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. 


Friday, May 24

Gapers Block

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

« Contest: Jamie Lidell @ Lincoln Hall, 4/6 Phosphorescent's Matthew Houck Discusses Muchacho's Desperate Excitement »

Review Fri Apr 05 2013

Review: Andrew McMahon @ Lincoln Hall, 4/4/13

All photos by Katie Karpowicz

Earlier this year Buzzfeed published a tribute piece on Something Corporate's "legendary" emo anthem "Konstantine" in light of the fact that the song has now been around for 10 years. Being mentioned on a website that typically worships A-list mainstream idols like Beyonce and Ryan Gosling truly put the song's pervasiveness into perspective. If you were a high schooler or college student in the early to mid-2000s, there's a serious chance you heard this song at some point -- despite the fact that it never actually made it onto any of Something Corporate's albums.


Most popular songs written by an emotional 20-year-old lose their meaning after a while and likely even sound unbearably immature a decade later. Perhaps McMahon's continued success has something to do with his ability to write songs with meanings that transform with age. Watching McMahon's encore performance of "Konstantine" last night at Lincoln Hall, I realized something. The song doesn't mean the same thing it meant to me in my teens, but it still means just as much.


It makes sense that McMahon is finally venturing out as a solo artist. After forming and eventually disbanding two successful bands -- Something Corporate and Jack's Mannequin -- it's clear he's always been the songwriter, the frontman, the singer, the performer that fans naturally gravitate towards, unfortunately leaving other contributing band members in the shadows. In the past, he's seemed gracious towards former band mates, but, as a solo artist, McMahon's comprises will be at a minimum and creativity, hopefully, at the max. This is probably for the best as the new songs performed last night (including the especially keyboard-filled "Synesthesia") suggest McMahon is shifting directions yet again, upping his pop music game and welcoming some electronic elements.

That said, McMahon's live band is now more robust than ever including two guitarists, a keyboardist, drummer, bassist and — of course — McMahon on the piano.


Last night's set was a dream. In addition to the new tracks and "Konstantine," McMahon cruised through generous handfuls of both SoCo ("I Woke Up In A Car," "Watch The Sky," If U C Jordan") and Jack's Mannequin ("Bruised," "The Resolution," "Holiday From Real") songs.


I was once again reminded of McMahon's influence on his generation after catching the burly, bearded, stone-faced security guard near me break character and begin mouthing to words to "Straw Dog." Hopefully McMahon's still finding new meanings in his now decade-old songs like his fans are because we definitely aren't tired of hearing them.


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