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.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Sunday, January 17

Gapers Block

Gapers Block on Facebook Gapers Block on Flickr Gapers Block on Twitter The Gapers Block Tumblr

« Review: No Sun by Nonagon Let Loose and Dance With OBDBI »

Concert Fri Nov 28 2008

Clouds: Coming to Chicago, they just keep on puttin out. . .


Clouds had been on tour for a good while before being invited to join back up with Boris for a jaunt through the Midwest and on back east. They hit Chicago on Saturday, November 29th, rolling into the Empty Bottle just in time to cure everyone of their excessive exposure to turkey and family. Based out of Boston, for all that they haven't seen that east coast city for a while, Jim Carroll chatted of the cities they've seen and the bands they've seen those cities with.

This past March Clouds hit SXSW promoting the release of their album "We Are Above You" on Hydra Head Records. As always, the four day music fest an onslaught of music from around the worlds, as well as a showcase of fans' willingness to flock to Texas to see their favorite, or soon to be favorite bands. SXSW may swell the population of Austin by about ten times, but according to Jim, the vibe is really the same that weekend as on any given Monday night.

Clouds scored a show at Red 7 last year, home to many a metal set. But really, when the festival is in town, any bar that can lay hands on a sound system turns into a venue.

Jim has also been in Austin when the city isn't in the grips of a music fest. "Austin is kind of always like that, just not in that grand a scale," said Jim over the phone while the band pulled themselves together for another day on the road. "It's one of the only places in the middle of America where you can play a show on a Monday and it will be raging."

Boston, MA on the other hand, their home [and mine back in the day] has a slightly different vibe. With so many colleges swelling the population the face of the city effectively gets "recycled" as Jim puts it, every four years. There are other processes afoot too. "Boston has totally been gentrified to the max," says James. "There will always be places to play, people will always be starting small size music venues, there will be something. But it can pose a problem when one place shuts down."

Certainly that kind of flash-in-the-pan venue can be a problem for bands touring though, not knowing if they'll get to play somewhere they know and that knows them. But even worse for bands coming home from a tour to find their favorite digs turned into Urban Outfitters or a new CitiBank. As Jim said "It's a very youth based city. It's hard to start a community." He's watched a lot of folks hit 21, get done with college, and move out.

So community then. For a band on the road community ends up being the folks they're touring with. Clouds has been out with their label mates Torche for the summer and again in the fall. Now though they've been invited to join Boris for a bit. Boris just finished touring with Nine Inch Nails and will continue on through the Midwest before winding through Buffalo, NY and on to the East Coast.

Jim was excited to be touring with Boris again. They'd been with them around SXSW but were excited to get a second round on the road. "There is the language barrier," says Jim. Only one of the members of Boris speaks much English. "But we can all get along. It takes a lot more time to explain things but we can still all have a good time." Some comment could be made toward the universal language of music, but I'm not sure that was really what he was talking about.

While out on the road Clouds have crashed with friends and fans. They've partied, as can be seen in the heartwarming video celebrating Hydrahead label guy Mark Thompson's birthday. Clouds are also out to keep their fans, their community happy. Jim promised they'll "Keep putting out."

When they were home in October, Clouds holed up and recorded a few songs that they'll be pressing available in vinyl only. The songs will also go up online, but don't go looking for CDs. Realizing that the collectors out there are really the vinyl folks, Clouds will be catering to them. So each time they're home, or even if they manage to set aside some time on a tour, Clouds will be recording a song or three. These will then get pressed as limited edition vinyl, only a thousand or so each time.

So keep your eyes out. And your ears open. Though for the show this Saturday, beware. Between the punk rock/metal of Clouds and the drone metal of Boris, you may be bleeding even if you don't join in the pit. Bring some ear plugs, eh folks?
Saturday, November 29th
The Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western Ave.
Boris, Clouds, and Poison Arrows
Doors at 10pm Tickets $15

GB store
GB store

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

GB store


Featured Series


Transmission on Flickr

Join the Transmission Flickr Pool.

About Transmission

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...
Please see our submission guidelines.

Editor: Sarah Brooks,
Transmission staff inbox:



Transmission Flickr Pool
 Subscribe in a reader.

GB store

GB Store

GB Buttons $1.50

GB T-Shirt $12

I ✶ Chi T-Shirts $15