Monday, October 24, 2011

The Great Pumpkin cometh - 2011 Chicago Halloween show roundup

By Sasha Geffen

The veil is thinning again. Basic cable has steadied its classic horror assault and everything tastes vaguely of cinnamon and fear. Benevolent anthropomorphic pumpkins will undoubtedly fail to appear yet again no matter how carefully you tend to your patches and Chicago's venues are once again loaded with rollicking costume parties. We've got all sorts of doomy celebrations to look forward to, from local outfits dressing up as their favorite bands to international indie-metal stars stopping by to terrorize your eardrums. Be sure to stimulate your horror receptors with at least one of these Halloween festivities. 


darkroom (2210 W. Chicago): Unicycle Loves You will light up Ukrainian Village's darkroom with their bombastic psych pop, possibly even playing a few new tracks from their upcoming LP, which will drop this Valentine's Day. The Wheelers and The Melismatics will also make appearances and Jack Armondo of My Gold Mask will be DJing. Tickets are only $7 if you come in costume so be sure to break out that zombie makeup and/or robot mask. 8pm, $7 advance or at door in costume, $10 at door uncostumed, 21 and over. More info and tickets here.

The Vic Theatre (3145 N. Sheffield): If you like your Halloweekend heavy and smeared with the primal goo of the Dark Lord, the Vic has you covered on Friday. Legendary Scandinavian metal outfit Opeth will be swinging by these parts. Fellow Swedish dark rockers Katatonia will open. 7:30pm, $28.50 in advance, all ages. Details and tickets here. 


Elbo Room (2871 N. Lincoln): A whole slew of bands will be playing dress-up at Elbo Room's Halloween Extravaganza. Swing by to hear a ton of classics covered. We'll get Pine Cone Alley as Weezer, The Plastic Boots as The Who, Bullet Called Life as Sly and the Family Stone, Model Stranger as Nirvana, Lucid Ground as Tom Petty, and The Hot Sauce Committee doing double duty as both the Beastie Boys AND Limp Bizkit. Everyone will be in full costume so it's probably just going to be awkward if you show up plainclothed. 8pm, $10, 21 and over. RSVP here, tickets here. 

Double Door (1572 N. Milwaukee): Meanwhile, Wicker Park's Double Door will be presenting its 15th Annual Halloween Bash. That's quite a lot of bashes, and it looks like the decade-and-a-half anniversary will be a good one. AM Taxi will headline as The Clash, and we'll also see Dorian Taj transformed into Bob Dylan, Hessler as Judas Priest, The Fold as NOFX, Blackbox as Stone Temple Pilots, and The Last Vegas as The Runaways. Quite a range of old-school goodness done right by new-school awesome. 8pm, $12, 21 and over. Tickets here.

Ultra Lounge (2169 N. Milwaukee): MPShows and Wine from the Moon present a fully midwestern costume party. Poppy Americana outfit Briar Rabbit will headline, supported by local folk rock ensemble Paper Thick Walls, Ohio-based guest stars Sandman Viper Command, and the banjo-shredding Jonas Friddle and the Majority. Stomps and twang abound. 9pm, $8, 21 and over. Tickets here.


Beauty Bar (1444 W. Chicago): Beauty Bar presents Fright Night on Sunday with Sydney electropoppers Art Vs Science rolling into town to headline. We'll also get to enjoy DJ sets by Database, Team Bayside High, and B starr with a special secret guest performance. Stay tuned. 9pm, $5, 21 and over. Tickets here.

The Hideout (1354 W. Wabansia): In case you missed Opeth or didn't get enough metal in your cranium on Friday, The Hideout is there for you with their annual Hideout Gets Heavy Halloween Hurt. Doom metal band Indian will destroy you with the help of Rabid Rabbit, Bloodyminded, and DJ Steve Hess. You'll get to enjoy lens-cracking projected visuals by Chicago artist Kelly Reaves too. 9pm, $5, 21 and over. Tickets and info. 


Schubas (3159 N. Southport): And finally, honoring the holiday by the calendar and not the day of the week, Schubas will celebrate Samhain with a standout art-pop lineup. Swing by to enjoy Cains & Abels masquerading as Modern Lovers and In Tall Buildings posing as Deerhoof with the help of Aleks Tomaszewska's amazing vocal talents. 9pm, $8 advance, $10 door, 21 and over. Tickets here.

What will you be and where will you go this weekend? Let us know in the comments.

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