Rollo Tomasi, Rough Island, Arbogast | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Rollo Tomasi, Rough Island, Arbogast 

When: Thu., Feb. 23, 9 p.m. 2012
Price: $5
Local posthardcore four-piece Rollo Tomasi set up shop in 1999, the heyday of growing thickets of facial hair, adding extra gruff to the gruffed-up vocals already standard in the genre, and bashing the hell out of a ride cymbal forever. Bands like Hot Water Music and Small Brown Bike reigned supreme during the late 90s and early aughts, playing a brand of anthemic beard rock that reeked of DIY sweat and relentless touring. Rollo Tomasi's 2010 full-length, Coward (Shakefork), continues to rep that sound with Helmet-like aggression and a strong sense of nostalgia—the band comes across like an aging coal miner, lunch pail and all, who yearns for the glory days but can still lower his head, get filthy, and spit nails. Rollo Tomasi's releases may be few and far between—Coward is only their third since 2001—but they certainly haven't spent their downtime getting soft. Tonight's show is the band's second with drummer Jim Staffel (Yakuza), who recently replaced Craig Olson; they'll begin recording new material with him this summer. —Kevin Warwick Rough Island and Arbogast open.

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