Imelda Marcos embody what makes Chicago’s experimental rock scene exceptional | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Imelda Marcos embody what makes Chicago’s experimental rock scene exceptional

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Chicago is home to lots of technically savvy rock weirdos obsessed with unconventional song structures, odd time signatures, and controlled chaos. I’ve wondered often why London four-piece Black Midi has gotten so much international hype for their (perfectly fine) debut album, given that I can walk into Subterranean’s downstairs venue on a Tuesday and see three local bands with just as much or more face-melting proficiency. I hope at least some of the folks getting turned on to askew rock via Black Midi end up finding these Chicago acts—and Imelda Marcos would be a great place to start. The instrumental noise-rock duo play the Empty Bottle to celebrate their new third album, Tatlo (Already Dead), where guitarist Dave Cosejo and drummer Matt Durso explore the language of rock by finessing together blistering melodic attacks and serene, glacial interludes. On “Brokenfinger Tea LLC,” Cosejo weaves metallic shrieks and beefed-up, funky grooves around Durso’s tastefully sparse drumming, and then they both take a surprising turn: the song ends with the sort of dank, furious instrumental Korn wish they could still write. I mean that as the highest of compliments—more experimental rockers should take such risks.   v

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