hall, chicago | 3.11.15 | @thefaakehipster

pell | lincoln hall, chicago | 3.11.15 | @thefaakehipster

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

parquet courts // meat wave // nov 15 // the empty bottle // sold out

reppin: brooklyn, usa // chicago, usa

rock out

For all you head bangers out there, it is time to come out and show it off. Parquet Courts brings a funky feel to their post/punk-rock sound as they have released all sorts of music. Meat Wave will be taking the stage before them, a fast paced Chicago punk group that leaves everything on the stage

spotify: pc // mw

amine // pell // nov 18 // metro // sold out (pell blog post, may 2016)

reppin: portland // new orleans

twist one up

Two truly young, talented wrappers will grace the stage this night. Amine has that song “caroline” streaming hundreds of millions of times across the internet and offers up a smooth flow. I’ve been a huge fan of Pell for some time, who brings soul, funk and jazz to his tracks with his incredible rapping ability. You’ll be hearing about these two a lot more in the near future.

spotify: amine // pell

lizzo // nov 19 // thalia hall // sold out

reppin: detroit // atlantic records // 2012 - present

fuck you I just want to dance

I don’t know if I have come across a rapper that has the blends of beautiful vocals and rapping in awhile. It is almost like she is singing as she raps with a demanding yet welcoming voice. Bouncing around from Houston to Minneapolis to Detroit, you can hear the midwest vibes, soul train fever and southern beats. This is going to be a party.

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

noname // buddy // nov 21 // concord music hall // sold out

reppin: chicago, usa // compton, cali

twist one up

If you haven’t come across noname yet I am honestly jealous as her flow and soft beats are mouth watering. She bleeds Chicago hip hop and soul. Then there is Buddy who brings the west coast vibes, the kid who has worked with just about every big name in the genre. This is going to be a fun, upbeat show.

spotify: noname // buddy

jacob banks | sxsw, 2017 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | sxsw, 2017 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks // nov 22 // lincoln hall // tickets (jacob banks blog post, aug 2017)

reppin: birmingham, uk via nigeria // interscope // 2012 - present

netflix & chill

Probably my favorite soul singer in the game, this dude mixes it up with blues and R&B with vocals that are out of this world. Only in his mid-20s, this dude has so much in front of him. Let him sooth you as somehow this show is not sold out, so go!

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

kweku collins // nov 25 // space // sold out (previous blog post, oct 2016)

reppin: evanston, il // closed sessions // 2015 - present

kweku collins | metro, chicago | 3.25.17 | @thefaakehipster

kweku collins | metro, chicago | 3.25.17 | @thefaakehipster

twist one up

A kid on the rise fast, playing in his hometown during an incredible music month. It does not get much better than this. Kweku raps from the heart about issues that matter to the world. He also has delicious rapping vocals and a flow to match

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

jungle // nov 27 // metro // metro // tickets

reppin: london, uk // XL recordings // 2013 - present

twist one up

You’ve certainly heard their track, “busy earnin,’ all over the place. This neo-soul band creates an almost electronic, chill-wave feel filled out with soul. They have a worldwide vibe having their album chart just about everywhere. Again, how is this not sold out!

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

xavier omar // nov 28 // chop shop // sold out

reppin: san antonio, tx // soulection // 2012 - present

netflix & chill

I am really stoked to close out the month with Xavier. He has dreamy soulful vocals that almost give you that 90s feel with modern beats. I love his funky beats, melodic verses and honest lyrics. Watch out for this dude and his next album

spotify // fb // twitter // ig

encouraging your ears to discover new sounds

Go see live music

chicago // SHOWS ON SHOWS ON SHOWS: oct 3 - 15

*a look ahead at some rad shows to kick off october*

explosions in the sky // 10.3 // empty bottle (sold out)

reppin: austin, tx // temporary residence limited // 1999 - present

sounds like: a mural of the world and its secret landscapes that defines us

explosions in the sky | photo cred: rtrfm.com.au

explosions in the sky | photo cred: rtrfm.com.au

A band that has grown from playing small bars and venues to big arenas returns to their roots in Chicago for a special night. A constant evolution of instrumental post-rock, these guys tell a story with every track they write.

listens: your hand in mine // first breath after coma // so long, lonesome

japanese breakfast // 10.4 // subterranean (sold out)

reppin: eugene, or // dead oceans records // 2013 - present

sounds like: walking through a futuristic forest

After spending time in her outfit, Little Big League, Michelle took what she learned from playing and turned into her solo project. Her indie rock/pop sound is a tad on the dark side, yet so fulfilling in an upbeat kind of way. Her latest album, “soft sounds from another planet” has earned her universal acclaim from critics.

listens: everybody wants to love you // road head // diving woman

flor // 10.5 // bottom lounge (tix)

reppin: hood river, or / la, usa // fueled by ramen // 2015 - present

sounds like: sitting down with mother nature and having a deep chat

My ears strongly feel that these kids have put out one of the friendliest sounding debuts in some time. Those vocals, poppy hooks and beats that make you sway will have you loving seeing this band in real life form.

listens: guarded // hold on // warm blood

jr jr // 10.5 // house of blues (interview coming tomorrow) // tix

JR JR | photo cred: Travis Shinn

JR JR | photo cred: Travis Shinn

reppin: detroit, usa // warner // 2010 - present

sounds like: sitting with a group of friends reading an adult children’s book

Sometimes when you are fucking around with friends in a basement, not worrying about what the public thinks...you make music that humans respond to. Easy on the ears, JR JR brings indie pop tunes that make you want to grab onto someone close and hold on tight.

