Every now and then I like to provide something of a service to my Chicago readers by writing about an interesting or important show that will be happening in town in the near future. While the site doesn’t have a concert calendar, it is nice to get the word out about some great bands and great shows that go beyond the music that gets shared in the daily editions of Pick Your Poison. Today I want to write a few words about two pretty great bands who are touring together and will be at Metro next Tuesday, May 13th. The first band on the double bill is Braids. Their second record Flourish // Perish came out last year and marked an interesting step in a more electronic-based direction. While the album lacked a little bit of the oddball charm that their 2011 debut Native Speaker had, thanks to formidable cuts like “Amends” and “In Kind” there was still plenty that impressed. Actually, a couple weeks ago they released a non-album cut called “Deep Running” that may not have worked in the context of that last record but still does a fantastic job getting at the core of what makes Braids such a special band. As they’re a Montreal-based band signed to Arbutus Records, they’ve been compared recently to labelmate and fellow Canadian Grimes. Braids explores more space and psychedelic elements in their music though, and are less concerned with composing the sort of hooks found in traditional pop music. That’s something I find admirable. Sharing the bill with Braids is another band that I have great admiration for, which is Baltimore/Portland-based band Wye Oak. The duo of Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack just released their fourth full length Shriek, and like their tourmates have made a conscious decision to move away from a guitar-based sound towards something more electronic and synth-based. Long-time fans of Wasner’s muscular guitar work may miss it, but vocally and compositionally the band has never been stronger. That’s evidenced by singles such as “The Tower,” “Glory” and the album title track. It’s funky and fun, and the clean, clear foundations provided by the synths on most tracks allows Wasner to stretch her vocals to new, expressive heights. So as you can see, both of these bands are worth your time and hard-earned money. If you want to see them live when they play Metro on Tuesday night, tickets are $18 in advance ($20 day of) and can be purchased here. Beyond what I’ve just covered, we’ve got a fresh edition of Pick Your Poison for your mid-week pleasure! There’s some great tracks in this set from Ancient Babes, Broadwing, Gene the Southern Child, Pacific Mean Time, Siberian Front and We Came From Wolves. In the Soundcloud section after the jump, stream songs from Brett, Jaded Inc., Kitty, Kuhrye-oo, Say Lou Lou, Spider Bags and Turn to Crime.
Brett – Lovers
Jaded Inc. – Monster
Kitty – emob0unce
Kuhrye-oo – Air Days (ft. Evy Jane)
Say Lou Lou – Peppermint
Spider Bags – Back With You Again in the World
Turn To Crime – Forgiveness