Continued from Part 1.
Since dinner the night before consisted of a small bowl of mixed nuts (thanks, Jim!) at 2am, I kicked off Blackout day 2 with a starchy double breakfast at Longman & Eagle and a vegan chocolate cupcake from New Wave Coffee. (This, and all the meals I had over Memorial Day weekend, is the subject of another post.) Amazingly, my usual food coma never set in and I was fully awake for all the festivities. From what I remember:
1. The Nones (pronounced “nuns”) took the stage at around 4pm—saxy, shambolic fun.
2. Outer Minds, who made one of my Top 7 singles of 2010, belted out haunting harmonies reminiscent of the Mamas and the Papas. C and I shot some footage that may or may not appear in their upcoming video.
3. Although they didn’t play right after each other, Radar Eyes, People’s Temple, and Idle Times generated a blur of distortion and head-banging.
4. Heavy Times were way punker than their HoZac single led me to believe they are. It was not an unpleasant surprise, though I was baffled that they’d play “Ice Age” but not “No Plans,” the A side of the same single.
5. Reading Rainbow, now a three piece, delivered a sweet, engaging set. I had a hard time shooting them so you’ll have to deal with a portrait of them instead of a live shot.
6. Puffy Areolas assembled themselves on the floor and, assisted by Christmas Woods (of ET Habit and Mickey), whipped up a sonic maelstrom that sucked in everyone within earshot. Christmas, in his final performance of the weekend, literally fired up his saxophone at one point, while my friend Alejandro (the one who took the bus to Chicago from San Francisco), Ross of the Brides, and at least a dozen other audience members groped and fondled the singer’s guitar.
7. Back on stage, Timmy’s Organism delivered cosmic convulsions of the highest order yet managed to keep it clean (i.e., no squid parts or neon paint).
8. Close to midnight, hunger finally started worming its way into my every thought. Somehow I made it through a few Tutu & the Pirates‘ songs (these self-proclaimed toilet punkers were so good C had to drag me away) before hightailing it to the Rocking Horse a few doors down for burgers, fries, and a surly waitress. We inhaled our food but missed all but two songs of Nobunny‘s set. Chicago apparently loves Nobunny—so much so that a good portion of the crowd, intoxicated by the warm and fuzzies, left in a daze and forgot to come back for the Nervous Eaters, who hit the stage at around 2am. Partly expecting them to play the ’80s versions of their classics, I was thrilled that they stuck to the no-nonsense punk sound that they launched their career with. Songs like “You Smell Like Fish,” “I’m a Degenerate,” “Loretta,” and “Just Head” incited a near-riot on the floor. I was excited to see “Get Stuffed” on the playlist…and thoroughly disappointed that they skipped it when their set got cut short. Gah!
Here are some photos to remember Blackout 2011 by. For a more expansive look, click here. I also put up separate galleries for Puffy Areolas, Timmy’s Organism, and Tutu & the Pirates because, well, I just couldn’t bear to kill these babies anymore.
Welcome back, Blackout! Hope to see you again next year!