listens: same dark places // gone // if you didn’t see me (then you weren’t on the dance floor)

touche amore // 10.7 // subterranean (tix)

reppin: la, usa // epitaph // 2007 - present

sounds like: a teddy bear shaking you of your fears then holding you close

Lyrics you can hold close to your heart, vocals you can feel in your chest and a post-hardcore that is friendlier on the ears than you may think. Their riffs, energy and emotion have been at the top of their game for nearly ten years now and I cannot wait to see them live again

listens: flowers and you // palm dreams // new halloween

zola jesus // 10.8, thalia hall (tix)

reppin: merrill, wisconsin // sacred bones records // 2006 - present

sounds like: a shark hunting its prey in the depths of the ocean

Nicole has been far and ride and reached deep to bring her tunes to where they are. A voice that haunts you in all the right ways, is just dark enough to keep you hooked and not scare you away...or maybe she will. She is going to light up Thalia

listens: soak // skin // exhumed

zola jesus | photo cred: tunefind.com

zola jesus | photo cred: tunefind.com

conner youngblood // 10.9 // schubas tavern (tix)

reppin: dallas, usa // tunecore // 2012 - present

sounds like: swimming through the air in the middle of a lively forest

conner youngblood | photo cred: stereofox.com

conner youngblood | photo cred: stereofox.com

I had the pleasure of meeting Conner a few years opening for Pell and his ice cream swirl that is ambient and rhythmic pop. For me, it’s a dream, and he can prove it live as he’s put out amazing track after track

listens: australia // everyday // higher

nicolas jaar // 10.10 // concord music hall (tix)

reppin: nyc, usa // other people //2007 - present

sounds like: a safari ride through a disco hall

This dude can make your feet move in a funky way with this out there experimental electronic tracks. Having played the role of DJ, producer, composer and more across soundtracks and explorative concerts. This one should be a good ol’ fun time

listens: mi mujer // el bandino // time for us

yoke lore // 10.10 // lincoln hall (tix)

reppin: Katonah, New York // B3SCI Records // 2013 - present

sounds like: a morning bath in a deep forest spring

Adrian Galvin, formerly of Walk The Moon, throws a stirring style of indie pop into your ears that meets in the middle of true pop and psychedelic. A talented dude who can play all of the instruments with vocals to match, he is amping up the touring.

listens: hold me down // goodpain // only you

r.o.e // 10.12 // emporium arcade wicker park (interview to come) // free show

reppin: brooklyn, usa via chicago // rising over envy music // 2009 - present

sounds like: hanging out in a room with classy carpet on the floor and walls

R.O.E has a flow that immediately stands out from the moment he hits the track. An old school vibe with a new school attitude, you’ll find his smooth flowing raps over soul, R&B, indie and more. Catch him as he returns back home to play some of his latest from “a backpacker named R.O.E”

listens: cruise // good times // the gloves - mathien

rac (remix artist collective) // 10.13 // the metro (tix)

rac | concord music hall, chicago | 11.13.15 | @thefaakehipster

rac | concord music hall, chicago | 11.13.15 | @thefaakehipster

reppin: portland, usa // counter records // 2007 - present

sounds like: having your own personal red carpet runway to do as you please

What started as Andre creating hundreds of remixes across the board of genres has turned into a feel-good dancy project with a tourning band. Mixing in some originals, the dude knows how to make you get up and move while putting a smile on their face. I always have a good time seeing them.

listens: let go // back of the car // i still wanna know

misterwives // 10.15 // the riviera theater (tix)

reppin: grand haven, michigan // interscope // 2010 - present

sounds like: being miniature in a big kids world

Ever since "reflections" dropped this band has been on spanning the spectrum of indie rock and pop. Their latest album, "connect the dots" is ballad after ballad you can easily get up to and sing along with.

listens: reflections // chasing this // our own house

concert shenanigans: JULIE BYRNE

reppin: buffalo, ny // da da bing records // 2012 - present

sounds like: watching bright, colorful leaves come off a tree on a warm fall day

latest album drop: not even happiness (jan 2017)

featuring: julie and her guitar

julie bryne | photo cred: orindal.limitedrun.com

julie bryne | photo cred: orindal.limitedrun.com

You can feel the anticipation as we all know it is time for the headlining act. Finally, Julie slowly walks from the back of the crowd, drink in hand, to the Schubas stage, winding through the crowd. The conversations begin to dwindle as the light applause begins...not because no one is excited, but more so given the beautiful, mellow set that is about to begin. People...when Julie plucks those first notes on her acoustic up and down the fretboard, it comes through so crystal clear, simple and smooth. Then, her voice. Holy shit. It demands your ears no matter what you are doing. She sings so effortlessly, like waves gliding into the beachside at night. Julie’s deep, warming vocals, combined with guitar and keys are likened to pouring creamer into coffee. Her voice drags in such a beautiful way that the words kind of blend into one another...much like watching the creamer slowly take over. If her voice is the creamer, then the coffee is her folk melodies. When you finally stir it all together, you have a sweet, creamy cup of songs.

julie byrne | schubas, chicago | 7.20.17 | @thefaakehipster

julie byrne | schubas, chicago | 7.20.17 | @thefaakehipster

Julie prides herself on more of a fingerstyle sort of guitar playing, which meshes with her singing so fluidly. Being raised in the humble city of Buffalo and having a father dedicated to guitar playing, she naturally rooted herself in music. In fact, her father developed multiple sclerosis and she took it upon herself to honor the legacy of his playing and build something upon it. It is so obvious as you can hear and feel the heart and soul pour out of her mouth and guitar, creating beautiful melodies. Having bounced around in cities like Chicago, Pittsburgh, New Orleans and Seattle, she is well rounded in culture and the music that comes with it. This path has led to the release of her latest album, “not even happiness,” which was so fittingly recorded in a cabin in New Hampshire. These nine tracks have earned the album universal acclaim and will sway your emotions across the spectrum.

