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Friday, September 29

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DJ / Dance Thu Sep 01 2011

Best Bets at the North Coast Music Festival

We'll be at Union Park (1501 W. Randolph St.) all this coming Labor Day weekend for the second annual North Coast Music Festival, but before we slather on the suncreen and grab a corndog, here are some best bets for sets that can't be missed, and info on the prime Chicago talent on the bill as well. Single day tickets ($60) are still available (will call info.), so come on down and join us! (Download a PDF festival map.) We'll be reviewing the best and bounciest beats all weekend long, too.

Best bet for a solid mosh pit: Gogol Bordello
With an Eastern European peasant blend, these gypsy punks are known for their rowdy live sets, full of crowd singalongs and seas of sweaty people. The band fuses together traditional Eastern European gypsy folk music with a punk rock energy, and their live setting includes everything from dancers playing washboards to violin and accordion. Imagine the band Beirut if they were hopped up on something, didn't shower for a few weeks, and made music for the Gulag instead of a nice sunny day. Expect Gogol Bordello to put the festive in festival with their Sunday night set at 7:30pm.
-Lisa White

Best place to see booty bouncing: Major Lazer
The brainchild of producers Switch and Diplo, Major Lazer combines island music with an electronic mix and hip-hop flourishes. When the band played Pitchfork festival two years ago, their set included a Chinese dragon dancing around the stage and girls juking on ladders. Needless to say their chaotic dancehall hodgepodge theme translates well live, and even more mainstream acts are starting to catch on to their contagious style (Switch produced and sampled Major Lazer's "Pon de Floor" on Beyonce's latest hit "Run the World (Girls)"). To further prove their live shows get a little out of hand, I can personally attest to watching two strangers have a "physical intimate connection" during one of Switch's DJ sets a few years ago at Smartbar. So if you want the chance to get a little wild this weekend, cut lose with Major Lazer. Catch them at 6pm Saturday night.
-Lisa White

The respect your elders set: Fatboy Slim
There are certain artist that have had a significant amount of impact on their genre (and others) that you pretty much have to stop by and check out their set just as a sign of respect. The artist that most deserves that nod this weekend is Fatboy Slim, a man that has contributed more than a lifetime's worth of work to the world of electronic music, and has crossed over to produce and remix for a variety of types of music. Not to mention he had a hand in creating one of my favorite music videos (and Christopher Walken moments) ever. And on a list from Q magazine of the top 50 bands you must see before you die, Fatboy Slim ranked number 26. Needless to say, you should probably stop by his set at 8:45pm Saturday night to pay your respects and decide where he ranks for yourself.
-Lisa White

Best place to be engulfed by a cloud of weed smoke: Wiz Khalifa
Most people are familiar with Wiz Khalifa, ever since his breakout hit "Black and Yellow" soared up the charts and was played on every promo leading up to any Pittsburgh Steeler's game earlier this year (including every commercial regarding their Super Bowl appearance). But Wiz's real muse for many of his verses can be found if you simply look at the name of his debut album (Rolling Papers) and mixtapes (Kush and Orange Juice). The man loves to smoke, and loves to rap about smoking, so it's no surprise that when I saw him at Soundest festival in 2010, above me was the biggest mushroom cloud of marijuana smoke I have ever seen. Narcotics aside, Wiz's fast yet smooth delivery style over well known sampled beats is cause enough to check out his set. Also add in the fact that he's one of the fastest rising stars of hip hop in the past few years. But if you are really just searching for a new friend to mellow out with, than this will be your crowd at 9pm Friday night.
-Lisa White

Best place to hear some seriously awesome Chicago-bred female pipes: The Right Now
Not only is the The Right Now bringing oldschool R&B and soul back to Chicago's music scene but they're doing so with the help of their seductive leading lady Stefanie Berecz. Complete with an impressive horn section, The Right Now will be playing tracks off their debut album Carry Me Home at North Coast this year. After scoring a win at the Toast of the Coast contest, they'll be hitting the main North Coast Stage at 12:30pm on Saturday.
-Katie Karpowicz

Best place to mix your love of jam bands with electronica: STS9
Sound Tribe Sector 9 (or STS9 for short) can get a lot accomplished during a 90-minute set, like the one they'll be playing at NCMF this year. Slap bass, bongos, other-worldly synth sounds, an always impressive light show and more than 12 years of material are sure to make these futuristic jammers one of the standout headliners at Union Park. STS9 rounds out the night on Saturday starting at 8:30pm on the North Coast Stage.
-Katie Karpowicz

Best places to get your funk fix on: New Mastersounds and Lettuce
Sure, North Coast Music Fest is mostly about DJs and MCs, but that doesn't mean there's not some great diversity dispersed throughout the 2011 lineup. If it's brass and rhythm you're looking for this Labor Day weekend, Union Park is the place to be thanks sets from New Mastersounds and Lettuce. Both bands play Saturday on the North Coast Stage at 2:30 and 4:30pm, respectively.
-Katie Karpowicz

Best place to hear a saxophone solo over bass-thumping beats: Big Gigantic
Surprisingly, there's no shortage of saxes at this year's North Coast. DJ/drummer combos aren't much of a rarity on the electronica scene either these days. But, if you want a unique pairing of the two then hit up Big Gigantic's set on the Red Bull Grove Stage on Saturday at 4:30pm.
-Katie Karpowicz

Local sounds:
North Coast Music Festival splashed onto the Chicago festival scene last year and is now back for its second year. As many Chi-town music fans know, these festivals can be both great places to catch sets from national acts as well as pick up on some new tunes by local artists. If its local music you're looking for at North Coast this year, here's where to find it:

40 oz. Kings - 3:30pm @ The Named After Groupon Stage
Orchard Lounge - 3:30pm @ The Red Bull Grove Stage
The Hood Internet - 4:30pm @ The Red Bull Grove Stage

The Right Now - 12:30pm @ The North Coast Stage
Gemini Club - 1pm @ The Red Bull Grove Stage
Future Rock - 5:30pm @ The Named After Groupon Stage
Common - 7:30pm @ The Named After Groupon Stage

DJ Solo - 1:30 @ The Red Bull Grove Stage
Van Ghost - 4:30pm @ The North Coast Stage

And don't forget to check out the Magic Hat Local Stage all weekend long for acts hailing from the Windy City.

-Katie Karpowicz

North Coast Music Festival Lineup

(full interactive schedule with set times)

Friday, September 2, 2011
David Guetta
Wiz Khalifa
Wolfgang Gartner
James Zabiela
Auto Body
The Hood Internet
Orchard Lounge
Keys N Krates
Midnight Conspiracy
Perfect Kiss
Fifth World
40oz. Kings

Saturday, September 3, 2011
Fatboy Slim
Carl Cox
Major Lazer
Future Rock
New Mastersounds
Zeds Dead
RJD2 with Break Science
Big Gigantic
Felix Cartal
California Wives
Team Bayside High
Gemini Club
DJ Thibault
The Werks
Pyro Fighter
Digital Driver
Intonation Music Workshop

Sunday, September 4, 2011
Thievery Corporation
Gogol Bordello
Benny Benassi
Of Montreal
Little Dragon
The Budos Band
Soul Rebels Brass Band
Paper Diamond
Van Ghost
Lance Herbstrong
Loyal Divide
The Coop
Mario Florek
The Ill & The Restless
Great Divide
Orville Kline
Midwest Hype
The Arts of Life Band

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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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