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Concert Tue Aug 24 2010

Clare and the Reasons @ Pritzker Pavilion, 8/23

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With a voice that is filled with longing but not without comfort, Clare Manchon took the stage with her husband Olivier Manchon and others to play a fruitful 75 minutes of music. The songs have elements of great delicacy as well as humor. Between just the two of them there were ample instruments, Clare switching off between guitar and washboard and Olivier playing violin, guitar, mini xylophone, and a small drum at times. Yet, they made the most out of the beautiful space by bringing in brass musicians from Chicago to play trombone and french horn. In addition, another musician accompanied the small brass section to treat the audience to keyboard, bass, and clarinet playing.

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There's a lightness to a great deal of Clare's songs that is crossed with a persevering note of sincerity with topics ranging from grandparents in the 40s, bees, and NYC's Alphabet City in the middle of the night. Olivier provided backing vocals to his wife's lead at times as well as a sense of humor, asking if there were other Frenchmen in the audience, imitating WBEZ announcers and talking about This American Life's Ira Glass. Though Clare spoke relatively less between songs, she had a subtle wit about touring in Japan and ending her songs as well as suffering from jet lag. To put it in a nutshell, Clare and her husband are clever but not too clever that you lose track of the lovely melodies and harmonies they are so apt at creating.

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Clare and the Reasons also adeptly walk that curious line between indie pop and folk with hinting elements of twee thrown in randomly for good measure. Though they are definitely a part of this post modern world, one can't help but feel a little transported back at times with a little whistle and washboard playing. It's also a bit dreamy and filled with happy chemistry as Clare and her husband Olivier seem to have a great connection through the music.

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One of the hallmarks of playing Pritzker Pavilion for bands besides the larger audience and lovely outdoors in a city in which our summer weather might unfortunately be fading fast sooner than later is the great sound. Clare made note of this several times and seemed humbled by the architecture around her. It's a great advantage to Chicagoans that our city not only took the initiative to build Pritzker but also brought us so many great free shows this summer. Whether it's a symphony, a rock band, or a finer thing in life, such as Clare and the Reasons, the sound is always well amplified and balanced. Let's hope next summer brings many more shows just like this one.

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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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