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July 2014
Peter Matthew Bauer
"Liberation!
"
mp3
Thank God The Walkmen are on a “hiatus.” As unpopular a statement as that might be to fans of the beloved indie-rock outfit, the resulting album, Liberation! (Mexican Summer), by the group’s former bassist Peter Matthew Baur reinforces the truth behind what I think. Baur has taken the time as a chance to expand his wingspan creatively, producing an album that’s slick, resonant and infectiously psychedelic.
 
It’s a heady journey through the artist’s far-from-normal life, never lacking in emotion and fundamentally based in a sense of optimism. Also, one of the most fascinating things going on with Liberation! is how it blends local and international aesthetics without ever feeling like appropriation or pandering. Songs such as “I Was Born in an Ashram” and “Philadelphia Raga” feel organic and refreshing, incorporating exotic influences without ever making them feel awkwardly placed or unnecessary.
 
The whole effort is the culmination of a meditative post-“hiatus” tour through Europe, and it shows. The record is relaxed and casual yet exploratory, never seeming to break a sweat while being thoroughly entertaining. The collection of songs has a comforting accessibility reminiscent of couchbound evenings of honesty-filled, drunken/stoner chats with your best buddies, which may seem to come few and far between as all of us get older and busier. - Daniel Ludwig

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Magicks New Single

Magicks has released a new single called "Ohaider;)". On the bandcamp page for the single he writes, "At 1:25 close your eyes and imagine your first time kissing someone. Maybe it already happened maybe it didn't.". This track is a part of Magicks forthcoming ep Musicks which will be released on Jan. 26th.

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Midwest Hype @ Schubas

Midwest Hype call themselves a "Urban Garage Jazz" band and they are celebrating the release of their new EP Dayglow on January 5th at Schubas. The group recently dropped by Audiotree to record a fantastic hour long set.

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Lightfoils @ Double Door

Lightfoils are releasing their debut EP tomorrow, December 30th through Xd Records. The released a sneak peak on Christmas in the form of the track "Into Deep Sea".

Lightfoils are performing at Double Door on January 5th with Battle Stations, Viceroy, and Tribe of the Mountain (Detroit). The doors open at 8:30pm and admission is just $1.

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The Hood Internet's Debut Album

The Hood Internet (aka Aaron Brink from ABX and Steve Reidell from STV SLV) have been remixing and mashing and blending amazing tracks for the last four years, and have released mixtapes and single galore. The now have complied the best of what they have done into a debut self-titled album through Mishka. The duo also released a behind-the-scenes video filled with tacos and fun.

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Driftless Pony Club @ Lincoln Hall

Driftless Pony Club has had a great year which saw the release of their latest album Buckminster back in February, a couple of big tours, and the release of several great videos. The band is capping it off with a New Year's Eve (Eve) party at Lincoln Hall on December 30th with The Hood Internet.

Their latest video was released back in October, and is for the track "Inspectors of Inspectors".

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Wolf In A Spacesuit "Sea of Doors"

Algebra Huxley and Arthur Aircraft (aka Wolf In A Spacesuit) are back with a new album filled with lush electro-pop. The release is called Safari - Sea of Doors, and through the eight tracks you will find gentle piano sound, well placed sample, hushed vocals, multi-layered beats, and more. Sea of Doors is the first half of what will be a full release called Safari. Both releases will be combined into a full-length vinyl release. You can stream or purchase the Sea of Doors on the band's bandcamp page, and also download the track "No Bird Fly" for free. The band also created a video for that track which you can watch below.

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Seel Fresh "Times Up"

Seel Fresh has released the fifth video from his 2011 ep Fresh To Def. The entire ep can still be downloaded for free from his website.

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2011 Chicago Music in Video

With every year that passes the medium of video becomes increasingly important in how people discover, enjoy, interact, and experience music. In this post I am going to attempt to recap 2011 in video by posting my 15 favorite, but I would be missing something if failed to mention all of the wonderful live video that was captured this year. With sites like Small Chicago, Giant System, Rooftop Sessions, Lightbox Sessions, Living Room Songs and others dedicated to capturing local live performance fans of local music have access in ways they never have before.

Here is my disclaimer, as with all year end lists, this is in no way comprehensive, but these are my favorite video from 2011 and so how shape my year as a fan of Chicago music. You can view the entire list here.

15. Shapers "Jar"

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