Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Show preview: Canasta, Dastardly, Soft Speaker, Secret Colours at Empty Bottle

Posted by Frank Krolicki

If anyone needed proof that the Windy City is home to some of the finest indie bands on the planet, they could find plenty of it at the Empty Bottle this Friday, May 13th. Our friends at Betta Promotions and The Deli Chicago have put together a solid showcase of artists that were chosen by fans on the Deli's site as some of Chicago's best emerging acts throughout 2010, including Canasta, Dastardly, Soft Speaker and Secret Colours. 9:30 p.m., $10 tickets, 21 and over.

Canasta's intricate, well-crafted orch-pop has got them a great deal of attention ever since the release of their debut full-length We Were Set Up, and the sextet has really gained momentum with their most recent release, The Fakeout, the Tease and the Breather. It's an album full of melody and memorable hooks, but also a thoughtfulness and subtlety that reveal more with each listen.
For more information, check out:
- Record review: The Fakeout, the Tease and the Breather
- Video: "Appreciation"

Dastardly have accomplished a lot in a short time. We first found out about them last summer from a video of them performing their track "Villain," and since then they've been rapidly gaining buzz with an excellent debut release, May You Never..., and many successful gigs. Their alt-country stands out with consistent, relatable honesty, a sense of humor and most importantly, really impressive songwriting.
For more information, check out:
- Record review: May You Never...
- Indiesomnia interview/live session

Fresh off the release of their first LP I'll Tend Your Garden, Soft Speaker is another band whose music holds a great deal to discover. They have a big sound that's hard to classify. At times pop elements creep in and at other times the song structures are miles away from conventional or catchy, but there is one constant: they are always compelling.
For more information, check out:
- Record review: I'll Tend Your Garden
- EP review: Stranger in the Alps
- Indiesomnia interview/live session

You can always count on Secret Colours for some solid psychedelic drone to get lost in. Since coming onto the scene last year, the band has released a well-received self-titled LP in addition to a handful of singles that they have put up for free download. They also have an impressive list of live shows under their belt, getting their music noticed both in and out of Chicago.
For more information, check out:
- Record review: Secret Colours LP
- Video: "Popstar"
- Free download "Follow the Drone"

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