Monday, June 26, 2006

This past weekend in Chicago was quite excellent. After making superb time (4 hours flat!) and mistaking AM pulse-static for experimental music (yeah... art fags...), it was a pleasure, as always, to see Adam and Alex of Kill Friday night, and quite a treat to see The Hacker. As Bethany noted, we have never heard a dj who's track selection was so in line with our own tastes. There was a Neon Judgement/Terrence Fixmer/Nitzer Ebb segment that had us busting some utterly ridiculous industrial stomp/ballroom S&M moves. Alex was kind enough to introduce us to Monsieur Amato, who was very enjoyable to talk with, until one of the humorless, 'roided-out bouncers in a black mock turtleneck (I guess these guys are everywhere at downtown Chicago bars) rudely butted in and decided it was time for everyone to go. They even tried to kick out Kill's manager Marlon several times. Other than the security goons, a great night. (Huge thanks to Marlon for taking care of us!)

Good and hung over Saturday, we made our way up to Pick Me Up Cafe on North Clark for strong coffee and killer Eggs Benedict. Usually the term "funky" is a big turn-off for me, but Pick Me Up is funky in the good way (read: "weird.") While I had a meager two shot Red Eye, Bethany opted for The Zombie, which consists of two cups of organic coffee + four shots of espresso + steamed milk and whipped cream in one gargantuan mug. Properly callorized and caffeinated, it was off to Wicker Park. After supplementing our antioxidants with a blueberry smoothie from Earwax, my favorite haunt in all of Chicago, Ms. Toybreaker scored a used a;GRUMH LP at Reckless Records, and an excellent book on circuit-bending from Quimby's. Very pleased with our purchases, it was time top start drinking again, so we settled into an outdoor cafe on Damen. It turned out that A Flock of Seagulls(!) was about to perform at a street fair directly across from us. I swear Chicago is a never-ending John Hughes film...

Next stop was the legendary Metro to see our friend Scott Mason's band Office. They were opening for The Fiery Furnaces (which we, to be honest, could not get into at all.) Office was great as always though, and it was fabulous to catch up with Mr. Mason. We were seriously floored hearing the number of records Office was selling on iTunes... without a record contract mind you. It made us wonder why anyone with a unique, quality product would even need to be signed in the age of digital, but I guess, with the exception of finding that rare label you feel at home with, most people are flat-out too lazy or just not interested in taking on the full time job of self-promotion required to get your work out there.

From there we zagged back to Wicker Park to visit our friend Josh Eustis, who was DJ'ing at Del Toro, a very swanky and nicely designed Spanish-themed tapas bar/lounge on Damen. After catching up with Josh (and a few more cocktails to the likes of Kraftwerk and Daft Punk) we ended the night by doing what all good Goths in Chicago do... we met up with friends at NEO. The Chicago Goth scene isn't nearly as pretty as New York, but it's certainly not City Club (thank god!) The Ladytron and Acid Horse selections were enough to keep us from hanging the DJ during the trancier moments, but nonetheless, we took in some good people watching and didn't press our stay. (Thank you very much to JV for the crash pad and hanging out Saturday night!)

Yummy brunch and a lazy Sunday drive home... ahh. Now back to work!

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