- Wooden Rings 9:00pm
- Crashdive 10:00PM
- Spocket 11:00pm
Logan Square 3425 W. Fullerton Ave.60647
Chicago, IL, US(773) 384-3243
Beat Kitchen2100 West Belmont Ave 60618 Chicago, IL www.beatkitchen.com
By Britt Julious Chicago Tribune
The eerie, methodical construction of Wooden Rings’ music sounds characteristically Chicago. This lush, multilayered brand of chamber pop might not be the most popular sound in town, but its roots can be found in acts who’ve grabbed national and international acclaim.
The first that comes to mind is the quiet and composed Andrew Bird but comparisons tend to reduce the vision of the artist. And in Wooden Rings, the brainchild of Ramah Jihan Malebranche, the vision is precise and haunting in its beauty and strength.
Born in Haiti but raised on and off here and his homeland, Malebranche’s music sounds pulled from a variety of different sources and ideas, all flowing together to create off-kilter pop that bends and weaves rather than pushing straight from verse to chorus. Malebranche’s clear vision can be heard throughout his songs.
On the 2013 “Twisted & Tangled” EP, the lonesome, contemplative lyrics of Malebranche couple lovingly with eerie, piercing wind instruments and flourishes of steady guitar. The songs are as classic as any other — about the trajectory of an old relationship — but the construction and unique instrumentation elevates the music to something much more interesting, even profound in its beauty. More than anything, Malebranche writes with heart — a heavy one — making his music the kind that sticks with you long after you hear it. That he hasn’t found more acclaim feels like a fluke, yet something that can be rectified with just the right push.
Malebranche’s new project is “Heliocentric,” a reflection of his current personal and professional state of mind. “I just realized I can’t keep singing about this music and my struggles getting over this relationship,” he said. For one, he is married to someone new.
Heliocentric means sun-centered, so this new material touches on this dark and desolate season and how Malebranche’s need for the sun trickles down to his personal friendships and relationships.
“I was originally born on an island in the Caribbean, and so every winter I go through this cycle of really missing that and needing to see color and needing physical contact and reassurance. Just this whole cycle of emotions,” Malebranche said about his new material. “There is a seasonal tilt to the way I feel and how rigid I am. Our winters in Chicago have become very severe and almost knee-jerk winters. They’re not as smooth as they used to be. I have a feeling I’m not alone in this.”
From a professional standpoint, Malebranche defines the new material as a better reflection of the band’s lineup: Peter Burger V, Jon Ozaksut and Nathan Staley, with occasional assistance from Joshua Torrey, Andrew Zelm and Keith Bjorklund.
The songwriting process is more collaborative, pulling not just from the psyche of Malebranche but from band members as well. But more than that, the work reflects a new outlook for Malebranche. No longer is he creating the sort of affectingly somber chamber pop that reflects on his past love. He’s moved on and so the music must as well. What that means remains to be heard as the project is still evolving. Hopefully it won’t strip Wooden Rings of what makes its sound so compelling: a strong vision and endless amounts of heart.
Britt Julious is a freelancer. email@example.com Twitter @chitribent
When: 9 p.m. Tuesday Where: Hideout, 1354 W. Wabansia Ave.
Tickets: $8 (21+); 773-227-4433 or www.hideoutchicago.com Copyright © 2015, Chicago Tribune
Wooden Rings will be performing with the very nimble jug/folk band, Bones Jugs N Harmony at Feed Arts & Cultural Center in Kankakee, IL on Friday, August 21st at 8:00pm.
Bones Jugs N Harmony is like Frank Zappa un in some Spike Jones, spiced with Looney Tunes playing Nintendo. It’s a ragtime-jugband-calypso-shake-up from Urbana, IL. Wackadoodles.Openning we have the Kinder Sister. You can hear their vocal amazingness at thekindredsisters.com
Feed Arts & Cultural Center, a not-for-profit 501 (c)3 organization, provides an environment for visual and performing artists of all levels and ages to pursue their work and to broaden their knowledge of the role of art in contemporary society. The mission of Feed is to encourage and nurture emerging and established artists and to increase the appreciation and understanding of the arts within the Kankakeeland communities through classes, workshops, outreach, exhibitions, lectures, film screenings and other cultural events. It is our ultimate hope that Feed can provide a space where people from various backgrounds and worldviews can come together to find common ground and a vision of friendship, solidarity, and empowerment in the community.
We are very excited to play a show with the very talented Honey Watts, a very soulful outfit from Philly. Think Americana and ambient folk dripping with honey.
The other voice for the evening, Wild Orphan, is a poet wielding rich imagery in beautiful lyrical puzzles. Taste one that resonates with our long-upcoming EPs, Heliocentric I & II.
what the light’s
Yes, the sun
See you on Sunday 12 July 2015 from 7:00pm-10:00pm It’s $8:00 and you want to RSVP by phone at 773.465.9801
Uncommon Ground on Devon 1401 W. Devon Ave. 60660 Chicago, IL, US 773-465-9801 http://www.uncommonground.com