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« Matlock Raps (But It's Not Who You Think) Review: Delorean @ Lincoln Hall, 11/17 »

Feature Thu Nov 18 2010

The Show Doesn't Stop at Midnight: A New Year's Eve Roundup

The weather's turned mittens-optional, and our pumpkin chais are getting changed out for peppermint lattes, so of course we're starting to get the itch to make plans for the holidays. For music lovers, there's often an maddening abundance of great shows at local venues at a variety of ticket prices. The Transmission staff has started a New Year's Eve show roundup here, listing our favorite club's plans for the night where everyone rides free, er, cheap. You still have time to get tickets to almost all of these concerts, and we even mention some great, though sold out, shows, just in case you happen to get a pair of tickets as a gift for the holidays. What follows is those Chicago venues that have announced their December 31st entertainment. Check back as we add additional lineups.

Abbey Pub: Pegboy, Mannequin Men, White Mystery; 8pm doors; Tickets $20 now $25 until 12/30, $30 at door (if available); 21+; 3420 W. Grace [Update: Price has gone up. Tickets now available at the Abbey Pub box office. Evening will include favors, champagne toast at midnight.]

Best place to wish on a (fake) shooting star...

...And I'm not talking about rock stars. Anyone who's ever been to the Aragon has gazed up at the sky at some point during the show and noticed the space-scape painted on the ceiling. While it might look more like something out of a wizard comic shop, it certainly adds character to the ballroom turned venue. The real stars on December 31st though (their second NYE spent with Chicago), will be The Black Keys' Dan Auerbach and Pat Carney as they play to a sold out room. The blues rockers have had a huge following for some time now, only intensified this year by the release of their latest album, Brothers, on which they returned the grit after a somewhat melancholy Attack and Release in '08. Tracks from the album have popped up all over the place including several television commercials, and the boys even won an MTV Video Music Award for "Tighten Up" (even if the original moon man was made out to Fergie--whoops!). This show is the second of a three night stand.
—Michelle Meywes

Aragon: Black Keys; 10pm; (SOLD OUT); 1106 W. Lawrence Ave.

Beat Kitchen: Tossers, Flatfoot 56; 9pm doors; Tickets $25; 21+; Belmont & Hoyne

Bottom Lounge: Local H; 9pm doors; Tickets $50; 21+; 1375 W. Lake St.

Congress Theater: Pretty Lights w/ Holy F_ck; 7:30pm doors; 17+; (SOLD OUT); 2135 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Double Door: Lucky Boys Confusion, Swizzle Tree, The Dog & Everything, Saraphine; 9pm; Tickets $30- $100; 21+; (10 Year Anniversary...The Last Songs From A Scene); 1572 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Empty Bottle: Big Freedia, Nobunny; 10pm; Tickets $25; 21+; 1035 N. Western Ave.

[Update] Green Mill: Battle of the Saxes: Von Freeman & Edward Petersen; 8pm-12:30am, followed by live jazz jam session until 5am; Tickets $25 (at door) cover includes drinks, midnight champagne toast, party favors; 21+; 4802 N. Broadway Ave.

House of Blues: Robert Randolph and the Family Band, w/ North Mississippi Allstars, The Steepwater Band; 8pm doors/9pm show; Tickets $53 adv/$58 day of (GA floor), $63 (GA opera box); 329 N. Dearborn

House of Blues Back Porch: Ike Reilly Assassination; 9:30pm doors; Tickets $24 adv/$26 at door; 21+; 329 N. Dearborn

You want to dance your party pants off...

...but you can't decide whether you want to booty drop to DMX or get off your feet to something more like Daft Punk. And you won't know whether you want to doll up (spiff up for the males) or just roll out of bed and throw on skinny jeans until day of. Either way, you definitely want to get down (and have a few PBRs, but not without a wristband). If this is you, then you should spend the countdown at Lincoln Hall with Chicago's DJ duo Flosstradamus. Starting at 10pm Flosstradamus will be mashing up old and new favorites while maintaining a consistent dance beat, with special guests Gemini Club and Prefrosh.
—Bonnie Page

Lincoln Hall: Flosstradamus with special guests Gemini Club and Prefrosh; 10pm; Tickets $25 until 12/1, $30 after; 18+; 2424 N. Lincoln Ave. [Updated with supporting acts, ticket also includes complimentary champagne toast, balloon drop, and $3 Bud draughts.]

You know what 2011 is gonna sound like?

Mucca Pazza, that's what. I predict that next year is going to be totally amazing for everyone--a year that kicks off with a snare drum marching step, continues with brassy flair and ends on a glockenspielesque "ting!" Make that dream a reality by dancing in the new year with local marching band rock stars Mucca Pazza at Logan Square Auditorium. It's going to be a crazy fun time, so ask yourself: Do I deserve to ring in the new year with a tuba? The answer, my friends, is a resounding yes.
—Kara Luger

Logan Square Auditorium: Mucca Pazza; 10pm, Tickets $25; 17+; 2539 N. Kedzie Ave.

