Tennis | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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To those of us who like our electronica charismatic and sexy, most "intelligent" dance music isn't terribly exciting: narcotic repetition, moody soundscapes that transform in trifles, a focus on minutiae that begets impatience. Every once in a while, however, an act like Tennis comes along and blurs the genre lines enough to suck us in. Though Ben Edwards (aka Benge) and Douglas Benford (better known as Si-cut.db) have both established solo careers as musicians and DJs, they've received the most attention for this collaboration. The catchy glitchwerks on their Europe on Horseback (Bip-Hop) take a while to develop, occasionally cycling into suspended animation, but the simple, toe-tapping rhythms make the wait bearable. Particularly outstanding are "Weakness Together," a hypnotic dystopian ditty nearly nine minutes long with a comfy house beat, and the sullen, disjointed "Loose-Knit Pierrot." The floor at most IDM shows is for sitting, not dancing, but this might be an exception. Warmdesk, aka local musician and multimedia artist William Selman, opens, and Si-cut.db also performs solo. Sunday, October 14, 7 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western; 773-276-3600.

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