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Concert Sun Mar 23 2014

The Love on Top Tour Throws a Dance Party at Schubas

I saw TOPS perform last year when opening for King Krule. I was immediately impressed with their pop driven songs. I honestly felt like they were old classics, songs I had heard countless times and still had not grown tired of them. As soon as this feeling would sink in, TOPS would change it up. They are not a simple retread of familiar sounds, but rather an evolution of them. It only makes sense that they are touring with their fellow Canadian Calvin Love, whose own music go towards a similar sense evolution, albeit via a different path. Together they form the Love on Top Tour as they passed through Schubas this past Thursday.

CALVINLOVE.jpg

It is crucial emphasize how great it is to come on time to see openers, especially when they are as talented as Calvin Love. Love started his set to a very sparse crowd. Aside from a few very direct jokes about the latecomers, like dedicating "Waiting on You" to them, it didn't seem like Love cared. He played like he was in a full house. On his records, Love's music is a very dark and experimental version of the 80s synth that has come back into fashion. But when performing live he is filled with pure punk fury, which makes sense considering those are his roots. His croon is much grittier and his songs are faster. Luckily more and more people started coming into Schubas as "Cool", Love's most appropriately named song, sparked a dance party. I'm not saying the typical concert swaying and grooving, I mean full on across the room dancing. Even TOPS lead singer Jane Penny joined in as more than just a few rugs were cut during the second half of his set.

After all that dancing it was fitting that TOPS continue the jubilancy with the ever growing audience. Instantly the crowd caught on with their energy. It really isn't surprising; their songs have a completely approachable sense about them. "Turn Your Love Around", one of their catchiest off their album Tender Opposites, is lively as the band goes wild at its end. It's one of those moments that just explode though a crowd as Jane Penny's vibrant voice breaks through the band's feverish playing. They all work incredibly well together, playing off each other wonderfully. David Carriere guitar fuses with Madeline Glowicki's bass while Penny' gentle keyboards contrast Riley Fleck's strong drums. There wasn't an instance in there set where TOPS faltered.

TOPS.jpg

TOPS music grew progressively more danceable and much like Love's set, this played an integral role to the end of the show. While the much denser crowd prohibited the area of the dance floor, there was still enough room for Love to join in and bounce along with everyone to TOPS. The band quickly returned for a final song at the behest of the crowd. They truly gave it their all, with Carriere spinning his guitar around his body. After asking if any one had a place for them to stay, both bands went out into the crowd to take pictures and talk with the audience.There was a lot of love going around at Schubas that night, all of it well deserved.

 

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Classical Wed Aug 06 2014

Pulling Strings: For classical music in Chicago, you got a guy - August 2014

By Transmission

Before the main classical season kicks into gear in the next month or two, take advantage of these local artists and ensembles playing throughout the city.

Read this feature »

Blogroll

  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
BackStage
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
ChicagoMusic.org
Chicago Music Guide
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CHIRP
Country Music Chicago
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Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
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  Venues:

Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
B.L.U.E.S
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
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Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
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Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Martyrs'
Mayne Stage
Metro
The Mutiny
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Park West
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Rosa's
Schubas
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Smartbar
Subterranean
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Township
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Atavistic
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Hozac
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


Events

Sun Aug 31 2014
What's Happening? Block Party @ Longman & Eagle

Sun Aug 31 2014
North Coast Music Festival

Sun Aug 31 2014
Chicago Jazz Festival

Sun Aug 31 2014
African Festival of the Arts

Mon Sep 1 2014
African Festival of the Arts

Wed Sep 3 2014
Creepoid, My Dad, & Shahman @ Township

Thu Sep 4 2014
Owen Pallett & Foxes in Fiction @ Metro

Fri Sep 5 2014
The Hideout Block Party & Onion AV Fest

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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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Editor: Anne Holub, anne@gapersblock.com
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