Before I moved to Chicago the band Loyal Divide loomed large in my mind as particularly impressive representatives of the local indie music scene- now I live in the Windy City fulltime, and Loyal Divide still looks like one of the best things going. The band takes two genres that Chicago handles well- electronic music and straightahead rock- and fuses them into a hybrid that seems so second nature that they beg their own genre.
QRO got an early listen to their new album Bodice Ripper, and we’re digging it "big time". Some of the tracks were simply rolled over from the EP Labrador, which I went gah-gah for in a writeup for Ampeater Review . The rest of the tracks reveal a band on a huge growth spurt. "Lover Can I Tell You" is the prettiest little popsong they’ve ever written; "Vein Harvester" and "Faucet" push the ambient sound they’ve always hinted at to glorious extremes; "Otto" shows off some serious songwriting chops, transitioning from a purring ditty to a dirrrty house track without missing a beat; and "Near Native", below, is a quiet gem, that "haunts as it flaunts". The orchestration on the album is a huge step up from earlier work: more sounds, more instruments, more rhythms, more textures. Watch for Bodice Ripper at the end of January!
Stream "Near Native"