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Saturday, December 16

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« Metro Celebrated Saturday Night with Jukebox the Ghost Family Crest Wrapped up TNK Festival at Schubas Sunday Night »

Tomorrow Never Knows Sun Jan 18 2015

Alvvays Bring Sunshine Vibes to Schubas, 11/17

The inventive Toronto five-piece Alvvays crafted one of my favorite releases of 2014. After swiftly building their fan base, their debut self-titled album featured summery rhythms, that infectious twee sound, and stunning vocals by lead singer Molly Rankin. Would the sugary melodies be too sweet in a live setting, or would they prove to decrease our winter blues just a little bit?

Carbon Tigers opened up the Tomorrow Never Knows Festival show at Schubas with their powerhouse ballads. I honestly think they could have headlined their own show with the spiritual-experience-inducing tunes. Begun in Chicago, their sound is unique and inventive, with lead vocalist Chris Wienke's commanding vocals drawing you in instantly. They dazzled the crowd with songs off of their first and second EPs, and off of their full length album being released this year. They shared their penchant for learning covers of their favorite songs, and played an exquisite version of Chris Isaak's hypnotizing "Wicked Game."

We then heard the wonderful indie sounds of local group, Santah, who brought their unique vocal stylings and infectious beats from their three high-caliber studio albums for a gradually more crowded concert venue. Sun Club emerged next, a Baltimore outfit with their rambunctious stage presence and wailing vocals that kept us moving before Alvvays' arrival.

It was 11:40pm when Alvvays finally took the stage, much to our delight. Schubas was packed with wall-to-wall concertgoers, as I wedged my way into the crowd to get a view of their illuminated and simple namesake sign posted on the wall, a stark white background with black jagged lettering. They opened the show with a lengthy intro signaling "The Agency Group," where Rankin's vocals were effervescent. It sounded like they took a moment to get their footing and integrate all parts of their sound together in harmony, but by their second ballad they were completely in check.

They continued with "Atop A Cake," which proved that sound cannot be too sweet or too catchy. Alvvays is able to effortlessly convey larger themes and intense events with a fuzzy, jangly backdrop, especially in their most well-known ballad, "Next of Kin." It's hard to not be even a little bit happier after listening to their songs. A truly valuable aspect of their music is that they are able to showcase these wistful tunes with emotional lyrics and raw subject matters. As they began the rumbling hit "Adult Diversion," they showed that their artistry definitely has staying power with their sound that won't lose its luster anytime soon.

 
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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 »

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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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