The Dream Syndicate

The Dream Syndicate

Eleventh Dream Day

Sat, June 1, 2019

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

The Hideout

Chicago, IL

$20

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The Dream Syndicate
The Dream Syndicate
Like a lot of bands and other incendiary devices, the Dream Syndicate began in a basement.
In the final days of 1981, Dennis Duck, known in the LA scene as the drummer of post-punk stalwarts Human Hands, met up in Los Angeles for a subterranean rehearsal with Steve Wynn (guitar, vocals), Karl Precoda (guitar) and Kendra Smith (bass), three scruffy and noisy kids of no particular renown. Despite mostly consisting of long jams on CCR’s version of “Susie Q” and a few embryonic Wynn compositions, the rehearsal left the quartet feeling they were on to something that, if nothing else, was the sound they had been seeking and most certainly not finding on the local scene.
That sound was long songs of feedback and drone and psychedelic rave ups centered around cheap guitars plugged into broken amps. Guitars! Long Songs! Psychedelic garage music (well, basement, technically)—not things that were in fashion at that moment of time.
“We fully expected to be hated,” said Wynn. “But we also figured that if we liked this music as much as we did that somebody else would have to feel the same. We set out to be a band that could be somebody’s favorite band—even if for only a handful of people. Love us or hate us—that was our gauntlet at first.”
But that gauntlet was met by more people and more quickly than expected. Within 3 weeks the band recorded a four-song demo tape for $100 that ended up being their first record, a self-released EP on Wynn’s Down There Records label. The record immediately got press locally and nationwide, airplay on Rodney Bingenheimer’s “Rodney On The Roq” program and other similarly outlier stations across the country, hitting various indie charts along the way. It was only a matter of months before they were offered a record deal by Slash Records to make a debut album for the label’s Ruby imprint. Nine months after that basement jam session, the band was labelmates with the likes of X, The Blasters and The Germs.
That debut record, “The Days of Wine and Roses” was recorded in three consecutive midnight-to-8am sessions—“because the rates were cheaper during the graveyard shift,” Wynn states. “We would finish in the morning and go straight to our day jobs and then go right back to the studio.” Fueled by adrenaline, junk food and the knowledge that they were making the record they’d always wanted to make, The Dream Syndicate made an album that continues to make all-time Best Album lists and influence bands to this day.
Eleventh Dream Day
Eleventh Dream Day
Since first hitting the road in a battered Econoline van in the 1980s, Eleventh Dream Day continues to build on their history by moving forward musically,while never forgetting what inspired them. On Works For Tomorrow, core band members Rick
Rizzo, Janet Beveridge Bean, Mark Greenberg, and Douglas McCombs are joined by James Elkington (Brokeback, Tweedy), marking the first time the band has recorded with a second guitarist since 1994. Elkington’s addition has unleashed the band’s strengths. The ferocious and visceral interplay between Rizzo and Elkington charge the band with a joyous exuberance that sweeps the listener in for the 43 minutes of Works For Tomorrow. The album also features performances by long time friend Martin Wenk (Calexico) and Chicago stalwart Rich Parenti on horns.

Eleventh Dream Day is known for their raw, inexhaustible live performances. They honed the songs on Works For Tomorrow during an extended residency at Chicago’s Hideout Club, and the packed, sweaty energy of those shows is unmistakable on this new recording. Drummer and sometime lead vocalist Janet Beveridge Bean breaks free as never before, her vocals igniting the songs with an animalistic urgency, as she furiously propels the songs with pure command from behind the kit. Works For Tomorrow was recorded and mixed by Greenberg at the Loft (Wilco’s studio) and Mayfair Recordings. The 10 tracks on the album center on embracing a future which does not succumb to the past, but challenges it in order to adapt and grow. This reframing and understanding of history is keenly stated in the album’s title track when Rizzo sings, “You see her, this must be the beginning or the end of whatever that was.”

“Vanishing Point,” the album’s opening track sets the tone with its brute force and driving rhythm. Written by Bean while on long distance runs, the song captures the thrill she feels on a motorbike as she takes that perfect line through the curve, setting her up for the burst of speed on the straightaway. The guttural urgency of Bean’s vocals on this track are counterpoised by a guitar tour de force. “Requiem For 4 Chambers” -- a clever song on the complexities of the human heart -- imagines the heart as a disembodied organism moving simultaneously toward destruction and light. From the reimagined, deliberate version of Judy Henske and Jerry Yester’s “Snowblind,” to the quieter, melodic tracks like “Deep Lakes,” Eleventh Dream Day’s fiery performances and inventive arrangements make for the most complex and compelling record of their career. Works For Tomorrow finds the band fixed on the road ahead, barreling toward the horizon with the radio turned up -- way, way up.
Venue Information:
The Hideout
1354 W. Wabansia Ave
Chicago, IL, 60642
http://www.hideoutchicago.com