Chicago Month One

Concept-15bHi All,

This past month has been crazy. We’ve been doing our best to hit up all of the bars, coffee shops,  and art shows we could – making up for lost time in getting to know a city that this time last year we had never once even been to. Last night we went to the opening of the Heartland Exhibition at the Smart Museum which was exceptional. Go to the official site here or see a write-up in the Huffington Post. There was a great, great piece by Deb Sokolow. See more of her work here. This piece was sort of a sprawling, graphical, choose-your-own-adventure style mural made up of hundreds of bits of drawings and narrative text interlinked by arrows, dotted lines. Construction was partly on paper and partly stenciled directly onto the walls of the museum itself; a great delivery mechanism for the captivating and paranoid storyline. Speaking of narrative, it was also amazing to finally see some of Kerry James Marshall’s RYTHM MSTR work.  We had read about this originally on the PBS ART:21 website a while back, but couldn’t find a way to get our hands on any of it. The work was beautiful, brilliant, a completely unique vision. What else? There was an amazing dual-channel movie called Rites of Passage by Judika Rudelius (seemingly about young politicians coming of age), a feature length music video and documentary by Ssion. A giant boat with wings. Over all, an awesome show. Completely worth checking out if you are in the Chicago area.

OK. So music shows. What did we see? Well, we went to see Jon Langford at the Empty Bottle; also Psychedelic Furs and the Happy Mondays. Both shows were amazing. We were Psychedelic Furs fans before but we came out of that show having a now newfound respect for them. Their set was extremely tight and totally engaging, but moreover it really seemed like they loved being there, playing these songs that are now, what, like almost 30 years old? And Jon Langford…well, exactly what the doctor ordered really. We’re huge Mekons fans so it was great to see the man engaging in the sort of twangy bar music that makes that band so epic and mundane at the same time. He also played a Go-Betweens cover which really put the show over the top. What else? Well, tonight we’re going to see Monotonix at the Logan Square Auditorium. If rumors are to be believed, that show should be nothing short of legendary.

Okay, that’s it.

More soon,

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