Nice As Fuck Supergroup Lives Up To Name

Tonight in Chicago a new band called Nice As Fuck, fronted by Jenny Lewis and featuring Au Revoir Simone’s Erika Forster and The Like’s Tennessee Thomas, played their first show in town. Headlining the already cozy Subterranean in Wicker Park, they opted for an even more intimate “In The Round” show where they played on the floor instead of the stage. Music lovers that got … Continue reading Nice As Fuck Supergroup Lives Up To Name

Jenny Lewis at 80/35

Preceded by her band and a mysterious cup with a Bernie Sanders sticker across the front, Jenny Lewis took the stage to a grand applause. She launched into the Rilo Kiley song “Silver Lining,” the first of many older tunes played in the set. Beach balls were flying, Lewis and her band were all smiles, and the positive vibes were flowing through the now-much-larger 80/35 … Continue reading Jenny Lewis at 80/35

Night Terrors Of 1927-Everything’s Coming Up Roses

A lot of good decisions were made ahead of Night Terrors Of 1927‘s first full-length release. Two EPs and constant touring preceded this album, keeping old Rilo Kiley and The Honorary Title fans interested while the new band gathered new admirers. Here in Chicago they played at least three times in 2014, opening for The Colourist at the intimate venue Schubas before returning to some … Continue reading Night Terrors Of 1927-Everything’s Coming Up Roses

Toronto Urban Roots Festival-Day 3

The term “Save the best for last” may have been coined hundreds of years ago, but it’s never been applied more aptly than in describing the Sunday lineup of TURF. Headlined by the reunited Neutral Milk Hotel, the day featured sets by some of the best songwriters of the day and two of the most exciting acts I’ve seen in quite some time. We ended up arriving about an hour earlier than anticipated after a quick brunch at Thompson’s Diner. The West stage was our main attraction for the day, so we set up camp and checked out a set by a Tennessee-based group called Twin Forks. Sweet harmonies and a fun stage presence made them an unexpected surprise hit. They balanced out some of their originals with covers of Roy Orbison and Violent Femmes, to the delight of many fans from the previous day. We had been tipped by one of the local photographers to not miss the East stage performance by July Talk, and they certainly weren’t wrong about the bands combustible energy. From the second they took the stage their chosen mission was to wake up the sleepy Sunday crowd from their drunken stupor and they succeeded in spades. I’d heard of the band but didn’t know much about them. Apparently they have quite a following in their hometown of Toronto, and after just a few minutes it was obvious why. The main singer sounds a bit like George Thorgood with a modern rock band behind him. They also feature a female on vocals who got the crowd going by dancing and running all over the stage. It was certainly a lot more frenzied than Jenny Lewis on the West stage. Not that I minded at all. The last time we saw her live it was a huge disappointment, with Lewis barely able to get through her own songs without forgetting the words. This time she was spot on in all areas of performance. She opened with her latest single “Just One Of The Guys” and spent the rest of the set hopping back and forth through her catalogue from Rilo Kiley and her solo work. The new songs sounded good, but “Silver Lining” was probably my favorite of the set, followed by “A Man/Me/Then Jim.” 20140707-073751-27471016.jpg Continue reading “Toronto Urban Roots Festival-Day 3”