Mayne Stage: ABC 7's Countdown Chicago to 2011 w/ Terisa Griffin; 9pm doors/10pm show; Tickets $50; 1330 W. Morse Ave.

If you want a long strange trip of a night...

... then head over to the Metro for Yeasayer. The psychedelic pop outfit are known for some very trippy videos to match their sometimes jarring catalog of work. Yet with their latest release, Odd Blood, the band has found a more accessible sound to gain the attention of a larger audience (they graced the Lollapalooza field this past summer). Buried under some standout pop hooks though are hints of seriously dark drugged out music. And if the show isn't weird enough for you, stumbling through Wrigleyville at 2am on New Year's Eve when all the bars let out will provide you with a cornucopia of long strange trips.
—Lisa White

Metro: Yeasayer, w/ Health, DJ sets by DARKO; Doors 10pm, show 10pm-4am; GA tickets $56 adv/$66 day of show, VIP tickets $500 includes balcony reserved table for 2, 2 posters, 8 drink tickets, bottle of champagne, must be 21+ to get champagne; Show is 18+; 3730 N. Clark St. [Update: Download a Darko-created mixtape to get yourself in the mood. Also, 12/30 Yeasayer and Health show now added, plus a new video flyer.] [Update! This show is sold out.]

Quenchers: Tight Phantomz, Bible of The Devil, Lovers; Tickets $10 (door); 9pm doors, 21+; Fullerton & Western

[Update] Red Line Tap: Sexfist; FREE; 10pm show, 21+; 7006 N. Glenwood Ave.

Reggie's Rock Club: Smoking Popes, Sig Transit Gloria, The Fold; 8PM; Tickets $30; 21+; 2105 S. State St.

Riviera Theatre: Umphrey's McGee; 8pm; Tickets $74 (3 night packages also available); 4746 N. Racine

Rodan: DJ's Joe Proulx and Al Valentine; 9pm; No cover charge; Normal dinner and drink services (no packages), champagne toast; 1530 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Best Place to Pop an Eardrum

Vancouver garage/noise rock duo Japandroids were just another cacophonous guitar/percussion until their debut Post-Nothing was released and caused some people (like me) to ask, "Is this the same band that put out those mediocre EPs?" Yes, it's the same personnel, but at some point they learned how to craft dynamic songs. And, oh boy, did they ever figure out how to play live. (When they last rolled through Chicago, they upstaged the Walkmen.) For New Year's, they'll be headlining Schubas and undoubtedly wowing with their wild antics, tight play and those glorious cover songs.
—James Ziegenfus

Schubas: Japandroids; 10pm; Tickets $30; 21+; Belmont & Southport

SmartBar: DJs Orchard Lounge, Nate Manic, Major Taylor, Kid Color; 9pm; Tickets GA $25 before 12/1, $30 after and night of show; VIP tickets $80, includes reserved table with cocktail service, gift bag and 6 drink tickets per person (2 beer, 2 well, 2 premium), Platinum tickets $400, includes seating for 4 VIP 1 bottle of champagne, 6 drink tickets per person and gift bag, Diamond table ticket $600, includes seating for 6, 2 bottles of champagne, 6 drink tickets per person and gift bags; 21+; 3730 N. Clark St.

SPACE: Early Show: Jill Sobule & Julia Sweeney; Tickets GA $20 adv/ $25 day of show — $34 reserved seating. Late Show: Shemekia Copeland; 10pm; Tickets GA $40 adv/$45 day of show — $60 (reserved table seating, includes champagne toast at midnight); 1245 N. Chicago Ave., Evanston

Subterranean: Cursive (playing "Domestica"), Yourself and the Air; 9pm doors; Tickets $30; 21+; 2011 W. North Ave. [Update! This show is now Sold Out.]

[Update!] Wicker Park Art Center: New Years Global Dance Party with Nguzo & the Groovement, Eyes Manouche, DJ RomaSoul, and Mae the Bellydancer; 9pm doors / 10pm show; Tickets $40 advance, $50 door. Sponsored by Hot House Chicago. Includes hors d' oeuvres, dessert & a champagne toast. 2215 W. North Ave.

More venues to come as shows are announced!

GB store

Vince Jose / November 18, 2010 5:25 PM

Thanks for the roundup!

Lidia / November 18, 2010 10:59 PM

I can't believe you didn't mention
Pegboy -
Mannequin Men - Sweet Cobra - White Mystery at The Abbey Pub - $20

Lidia / November 18, 2010 11:04 PM

You did! I feel really stupid now.

Pouya / November 19, 2010 4:59 PM

Huh.... They didn't they though?

NYE Chicago / December 6, 2011 1:25 AM

I love new years... Nice list!

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

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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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