Yakuza, Alaya Conscious, Swan King | Beat Kitchen | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Yakuza, Alaya Conscious, Swan King 

When: Sat., June 5, 10 p.m. 2010
Price: $10
It's been three years since Yakuza released Transmutations, and it was such a big step forward for this Chicago progressive-metal quartet that anticipation has been running high for the new Of Seismic Consequence (Profound Lore), recorded here in town with Sanford Parker. The band has fanned the flames with an online teaser video and a listening party last month at the Liar's Club, though, so it's not exactly a tightly guarded secret that this album, due June 22, is incredibly good. Front man Bruce Lamont, who plays saxophone and occasionally guitar, is also a member of avant-doom-drone outfit Bloodiest and the crowd-pleasing Led Zeppelin 2 (in which he channels Robert Plant with uncanny accuracy), and he always keeps a toe in the demimondes of noise and improv. In Yakuza, these disparate strains of his musical personality—and the personalities of his bandmates, including new bassist Ivan Exael Cruz—find their purest, fullest expression. Of Seismic Consequence careens recklessly but eloquently between brutality and beauty, marrying psychedelic space-rock to enough jet-engine power to send the whole package hurtling straight into a supernova—and out the other side unscathed. The band's set at this release party will include the entire album, top to bottom, and they'll have help from cellist Alison Chesley (aka Helen Money) and Lamont's singing sister, Kelly, who also plays Elvis's girlfriend Dyanne in the musical Million Dollar Quartet. —Monica Kendrick


4.6 out of 5

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