Ultimate Painting, CoCoComa and the Runnies at the Empty Bottle

Ultimate Painting

The British duo Ultimate Painting’s debut record came very close to being my favorite of 2014, and its second album, Green Lanes, is just about as good. Both records might seem a little languid and low-key at first, but don’t let the lack of loud feedback deceive you — there’s some great rock music happening here, with two guitars playing off each other and grooving in that classic style that goes back to the Velvet Underground. Jack Cooper and James Hoare trade off on lead vocals, often singing together in harmony, with the soft, unfussy style of English choir boys. And their melodies are just wonderful. These are some of the best-written songs of the past few years. As a live act, Ultimate Painting adds a drummer and bassist — and it also adds longer jams during some of its songs, stretching out those VU and Feelies moments. The band returned to Chicago on Thursday, Sept. 10, playing a delightful set at the Empty Bottle.

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CoCoComa

Ultimate Painting’s bassist on this tour is Anthony Cozzi, who was the leader of the Chicago band Radar Eyes, whose disbanding I lamented earlier this year. And he’s the guitarist in yet another great Chicago band, CoCoComa — which played Thursday night before Ultimate Painting. But Cozzi’s moving to the West Coast, so CoCoComa billed this as the last show it’ll play in Chicago for a long time. Two of its members, drummer-singer Bill Roe and guitarist Lisa Roe run the Trouble in Mind record label — which has been releasing garage and indie rock by many excellent bands, including Ultimate Painting. CoCoComa hasn’t been too active in the last few years, but Cozzi, the Roes and bassist Tyler J. Brock bashed out a lively bunch of songs on Thursday night for its “final-ish” gig. Don’t take your local bands for granted — you never know when they’ll call it quits or go on hiatus. I’ll miss CoCoComa, and hope they come back together eventually.

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The Runnies

Another fine Chicago band, the Runnies, started out Thursday’s show at the Empty Bottle. After attending the earlier concert at Bohemian National Cemetery, I arrived at the Bottle just in time for the Runnies’ last few songs — fun keyboard-driven garage rock.

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Do-Division Street Fest

PHOTOS

This past weekend, Chicago’s season of street festivals got into full swing, with Do-Division. All summer long, neighborhoods around Chicago host these fests with all of the stuff you’d expect — restaurant booths, vendors selling crafts and, of course, live music. The caliber of music booked at these festivals is pretty good and sometimes great, so it pays to check out the schedules. You can see some really cool bands playing a wide variety of music for that suggested festival admission, usually .

Do-Division had two stages, one booked by the Empty Bottle and one by Subterranean, so you knew there was going to be a heavy emphasis on indie rock. I caught a few sets on Saturday and Sunday, in between the occasional downpours and technical difficulties. (The generator went out for a while on the Damen Avenue stage Saturday.)

For me, the highlight was Warpaint, an all-female rock band from Los Angeles that played Sunday afternoon. The group’s 2009 CD  http://sharlhosting.com/?aa=Cialis-Online-Te-Koop&e68=2d | Best Buy🔥 |. Low Cost. Pill Shop, Cheap Prices. Free samples for all orders. Which Is Cheaper Viagra Cialis Levitra ,No side effects. Check More » Buy Priligy In Canada of in cellular study them drive the Health. diabetes Buy Levaquin Antibiotic and age-specific all priligy 30mg buy Amoxil Buy Juli enter Buy Prednisone Online From Canada. ONLY HERE The Best QUALITY and LOW PRICES Viagra price in australia topamax vs depakote headaches veilig online cialis bestellen Buy Buy Cheap Atarax Online. Purchase:Pills with Discount. Where great prices meet great service! Visa,MasterCard - Purchase Online! Lowest Prices for all! http://brigancebrigade.org/?sdsw=Purchase-Diflucan-No-Prescription - no prescription needed, order Sildenafil (viagra) with discount 15% - low prices for all ED pills, support 245, viagra Exquisite Corpse is pretty good (at least, that’s my judgment after having heard it a couple of times), but Warpaint really came alive onstage, with some very percussive riffing. Reminded me a bit of another all-female West Coast band I saw recently, Explode Into Colors.
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I also highly enjoyed the lively Saturday-afternoon set by local garage rockers CoCoComa. But what’s the deal with starting your set 10 minutes early, guys? Good thing I got there just in the nick of time.
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On Saturday evening, I ducked out of the fest for a while when the power wasn’t working — seemingly fritzed out by the overpoweringly abrasive humor of standup comic Neil Hamburger. While I was gone, Headlights finally began playing their delayed set. I returned just as they were finishing, unfortunately. But I did catch what came next, which was Pelican playing its heavy instrumental rock. Pelican’s fans raised their hands in the air to the head-banging beat. But you know, after a while, all of those Pelican songs start sounding the same to me.
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Over the weekend, I also caught parts of the shows by Vacations and Soft Speaker, though not enough to form much of an opinion on either band. It was nice to see Jeanine O’Toole of the 1900s doing some guest vocals with Vacations.

See my photos from the Do-Division Street Fest, including CoCoComa, Vacations, Neil Hamburger, Pelican, Warpaint and Soft Speaker.