julie bryne | photo cred: drukenwerewolf.com

julie bryne | photo cred: drukenwerewolf.com

Whether you have her in your ears or within your line of sight in the flesh, close your eyes as your listen. She will allow your mind to drift into a vast open pasture of imagination that will hug you, comfort you and think of turning all that negative energy into positive light. Digging deeper into her lyrics, which are full of metaphors and self reflection, travels, love and lost, there is something for everyone to relate to and interpret through their own life. While Julie’s music falls under the contemporary folk nature, there is no doubt she stands out with her powerful, soothing voice. You can hold onto yourself, or someone close to you, but either way, after giving this album a listen, you will be able to dig down into that soul of yours and come out fresher and better.

suggested listening experience: laying around the apartment // cuddling with the one you love // soothing whatever pain you have

listens: follow my voice // natural blue // sleepwalker // morning dove // melting grid // prism song

jb // bandcamp // spotfiy // sc

concert shenanigans: DUCKTAILS

*guest contributor - tony scianna*

reppin: ridgewood, nj // domino records // 2006 - present

sounds like: the haze near the end of a long road trip as you look out the car window at the state of nothingness.

matt mondaline | photo cred: factmag.com

matt mondaline | photo cred: factmag.com

last album drop: “St. Catherine” (2015) – “Jersey Devil” expected to drop Oct 2017

featuring: matt

ducktails | empty bottle, chicago | 9.8.17 | @tonyscianno

ducktails | empty bottle, chicago | 9.8.17 | @tonyscianno

It was quickly approaching midnight when a tall, hipster-esque, dark haired man with glasses took the stage at The Empty Bottle – a small, yet intimate, indie music venue/bar. His attire was as casual as his demeanor: a plain white t shirt and plain jeans, with a natural saunter. He looked like he could have just been part of the crowd – which he was during the two opening acts, local bands “Dogs at Large” and “Varsity”. It was hard to miss Matt walking around and being social before he took the stage. His presence was undeniable, but it was also natural. He fit in with us as much as we fit in with him. Seeing your favorite musicians casually hanging out like any other person is one of the coolest experiences that comes with seeing indie music live. By time he took the stage it didn’t feel like some bigger than life person was in front of us; it felt like watching your friend, who happens to be incredibly talented, have fun and play music. That is the vibe Matt likes to create at his live shows – something he accomplishes through his presentation as well as his music.

After spending time as the founding guitarist of indie pop powerhouse “Real Estate”, Matt decided to take his dreamy, hypnotic, Jersey jangle pop guitar riffs and venture off on his own. Ducktails is a solo project, something Matt takes to heart with his live performances. Unlike the two opening acts, Matt didn’t have a band playing with him. It was just him and his guitar. But it wasn’t a stripped down, acoustic performance. Matt used a pedal to control pre-recorded bass, drum, and synthesizer tracks while he played electric guitar and sang over the prerecorded tracks. Almost in the same way a DJ will use pre-recorded tracks and scratch or improvise over them. He even comments during the show, saying, “I used to play with a band, now I’m trying this. DJ’s do it, why can’t I?”

ducktails | photo cred: lpr.com

ducktails | photo cred: lpr.com

Ducktails’ music is breezy and hypnotic – it allows you to let go and get lost in your own head. Before you know it, you’re relaxed and not thinking about the trials and tribulations of daily life. It highlights music’s wonderful ability to make you feel like nothing else really matters except for enjoying what is in front of you. Matt wants to keep the good vibes going. He blatantly says that in his biggest hit, “Killin’ the Vibe” when he urges others around him to “don’t go killin’, killin’ the vibe”. Matt wants his shows to be fun and inviting. He invites us to join him on a metaphorical cruise through the jersey shore – soaking in the sun with good friends.

During the show, he had a slideshow of photos playing on a screen in the background. The photos seemed random and obscure – almost as if it was an inside joke. But he explained that they are photos he took as he’s journeyed around the country. The way the photos masked his face and projected over his plain white t shirt presented a beautiful image of unity between his music and his life. He’s showing us who and what he is, all on his own. A mirage of photos, music, and his own vulnerability. And he’s inviting all of us along for the ride.   

suggested listening experience: laying in your bed at the end of a long day // after a hike with your best friends // lazy Sundays at the beach

listens: map to the stars // killin’ the vibe // headbanging in the mirror // light a candle // hamilton road // surreal exposure // ivy covered house // the disney afternoon

dt // spotify // ig // twitter // fb // sc

chicago // shows on shows on shows: SEPTEMBER 1 - 15

*a new feature focusing on all the groovy shows coming up in chicago*

diarrhea planet | lincoln hall, chicago | 12.30.15 | @thefaakehipster

diarrhea planet | lincoln hall, chicago | 12.30.15 | @thefaakehipster

Dent May // 9.2 - The Hideout // tickets

reppin: la, usa by way of jackson, mississippi // car park records // 2007 - present

sounds like: the opening scene of a weird, yet classy movie

last album drop: across the universe (may 2017)

Mr. May got his start a while back playing in the power pop group, The Rockwells. Since then, he has brought his southern charm and influence to LA, bringing a unique sound to the forefront. His latest album tells the story of adjust to life in the new big city.

