U.S. Girls, Mayor Daley, Gel Set | Empty Bottle | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

U.S. Girls, Mayor Daley, Gel Set Recommended Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Image

When: Sat., Nov. 21, 9 p.m. 2015

Since Chicago native Meghan Remy first adopted the name U.S. Girls in the aughts she’s been submerging fractured pop in layers of distortion like a kid burrowing beneath a fort’s worth of blankets. But on her 4AD debut, September’s Half Free, Remy peels back the husks of haze shrouding her unsettling throwback tracks. That fuzz enhances Remy’s mysterious atmosphere, but it also might dull its haunting effect; on old material she sounds like the ghost of a wailing 1950s doo-wop singer, but on Half Free she sounds like a vocalist who recently rose from the dead and brushed the dirt from her lips to sing as clearly and strongly as she did in her first life. Remy’s music retains its shambolic charm, and the multilayered muted dub of “Damn That Valley” chugs and sputters along with a beguiling swagger. But when she brings out spine-tingling horror synths on “New Age Thriller” I find myself yearning for that sound of yore like it’s a security blanket.

Leor Galil

Price: $10

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