Baby Teeth | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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On the cover of Baby Teeth's second full-length, The Simp (Lujo), bassist Jim Cooper is moping in a jacket and tie at the California Clipper's handsome bar, looking like he just failed the audition for Bryan Ferry's spot in Roxy Music, and from the first track to the last the band splurges like a soused middle manager on an expense account, indulging in almost every kind of flourish you can cram into a pop record--itchy disco strings, bursts of sunny a cappella harmonies, wicked hair-metal guitar solos, even a slide-whistle-and-slapstick vaudeville breakdown. The music here is a quantum leap from their debut--it's filthy, oily lounge glam with nods to the Bee Gees, Queen, and CCR popping up exactly where they shouldn't, and the boys drive home the whole arch monstrosity with gut-wrenching sincerity. Front man and keyboardist Abraham Levitan has abandoned his Pearly Sweets handle but not the bushy-tailed prankster persona that goes with it, and between the Simp sessions and this release party the band added its first full-time guitarist, Michael Lyons of Clyde Federal and Violins. Baby Dayliner and the Bitter Tears open. a 10 PM, Schubas, 3159 N. Southport, 773-525-2508, $10.

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