listens: born too late // meet me in the garden // face down in the gutter of your life

Middle Kids // 9.6 - Lincoln Hall // tickets

middle kids | photo cred: rolling stone aus

middle kids | photo cred: rolling stone aus

reppin: sydney, australia // EMI & Domino Records // 2016 - present

sounds like: taking a camper into the woods and hanging by the campfire

last album drop: middle kids EP (feb 2017)

These kids only have a few singles under their belt, as well as an EP, but they are doing all the right things as they hit the states for their first run. This 3 piece has a solid alt rock, indie sound with vocals by Hannah that make you smile. Catch this show as you can as they may be playing much bigger venues the next time around.

listens: edge of town // your love // never start

Diarrhea Planet // 9.8 - Wurst Fest // tickets

reppin: nashville, usa // dine alone records // 2009 - present

sounds like: the happiest fucking moshpit you’ve ever been in

last album: turn to gold (june 2016)

you have not heard anything like these dudes before. 6 dudes, 4 guitars whaling in your face and a whole lot of good feels and smiles. These live shows are full of constant energy, shredding solos on solos on solos. They will be crazy fun, don’t miss them.

listens: separations // lite dream // life pass

diarrhea planet | lincoln hall, chicago | 12.30.15 | @thefaakehipster

diarrhea planet | lincoln hall, chicago | 12.30.15 | @thefaakehipster

Ducktails & Varsity // 9.8 - Empty Bottle // tickets

reppin: ducktails - ridgewood, nj // domino records // 2006 - present //// varsity - chicago, usa // unsigned // 2013 - present

sounds like: both bands - a never ending dance floor with all the lights you need 

last album drop: dt-  st. catherine (july 2015) // varsity - self titled (2015) 

ducktails will soothe your soul to goovy indie rock tunes all night long. They threw themselves in a blender with the ingredients of chillwave and lo-fi pop rock. Varsity will give you the same kind of vibes, expect sub in Stephanie’s wonderful running vocals. You got a great pair of bands for a cruising kind of chill night.

listens: dt - killin the vibe // headbanging in the mirror // light a candle //// varsity - so sad, so sad // cult of personality // settle down

Geographer // 9.10 - Schubas // tickets

reppin: san fran, ca // roll call records // 2007 - present

sounds like: hanging around in outer space, just chillin

last album drop: ghost modern (march 2015)

Mike has been doing his thing for some time and has absolutely nailed this indie rocky electric sound. He’s Berklee graduated, has supported many big acts and played a big bucket of festivals. Him and the live band will be a dancy good time.

listens: kites // verona // read my mind

Royal Canoe // 9.12 - subterranean // tickets

reppin: winnipeg, canananada // nevado music // 2010 - present

sounds like: floating through a light rainstorm

last album drop: Something Got Lost Between Here and the Orbit (sept 2016)

These kids bring the funk dance vibes and it is pretty freaking awesome. If you happen to see them live, you’ll see some different instruments on stage serenating you with the type of pop sound that makes you move.

listens: bathtubs // fussin’ // exodus of the year

Strand of Oaks // 9.14 SPACE // tickets

reppin: goshen, in // dead oceans records // 2003 - present

sounds like: going into one of those bouncy houses with speakers blaring from all angles

stef chura | empty bottle, chicago | 5.4.17 | @thefaakehipster

stef chura | empty bottle, chicago | 5.4.17 | @thefaakehipster

last album drop: hard love (feb 2017)

I’ve seen this bearded man a few times and he never disappoints. He always brings a ton of energy to his shows, it’s super easy on the ears and you’ll want to sing along. One time he brought his mom out to sing, so yea.

listens: goshen ‘97 // everything // hard love

Stef Chura // 9.14 - Subterranean // previously blogged about // tickets

Death Valley Girls // 9.15, Empty Bottle // tickets

reppin:  la, usa // burger records // 2014 - present

sounds like: a sweaty sweaty face shaking back and forth in slow motion

last album drop: glow in the dark (june 2016)

Self described gutter rock, these three chicks and a dude put on a hell of a party. It’s trippy, it’s garage and you want to rock out and drop your jaw just to stare at the same time. They live up to how wild rock n’ roll should be.

listens: disco // glow in the dark // no reason

Riot Fest  // 9.15 - 17 // Douglas Park

new music: JACOB BANKS

reppin: birmingham, uk by way of nigeria // interscope // 2012 - present // 26 years old

jacob banks | photo cred: next2shine.com

jacob banks | photo cred: next2shine.com

sounds like: walking around with crazy cool, mid-evil statues on each side of you buffering you from all the bad

last album drop: the paradox (july 2015)

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

featuring: jacob

This man is here on this blue and green marble to do one thing: save soul. Without soul we have nothing in music. Jacob Banks hails from Nigeria and scooted over to the UK at the young age of 13 where he explored just about every creative arts form. He can hit the keys, strum the guitar and oh baby, can he get those pipes going. He expanded his gift of belting sounds out to writing songs about six years ago and we should all be thankful someone put him in the studio to do just that. He earned his stripes the hard way too, hitting all the open mics he could back home, something that flourished into a career that has begun to take him around the world. What impresses me about this man is his ability to tell stories with his writing. As he described to Billboard, regarding the music video for his tune “Unholy War,” “This video depicts how the world gives people shit for things that are out of their control and the sacrifices people make to keep their magic alive.”

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

When an individual like Jacob can not only have a commanding vocal presence, the deep ties to society make him even more relevant in my eyes. He has this delicious and nutritious mix of soul, r&b with toppings that include hip-hop and even some good ol’ rock. You can hear the 80s creeping into the 2010s and even some influence form his home country in Africa. This man is only 26 mind you and quite seasoned in the array of styles he can produce. As each song funnels its way into your ears, it will move your body in so many different ways and despite what the lyrics may write out, the sound alone will put smiles on your face.

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

jacob banks | sxsw, austin | 3.12.17 | @thefaakehipster

The first time I was fortunate enough to have Mr. Banks grace me with his presence was at a private showcase at SXSW this year. After lighting up a nice J of Cali’s finest with some new homies, we crept to the back of the small crowd and preceded to drop our jaws...and they just would not close shut. He gives you goosebumps with his range of vocals.. His band makes the hairs on your arms stand up straight. The chills are there in all the right ways. While he has only released a few singles on top of his 2015 release, there is no ceiling in sight for this man. His blends of genres and youth of his career can only allow this man to grow musically. Take a seat, throw on his tunes, and melt into that thing because you won’t need to move anytime soon.

suggested listening experience: making sweet sweet love // cruising along on something with wheels // getting ready for the evening

listens: unholy war // worthy // chainsmoking // silver lining // monster // sink or swim // mercy

jb // spotify // fb // twitter // sc // ig

wtfaylttg (Why The Fuck Aren't You Listening To These Guys): DOOMTREE

*a new feature giving you the legends who have been doing there thing for awhile, better than most*

reppin: minneapolis, mn // doomtree records // 2007 - present

sounds like: a rare and hard to find roller coaster theme park misplaced in the flatlands of the midwest

doomtree | photo cred: kelly loverud

doomtree | photo cred: kelly loverud

discography: false hopes (2007) // doomtree (2008) // FH:XV (2009) // No Kings (2011) // All Hands (2015)

featuring: P.O.S // Cecil Otter // SIMS // Dessa // Mike Mictlan // Lazerbeak // Paper Tiger

THE OVERVIEW

doomtree | chicago | 2.20.15 | @thefaakehipster

doomtree | chicago | 2.20.15 | @thefaakehipster

The beautiful, poetic history of hip-hop has taken twists and turns over the decades, sprouting into sub-genres and extending the boundaries of how we take in a beat. Within that, artists from their respective cities are always holding their region close while expanding their minds as they work with others across the globe. With all the members of Doomtree hailing from the land of Minneapolis, I have never come across a group of individuals who can combine their styles, flow and personalities to spit out some of the most unique hip hop your ears will come across. They lay their foundation with the electronic production of Paper Tiger and Lazerbeak, constantly pushing the envelope of creating holistic tracks with so many flavors. While we see most artists in this genre couple off for a song or an album, there is a supremely special asset to what makes these humans go: consistency. Each of their solo careers has allowed them to come together collectively and keep chugging along, working to outdo what they did last.

THE HISTORY

The story begins in the upper north with a bunch of kids just fucking around in school, not knowing what the future holds. There was talent swirling around the group, a group that favored different genres and clashed in style. Whether it was playing in a punk band, listening to jazz and funk of getting down with blues, rock and soul, they sprinkled a bit of everything in the mix. That didn’t matter to them, they loved it. Once the tracks started coming off the tongues and table tops, they started booking the local shows. The friends showed up at first, then word spread and the live sets got bigger and bigger. How the heck can 7 people continue to make a little cash to keep themselves going? So, they turned their group into a business, churning out merchandise, creating a lifestyle….all out of a mother’s basement. Not only were they pushing Doomtree, they started releasing their own records, to this date over 50 in total. They’ve conquered a DIY attitude, finding the right people to work with and creating something from nothing when needed. While all the Doomtreers are constantly touring and putting out new music, whenever they all come together for shows and tours, they sell that place out with dedicated fans who want to pour their hearts our with them.

doomtree | chicago | 2.20.15 | @thefaakehipster

doomtree | chicago | 2.20.15 | @thefaakehipster

THE FIRST BIG MOMENT

After taking some time for the group to settle in on its final members, it did not take long for Doomtree to branch outside of their hometown. That third record, “No Kings” is what really put them on the map in my opinion. With bumping joints like “No Way,” “Team The Best Team,” “Little Mercy,” and their anthem, “Bangarang,” fans knew it wouldn’t be long until the secret got out. Just about every track on that album creates a unique flow with ever changing rhythms and beats that mold to whoever is rapping. And it is not just me. The album received critical acclaim and started appearing on “top lists” as the next best groups to come. We saw some great music come from the members for their solo projects as well, giving further proof to them growing separately and coming together as a group. When they take the stage at whatever venue they are rocking, the crowd goes nuts, sings along and the energy and vibe reaches all time highs. You can tell how much fun they are having on stage and it spreads like a virus across the room.

THE SUSTAINED SUCCESS

doomtree | photo cred: ben lafond

doomtree | photo cred: ben lafond

Looping back to that word, consistency, with this crew gives me all the confirmation that Doomtree is here to stay. Not only do they have a rap group, but a record label, a press label, international distribution...a foundation that will lead to bigger and better things in the future. They can spit about anything from love, loss and friends to video games and good times, they have lyrics with purpose. They are never pushing to get their tracks on the radio, but separate themselves from the pack and continue to win fans over one at a time. The raddest part...they are so good and true to their fans. If you catch them walking down the street or having a beer, they’ll kick it with you. Never seeing themselves above anyone, the authenticity of not only their sound, but them as humans, is really rare with such talented artists.

