ANCHR Magazine

Holding you down with the best new music

Live Recap: Jade Bird Closes Out Her First US Headline Run with Field Report at Lincoln Hall

Jade Bird’s first US headlining run came to a close on Sunday at Lincoln Hall, with support coming from Field Report’s Christopher Porterfield. Porterfield took the stage this tour sans his usual bandmates, delivering rare stripped down, acoustic versions of songs that Field Report fans have become familiar with as their fully produced studio versions. “Jade brought me along for the banter and awkward laughter,” Porterfield joked between songs, but as he captivated the room with just his voice and his gentle guitar strumming, it was clear that he also had the impeccable songwriting skills and the musicianship to back up his witty showmanship. Throughout his hour long set that was filled with songs from Field Report’s latest album and even one he’d just written on the road, the audience showed their appreciation with their attentiveness and loud applause, and Porterfield made sure to thank them. “It’s really nice to be doing this with one another instead of at one another,” he said. While most of Porterfield’s talking points between songs remained lighthearted—like his story about hearing his song in Starbucks during one of his drives on this tour and the story of his participation in a John Prine tribute at Eaux Claires Festival— he made sure to use his platform for the better and encouraged everyone to vote and to be kind to each other before he left the stage. “Let’s encourage each other and be kind to each other.”

The positive vibes and friendly tone that Porterfield had set up during his performance lingered through the remainder of the night. Jade Bird first cut her teeth playing solo sets or playing support slots in The States, but on Sunday night, a packed house anxiously awaited her first go as the main act. Earlier in the day, Bird had played a solo in-store performance at American Eagle in the suburb of Oak Brook, and she began the show that evening on her own again for “What Am I Here For,” before inviting her band onstage. The delicate opening song had the immediately crowd hooked, but Bird really kept everyone engaged by easing them all in and gradually picking up the pace; throughout the night the audience remained on their toes as Bird switched between more mellow, sombre songs to bellowing, upbeat tunes. Right around the half way mark of the set, Bird’s bandmates left the stage again for her to perform a couple of songs on her own at the piano, including a cover of Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God)” and the very sombre “If I Die.” Bird juxtaposed that mood by immediately following up the latter with her latest single “Uh Huh,” a cheeky anthemic song that really showcases the power behind Bird’s vocals. The rest of the set included a couple of new, unreleased songs and covers by The Bangles and Johnny Cash, highlighting the wide array of influences she pulls from. At this early stage in her career (Bird hasn’t even released her debut album yet), Bird demonstrates remarkable writing talent and incredible vocal control, allowing her to give her songs a full spectrum of dynamics; From her stunning soft vocals to her wailing growls, Jade Bird is a force to be reckoned with.

If you missed out on this last tour, stay tuned for new music from Jade Bird coming soon, and check out our photo gallery from the Chicago show.

Jade Bird Facebook + Instagram

Live Recap: Hippo Campus and The Districts at The Riviera 10.06.18

In celebration of their sophomore album Bambi, Hippo Campus returned to Chicago to play their biggest headline show here yet, bringing along Philadelphia’s The Districts to warm up The Riviera Theatre. The Districts had been in town only a few weeks prior to perform at Riot Fest, and although the crowd at the theater varied from those that watched their Riot Fest set, the audience on Saturday night eagerly soaked up the 45 minute set.

While the stage changed over for main event, devoted fans of Hippo Campus buzzed with excitement, everyone in the packed theater ready to hear some of band’s new material live for the first time. Bambi had just been released a week before, on September 28th, and the band didn’t make fans wait long to hear the new material; In fact, they hit the stage by opening with the new album’s title track. The new music streak continued with Honestly and “Doubt” before the set slipped back into older staples like Suicide Saturdayand “Simple Season.” The setlist for the rest of the night remained a thoughtful mix of the band’s discography, featuring a couple of albums and EPs.

Saturday marked only the second night of the tour so far, so if you missed out, check out our photo recap below and see where else you can catch Hippo Campus next here.

Hippo Campus Facebook // Twitter // Instagram

The Districts Facebook // Twitter // Instagram

Listen to Bambi in full below:

PHOTOS: The Shacks and Django Django at Metro 10.05.18

On Friday night, Django Django made their long awaited return to Chicago, playing at The Metro alongside The Shacks. Check out photos from the show below.

