Fri August 11, 2017 9:00 pm
Million Tongues Festival 2017 2-Day Pass
Heron Oblivion / Narita of High Rise / Charalambides / Mark Fosson / ONO / Itasca / Fursaxa / Spires That In The Sunset Rise
Since 2004, musician, artist and historian Plastic Crimewave aka Steve Krakow of Galactic Zoo Dossier/Secret History of Chicago Music/etc has curated the celebrated Million Tongues Festival. The fest has included international folk, experimental, psychedelic, and underground musical artists from as far away as Japan and the UK. Million Tongues spanned over several days at Ukrainian Village’s Empty Bottle in the early aughts, then mostly turned into one-night events. For the club's 25th Anniversary, the two day summer festival is reborn, featuring many alumni who don't appear live often these days.
MEG BAIRD played in '04 with chamber-acid-folk ensemble ESPERS, but her new explosive/sublime ensemble HERON OBLIVION (Sub Pop) with Ethan Miller and Noel Von Harmonson of COMETS ON FIRE make their Mil Tongues – and Bottle – debut. SPIRES THAT IN THE SUNSET RISE are no strangers to the fest or the EB stage with their pagan-like sonic odes (the duo now live in Madison and NY). Cosmic chanteuse FURSAXA returns, leaving her off-the-grid Philadelphia forest home to play her first show in Chicago in many years, as does TX transcendent soundscape duo CHARALAMBIDES, who played MT three times!
New to Million Tongues is NARITA of legendary Japanese psychedelic punks HIGH RISE, who changed the entire course of the underground musical landscape in the late 80s with their blown-out-beyond-comprehension biker-speed riff-mania. In this EXTREMELY RARE USA appearance (NARITA has not played over here in over 20 years), the absolutely slaying acid-guitar king will be backed by members of LA's OVER GAIN OPTIMAL DEATH, who freely admit to worshiping the man. If you miss his appearance, you will be crying grimy psychedelic tears for the rest of your miserable life.
Making his Chicago debut after a 40 year-plus career is fingerstyle guitar god MARK FOSSON, who caught the ear of JOHN FAHEY in the 70s. His lost LP wasn’t issued until the inimitable Drag City finally put out his Lost Takoma Sessions in 2006 and we’re lucky enough to have a new LP just two weeks before his MT appearance. Aptly titled Solo Guitar, it’s being released by the lovely folks at Drag City Records on July 28.
Also new to the festival is the widely-lauded, delicate LA songwriter ITASCA (aka Kayla Cohen), who’s stunning 2016 album, Open To Chance (Paradise of Bachelors), was a favorite among record snobs around town. Cohen has toured around the globe and performed with the likes of RYLEY WALKER, DANIEL BACHMAN & more. Last but certainly not least, no freak in Chicago should be unfamiliar with the mighty ONO, whose resurrection after a few obscure 80s albums has been nothing short of miraculous. Garnering press and accolades galore, the new/no wave/anti-music/gospel unit never leaves audiences disappointed.
It’s all going down the second weekend of August – Fri, 8/11 & Sat, 8/12 – right after that behemoth Lollapalooza steamrolls in and out of Chicago. A welcome respite for Chicago’s more adventurous listeners and about 10x more affordable, tickets are just $12 per night, with a limited number of $20 2-day passes available and on-sale Wednesday, May 24th at 10am.