K-Rad | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Local producer-programmers Chris Grabowski, Joe Hahn, and Mark Hardy formed K-Rad in 1996, and they have come to see the group as an ongoing experiment. They pride themselves on making new music for each show, and have issued 17 homemade CD-Rs via their Web site, www.padk-rad.com, which also served for a time as an archive of their complete works. Deli Mood Spot (Some Odd Pilot) is their first "real" album, and it honors the sprawling nature of their previous CD-Rs. "103BR18," the disc's opening track, begins with a scratchy sample of a hypnotist encouraging the listener to "relax your mind" by concentrating on a metronome, then builds to a flighty trip-hop groove. But most of the album's best moments are anything but relaxing. "177Jif" tops a frantic drum 'n' bass rhythm with what sounds like a game of Missile Command gone berserk and an elastic, wavering bass tone; the restlessly clicking percussion, clanging cymbals, pizzicato keyboard-bass, and skittering beat of "126Bass6" fall right in line with the glitchy, dubwise microhouse of artists like Ricardo Villalobos and Pantytec. Sunday, December 1, 9 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western; 773-276-3600.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Chris Eichenseer.

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