Listen to Django Django’s latest album in full below and check out the rest of their upcoming tour dates here.

Live Recap: Dream Wife With Russo and Girl K at Schubas 10.01.18

On Monday night, Schubas kicked off October by welcoming the London-based trio Dream Wife. The group made their debut as headliners in this city by delivering a great show, sending a powerful message, and promoting femme fronted artists. For the first set of the night, Dream Wife put the spotlight on Chicago’s own Girl K; Prior to the tour, Dream Wife opened submissions for local non-binary and female fronted groups to open for them, and Kathy Patino’s indie pop project had been hand-selected for this show. As Patino and her bandmates played through songs released in the last year, like “Cinnamon” and “Division Club,” the audience continued to trickle into the room. In Chicago, Girl K has quickly become one of the buzziest local bands, thanks to the amiable mix of indie pop and rock that easily complements any lineup, and it didn’t take long for the music to win over those in the room unfamiliar with Girl K. Patino even performed a couple of brand new songs back to back during her set, both of which received an enthusiastic response from the audience.

Next up, the crowd warmly welcomed Russo, the brainchild of singer-songwriter Cailin Russo. The new outfit from Los Angeles had the chemistry of groups who have been playing for years, even though Russo’s debut EP House with a Pool just came out in July of this year. Despite the mention of her being sick, Russo and her bandmates brought a boisterous energy to the Schubas stage on Monday night, combining the spirit of a punk band with the cheekiness of pop music and they commanded the room’s undivided attention. Russo exerted all of her energy into the show, still delivering topnotch vocals as she danced and jumped around stage, while guitarist Tyler McCarthy kicked and trashed as he strummed, and drummer Hayley Brownell could be seen throwing every ounce of her gusto into her drumkit. As Russo played through the songs on the EP and a few newer tracks, the crowd loudly showed their appreciation for the showmanship being displayed.

Last but not least, Dream Wife closed out the night with a bang, returning to the city for the first time since their debut Lollapalooza performance in August, which also included an after show at Thalia Hall. The room at Schubas filled up with music fans eager to see Dream Wife hit the stage here as the main act, and no one left the show disappointed. The set list contained the majority of Dream Wife’s debut, self-titled album that they had released in January of this year. One full listen to the album, and fans knew that Dream Wife wasn’t just another rock band; they’re here to have their voices heard and they’re not afraid to deliver their message. One of the most important songs on the album (although they’re all empowering in their own way) is “Somebody,” and lead singer Rakel Mjöll set up the band’s performance of the song by saying, “This next song is a big fuck you to gender norms. Gender is a construct.” She then called forward all those who “identify as bad bitches” and dedicated the song to them. At this point in the set, the energy that had been bouncing between the audience members and the band members the entire night only amplified, and it continued to grow as the set closed out with the gritty anthem “F.U.U.” and flirty, feel-good tune “Let’s Make Out.”

If Monday night’s show is any indication, all three of the acts on this bill are set up for even more success in 2019, and both Russo and Dream Wife will be welcomed back to Chicago with open arms whenever they can return. Check out photos of the show below, and see where else you can catch Dream Wife on tour here.

Can’t get enough Dream Wife? Check out our interview with them here.

Audiotree Music Festival 2018 Recap

The Chicago-based audiovisual tastemaker company Audiotree set up camp in Kalamazoo, Michigan during the weekend of September 22nd and 23rd for their annual music festival. This year, the fest’s lineup showcased a diverse lineup of talent from across the spectrum. Artists ranged from up and coming bands from the Chicago or Kalamazoo areas to the likes of Real Estate, Local Natives, and Father John Misty. With just two stages that never had overlapping set times, the festival allowed the attendees to really focus on this music and appreciate the art without any overcrowding or over-scheduling.

The event also remained a safe space the entire time, with the organization Our Music, My Body tabling the festival so that concert-goers had someone to talk to if they felt violated, or if they just wanted to get further educated on consent and keeping everyone comfortable in public spaces. Throughout the weekend, bands like Diet Cig and Stuyedeyed began their sets announcing that any behavior that made others feel unsafe wouldn’t be tolerated.

