Dave Alvin & the Guilty Men | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Dave Alvin & the Guilty Men 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Romeo's Escape, the title of Dave Alvin's 1987 solo debut, neatly encapsulated the persona he's used ever since he left the Blasters in 1986: the wounded romantic searching for freedom and sanctuary in a soul-killing world. That's a timeworn rock 'n' roll pose, of course, and on Ashgrove (Yep Roc), released last year, Alvin sometimes fuses it to doomy minor-key power chords and slogging blues motifs reminiscent of Morrison Hotel-era Doors. But when he's true to the spirit of the southern blues, country, and rockabilly that first inspired him, he tempers the gloom with uplifting arrangements: some of his most dire vignettes are backed by lilting acoustic fingerpicking or propelled by trucker-boogie shuffles. Alvin's weathered but determined singing lightens somber fare like "Rio Grande," a travelogue through a sere, bone-strewn south Texas landscape; on "Nine Volt Heart" he imagines his radio as a portal into wonder and mystery, crooning about its "plastic silver nine volt heart" with a sensuality that borders on lust. The album was recorded with a passel of roots-music vets, including Greg Leisz, but for this show he brings his longtime touring band, the Guilty Men. The Iguanas open. Fri 2/11, 9:30 PM, FitzGerald's, 6615 Roosevelt, Berwyn, 708-788-2118 or 312-559-1212, $20. See also Saturday.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Issa Sharp.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
Oslo Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place
September 10
Performing Arts
The Great Leap Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Upstairs Theatre
September 05

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories