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Saturday, July 11

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Review Sat Sep 24 2011

Review: Cut Copy, Washed Out @ Pygmalion Music Festival, 9/23

It was just over two months ago that Cut Copy dominated a late afternoon set at Pitchfork. (And it was just this past Tuesday that they played a packed Riviera on the last leg of US touring.) They've come a long way from the band they used to be even three years ago - ditching t-shirts and jeans for dress shirts and trousers, using lighting more efficiently and scaling back when appropriate. It took a couple songs for them and the crowd to warm up at the Canopy Club on Friday night, but soon enough everyone got their bearings.

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Cut Copy (photos by Rory O'Connor)

Cut Copy's strengths are in creating atmospheres drenched in synth-pop, disco beats, new wave and essentially being respectful of the 80s electronic sounds that they revere. While 2008's In Ghost Colours was a pastiche tour de force, their latest Zonoscope is no slouch either and has crisper songwriting. Hearing their current toned-down rendition of "Saturdays", which always sounded like a vessel to replicate the sick hook from "Music Sounds Better With You", makes you realize how much they've grown as songwriters in not pulling in every trick up their sleeve.

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Cut Copy (photo by Rory O'Connor)

Now, the confidence to put the searing standout "Need You Now" at the front of Zonoscope (instead of burying it like its cousin "Strangers in the Wind" on IGC) is a huge step, but that song just cannot compete live with a thumper like "Lights & Music" that had the whole front section of the Canopy Club pogoing. The chorus for "Hearts on Fire" had a similar effect. That's not to imply that "Need You Now" or even "Blink and You'll Miss a Revolution" don't have their moments, but nobody's losing their mind for those, even if they're acknowledging how pure the songwriting is. Although, I suppose that's part of scaling down. In a short set (just barely an hour), Cut Copy showed off their new strengths but didn't completely forget their wild past.

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Washed Out (photo by Rory O'Connor)

Opener Washed Out springboarded off of their chillwave records into a surprisingly full and lush set. In the past, leader Ernest Greene has been a solo act with a laptop. Now with a full band (an array of keys/samplers/iPad, bass and drums) it appears like Washed Out's figured out how to sound dynamic live. They may not bring it as hard as Cut Copy, but they establish solid grooves underneath synthy soundscapes.

[Gapers Block will have coverage later this weekend of Grandkids, the Luyas and Dodos from Friday night, as well as whatever we run into on Saturday.]

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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.

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  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


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Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
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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

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  & 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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