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The Kids' Dads Are Alright

By Scott Smith in Arts & Entertainment on Apr 19, 2006 4:08PM

While we’re sure that Union Park will see its fair share of indie kids in ironic tees this summer, it’s starting to look like there’ll be plenty of folks in relaxed fit jeans as well.

2006_04_clusterfest.jpgPitchfork Music Fest has added Os Mutantes to their July 29-30 lineup. When one of Chicagoist’s indie rock friends told us this, we just sort of stared blankly at them, which only prompted her to yell “Os Mutantes! Os Mutantes!” at us in an increasingly louder voice.

Why the enthusiasm? Os Mutantes is a Brazilian tropicalia band, which hasn’t performed together since 1973. In their heyday, they were censored and monitored by the Brazilian government for stirring up the country’s youth. Their influence has been seen in songs by Beck, David Byrne’s big-ass suit, and Of Montreal’s light, spacey compositions. After a show in London at the end of May, they’ll arrive stateside for shows in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago at the end of July. Original singer Rita Lee will unfortunately not be performing.

On the Intonation side of oldster adds, Roky Erickson will perform during the June 24-25 fest. This gent is why we started yelling at our friends in excited voices. Erickson’s work as guitarist, singer and songwriter with the seminal psychedelic band 13th Floor Elevators, cast him as a musical innovator, much like the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson. Like Wilson, drugs and mental illness hobbled Erickson’s brilliance. Recently, with help from his younger brother, Erickson’s health improved and led to his return to the stage.

We recently caught one of Erickson’s performances in his hometown of Austin. While not a flashy performance, he commanded the stage with a voice that retained the power of those early records and riffs that sliced through the muggy Texas heat.

In recent days, Intonation also added fellow gray-hair Robert Pollard, some local hip-hop flavor courtesy of Rhymefest, as well as a reunited Blue Cheer while Pitchfork has begun to fill out its DJ stage with Diplo and Matmos.

Seriously, Clusterfest 2006 is going to rule.