WHAT'S NEXT

It has been a few years since “All Hands,” their latest release in 2015 filled with special treats like “Final Boss,” “Gray Duck,” “Generator,” and “Heavy Rescue.” The fact that they may be awhile off their next release is not a bad thing. The members are pushing along, hitting the road and striving to open up new doors in both opportunities and music exploration. P.O.S will be hitting the entire country this fall and winter while Dessa will be rocking out at Riot Fest. While they all have their solo careers, it is so clear that their individual growth has led to each album topping the last.

suggested listening experience: cruising in your ride // party time // getting hot and heavy

listens: bangarang // slow burn // final boss // team the best team // no way // bolt cutter // spill me up // gray duck // heavy rescue // little mercy

dt // spotfiy // ig // twitter // fb // sc

Lollapalooza 2017 - Recommended Up & Comers Based On Your Mood

Wake up. Get a good stretch. Maybe a little work out. Take a shower that won't matter later. Get yourself a hearty breakfast, you'll need it. Strap on those shoes that you are okay getting dirty and get ready for a hell of a 4 days. Lollapalooza 2017 is here to take over Chicago and it is time to strap in and let the good times roll.

Lollapalooza 2016 | @thefaakehipster

Lollapalooza 2016 | @thefaakehipster

where: chicago, usa // grant park

when: august 3 - 6

7 stages // 176 bands..ish

Faake Hipster Lollapalooza 2016 Recommendations

For the second time, Lolla is bringing us 4 great days of music with genres all across the board. How the heck are you going to work out your schedule? Plan as much as you want, but it will probably blow up in your face. Not to worry, I am here to crunch those numbers, travel the vast depths of the internet and streaming services and supply you with the latest in the newest music and best acts. But, I don't just want you to see these acts, I want you to experience them, to feel them. Even if you go one day, it is a long one filled with all types of music. So, whether you want to keep it super chill or maybe get your dancing shoes on, we are going to break down this year's recommendations by mood. Your key:

Rock Out (RO) // get ready to have your face melted

Fuck You, I Just Want To Dance (FUCKDANCE) // Time to sweat your face off

Twist One Up (TOU) // Get ready to have your face lifted

Netflix & Chill (N&C) // I just want to sit down and not do anything with my face

Previously Blogged About (**) // Wrote about their faces earlier

 

THE ROSTER

The Spotify Playlist

white reaper | beat kitchen, chicago | 5.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

white reaper | beat kitchen, chicago | 5.5.17 | @thefaakehipster

Thursday //

Kweku Collins** // White Reaper**  // The O'My's** // Middle Kids // The Drums

Kweku Collins // TOU // evanston, il // 12, Pepsi // sounds like: posting up at a campfire in the middle of the big city

White Reaper // RO // louisville // 12:45, Grant Park // sounds like: rocking out in the basement all night long with your best friends, leaving at sunrise and not having a fucking care in the world

The O'My's // N&C // chicago // 1:50, Pepsi // sounds like: putting on suspenders, a bow tie, a top hat or that vintage 50s dress with your derby hat, then looking in the mirror and saying damnnnn I look good

Middle Kids // N&C // sydney // 2:50, Pepsi // sounds like: walking through the forests in the northern woods of wisconsin 

The Drums // FUCKDANCE // nyc // 3:30, Lake Shore // sounds like: you dancing by yourself in the middle of a disco dance floor and being totally cool with it

 

Friday // 

mondo cozmo | shazam private party, chicago | 4.6.17

mondo cozmo | shazam private party, chicago | 4.6.17

SAINt JHN // San Holo // Mondo Cozmo // PUP // Mura Masa // Whitney**

SAINt JHN // TOU // brooklyn // 12:50, Pepsi // sounds like: taking a glorious, smooth shower in the coolest hotel room in Vegas

San Holo // FUCKDANCE // netherlands // 1:15, Perry's // sounds like: going through one of those installments where mirrors are everywhere reflecting off one another

Mondo Cozmo // RO // philadelphia // 1:50, Pepsi // sounds like: watching a city plant grow in your patio

PUP // RO // toronto // 2, Tito's // sounds like: taping yourself going out the other night and watching it the next day at 10 times to speed

Mura Masa // FUCKDANCE // guernsey // 4, Pepsi // sounds like: walking through a stripped down city in a tropical setting

Whitney // N&C // chicago // 7:45, Pepsi // sounds like: cruising in your cadillac...bright lights, big city and chill - 45ish years ago

 

Saturday //

The Shelters // Ron Gallo** // Jacob Banks // LÉON // Colony House // Royal Blood

the shelters | beat kitchen, chicago | 4.12.17

the shelters | beat kitchen, chicago | 4.12.17

The Shelters // RO // la, usa // 12:45, Grant Park // sounds like: living your life through a classic style microphone 

Ron Gallo // RO // nashville + philadelphia // 2:10, BMI // sounds like: giving the finger to those kids that bullied you later than life with a smile

Jacob Banks // TOU // birmingham, uk // 2:15, Tito's // sounds like: walking around with crazy cool, mid-evil statues on each side of you buffering you from the bad

LÉON // N&C // stockholm // 4, Pepsi // sounds like: laying in the perfectly crafted bed made of clouds and marshmallows

ron gallo | subterranen, chicago | 2.20.17 | @thefaakehipster

ron gallo | subterranen, chicago | 2.20.17 | @thefaakehipster

Colony House // FUCKDANCE // franklin, tennessee // 4, BMI // sounds like:

Royal Blood // RO // brighton, uk // 5:15, lake shore // sounds like: a fight for supremacy among animals in the deep jungles of south america

 

