Hot Time in Chicago with Delta Spirit

Why would I brave four hours of gridlock traffic into Chicago on a hot summer day? It would have to be a pretty special event to motivate such a trip, Delta Spirit at the Metro sparked this insanity. After being duly impressed by their intimate performances at Daytrotter's Barnstormer III in May, we took the trip into the Windy City to see them in an actual club setting where they were even more impressive. Delta Spirit hails from Long Beach, CA, playing an addictive concoction of soulful southern blues with indie rock sensibilities.

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Review: Frog Eyes Schizophrenia Live

Carey Mercer of Frog Eyes music style has been referred to by critics as idiosyntric, bombastic and capable of creating an atmosphere of psychedelic unease. The band’s recording efforts certainly show elements of all those descriptions and more. Frog Eyes live adds another dimension to the very original sound that somehow emerges from the band’s unlikely home base of Victoria, British Columbia.

Carey Mercer of Frog Eyes

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SXSW Mantra: More Bands, Less Sleep


SXSW 2010 Diary

Each morning we get up progressively later and slide on down to the hotel breakfast buffet before it closes. Today we notice members of Frightened Rabbit contemplating what kind of omelet they want to have while we try not to look too disheveled. But hell everybody in the hotel at this time of the morning looks disheveled!

At this point, people start to get a little crazy from lack of sleep and overall shock of seeing hundreds of bands. You’ve got bands in bars, bands on the street, bands in churches, bands in peoples’ backyards. Literally everywhere you look is a band or artist. The streets are clogged with more band tour buses, vans and trailers than Madison on UW moving day. SXSW brings in more money to the city of Austin annually than any other event. Local cab drivers and pedicycle operators estimate about 100 – 150,000 additional people in the city for the music festival.

Zola Jesus

Zola Jesus at SXSW


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Holy Fuck is Hot Shit

You gotta love Holy Fuck, the critically acclaimed four-piece progressive electronic band from Toronto, Canada. With little hope of ever getting the band’s name in the mainstream media, they’ve focused on what matters most; the music.

We saw Holy Fuck’s improvisational show at the BrooklynVegan showcase in Austin, TX during South by Southwest. When a Midwestern date opened up on their tour schedule, we thought a Madison show would materialize, but alas, Milwaukee got the gig. At the last minute, the Milwaukee show was moved from the cavernous Turner Hall to the more intimate Mad Planet club.

Holy Fuck

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Icarus Himself and Sleeping in the Aviary - The Frequency

Madison's Icarus Himself have evolved into a trio and just released a new EP "Mexico." Nick Whetro and Karl Christenson of National Beekeeper's Society along with new percussionist Brad Kolberg have matured the Icarus Himself sound into a cohesive identity as evidenced by the five songs on the new EP. We've been listening to the new material and especially like the textured build of "Digging Holes" and fuzz-soaked "Half Ton Load."

Icarus Himself

 Icarus Himself - Digging Holes

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 Icarus Himself - Half Ton Load

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Julian Lynch - Madison via New Jersey

Madison has always had the good fortune of excellent musicians taking refuge at the university to pursue academic endeavors. From Steve Miller and Butch Vig to Richard Davis and Jim Schwall, the list of musicians who called UW-Madison home at one time or another has become urban legend.

Julian Lynch, a Madison transplant by way of New Jersey, has taken residence at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to pursue a PhD in ethnomusicology. The multi-instrumentalist, who is a virtuoso on guitar and saxophone, will be a familiar face on the local music scene for the foreseeable future. Lynch has connections from his Ridgewood, New Jersey music roots to such diverse artists as Real Estate and Titus Andronicus. He’s recorded for the infamous Underwater Peoples record label collective and has just finished a new album entitled “Mare” that will be out this year.

Julian Lynch bathed in blue light at the Project Lodge
Julian Lynch 

Julian Lynch - Mare

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Julian Lynch - In New Jersey

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We caught Julian's live show earlier this year when he played with Zola Jesus at the Project Lodge and made it a point to watch for any of his upcoming shows. Julian Lynch’s low-fi recording approach meshes nicely with his spacey, layered soundscapes that take listeners to a different place. We had the opportunity to ask Julian a few a questions before his Summer Tour kick-off at the Gates of Heaven Synagogue in James Madison Park.

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