Spiraling | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Spiraling 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Keyboard whiz Tom Brislin is a fresh-faced lad of twentysomething, but don't worry about the rock industry chewing him up: he's already been tossed to the Yes aficionados. A child prodigy in classical piano, he claims his sisters exposed him to prog in the womb, and by 2001 he'd already toured with Meat Loaf for three years. But when his starship-trooping heroes hired him for the YesSymphonic tour, Brislin had to face the elders: "People are really passionate about this band," he said in the April 2002 posting of Notes From the Edge, "and some people just don't even want to hear it if it's not Rick Wakeman." But he took it in stride, and meanwhile his personal project Spiraling accrued a cult of its own. In 1996, then called You Were Spiraling, they released an EP on John Flansburgh's Hello label, and last year they toured behind their 2002 release, Transmitter, as They Might Be Giants' opening act. Transmitter creates the illusion of originality by marrying styles whose fans love to hate each other. There's plenty of clean-cut noodling to geek out on, but the concise power-pop structures are pushed along by 90s punk thrash and dolled up with touches of space rock and electropop. Brislin sings in a precise, bell-like tenor, like a saccharin-free John Denver. But however punk or unpunk your take on the last three decades, you'll have to be awful jaded to deny this miscegenated mutt's charm. OK Go headlines. Thursday, January 29, 9:30 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western; 773-276-3600.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Ann Sterzinger

  • The List: May 13-19, 2010

    The List: May 13-19, 2010

    Critics' Choices and other notable concerts: Gaslamp Killer, Julieta Venegas, Sonoi, Torche, Plants and Animals, Steve Dawson, Georgia Anne Muldrow, and more
    • May 13, 2010
  • The List: April 22-28, 2010

    The List: April 22-28, 2010

    Critics' Choices and other notable shows: Reflection Eternal, Peter Brötzmann & Hamid Drake, Céu, Drop the Lime, the Styrenes, and other notable shows
    • Apr 22, 2010
  • The List: April 1-7, 2010

    The List: April 1-7, 2010

    Critics' Choices and other notable shows: Xiu Xiu, High on Fire, Small Black, Orquestra Contemporanea de Olinda, Little Women, Titus Andronicus, and more
    • Apr 1, 2010
  • More »

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
June 21
Performing Arts
Not One Batu Berger Park Cultural Center
July 04

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories