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Tomorrow Never Knows Kicks Off Today

By Veronica Murtagh in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 13, 2010 9:30PM

2010_01_TNKLogo.jpg The opening of Lincoln Hall means that this year the annual winter indie-rock focused music festival, Tomorrow Never Knows, now has twice as many stages on which to provide Chicago music fans with five nights of emerging talent on local, national and international levels. Both Schubas and Lincoln Hall host two shows an evening, beginning tonight with a couple additional weekend days shows tossed in for good measure. We're planning to attend quite a few of the shows listed below and you can look forward to us sharing some reviews of our favorite moments across next week. Five-day passes are sold out, but some of the shows are still available to purchase as individual tickets in advance or at the door. Check each venue's website for up-to-date details on that front.

Wednesday, January 13

Schubas, 9:00 p.m., 18+, $5
The first day of the festival kicks off leisurely with laughter over a showcase of comedians titled Laugh It Up, Kid. Headliner Prescott Tolk has appeared on Comedy Central and is endorsed by both the Chicago Reader and Time Out as a talent to watch. Tolk is accompanied by comedians Cameron Esposito, James Fritz, Adam Burke and Mike Sheehan. Kevan Eftekhari of Robot Lounge will provide musical accompaniment and Bradley LaBree will host.

Recommended If You Like: A night of mid-week laughter after a long workday over a beer (or three).

Lincoln Hall, 9:00 p.m., 18+, $15
British indie rockers The Cribs can swing but they can also serenade and they'll do both in their stateside appearance tonight. Support from former co-founder of the Moldy Peaches, Adam Green, and Portland quartet The Dead Trees add variety to the lineup.

Recommended If You Like: A mixture of straightforward indie rock vantage points joined in a single show.


Thursday, January 14

Lincoln Hall, 9:00 p.m., 18+, $15
Voxtrot bring beautiful vocal melodies promise to leave showgoers with dreamy smiles plastered on their faces. Electronic-embracing acts Solid Gold and Gemini Club, and rhythmic indie four piece Maps & Atlases round out the evening.

Recommended If You Like: Indie rock vocalizations, but aren't afraid of keyboards, synthesizers and a bit of world rhythm backing them up.

Schubas, 9:00 p.m., 18+, SOLD OUT
Surfer Blood's sweeping anthems will grant you a welcome daydream of their Florida climate. There's a sound for everyone across the lineup as lighthearted tunes from Freelance Whales mix with the quiet reflections of Bear In Heaven and the guitar-heavy party that of locals Lasers and Fast and Shit.

Recommended If You Like: Staying on top of who's Next and don't mind a band without a long history so long as they can show you a good time.


Friday, January 15

Schubas, 9:00 p.m., 18+, SOLD OUT
Neon Indian appeared from nowhere, bringing with them a hell of a debut album and along the way added their fair share of buzz to the chilled-out, lo-fi music circuit. Truman Peyote, a new name to our radar who embraces similar stylistic tendencies to Neon Indian, supports alongside two of our favorite local electronic acts, The Hood Internet and the Only Children.

Recommended If You Like: Reading music blogs and dancing—and you're not ashamed to admit either.

Lincoln Hall, 10:00 p.m., 18+, $15
Atlas Sound, the solo project of Bradford Cox (Deerhunter) is more likely to rip your heart out than provide you with a gregarious Friday night show experience. If that's your speed, then you've probably already grabbed your ticket for his show that also brings complementary experimental compositions from Icy Demons and Shapers.

Recommended If You Like: Emotion set against sonic experiments. You prefer the ability to lose yourself in a song over clear melodies and familiar hooks.


Saturday, January 16

Schubas, 2:00 p.m., All Ages, $10 advance/$12 door
The Philadelphia founded Paul Green School of Rock offers youths the chance to get an early start in music and express themselves creatively. Students learn to play instruments on professional equipment alongside professional musicians. Saturday features Women Who Rock, a showcase of music from female students.

Recommended If You Like: Girl power!

Schubas, 10:00 p.m., 18+, SOLD OUT
Multi-instrumentalist Owen Pallett utilizes symphonic arrangements and ambitious lyricism in his work as Final Fantasy. Acoustic singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten and Minneapolis musical partnership Peter Wolf Crier ensure the evening will offer polish until the end.

Recommended If You Like: Sheet music and song structure, and don't mind music that requires a little patience to appreciate.

Lincoln Hall, 10:00 p.m., 18+, $15
For the full indie folk experience we recommend the excellent line-up of acoustic headliners Bowerbirds, supported by Canadians The Rural Alberta Advantage and Julie Doiron. Singer-songwriter fare will mingle with elements of both acoustic and upbeat rock in a showcase that will make your urban surroundings vanish

Recommended If You Like: The great outdoors, the wide open road and the spirit of Americana.


Sunday, January 17

Schubas, 2:00 p.m., All Ages, $10 advance/$12 door

The Paul Green School of Rock offers a second chance to catch the Women Who Rock lineup on Sunday.

Recommended If You Like: Girl power (but couldn't make Saturday's show).

Schubas, 9:00 p.m., 18+, $15
Montreal-based Clues front a night of acts that embrace the pop side of indie rock. Skybox, Pomegranates and the Netherfriends all add their own spin of upbeat melodies. If you're looking for an evening of bright, lighthearted fun then this the ticket you're going to want to buy right now.

Recommended If You Like: Music that reminds you that the happy moments are the best moments.

Lincoln Hall, 9:00 p.m., 18+, $15
If you're looking for a show outside the borders of indie, soul-crooner Lee Fields is not to be missed. He will be joined by his band The Expressions as well as JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound and Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers. Come ready for a night of vocal showmanship of the highest level.

Recommended If You Like: Numero Group's Eccentric Soul Revue and have been looking for your chance to relive some of the magic of that night.