Sean Green / 📷 : TLM

Strap on your specs, dear Surfers, and get ready for a full two weeks of Chicago summer music madness!! We checked out not one, not two, but three freaking festivals over the holiday weeks: Logan Arts Fest, West Fest, and American Music Fest all got coverage in this issue along with Car Seat Headrest at Millennium Park and Dressy Bessy at Sleeping Village from TLM, local jazz maven Joshua Abrams from MVM, and Stef Chura / French Vanilla and The Curls / Spirits Having Fun record release both at KPL’s favorite venue, The Empty Bottle. Like we said, this is one juggernaut of an issue, with plenty of new local, and even international, music to sink your ears into. So hit up the playlist, and take a gander at our biggest issue yet. You’ll be glad you did! See you next week for a full Pitchfork Preview and all the new releases we can throw at ya! ‘Til then...

Keep Seeing Live Music!

spirits having fun

“We're always working on our group telepathy.” - Spirits Having Fun





Logan Square Arts Fest

Monument on the Square

June 29th - 30th

Mykele Deville / 📷 : MVM

Logan Square Arts Festival, centered around the Illinois Centennial Monument, caters to every bit of the arts community and boasts a unique art vendor tent set-up better than any typical street fest and includes an eclectic lineup of music. Whether you want to hang out in the street and dance along to the music on the Milwaukee stage, or spread out on the lawn in front of the monument stage, LSAF has you covered. 


MarkFarina 2_LPL.jpeg

West Fest

West Town

July 5 - July 7

Mark Farina / 📷 : LPL

West Fest is always a total barn burner! Two stages on opposite ends of the musical spectrum bookend a collective fashion and dog show that puts most Chicago street fests to shame. The indie rock and house communities meet in a mashup of style and inebriation that ends up close to a Bacchanal on the city streets of Chicago. As anyone deep in the dance party at Chicago Ave. and Wood, or rockin’ out at Damen Ave. will attest, West Fest is where it was last weekend. 



American Music Festival


July 3rd

The Waco Brothers / 📷 : MVM

Do you like country, folk, bluegrass, blues, and rockabilly? Then this is the music fest for you. Catching returning greats like Sarah Shook and the Waco Brothers and seeing newcomer Sunny War, there is just something about boot stomping, guzzling beers, and listening to American music over the 4th of July weekend that feels right. Throw in some bottle rockets and M80’s going off in the background to complete the ambience of a proper 4th of July party.



Car Seat Headrest / Naked Giants

Pritzker Pavilion

July 1st

Car Seat Headrest / 📷 : TLM

July 1st was a blissfully hot summer night in Millennium Park. I was up front in the seats at Jay Pritzker Pavilion to try and get a few good shots, and because when it comes to Naked Giants (or any show really,) I like to be as close as possible.



Dressy Bessy / Colleen Green / Potty Mouth

Sleeping Village

June 26th

Dressy Bessy / 📷 : TLM

Potty Mouth's music brought an instant party atmosphere to the Sleeping Village. There were cheers for the opening notes of "Do It Again," the lead track off their most recent album, Snafu. Their music is high-energy, aggressive, glistening pop-punk. Guitarist, Ada Brumback fairly glowed as she smiled. The drumming by Victoria Mandanas shimmered with cymbal crashes. Ally Einbinder was a spring-loaded bassist; she bounced and lunged, sometimes at the same time. Lead vocalist, Abby Weems attacked the microphone and shook her head constantly, her dark hair cutting the air around her.




Lincoln Hall

June 29th

FM-84 / 📷 : MGC

The Retro Wave genre was captured in its purest form of display over the weekend at Lincoln Hall. The trio known as FM-84 played to a nearly sold-out crowd on Saturday and didn’t dare to flirt with disappointment. This was a night of ‘80s-inspired songs that you remember hearing in the credits of your favorite John Hughes flick. One word: FUN.



Joshua Abrams & Natural Information Society


June 28th

Joshua Abrams & Natural Information Society / 📷 : MVM

I was introduced to Joshua Abrams and Natural Information Society at Pitchfork Music Fest last year. I only caught a small portion from a distance and was intrigued by what was going on. Fast forward to April of this year, and when I pick up a Chicago Reader newspaper, I see an article highlighting Abrams and his wife Lisa Alvarado. Alvarado plays in the band, and also does the artwork for NIS, along with individual projects by the contributing members of NIS. After reading this wonderful article and seeing that the group had an upcoming show in Chicago, I immediately bought tickets. (For $15 you would be hard-pressed to find a better deal.)



The Curls / Spirits Having Fun (Record Release) / The Hecks

Empty Bottle

July 1st

The Curls / 📷 : TLM

Only in Chicago can you pull a double FREE show in one evening! After the amazing Car Seat Headrest set at Pritzker Pavilion downtown, we headed back to the hood for a Monday night local showcase at The Empty Bottle, arriving in time for the last half of the opening set by jangle jammers The Hecks. Impressive as always, the quartet stretches their tunes into opuses of weaving layers of guitar, synth and percussion that is as danceable as it is jarring.



