Juana Molina, Weatherman | Maurer Hall, Old Town School of Folk Music | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Juana Molina, Weatherman All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Recommended Image

When: Thu., April 10, 8 p.m. 2014

Juana Molina has always been in total control of the intimacy and delicacy of her music, and for much of her career she’s played every instrument on her albums. On last year’s Wed 21 (Crammed Discs), her first album in five years, the beguiling Argentine singer-songwriter adds bass, acoustic and electronic percussion, and even some electric guitar to her usual arsenal of electronic loops and acoustic guitar—but that expanded palette hasn’t disrupted the hushed beauty and otherworldly charm of her songs. It’s often a private experience to listen to a record, but Molina makes it feel like she’s in the room with you—even though her music is obviously a studio creation, with gorgeous looped harmonies of her voice layered atop one another. Her melodies retain their liquid quality even when surrounded by buzzy electronics and crumpling percussive noises (“Lo Dedicí Yo”) or spooky, hornlike wheezing (“Sin Guía, No”). Gentle acoustic guitar arpeggios in seductive yin-yang blends help frame Molina’s tender, matter-of-fact singing, and when a beat does kick in, it strengthens the song’s mesmerizing power instead of hijacking its direction. Even better, she frequently punctures her meticulously stacked loops with sublime, wordless countermelodies that let in rays of light. Molina’s recordings are always great, but they can’t compare to her live performances, where she complements her songs with magnetism and wit; she’s focused and sophisticated, but not afraid of breaking her spell with goofiness. —Peter Margasak Weatherman opens.

Price: $25, $23 for members

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