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Review Thu May 15 2014
The best things about being in the Chicago music scene are the nonstop opportunities to see new and upcoming bands perform. There are more than a few hidden gems out there that will satisfy your musical needs. It is imperative to seek out the types of shows that venues like Subterranean host, allowing local bands to grow and flourish. This past Sunday they hosted a nice grouping of punk and indie rock in the form of Bluster , Aggro Control, and the Cartridge B-Sides.
Bluster began the night with their eclectic sound, which times the felt like straight up rock before delving into more post punk territory. The singing was split between guitarist Mark and bassist Anne, who happened to be the only woman and mother playing on that lovely Mother's Day evening. Their songs have a catchy edge to them and while Bluster's status is particularly new, you can definitely see their cohesive talent. Bluster was quite fun, bantering with the crowd and chalking up a slight misstep to a necessity of rock and roll. They certainly hit a wonderful rocking high with their final two songs, especially with the ecstatic "Elegy" which best captures Bluster's energy.
Aggro Control was the most polished and craziest group of the night. Frank and Brendan's set up consisted of a drum kit splayed out in front of them, ready to be stomped on as the played their vicious guitars. Aggro Control's lead singer broke into eloquent madness between their songs, quoting Oppenheimer, referencing the Bible, and recounting a strange sex dream. These moments of spoken word were lifted and plastered across the stage with the lead singer's powerful cadence. It certainly fit with their assaulting punk rock, which never grew repetitive or dull. It got better and much louder.
The night finished off with the largest group of the night, Cartridge B-Sides. The five-piece band plays a sun-kissed indie rock lined with really fun jam sessions. Justin Roman's guitar work was impeccable and vocals had a nice flow throughout, but his brother Victor's snarl on The Walkman's "The Rat" stood out. It was a perfect example of the band's raw ability guided by a well crafted rock song. "Ryan's Garage", a song that reminisces on the band's time together, was the tightest of their original songs. Their influences are apparent in their covers, but their original songs have a nice and inviting charm.