Tuesday, August 10, 2004

What a weekend

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Fred flew up to Chicago to visit this past weekend, and he couldn't have come up at a better time. The weather was near perfect, and the Million Tongues Festival at the Empty Bottle was happening. I think the city left a very good impression on him, and hopefully within the next year Chicago will claim another citizen.

Going up the John Hancock Center was probably the highlight of Friday. Although the Sears Tower is the (3rd?) tallest building in the world, everyone had told me that the view from the Handcock is better. Instead of paying $9.50 to go up to the Observatory on the 94th floor, we went up to the Signature Room on the 96th floor for free, where we could buy alcohol from the bar while enjoying the view. It would've been a great place to take a date, but Fred was a good alternative.
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Later, we met up with Kat at her place of work and then went to this bar to have a couple of drinks before she headed off to O'Hare for a wedding in Asheville. We had a good time, although I wish she would've been able to hang out more this weekend.
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Saturday, Fred, Luke, and I spent the day at the new Millennium Park, and we were all thoroughly impressed. Later that night, a bunch of us (including my roommate Jeff and my new ladyfriend) headed off to the South Side to hit the original and best Soul Vegetarian, where even the most stringent meat-atarians are left craving for more.

Saturday's Million Tongues Festival featured Michael Yonkers, Charalambides, Matt Valentine & Erika Elder, and PG Six. We caught the last ten minutes of PG Six...it was good but not amazing. Matt Valentine and Erika Elder came out and weirded many out with their performance art...but within ten minuntes of their set they started to settle down and played some awesome avant-psych-folk music which reminded me a bit of Avarus and other Finnish psych-folk music. Charalambides came out next and completely wowed me. (I'd never seen them before, although I saw Christina Carter give a very nice, albeit short set a couple of weeks ago.) Even Maria was impressed, and she bought one of their CDs. Michael Yonkers was a huge disappointment. I really liked his album that Sub Pop released last year, but his performance was monotonous and boring. We all left early.

To make a long story short, Fred missed his flight on Sunday, and Delta can lick everyone's ass. Fuck Delta. But it did give us an opportunity to see more of the city and also attend the last night of the Million Tongues Festival. Besides the Pacific Coast Highway in California (which I've never been on), I don't know if there's a better street to drive through anywhere than Chicago's Lake Shore Drive. We drove and parked in the area where Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, and Soldier Field are located. If you want the best view of the skyline, go there. Here's a pic:
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Due to a late dinner, we got to the the Empty Bottle late, thus missing Fursaxa and only catching the last couple of songs from Paul Flaherty and Chris Corsano. We did catch Six Organs of Admittance, who again wowed me. Simon Finn, in his first US performance, completely charmed everyone in the audience.

I woke up at 4:45 AM the next morning to take Fred to Midway. It was a great weekend, and I'm hoping that Chicago will claim another Chapel Hill resident in the near future.

I typically try to avoid "diary-type" entries, but one of the reasons for this entry is to send a message to all my friends/bitches/fans out there, which is COME VISIT, YOU MOTHERFUCKERS!

Fred has tons of pics up. Check it out.


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