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If you understand all of the words in the phrase "instrumental, semi-improvised, and recorded mostly in one take using a rig centered on a vintage ARP Odyssey and a new Arturia MiniBrute," then congratulations, you qualify as a synthesizer geek. But you don't need to know your CV/gate from your LFO filter to enjoy Pspoilers, the latest release from local experimental-electronics-scene stalwart Jim Magas, which I described using the above wording. Pspoilers recalls the 70s heyday of analog synthesizer exploration, oscillating between soothing ambience and noisy squalls that line up nicely with Magas's earlier electro-punk works.
Prolific Chicago cornetist Rob Mazurek has worked with more bands than one can count, each with its own approach to the goal of pushing the sonic envelope. In Peter Margasak's opinion his newest outfit "feels like a reconciliation of this recent work with the more straightforward jazz of his early days." Their debut album, Stellar Pulsations, "maintains a delicious tension—between rhythm and melody, between ethereality and heft—as if Mazurek is surveying the restless progression of his career and finding new life in ideas he ripped through too quickly the first time around."
There's more than a little hypocrisy in aging punks engaging in the same kind of unalloyed youth-cultural nostalgia they derided Boomers for decades ago. But the posi vibes surrounding the series of concerts held across the country over the past few months to celebrate Revelation Records' 25th anniversary make that double-dealing easy to ignore. Tonight the legendary Gorilla Biscuits, who introduced a melodic streak to hardcore's speedy aggression, and Youth of Today, icons of hardcore's tough-guy contingent, headline. On Sunday emocore pioneers Texas Is the Reason top the bill.
The first rapper scheduled to take the stage at this showcase of local hip-hop talent, Cody DeCamry is a young MC with a new mixtape, Blazed, and a "playful and dynamic flow," according to Leor Galil. "His voice bobs and weaves through instrumentals—mostly loose, funky arrangements with mellow key notes, clean and punctuated drum patterns, and the occasional horn melody or guitar solo—and his words ease forth with a collected nonchalance."