Hey, blogspot readers, SouthSide's rockin' the wildest party ever! Yet, this was no ordinary party either. It was a rockin' burlesque party hosted by the masked Luchadores known as Los Straitjackets (TN)- live and in living color from the depths of Hell. Well, actually from the crowded Martyrs' (located in the heart of the Northcenter neighborhood). And this unique surfer rock-burlesque combination show featured the lovely World Famous Pontani Sisters (NY) with extra special guest Revolva (CA) and her hula hoops to tantilze and tease the imagination with their sexy moves on stage while on stage with Los Straitjackets. Also featured on tonight's lineup was the soulfully jazzed alternative sounds by friends Lake Street Dive (NY) and the local buzz of retro rock-n-roll with a big band swing The Honeybees.
Before entering Martyrs', SouthSide was instantly stung by the buzz of these rockin' bees and she highly recommends getting stung too by this quintet's retro homage to the early days of rock-n-roll jive and music. Local group, The Honeybees, warmed up the packed house with fun danceable tunes which included teaching everyone The Cool Jerk and Hippy Shake. However there was a moment when these Bees got all hot and sticky like heated honey under a downtempo tune that embodied a lot of sultry sexiness both in music and lyrics (sung by female vocalist Megan). What this reviewer enjoyed about The Honeybees was the electrifying momentum which kep many jumpin' and jivin' to their modern take on the old school rockabilly vibe. Plus the duo female vocalists (Barb and Megan) brought band a harmonizing two-part voice range that reminded her of classic radio singing ...something not heard in a long time. SouthSide says when seeing The Honeybees be prepared to get stung into dancing along with them and your honey. For more information about this band, visit http://www.the-honeybees.com or http://www.myspace.com/thehoneybees.
The last time SouthSide her friends (six months ago at Elbo Room), she was literally blown away by their soulfully jazzed pop/alternative sound and vibe. They, Lake Street Dive, returned to Chicago bringing with them again that fresh, hip but electrifying vibe to the Martyrs' stage along with more soulful sexiness and a little hip action (by lead vocalist Rachel). Compared to Dive's Elbo Room appearance and now, Rachel and the band were knocking this crowd "dead" with its hot momentum and energy which continued where The Honeybees ended moments ago. Plus Rachel added more fierce vocal strength to each song making the lyrics vibrantly pop to life while displaying some diva-tude in her voice especially during Funny Not To Care and Got Me Fooled (in which she hit that high soprano note). Yet under the right music combination (i.e. for example - an upbeat, lively tempo with a jazzy spunk to their pop/alternative sound), Rachel's voice could emit an energetic vibe amidst the music as heard in the song Henriette. Or when behind the guitar (strumming a chord or two) while hot horn rhythms float amongst the downtempo pace for that cool breezy sound during one particular song, she dropped into an ultra sexy temptress-sounding siren. The magic moment of Lake Street's performance happened while performing The Drifters' classic - This Magic Moment. This reviewer liked the downtempo rhythm to highlight this band's music style but still popping energy and momentum in which the crowd easily responded by dancing to this popular cover tune. Closing with Hello? Goodbye!, Lake Street Dive definitely rocked out Martyrs' with an entertaining, high energy show and SouthSide highly suggests rockin' with them as they dress up for Halloween as Fleetwood Mac. Wherever they're rockin' again, be sure to have your dancing shoes on, blogspot readers but in the meantime visit http://www.lakestreetdive.com or http://www.myspace.com/lakestreetdive for more information about them.
Luchadores in black suits playing California surfer rock? Interesting band gimmick, blogspot readers? HOWEVER, luchadores in black suits playing California surfer rock while women perform burlesque acts? NOW - that's a rockin' show! And basically it sums up part of Los Straitjackets' headlining set featuring The World Famous Pontani Sisters (http://www.pontanisisters.com) and extra special guest, Revolva . Martyrs' suddenly swelled to full capacity near and around the stage as people fought to get a good view of the band when the masked group in their early Beatles-esque attire (suits and ties) finally appeared amidst the fan frenzied commotion of cheers and whistles. It took the band mere seconds to enrapture the entire venue underneath its surfer rock music (think Annette, Frank, and Beach Blanket Bingo ...or Beach Boys if they only performed instrumentally) with a single stroke of the guitars. Los Straitjackets played ...er surfed to a melodically electric California vibe and sound that instantly had this crowd partying as if it was still summertime in Chicago at North Avenue or Oak Street beaches. Speaking solely in Spanish throughout their performance (luckily SouthSide could translate for those around her who couldn't understand), these masked luchadores performed a wide variety mix of tunes featuring classic covers and their own originals. The room immediately jumped to life when they covered favorites classic surfer rock tunes like The Munsters theme song and a (sort of) holiday themed favorite of this reviewer - Spooky (by Classic IV and The Zombies). Though not her ideal choice to turn into a romantic surfer ballad, SouthSide did find their version of Celine Dion's Titantic theme song (My Heart Will Go On) more enjoyable without the lyrics being sung before performing another one for the romantic couples in the audience You Send Me by Sam Cooke to which you could hear many voice singing the lyrics. This reviewer highly recommends rockin' to Los Straitjackets' new original Space Mosquito that featured a buzzing flurry of twitterpating guitar riffs (like a mosquito buzzing at your ears). It kept everyone jiving to the energetic wave,
Now as SouthSide mentioned earlier, there were some tantalizing burlesque acts incorporated along with this headlining show. That was also when the crowd was at their wildest, blogspot readers. Such acts included non burlesque dance numbers with The World Famous Pontani Sisters like Kitty Kat song (featuring Ritz Carlton on vocals) and The Brooklyn Slide while individual burlesque numbers had each Pontani Sister tempting our surfer-themed fantasies like doing The Madison to Los Straitjackets surf rock. The highlight of this performance was when guest Revolva hula hooped not with just one (too easy for her) but with four during her highly energizing segment. As you can imagine, blogspot readers, the crowd went totally wild with fan fervor for more. There was also some Los Straitjackets fun moments like when guitarist Eddie tickled the ears with an extra long bluesy solo at the end of one particular song but to only be upstaged by drummer Jason. Thus it turned into a guitar-drum surf challenge between the two which fans decided on who won the bout. Eddie challenged him with wild, distorted metal riffs yet in between you heard chords from Moon River to Stairway To Heaven while Jason countered with his own percussion medley that included Girl From Ipanema in the mix. Overall they were both winners in SouthSide's eyes.
Well, SouthSide would like to tell you about the other Los Straitjackets happenings however as usual, you have to experience this beach party for yourself. Next time, she's bringing her Moondoggie (a Sally Field as Gidget reference) along to surf with the waves together with this rockin' band again. It was a blast the first time! For more information, visit http://www.straitjackets.com or http://www.myspace.com/losstraitjackets.
Until next time, support your local scene,