Akron/Family, Icy Demons, Mittens on Strings | Bottom Lounge | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Akron/Family, Icy Demons, Mittens on Strings 

When: Fri., July 24, 8 p.m. 2009
Price: $18, $15 in advance
Pennsylvania’s Akron/Family have been a trio since the departure of Ryan Vanderhoof a couple years ago, but they’re not necessarily diminished in any other way. On the recent Set ’Em Wild, Set ’Em Free (Dead Oceans) they’re still mixing folk rock, psychedelia, and acoustic pop—devoting special attention to elaborate vocal harmonies—and this time around there’s even the occasional bit of off-kilter funk or vaguely African groove. There don’t seem to be too many styles the group isn’t game to tackle, and to their credit they never come off as dilettantes; throughout their career they’ve remade everything they touched in their own image, becoming a kind of shambling but elegant patchwork beast. The new album opens with “Everyone Is Guilty,” whose jaunty, percolating rhythms are probably the hardest-driving thing Akron/Family have ever put to tape, but they soon return to turf that’s more comfortable and familiar, at least to them. Icy Demons and Mittens on Strings open. —Peter Margasak

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