Stef Chura / French Vanilla / Sean Green

Empty Bottle

July 5th

Steph Chura / 📷 : TLM

Pulling off our second double show of the week, we jumped ship on the gothic pomp of John Maus at West Fest a bit early, just in time to hit the triple bill of indie rock glee down the street at The Empty Bottle. Local crooner Sean Green opened the evening with a set full of his down to earth indie rock, with just enough spacey jam quality to provide a freaky fun encounter.





Lots of SOLD OUT shows this week that are not included here

+ Local
^ All Ages

THURSDAY July 11th

+ Glitter Moneyyy (Record Release) / ShowYouSuck / J Bambii / DJ Silent Hype @ Empty Bottle 8:30PM doors   $10

+ Canter / Teenage Afterglow / Rasplyn / The Well Tempered @ The Burlington  8PM Cover

Connan Mockasin / Helena Deland @ Thalia Hall 'In The Round'  7:30PM doors $22

Deanna Devore / Fay Ray / Cordoba @ Sleeping Village  8:30PM $10

Together Pangea / Tijuana Panthers / Ultra Q @ Lincoln Hall  7PM $18

Son Volt / Logan Ledger @ SPACE  8PM $40

Banks @ House of Vans 

^ Bomba Estéreo / Cultura Profética @ Taste of Chicago  5:30PM Lawn FREE , Seats $25 - $50

^ Pouya / Ramirez / Boobie Lootaveli @ House of Blues   6:30PM  $29.50

FRIDAY July 12th

^ Square Roots Fest @ Lincoln Square   5PM $10 donation  

+ Imelda Marcos (Record Release) / Big Syn / Not For You @ Empty Bottle  9PM doors $8

+ EGi / Groovy Louie & the Time Capsules @ Martyrs’  9PM $15

Joan Shelley / All Together Now @ The Hideout “Picnic On The Porch”  6PM $15

H.R. / Downtown Brown / Top Shelf Lickers / OvejaNegra @ Reggies  7:30PM $12

^ De La Soul / Taylor Bennett @ Taste of Chicago  5:30PM Lawn FREE , Seats $25 - $50 

SATURDAY July 13th

^ Square Roots Fest @ Lincoln Square  12PM $10 donation 

+ Revolt Coda / Rotten Mouth / Mircrocosms / North and Wells @ Cubby Bear  8PM $10 

+ Stoop Goodnoise / Denim Matriarch/ Fall Classic/ Flake Michigan @ Burlington  8PM Cover

Vocalo Summer Block Party featuring Jill Scott / Anthony Hamilton /and more @ Northerly Island  6PM $97 and up

Chris Forsyth & the Broken Mirror Motel Band / Health&Beauty @ The Hideout  9PM $12

Jake La Botz / Diamond Jim & Cookin Sherry @ Schubas  10PM $10

^ The Strumbellas / Lovelytheband / Joywave @ Taste of Chicago 5:30PM  Lawn FREE , Seats $25 - $50

Golden Vessel / Instupendo / OSTON @ Empty Bottle  8:30PM doors $12

Taking Back Sunday @ House of Vans 


SUNDAY July 14th

^ Square Roots Fest @ Lincoln Square  12PM $10 donation 

+^ Kaina (Record Release)  / Kara Jackson / Luna Luna / Sen Morimoto / Kahekili @ Lincoln Hall  6:30PM $12

Beach Slang / Wreath of Hogs / Young Man in a Hurry @ Empty Bottle  9PM doors $15

Alex Di Leo / Cody Lovaas @ Subterranean (Downstairs)  8PM $10

The Evening Attraction / The Go Rounds / Luke Henry @ Schubas  8PM $10

India.Arie / Meshell Ndegeocello / Bilal @ Taste of Chicago  4:30PM Lawn FREE , Seats $25

MONDAY July 15th

+ Ajani Jones (Dragonfly Listening Party) @ Chop Shop  6PM FREE w/ RSVP

Sophagus / Jackie Mendoza / Brent Penny @ Empty Bottle  8:30PM doors FREE

The Wild Reeds / Ian Noe @ SPACE  8PM $18

TUESDAY July 16th

+ Immortal Bird (Record Release) / Warforged / Barren Heir @ Empty Bottle  8:30PM doors $10

+ Modern Vices / Graveyard Club / Cold Beaches @ Sleeping Village  9:30PM $5

+ Fauvely / Gone Valley / Jessica Risker @ The Hideout  9PM $7

+ Claire and the Bears / Quiet Cove @ Martyrs’  8PM $10

+ Ivy Dye / Engine Summer / Sci-Fi Sleep Cycles @ Burlington  8PM Cover

+ Spills / The Lispshitz @ Schubas  9PM FREE

+ Andrew Bird / Madison Cunningham @ Chicago Theatre  7:30PM $39.50 and up


+ No Men / Oginalii / Douglas Slur @ Schubas  9PM FREE

+ Hanami @ Hungry Brain  9PM FREE  

+ Genna Simon / Spooktacular / ChinaRose / Modern Nun @ Beat Kitchen 7:30PM $10


See you at the show Chicago!