Three Beats: Haptic plays a piece inspired by Saturn's rings | Three Beats | Chicago Reader

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Three Beats: Haptic plays a piece inspired by Saturn's rings

Plus, the drool-inducing Russian Circles and Astrobrite returns!

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INDIE | Leor Galil

After a 14-year hiatus, Astrobrite returns for a celebration of local shoegaze

Mid-90s shoegaze band Astrobrite—the introspective, fuzz-laden solo project of Michigan expat Scott Cortez—will return to the stage for its first proper live show since 1997 at Late Bar on Thursday, October 20. Cortez says Phil DeStefano, who spins under the name DJ Peroxide and hosts a weekly dark-alternative-music night at the bar called Bittersweet, was the impetus for the reunion.

"Phil asked me, over drinks at the bar, if I would play the event he was setting up on his birthday," Cortez says. "I agreed to do it as a present for him."

DeStefano has put together quite a blowout, dubbed Bittersweet Blissfest, to celebrate his 24th birthday; New Canyons and Bliss City East—two local acts with new, distinct spins on shoegaze—will open for Astrobrite, with DeStefano DJing between sets.

Blissfest will also celebrate the work of BLVD Records and its involvement in the local shoegaze community. Label cofounder Melissa Geils, who bartends at Late Bar, helped DeStefano organize the fest, and members of the bands behind the label's three forthcoming releases are on the night's bill. New Canyons' untitled sophomore effort is on the dock as is pinkshinyultrablast, the second LP in the label's series of Astrobrite reissues. The third release is a 12-inch from dream-pop act Mahogany called Electric Prisms; Mahogany member Andrew Prinz will back Cortez for Astrobrite's set, during which he's going to perform Crush, the first Astrobrite album that BLVD reissued.

Geils anticipates the records will come out in early 2012, and the label will stream of some of the new tunes.

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