Bassist Joshua Abrams is ubiquitous in Chicago's improvised music scene, and has been instrumental in a number of rock, country, hip-hop and experimental projects—most notably Town & Country, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Sam Prekop, and the Roots. His most recent outing as a bandleader, Natural Information Society, highlights his work on the guimbri, a North African ceremonial string instrument, and features luminary musicians from across the many scenes in which he plays. The music is rhythmic and trance-inducing, evoking influences such as African ceremonial dance, Krautrock, and the collaborations of Terry Riley and Don Cherry. The ensemble’s second album, Represencing, saw a vinyl-only release on Eremite Records earlier this year.
Helmed by keyboardist and sound engineer Cooper Crane (CAVE), Bitchin Bajas create organ-based psychedelic drone music that will be perfect soundtrack for a blazing summer afternoon. Since they began as a side project in 2010, they have amassed a number of releases in various formats, most recently the Drag City LP Bitchitronics.