Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Friday, October 30

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Concert Thu Oct 25 2007

Hellacious D

This Sunday night sees a return performance from the Oakland noise-rock outfit D Yellow Swans as they roll through town in the course of their latest tour. It's been six years since the duo first started kicking up dust back at their initial home base in Portland, and in the intervening years they've released a beleaguering batch of material, with a back catalog of some 60 releases--many of them in very limited editions.

For the sake of sheer perversity, the group continually changes part of their name, having the "D" take a different form with each release (e.g., standing for Das, Die, Drowned, Dreamed, Detained, Dyad, Damned, etc etc). But if one thing about them has remained consistent, it's how they deliver tangled, surging masses of bottom-heavy noise--all churned out via guitar and a labyrinthine patchwork of mixers, effects units, and drum machines. As evidenced by Live During War Crimes II, a recent collection of their live material, D Yellow Swans’ sound involves a loose, improvised approach to whipping up a sonic maelstrom; one deeply indebted to the early industrial excursions of perennial faves Throbbing Gristle.

But their latest studio effort At All Ends reveals a more pronounced, hazily melodic sensibility clamoring it way through the Swans’ seismic din. Threaded with chiming and droning guitarwork, the album's prompted comments about a creeping Krautrock influence. But as member Pete Swanson recently rebuffed in an interview at Foxy Digitalis, "I was never really hit by that kraut stuff at all. ...[It] doesn't do anything for me." Instead, he claimed, the recording of the album was more inspired by his own personal obsession with the production work on Sade's Love Deluxe. Bullshit and ruses aside, At All Ends is a less chaotic affair than the band’s prior output, but no less visceral. It’s even prompted a few reviewers to use the term “beautiful” in their assessments. And depending on who you talk to, D Yellow Swans continue to hold down their rep as the best and most reliably interesting American noise band on the scene.

D Yellow Swans headline at the AV-aerie this Sunday evening. Zelienople, Oakeater, and Burial Hex are also on the bill. Tickets are $8, and the show revs up at 8pm. 2000 W. Fulton. Check the Empty Bottle’s website for further details.

[video]: D Yellow Swans – “I Woke Up”
[video]: D Yellow Swans – Live in Antwerp, May 2007

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
Congress Theater
Cubby Bear
Double Door
Elbo Room
Empty Bottle
Green Mill
The Hideout
Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
Kingston Mines
Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
Kranky Records
Laurie's Planet of Sound
Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records

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Transmission is the music section of Gapers Block. It aims to highlight Chicago music in its many varied forms, as well as cover touring acts performing in the city. More...
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