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Concert Tue May 13 2014

Hozac Blackout Fest Descends on the Empty Bottle this Weekend

Once again, the Empty Bottle (1035 N. Western Ave) brings out the dark and sticky from the corners and onto the stage for the three days of springtime mayhem known as the Hozac Blackout Fest. This weekend's conflagration of songs to stomp things to includes punk and proto-punk favorites, local bands, imported bands, and bands you're gonna wish you heard in the Music/Friendly/Dancing confines on Western Ave. Get your 3-day pass while you can (if you still can) or plop down some dough for your steady's new favorite date night.



In many ways the music of the The Boys is like a transitional fossil, somehow quietly bridging the gap between a poppier 1960s British music scene and the late '70s London punk explosion. Long overshadowed by the work of contemporaries and peers such as the Clash and the Sex Pistols, The Boys' songwriting and musicianship are in many cases the equal of or superior to their better known genre-mates. Though The Boys never really reaped commercial success, they've long been critical and cult darlings, inspiring, perhaps most notably, Germany's iconic punkers Die Toten Hosen, who have long championed their music. Their Blackout Fest appearance comes on the eve of their first new album in over 30 years, Punk Rock Menopause, set for release on June 20, and offers a seriously rare opportunity to see the band stateside.

Filling out the lineup of Friday night are other notables from the Hozac Records stable including the tight power pop of Toronto's First Base, lo-fi garage-punk from 999999999, and Chicago's own The Man.

-Dan Snedigar


For some reason, the Dictators always drop off the list of influential punk bands from the early '70s. That's nothing against their contemporaries who are lauded, but it's not like their debut Go Girl Crazy! is anything less than awesome. It's hard, fast and brash. If AC/DC had been a punk band, they would be the Dictators. But the band never really jumped into the mainstream like many followers would and it led to an erratic career. But their first three albums, Go Girl Crazy!, Manifest Destiny and Bloodbrothers still pack a punch and will undoubtedly be highlighted at the Bottle.

Atlanta doesn't typically spring to mind as a hot bed for exciting punk rock, but it's been hard to deny its place the last many years with bands like Black Lips, Gentleman Jesse and Carbonas being undeniable forces. Shocked Minds comes from the ashes of Carbonas (and is sort of an alternate Ex-Humans), but sound as if they popped out of a time capsule buried in 1978. They have a raw and spastic sound like the Kids or even the Testors. Their self-titled debut album from 2013 provides a nice jolt and actually gets stronger as it progresses. They'll fit in just fine at Blackout Fest.

-James Ziegenfus

The Hozac Blackout Fest takes place this Thursday ("Blackout Fest Art Show"), Friday, and Saturday at the Empty Bottle. Tickets are $10 (Thursday) $25 (Friday or Saturday) or $55 for a 3-day pass.

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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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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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