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Who Is Tosca?

By Scott Smith in Arts & Entertainment on Dec 1, 2005 9:03PM

You’d think that with five full-length albums to Tosca’s credit and with both of its members having achieved a measure of fame as artists in their own right, we’d have heard of them before their most recent album, J.A.C. But to be fair, the band has spent most of their time in Europe, specifically their home base of Vienna, and has never before toured the U.S.

Perhaps seeking to raise their profile here in the States, Tosca 2005_12_01_tosca.jpgkicks off a U.S. tour with a pull-out-all-the-stops show at the Vic on Saturday December 3rd.

Tosca was formed by schoolmates Richard Dorfmeister and Rupert Huber. The nerdily-named duo released their first track “Chocolate Elvis” in 1994. Since then they’ve released an album every couple of years combining elements of the blues, funk and dub.

The sound on J.A.C. doesn’t stray far from that formula with “Atomic Dog”-like funk (“John Lee Huber”), 70s disco (“Damentag”), bluesy jams (“The Big Sleep”) and a hint of the kind of downbeat flow found on Zero 7 albums.

How will all of this sound live? Chicagoist isn’t sure, but the grab bag of musical styles should keep things interesting. Dorfmeister (giggle) will open the show with some of the DJ skills he’s honed as part of the remix duo, Kruder+Dorfmeister before joining Huber onstage along with some guest vocalists. And since Tosca counts their visual effects artist as a full-fledged member of the band, make sure you don’t leave the cheeba at home. Oldsters: don’t forget to take a nap that afternoon; the show starts late and the band is promising to keep things going until 2 AM.

Tosca @ The Vic this Saturday, $26 in advance, $28 at the door, 10 PM