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Review Thu Oct 24 2013

Review: Thee Oh Sees, OBN IIIs, Blind Shake @ Empty Bottle, 10/22

It takes a nice bit of confidence to tour with not one but two opening acts with the potential to upstage on any night. It's no surprise that one band that'd be up for that challenge is Thee Oh Sees. The San Francisco band tours constantly and their garage rock, punk and terrific noise almost always result in an entertaining live show. And it was no different on Tuesday night at the Bottle when they headlined with an 80-minute set full of what anyone who's seen them has come to expect. They played the favorites like "Block of Ice", "Minotaur" and "Toe Cutter - Thumb Buster" punctuated by a freneticism that was mirrored in the crowd. As soon as they started, the middle of the room was already pogoing and bouncing off one another. Despite upsetting some showgoers on the pit's fringes, it appeared to be all in good fun. But it's not just how tight they are or their top-notch melodies underneath the noise that draws people in. It's that, while they may have predictable setlists, they give it all their all every night and know what the fans want.

On this night, however, it wasn't just about the headliner. Austin's OBN IIIs opened with a rousing set of garage rock. They were loud, brash and energetic. Their singer was out in the crowd, weaving the mic through his shirt, on the floor and generally a solid entertainer out of the Iggy Pop school of frontmen. They never lost steam and always looked like they wouldn't rather be anywhere else. And whether it was some strange showmanship or just forgetfulness, handing set lists out to the rest of the band 3 songs in was sort of funny. If there were one complaint, though, it's that their songs are really long for fast-paced garage rock. Also, it appeared that a dad and son were having a great time during their set. I can't say I see too many fathers and sons hanging out at the Bottle, so that was pretty cool.

The Twin Cities' Blind Shake opened the evening with a high energy set of garage/surf-rock. A little Man or Astroman is prevalent in their sound, and even sort of their look with duct-taped symbols on matching black shirts and all 3 band members with shaved heads. (That's some dedication.) They were pretty much all business and their short songs packed a punch that definitely perked the ears of early arrivers.

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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


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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