If you missed out on the weekend, relive the experience with our photo recap below.

Day 1 featuring Stuyedeyed, V.V. Lightbody, Melkbelly, NE-HI, The Regrettes, Diet Cig, Michigander, Basement, Khruangbin, and Local Natives

Day 2 Featuring Common Holly, Major Murphy, Lume, Palm, REZN, Post Animal, Pool Holograph, Slow Mass, Chicano Batman, Real Estate, and Father John Misty

Artist Portraits

PHOTOS: Hudson Taylor and Hozier at The Riv 09.21.18

Last Friday night, Hudson Taylor returned to Chicago to play their biggest show here yet, opening up a completely sold out Riviera Theatre for Hozier. The band has played massive shows back home in Ireland, and the packed house in Chicago welcomed brothers Harry and Alfie Hudson-Taylor and their band with open arms. Once Hudson Taylor had warmed up the eager audience, Hozier made his long awaited return, performing old favorites, songs from his new EP Nina Cried Power, as well as brand new, unreleased track “Movement.”

If you missed out on the eventful evening, check out photos of the show below, and see where else you can catch the tour here.

Hudson Taylor Facebook + Instagram

PHOTOS: Cut Worms at Schubas 09.20.18

After playing Tomorrow Never Knows Fest earlier this year, Cut Worms returned to Schubas as the headliner. If you missed out on the show, check out our gallery of Glyders and Cut Worms below!

Can’t get enough Cut Worms? Check out our interview with Max Clarke here.

PHOTOS: The Nude Party at Empty Bottle 09.19.18

Last week, The Nude Party returned to The Empty Bottle in Chicago, playing the venue for the first time since the release of their self-titled debut album. If you missed out on the show, check out photos from their set below.

Check out the rest of The Nude Party’s upcoming tour dates here, and listen to their album in full below.

Live Recap: Stella Donnelly and Natalie Prass at Lincoln Hall 9.19.18

This week Australian singer-songwriter Stella Donnelly kicked off her North American tour supporting Natalie Prass, performing at Lincoln Hall on Wednesday, September 19th.

It’s rare for a solo performer to completely captivate an entire room the size of Lincoln Hall, but Donnelly not only took the challenge; she surpassed all expectations and had the crowd engrossed from the start. She took the stage on her own, armed only with her guitar, her voice, and razor sharp wit, and she provided a 40 minute set that showcased her clever and thoughtful songwriting, her raw vocal power, and her authentic stage presence. Lyrically, she toes the line between sincere and cheeky, managing to tell serious stories in a personable way.

On Donnelly’s six-song debut EP Thrush Metal, listeners get the chance to observe her writing talent, but when performed live, her talent shines through even more. Its the type of performance that still demands the audience’s attention without any extra fluff or unnecessary bells and whistles. For most of the songs performed on Wednesday night, the mood of the room remained lighthearted; like when Donnelly introduced a song about her boss paying her late (“he paid me a week later. I was on the wrong pay roll,” she said at the end of the song) or when she described another song as being about a relationship on its last leg, in which both people are working to salvage it (“In Australia we call it polishing a turd”). However, one part of her set tackled the very serious issue of sexual assault, when Donnelly introduced her song “Boys Will Be Boys.” She was mindful enough to give a content warning before introducing and playing the song, which very candidly recounts the story of an assault that happened to a friend of hers. While the issue is still very relevant, especially in the music scene at the moment, Donnelly said she wrote the song three years ago before there was this much open conversation happening about the matter. With most of her songs, but particularly “Boys Will Be Boys,” Donnelly demonstrates a fearless approach to songwriting. If there’s a story to tell, Donnelly will deliver, and based on the audience response at her live show, people are here to hear her.

Photos of Stella Donnelly and Natalie Prass on September 19th in Chicago

Check out all of Stella Donnelly’s upcoming tour dates here and listen to Thrush Metal in full below.

PHOTOS: Vacation Manor 09.17.18

On Monday, September 17th, Vacation Manor played songs from their upcoming album, Everything I Can't Say Out Loud, as well as old favorites from their Girl, Say EP at Schubas! Check out the full gallery of the show below.

Keep up with Vacation Manor on Facebook + Instagram