Sunday // 

Grace Mitchell // VANT // Lo Moon // noname // Car Seat Headrest // flor 

Grace Mitchell // RO // portland // 12:15, Tito's // sounds like: your fuzzy night leading into the even more fuzzy morning

VANT // RO // london // 12:45, Grant Park // sounds like:  the soundtrack to looking back on a good day with your friends....all smiles

Lo Moon // N&C // la, usa // 1:50, Pepsi // sounds like: a casual trip into outerspace

noname // TOU // chicago // 2:50, Pepsi // sounds like: the most rocking, soulful lullaby you'll ever need

Car Seat Headrest // RO + N&C // seattle via leesburg // 3, Bud Light // sounds like: a night out in the middle of nowhere america with the sun setting on you

 

new music: SURF CURSE

reppin: la, usa // 2012 - present  // danger collective records

sounds like: a leisurely stroll down the beach behind a vintage filter

surf curse | empty bottle, chicago | 4.25.17 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

surf curse | empty bottle, chicago | 4.25.17 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

last album drop: nothing yet (jan 2017)

featuring: jacob // nick

surf curse | photo cred: thescenestar.typepad.com

surf curse | photo cred: thescenestar.typepad.com

The simple things in life...they are relatable, understandable, beautiful and at the core just want to be your friend. When surf curse hits the stage with two skinny, young looking dudes you start to possibly wonder what they can tangle together with a simple drum kit, a guitar and two voices. When they start playing, just close your eyes and the answer will come to you in a pleasant, lo-fi, bouncy beach sound that will have you vibing for days. This duo, hailing from LA via henderson, NV has tied the laces and put on the hat to what is a punk surfer rock band. I’m across the board on getting all sorts of music in my ears, but oh boy, is there something just beautiful about two humans composing a simple arrangement that brings more energy and emotion than five piece bands. After forming sometime in 2012/13 and often splitting time between coasts, they put out their EP “Sad Boys” in 2013 and have been hard tour dudes ever since. Drawing inspiration from a lot of their favorite movies like Dazed and Confused, they almost like to create their own soundtrack to it. They have played in just about every city and hit a ton of musical festivals to boot. Both “sad boys” and their first full length, “buds” had this deep, fast punk vibe to them, moving quickly from song to song with light and airy vocals. Just give “I’m Not Making Out You” a listen and try and not scoot around and dance in your apartment...impossible!

surf curse | empty bottle, chicago | 4.25.17 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

surf curse | empty bottle, chicago | 4.25.17 | photo cred: @thefaakehipster

What I can certainly notice is this shift in in your face surfer punk to this more mellow, lo-fi jam on their latest album, “nothing yet.” When the lead track, christine f, hits your ears, it starts with a simple drum intro coupled with nick’s vocals and then boom, the guitar hits and all of the sudden, so quickly, you just get the vibe. Sing along lyrics, a relaxed yet energetic collection of riffs, swift drums, and guitar picking throughout that equates to this euphoria sound with depth. You can’t help but bounce around and feel happy hearing them play. When they hit the stage live, sometimes with an extra musician to pick up those extra notes, their ease in their composure mixed with the organized thrashing along of their instruments. As you get deeper into their latest album, pay close attention to the lyrics taking jabs at personal experiences that seem to have shaped the music they play today. In fact, those lyrics, in the simplistic form they are in, are pretty relatable on anyone’s level. There will be a sense of comfort because of their melodic approach combined with that feeling of being a kid again makes for a great time.

suggested listening experience: bike rides and walks down the street // beach hangs // backyard bbqs

listens: christine f // i’m not making out with you // freaks // heathers // all is lost // the strange and the kind // doom generation // forever dumb

surf curse // fb // spotify // sc // twitter // ig 

concert shenanigans: NAUGHTY PROFESSOR & BASSEL AND THE SUPERNATURALS @ Taste of Randolph

reppin: np - new orleans, usa // 2011 - present //  b&ts - chicago, usa // 2008 - present

sounds like: np - a monster truck gracefully crashing into something. You can appreciate the beauty of it

b&ts - we are the movie Wet Hot American Summer on repeat. Constant trolling and very animated bunch. Good times and good vibes

last/upcoming album drop: np - identity (june 2017) // b&ts - elements (feb 2017)

naughty professor | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.17.17 | @thefaakehipster

naughty professor | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.17.17 | @thefaakehipster

featuring: np - ian // (tenor sax) // john (trumpet) // bill (guitar) // nick (alto and baritone sax) // sam (drums) // noah (bass) 

b&ts - bassel // brandon // philip // stevenson //  mason // caleb // thomas // corbin //  sean // juan // leslie

Taste of Randolph - Chicago

What they say about summertime Chi is true, it really does not get much better in this country. The beach (there is even a freaking festival on the beach now), street festivals, music everywhere, big festivals and more. A staple has landed right at the beginning of the summer madness and they call it, The Taste of Randolph. Located in the heart of the West Loop, it was first known as the place to flock towards to get the best eats in the city….all of those glorious tacos and sausages. Now, it has become clear that music is the leading force of this ginormous street fest, gathering some musically talented bands and acts from across the states. A clear winner and up there with West Fest, Green Fest, Wicker Park and DoDivision...let’s not forget Logan Square Arts Festival as well.

