In Rotation: Photographer Todd Diederich on "demon bass" | In Rotation | Chicago Reader

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In Rotation: Photographer Todd Diederich on "demon bass"

Plus: the Reader's Miles Raymer on Eek-a-Mouse's private language, and Xina Xurner's Young Joon Kwak on "sonic cross-pollination"

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Unicorn by T-Rex
  • Unicorn by T-Rex

Todd Diederich, artist and photographer at, what he's obsessed with. His answers are. . .

Tyrannosaurus Rex's Unicorn on vinyl I found a first pressing of this album in Athens, Georgia, after I left Chicago and dropped out of school. I'd just gotten off my shift dishwashing and was looking for something, though I didn't know what. When I found it, it was $7. I check eBay now and copies go for hundreds. I crawled back into the shack I lived in, turned up the speakers, and drifted far, far away. Catchy, whimsical, and folksy. Reading the lyrics is a must—it's hard to decipher the words through Marc Bolan's ethereal harmonies. This is my favorite relic of the 60s, complete with a cover font proclaiming "Unicorn" a la William Blake on LSD.

Zebra Katz: Champagne mix tape Remix sirens, tornado sirens, realness, swagger, and stanky leg—all the way turnt up. It makes me want to get my ass as close to the ground as I can without touching the ground. It makes me want to levitate my ass over that spot. To bounce up and down as I move out my right leg. It makes me want to wear all black, take pictures, play basketball, hit the streets on my BMX with a lady on the pegs. It makes me want to get a lady on the handlebars too. It's a welcoming into our new age.

All things Chicago At first to get me dancing there was DJ Funk, the Outhere Brothers, Gillette. Now Chicago has some new schoolers, the latest slangers of PLUR vibes: Xina Xurner, The-Drum, Sich Mang, Zombelle, Ultrademon, Supreme Cuts, Mr. 666, Teen Witch, Top8. And we got more true Chicago house/juke: DJ Rashad, Traxman, DJ Spinn. Chicago is pounding you harder than ever. These artists are tapping into demon bass, dark basements, and post-Internet worlds.

He asks. . .

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