One of the things about running a music blog, even a small blog like mine, is that at some point you start getting unsolicited albums. Generally I take a look at the band bio, maybe play a track or two to decide if they're worth the investment of time. The hit-to-miss ratio isn't great, but I've not yet been able to totally ignore someone who took the time to reach out to me. So this spring when I got an email from some dude named Yoni Gordon sporting just a scrappy website and an intriguing email, I wasn't too sanguine on the chances that I'd end up liking the music. Still, I thought it deserved a chance so I grabbed the album, cued up the first track, pressed play and sighed. Fuck. It was good.
Used to be that Labor Day celebrated not only the end of summer and the hopes of Chicago's baseball fans but the end of festival season. 2012, however looks to be different. Not only has the outdoor music season firmly implanted itself into at least mid-September with North Coast, the Hideout Block Party/AV Club Fest and an outdoor incarnation of Riot Fest, among others, but this year, local musician/artist/gadabout, Tom Schraeder is putting on a month-long salute to local musicians, comedians and artists at Lilly's, called Chicago, I Love You. With all music swirling around the city, it was fitting with that the newly-thirtysomething Cabaret Metro decided to kick off the holiday weekend with a trio of local acts on Friday night, headlined by songwriter and chanteuse Jennifer Hall.