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Tomorrow's Music Today

By Scott Smith in Arts & Entertainment on May 4, 2005 5:40PM

2005_05_04_ball.jpgAs the Lollapalooza lineup grows (...And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead, The Ponys, Ben Kweller, Mark Farina, Drive-by Truckers, and the (International) Noise Conspiracy and have all recently been added), a few more of the acts find their way to Chicago this week giving you the chance to see them in their natural environments before they are allowed to roam free in the grassy expanses of Grant Park.

World Leader Pretend plays an early show at Bottom Lounge this Saturday at 5 PM. Naming your band after an R.E.M. song might be setting up some unrealistic expectations. But like Stipe and Co., WLP springs from the South (New Orleans, specifically) and have a sound that has little to do with their pedigree. Orchestral strings and horns fight for equal time with chiming guitars and the emotional schizophrenia of their lyrics. Their major label debut Punches comes out in June but you can hear the early versions of some of its tracks from their recent EP here.

Also, VHS or Beta will be opening for the Electric Six tomorrow at Logan Square Auditorium at 9:30 PM. With their first album of French dance pop and their second (Night on Fire) sitting squarely within the U.S. Nostalgia version of the New Romantic movement, Chicagoist wonders if VOB is still a band trying to find their sound or just adept as staying one step ahead of the zeitgeist.

And since we’re mentioning Electric Six above, it seems like as good an excuse as any to post links to the covers of “Gay Bar” by Peaches and the Viking Kittens.