THE BLOW | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Khaela Maricich, aka the Blow, wrote a blog entry a couple weeks ago explaining why her next record needs to be different from her last. "Nobody," she said, "needs to hear another song about how it felt to get overwhelmed with love and get dumped and get over it." Try telling that to the heartsick indie kids who've treated her like an icon since the release of Paper Television (K Records) in 2006. Like her friend Miranda July, Maricich spins charmingly neurotic narratives about kooky girls high on ideas who long to be included, and on Paper Television she pumped them up with steppable beats crafted by collaborator Jona Bechtolt (aka Yacht, the Timbaland of the ultranerds). Plenty of people have tried their hands at the lo-fi dancetronic formula--blame the Postal Service, dude--but unlike most of them Maricich can actually sing. Her voice is pure Portland soul, vulnerable and urgent even when it sounds like it was recorded in a closet. Videohippos and High Places open. a 9 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western, 773-276-3600 or 866-468-3401, $12. --Jessica Hopper

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