Best Place to Hear a Melody Played Out of a PVC Pipe

Improvised/Experimental Music Series at Myopic Books

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This weekly event is one of the few places in Chicago to meet a guy who's programmed his pedal board with the almost delightful snoring of his cat or a band who build their songs around whatever disquieting wheezes they can coax out of Home Depot's finest PVC pipes. Every Monday at 7:30 PM, Myopic Books hosts experimental musicians on its meager second-floor "stage," where they try out their best (and weirdest) material. Founded in 1991, the store claims on its website to be "Chicago's longest running experimental music venue," and in fact this series has been following it from location to location since 1994. This is a curated series, not an open mike, and these days cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and experimental improvisers Brian Labycz and Aaron Zarzutzki decide who plays when. It's not amateur night by any means: the musicians involved may be averse to recognizable genres, instead taking after Neon Marshmallow headliners or, say, Captain Beefheart, but that doesn't mean they're less committed to what they do. If it's a little too incomprehensibly avant-garde for you, there's no shame in pretending to be interested in the dust-caked collection of postmodernist flash poetry behind you—that's probably why it's there.

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