As I wrote last week in Time Out Chicago, one of the Chicago record label Trouble in Mind’s latest finds is a psychedelic singer-songwriter from the Netherlands named Jacco Gardner. His debut album, Cabinet of Curiosities, is a delightful throwback to Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd and the chamber pop of the Left Banke; a more contemporary reference point is the music of newer psychedelic groups such as Caribou.
Gardner and his band played last night (March 19) at the Empty Bottle, visiting Chicago for the first time (and remarking on how cold our city is). The studio versions of Gardner’s songs are tuneful, pretty and generally on the mellow side, occasionally veering into strange and spooky sounds. The live versions Gardner played with his touring band didn’t radically change those arrangements, but the Zombies-esque drumming, acoustic guitar chords and melodic bass lines had a bit more zip — making the songs all the better. Gardner’s definitely a talent to watch.
I arrived at the Empty Bottle just in time to hear the last few minutes of the opening set by MMOSS, another Trouble in Mind band — who were jamming out on a different, spacier variety of psychedelic music.
Below: Pictures of Jacco Gardner and his band.