"...this is just a phase ...I can quit whenever I want..." ~ Pop Radio 101 by Camera
Hey, blogspot readers, spring break has finally arrived without the spring weather here in Chicago. However that didn't stop SouthSide from spending it at Double Door to see an old friend rock the stage there. It was Camera's The Panic and The Permanence (a follow up to the band's 2008 album Fire & Science) LP release show which also featured performances by Audiences, Cassettes On Tape and Golden State (Los Angeles, CA) to assist in the celebration. SouthSide highly recommends checking out all bands mentioned in this review.
Though missing Audiences' (http://www.audiencesmusic.com) opening act, this reviewer did arrive in time to groove within the electro powerpop swing of things by Cassettes On Tape (http://www.cassettesontape.com). This local band provided a dreamy yet energerized momentum as the quartet of musicians rocked the ears with an Echo and the Bunnymen sound, blogspot readers, if you had to compare the band's core music style. Not that this reviewer is frowning on the comparison ...she did like the danceable tempo and pop fee within that shoegaze vibe though having her see front man Joe (also on guitars) as Echo's stand-in during most of the set. She instantly fell in love with his deep falsetto vocal tone that popped the lyrics to life with such heartfelt tone and emotions. There's plenty of electro energy to keep you feeling that urge to dance along with the band even while in a slight downtempo rhythm.
Next from the warm sunny shores of California, this band brought more than just the bright lights of his rockin' city to the stage. Golden State (http://www.iamgoldenstate.com) also brought to its Chicago audience lots of thunderous energy and electric guitar riffs that had the stage ablaze under such intense fervor, blogspot readers, but not only that there was some (rock) sexual tension emulating from this band's sound too. This reviewer enjoyed how the music especially during the instrumental was performed quite emotionally as well as passionately to which helped highlight front man/guitarist James' fierce vocal tone on the lyrics in songs like All Roads Lead Home, Save Me and Bombs. Plus it did help to have Double Door lighting working in sync with the band to capture the intensity of Golden State's rock music adding plenty of excitement and energy for the audience rockin' in front of the stage. For example, during one particular song, this reviewer relished in feeling the sensation of the band's pent up electric momentum gradually rise on a steady crescendo that had the blood boiling with anticipation amidst the percussion's rhythm. Too hot to the touch despite the following song afterward having a downtempo energy and momentum but it was not to overshadow James' heartfelt vocal tone, blogspot readers.
Finally the moment had arrived to hear the live version of Camera's (http://www.cameraband.com) new LP, The Panic and the Permanence with a few oldies tossed in their headlining performance, blogspot readers. This local band have what they dub their music as "pop noir" though they do wonderfully pay homage to a few 80s bands like "..Oingo Boingo, David Byrne..." (according to Owl Mag in its review of the new album), and Talking Heads that's heard within core music. It doesn't have a campy 80s sound, mind you yet Camera plays around with it while meshing a different genres here and there within their songs. You might feel a pseudo Latin/sumba electroswing rhythm (track 1 - Grazed By Bullets) going one minute then at the next you're getting a saracastic lesson within a funky electro/powerpop beat (track - 2 Pop Radio 101) or you might find yourself dancing to the fun pop sound (track 6 -The Negotiator). Though most of the songs on this new album aren't technically "new", blogspot readers, it was great to mix with them a couple of new ones like A Place I Know and Heir Apparent. SouthSide's test audience recently did a test run of Camera's album and found the electro music enjoyable like the previous one - Fire & Science. They had like track 2 (Pop Radio 101) and track 8 (On A Night Like This) for both songs' tongue and cheek sarcasm especially in track 8 in which the lyrics jokinly state "...you're a girl ...so what do you know..." Tracks 4 (Nuclear) and 5 (Debris) are perfect in the order they're placed on this album because you get a somewhat contrasting sound by the band within a sort of "doom and gloom" feeling. During their Double Door show, Camera did perform three cool oldies (and reviewer favorites) like Wicked Games, One Neo Eon and London Fields.
Until next time, support your local scene,