The year 2017 featured the likes of rock/almost jam band Moon Taxi, Here Come The Mummies (a collection of talented studio musicians who yes, dress as mummies), electronic bossman Robert DeLong, the chill of the chilliest Slow Magic and dance kings !!! (Chk Chk Chk) as well as some smaller known acts. I got to kick it with two in particular: Soulfunk act, Bassel and the Supernaturals as well as jazzy “future-funk” outfit, Naughty Professor. Ladies and gentleman, these are two ridiculously musically technical acts that make jaws drop as you stand in place just observing the ear awesomeness. No, you will not hear them in the latest top 40 rotation, but they are the types of bands needed to progress and push out the borders of music. First up, Ohio born, Chicago living and Syrian raised, Mr. Bassel:

Bassel and the Supernaturals

Lets first focus on your unique sound and vibes that Bassel and Supernaturals is. What past experiences in music brought you to create this soulful funky sound?

bassel & the supernaturals | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.16.17 | @thefaakehipster

bassel & the supernaturals | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.16.17 | @thefaakehipster

We play like a neo-soul type of music. I was a drummer, playing violin in the indie rock music scene in Ohio. I was into a lot of forms of indie rocks. Denali, Mile Marker, a lot of early Death Cab for Cutie. I moved to Chicago seven years ago and that is where I started getting into more of the soul music. I got really deep into Andrew Bird and Sufjan Stevens beforehand and when I got to Chicago and it was a really good time to reflect on what I thought what made music timeless and what resonated with me. It all came back to that soulful connection to the music. I got really hooked on Otis Reading in particular and that led me down a whole path: Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, you name it. What all these artists have in common is that emotional connection to the music and their ability to tell a story doing it. Their music, tone, lyrics, everything, you just feel so connected to it. And it was very powerful for me. It taught me to find an emotional element to everything I was doing. It was less about writing soul music, but writing music from the soul. It is also just a ton of fun to play as well.

A lot of bands are always striving to be unique - live show, sound, promo, etc. You guys have a positive twist on it. I take it you are from Syria...which i think turns heads given the political climate now. What do you want to teach your fans about why you do what you do?

More than anything it is about people getting really nervous confronting the issues in Syria, being all political. What is so powerful about music is that ability for music to break down that wall and make that connection to those types of issues. The personal connection that we have to this issue has been unbelievably powerful. Beyond just festivals and clubs we play colleges and cultural centers, churches that are more focused on creating a conversation around this. And what is a common thread in so many of these spaces is that so many people have cared about this issues but they feel nervous about how little they know or don’t know different organizations. By creating a space where we can be open about that and not force any issues down anyone’s throat and just tell a story and talk about the organizations that who are doing good work and find that connection and personalize it. Not as a far away distance issues and it is something that affects us all.

The lyrics...real life situations, love, losing those close to you. How do you want your fans to take in your words and react to them?

We get a lot of questions if lyrics are specific to a person or friend or whatever. It is about emotions that connect to different experiences, that is how I enjoy writing. Love or loss...loss of a friend, dear item, that emotion that brings those experiences together. Being able to personalize those emotions and you feel the colors and the songs and you can interpret that with your own environment and who you are.

Y’all are about to go hit the stage on a nice summer day. What is the mission of your live set. When you make eye contact with a fan or are trying to make new fans...what do you want the audience to get out of it?

It’s creating an infectious energy on the stage, more than anything it starts there. I mean, it is great when you make eye contact with somebody and you know they are feeling it. I love to just energize my band. The more fun we are having on stage, the more fun everyone will have. I’ve learned to spend more time doing that and less time focusing on this person and that person. It has to translate to the audience

I always use funny metaphors to describe bands and artists i write about, what would you use?

We are the movie Wet Hot American Summer on repeat. Constant trolling and very animated bunch. Good times and good vibes.

Naughty Professor

How did you guys land on your sound, being a larger group with some diverse personalities?

So, we all met in music school in New Orleans and at a time when we were all checking a lot of different music out and growing as musicians...currently we are all between 25-28. So, we all met around 7 years ago. Over the course of the first year or two, we kind of landed on this sound...pretty bombastic and aggressive and still somewhat dynamic with some jazz sensibilities. We def leave space for every member to take a solo and guide the band one way or another.

So live, do you all do a lot of interpretation on your set?

Most of what we do is planned out, but we do leave space for a solo section so we can change it up a bit.

naughty professor | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.17.17 | @thefaakehipster

naughty professor | taste of randolph, chicago | 6.17.17 | @thefaakehipster

Me: That is refreshing to hear, being away from the mainstream genres, but you all aren’t afraid to be different among the general audience.

There are some lyrics involved, are there any stories and personal experiences involved with that? Or is more about the music and the solos you want fans to engage with?

So the band has usually been instrumental until this new album we are putting out next week actually. We decided to recruit seven singers and have five instrumental tracks. Until recently we never performed with a vocalist. Now, we have lyrics, but we did not actually write any of the lyrics. We sent the tracks to vocalists we liked and asked them to pick songs they like and write their take on it. It is a collaborative process, which I like, but none of us in the band are really singers or strong lyrical writers. We let the professionals write that.

While lyrics a central component for you, I’m sure the live show is where you focus on gaining those new fans. When you play live, what is your goal at the end of the day.

That’s a good question. Some things that set us apart from other groups are the amount of energy we have performing and just how much fun we are having on stage. There is some room to improvise our sets so it makes it a bit more free flowing, interact with one another. People have told me that they don’t really pay attention to the genre of music we play, but because of how we are on-stage, they are now believers. It really brings it home for them. I know there are some people that are jazz nerds like us and those nerding out...then there is the common music fan, and this is the perfect place to play.

I always use funny metaphors to describe bands and artists i write about, what would you use?

Ahhhh put me on the spot a little bit haha. I would hope we sound like a monster truck gracefully crashing into something. You can appreciate the beauty of it.

np // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // sc

b&ts // spotify // fb // twitter // ig // sc