Chicago expat Gregory Uhlmann explores a strain of chamber pop on his new solo album Odd Job | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

Chicago expat Gregory Uhlmann explores a strain of chamber pop on his new solo album Odd Job 

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click to enlarge Gregory Uhlmann

Gregory Uhlmann

Maren Celest

Back in January I previewed a performance by jazz trio Typical Sisters, a group that includes the Chicago-bred, LA-based guitarist Gregory Uhlmann. He returns to his hometown this week to show off a much different side of his musical personality, found on the lovely, tender singer-songwriter album, Odd Job (Dog Legs Music), he released in February. Uhlmann plays just about everything on the recording, but the delicate vocal harmonies of Cari Stevens and Alina Roitstein and the weightless strings of Lauren Baba and winds player Andrew Conrad add a gorgeous, spectral depth to the performances, accenting Uhlmann’s beautiful melodies with somber, baroque arrangements. The introspective folk of Nick Drake is a clear reference point, and while I can also hear a little of both Radiohead and Andrew Bird, Uhlmann veers toward a more lush brand of chamber pop, eschewing excess and eccentricity in favor of a quest for pure beauty.   v

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