Clinic, No Joy | Lincoln Hall | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Wed., April 24, 9 p.m. 2013
Price: $15
Until last year’s Free Reign (Domino) it had been a few albums since I’d heard anything new from Liverpool band Clinic, and during that time I’m afraid I assumed that because they kept insisting on wearing surgical masks they probably weren’t progressing creatively. Free Reign not only disabused me of that misconception, it also prompted me to check out the records I’d missed, including 2010’s terrific Bubblegum, where Clinic tweaked their tightly coiled hybrid of garage and Krautock by playing with relatively poppy elements—sweeter melodies, gentler rhythms, lusher arrangements. That stuff’s almost entirely gone on Free Reign, but returning to the stark aggression of earlier records suits the band well—austere settings for the spooky voice of Ade Blackburn’s spooky voice all but cries out for an austere setting, whether it’s the Troggs-primitive “See Saw” or the misty monotone ballad “For the Season” (which includes one of several nails-on-a-chalkboard clarinet solos). Clinic’s sound is just as identifiable as their costumes, but the new album makes it feel fresher than ever. —Peter Margasak No Joy opens.


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