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Transmission
« DeRo and Kot Host "The Kids Are Alright" Review: Todd Rundgren @ Park West, 1/25/08 »

Concert Tue Jan 29 2008

Dancing with Essex Chanel

Let's face it: Wedding dances can outright suck. Luckily, in the new album Dancing at Weddings, Essex Chanel brings the wedding dance to your living room -- albeit without the embarrassingly drunk uncle attempting to do the Worm on the dance floor.

Essex Chanel is the solo project of Chicago-based musician/artist/all-around busy bee Travis Lee Wiggins, who also performs in the Summer Salts and Fetla. Dancing at Weddings sort of serves as an tutorial, opening with a loopy, roaming bassline over background shouts to "Get up and dance!" Soon what one can only assume is a party robot intercedes. On second thought, you better bust out that Worm.

Subdued, muffled bass provides the anchor, while electro looping, feedback, and fiddlings run amok. Other tracks, such as "I'm the one (who wants to dance with you tonight)," two-step into indie rock territory featuring a super-simplified drum track and jangly guitar. It's not a spectacularly inventive combo, but it's fun and perfect for nights when low-key boogying is in order. Overall, the vocals are pretty basic, with Wiggins often just singing a single line over and over. And while that could prove boring, here it serves to let the music remain the showcase. The tracks seamlessly segue into one another, which is nice for maintaining a groove, but ultimately left me wishing the tracks stood out from one another a bit more.

Essex Chanel will be having a CD release show on Friday, February 1 at Shubas, featuring Wiggins with a full band. The show is 18 and up, and Ra Ra Riot and The Virgins will also be playing. Can't make it to the show? Get your own copy of the CD here.

 
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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 »

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