J @ Sasquatch!

This past Memorial day weekend I had the extreme pleasure of attending the best music festival the northwest has to offer. I am, of course, talking about Sasquatch. Beginning last year Sasquatch was upgraded from three days to four, and this was my first trek since the change. My initial thought of a four day festival was that it would be overwhelming. That come Sunday night I’d be dying to sleep in a real bed, take a hot shower, and stay off my feet for the next three days. I’m happy to say that I was wrong. The Gorge was shining over the weekend and the weather couldn’t have been better. Sure, it’s not as hot as the desert in Indio, or Grant Park in Chicago, but remember, that’s a good thing. During the day we saw plenty of sunshine with temperatures in the high 70s; I couldn’t have been happier. Night time actually got cold so there was no trouble sleeping in, either. The excellent temperatures during the day and the 7 plus hours of sleep each night left me feeling plenty energetic for a long weekend. By the time Monday ended, I didn’t want to go home, and right now I already miss it.

Continue reading

Fucked Up: Live

By: Jack Stein

Monday, April 9, 2012 / Chicago, IL / Lincoln Hall

A haiku (an ode, if you will) to the fine gentlemen & one lady in Fucked Up. Continue reading

Cloud Nothings: Live

By: Jack Stein

Friday, April 6, 2012 / Schuba’s Tavern / Chicago, IL

* * *

I’m sitting here with a stupid grin on my face, ears ringing, blasting Attack on Memory from puny MacBook speakers, typing away. Continue reading

Youth Lagoon: Live

Photo credit: Michael Roffman

Wednesday, April 4, 2012/ The Metro/ Chicago, IL

By: Jack Stein

* * *

After debuting as Youth Lagoon with the heart-wrenching The Year of Hibernation last September, Trevor Powers of Boise, Idaho has been busy bringing his tender hymns out of the bedroom and into a live setting. After reading less-than-stellar appraisals of his budding live show at SXSW a few weeks ago, I was excited yet apprehensive to see firsthand how the transition was going. Continue reading

Mid By Midwest: 5 shows, 7 days

By: Jack Stein

For those of us entrenched in academia, spring break is nearly, gloriously, finally upon us. What better way to celebrate one’s temporary liberation from the bone-rattling cries of schoolchildren than by seeing a shit ton of shows? Continue reading

The Magnetic Fields: Live

By: Jack Stein

Stephen Merritt: world-class curmudgeon

Photo courtesy of the Chicago Tribune

March 26, 2012 / The Vic Theatre / Chicago, IL

* * *

I went into The Magnetic Fields’ show on Monday night with pretty low expectations. First, it was a Monday. Second, I wasn’t feeling particularly well (which actually turned out to enhance the listening experience. More on that later.) Third, I never have considered myself a huge Fields fan; I’ve probably listened to their magnum opus 69 Love Songs once in its entirety, and was left so exhausted by the marathon listening session (it is literally 69 songs about love) that I now feel strangely intimidated by their cavernous catalog. However, after prodding from some Fields fanatic friends, there I was, trudging to the Vic on a blustery schoolnight. Continue reading

tUnE-yArDs : Live

By: Max Burke

November 20, 2011

The Neptune Theater, Seattle

It was Wednesday when a few friends and I decided to go to this Sunday concert.  Beyond my recollection of the bizarre look of their name, and a vague memory of hearing the song “Gangsta” months before, I had no idea what was getting into.  Indeed, it took me three days to figure out that the lead singer is a woman—the significance of which I will get to later.  And in those three plus days, I only listened to maybe four of their songs primarily due to sheer laziness.  Needless to say, I was truly going on a whim.

Continue reading

The Late Greats: A Night with Wilco

Jeff Tweedy: not the biggest "Sky Blue Sky" fan, either.

Attempting to separate a revered bands’s groundbreaking past from its placid present.

By: Jack Stein

December 16, 2011

The Metro (Chicago, IL)

* * *

Via Chicago”

News flash: Wilco is Chicago.

For anyone unacquainted with the great American metropolis, one frenetic peal from Nels Cline’s guitar recalls a CTA train speeding over a fragile south side railway. A crack in Jeff Tweedy’s fragile, smoke-scarred voice brings to mind the nauseating humidity emanating from a summer sidewalk. Continue reading