Jo Passed, Dick Stusso, Cafe Racer
3734 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60618, USA
The nicest thing anyone has ever – ever – said to Jo Hirabayashi, frontman of Jo Passed (Sub Pop), is that his band’s debut album sounds like “fucked-up Beatles”. Titled Their Prime, the LP does sound like fucked-up Beatles. It sounds like, somewhere across an ‘80s universe, Lennon and McCartney discovered Can and Neu!, and maybe a little Sonic Youth and XTC along the way.
When we last caught up with Dick Stusso on his debut, Nashville Dreams, he'd hit that special zen layer of loserdom. He'd thrown up his hands into the folly of failure. He was the affable, bumbling red-cheeked drunk lurking around the edges of the cookout - bumming smokes, putting down all the white wine and cocktail shrimp he could get away with. But now, a couple years on, that early-30s existential dread has crept its way into Dick's purview. With his sophomore long-player In Heaven, Stusso's numbered human days are on his mind. Without stumbling into pomposity, Dick has taken back the wheel on his life and is doing a bit of hotdogging.
A languid echo of guitar flowing from the speakers before swirling into something much more cosmic belongs to Chicago’s Café Racer. Café Racer’s revitalizing pastiche of 90’s shoe gaze/psychedelia reinterprets the sounds of their predecessors as vibrantly lush verse embedded with melodic drone, noisy fuzz, and looming lyrical confessions.
Early Bird tickets (first 50): $10Advance and Door: $12
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