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DS Show Review + Gallery: Rock For Rights Chicago w/ Boybrain, Aweful, Djunah, and Heet Deth

Story and Photography by Meredith Goldberg Liar’s Club, always supportive of members of the Chicago punk rock community, often hosts fundraisers for various individuals/causes. Recall, the venue sponsored one of the Dying Scene Resurrection Shows recently.  On Saturday August 6, 2022, Liar’s Club was the site for one of several local shows benefitting the Chicago […]

Story and Photography by Meredith Goldberg

Liar’s Club, always supportive of members of the Chicago punk rock community, often hosts fundraisers for various individuals/causes. Recall, the venue sponsored one of the Dying Scene Resurrection Shows recently.  On Saturday August 6, 2022, Liar’s Club was the site for one of several local shows benefitting the Chicago Abortion Fund (CAF). Venues in Chicago and elsewhere have been holding similar fundraisers in wake of the of the Supreme Court of the United States’ 2022 decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturns landmark SCOTUS decisions in Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992) and endangers numerous other privacy related rights. The announced amount of money raised for the CAF came to almost $2,000. 


Boybrain turned on the show’s engine with a hair swirling, brains (of all genders) smashing performance. The dizzying actions of the band members were matched by their striking physical appearances. Suited up in matching half uniforms of t-shirts with “Abortions” written across them in a font reminiscent of rec league baseball jerseys, and athlete-style black grease marks under their eyes. Boybrain slammed though a tight set featuring “Blood Wolf Moon,” off its 2022 debut album In the Company Of Worms. The band is comprised of punk rock veterans from the Chicago area and elsewhere: Patti on guitars and vocals, Inga on lead guitar, Colin on drums, and “Dr. Doom” (whose first name is actually Lauren. Come on though, Dr. Doom is a pretty cool moniker) on bass and vocals. 


Aweful, which we featured in the aforementioned Resurrection Show, once again offered its talents to an important cause. The trio, made up of Traci Trouble, Lucy Dekay, and Izzy Price, as always had the crowds pumped and their fists pumping. They ripped through tunes including “Far Away,” “Bubble,” “Just Like Me,” and one of their most popular singles, “No Avail.” Whipping around the stage, guitarist Dekay displayed her usual flair, whilst drummer Price and bass player Trouble fueled the backbeat. Trouble’s gritty vocals matched her stage presence as well as those of her bandmates. It’s always a fun moment to see how she and Dekay go back to back literally, appearing to be simultaneously competing for flashiest performance and joining together to create a single, more powerful organism.  So powerful that watching both women then fall away from each other, as if ripped apart, collapsing onto the floor seems the natural next occurrence. Even on the floor, Trouble and DeKay, are at times, still attached, playing a sort of punk rock patty cake with their sneakers. 


Djunah, an electrifying two-piece group from Chicago, is comprised of Donna Diane and Jared Karns. Diane pulls triple duty on vocals, guitar, and Moog Organ bass, as Karns powers through on drums. It was a rousing and hypnotic set. Thus far, 2022 has been a busy year for Diane, between recording vocals for Jason Narducy‘s Verboten the Musical, and the band playing festivals and sold-out shows, with at least two more upcoming fests. Those events being Louisville’s PRFBBQLOU2022 in late August-early September, and Milwaukee’s Bay View Bash, in mid-September.


Heet Deth is another 2-piece band from the Windy City. Formed in 2018 by best friends, Julia B on drums and vocals, and Laila E on guitar and vocals, Heet Deth describes itself as operatic. Wearing matching blood red shortsleeve coveralls, with their faces garishly painted red, white, and black, they manage to create their own styles even as the likes of David Bowie and Monkey from the Adicts are brought to mind. Heet Deth’s theatrical appearance is equaled by its non-stop energy.


Good to see the punk rock community standing up for all of our rights, as unfortunate as it is that these rights have to be fought for so vigorously at this point in history. Alas, the fight WILL proceed and there will be great music to keep us inspired and energized.

More photos below!


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DS Show Review and Gallery: Signals Midwest, Into It. Over It, Downhaul, Mush (Chicago, IL – 7/21/22)

Story and Photography by Meredith Goldberg Signals Midwest, from Cleveland, OH, returned to Chicago, supported by Mush, Downhaul, and Into It. Over It. Its performance at Subterranean – aka SubT – was a fun one. The members seemed especially grateful that their friends in Into It, Over It were able to join them. Signals Midwest […]

Story and Photography by Meredith Goldberg

Signals Midwest, from Cleveland, OH, returned to Chicago, supported by Mush, Downhaul, and Into It. Over It.

Its performance at Subterranean – aka SubT – was a fun one. The members seemed especially grateful that their friends in Into It, Over It were able to join them. Signals Midwest lead singer/guitarist Maxwell Stern expressed the sentiment that they should be supporting Into It. Over It instead of the reverse.

Signals Midwest played to what appeared to be an almost capacity crowd in the warm club on a hot night. Said crowd was vastly mellower than most of the shows we cover here in Chicago, with virtually no circle pit, and many fans watched from a second level. Nonetheless, the crowd members were very vocal as they repeatedly shouted their approval.

Signals Midwest performed 7 of the 12 tracks on their new LP “Dent,” which was released in April 2022. The set opener, “I Used To Draw,” was one of those seven. Other “Dent” tracks performed included consecutively “Tommy Takes A Picture,” “Gold In The Grey,” “Sure of It “ and “All Good Things.” The band also performed “Your New Old Apartment,” though without the song’s featured performer, Sincere Engineer. Signals Midwest closed its set with “Alchemy Hour,” from the album, “At This Age” (2016).


Chicago’s own Into It.Over It ripped through its set, performing songs from a cross-section of its albums. These included, among others, “Discretion and Depressing People”, and “Fortunate Friends” from the album Proper; “Spinning Thread”, and “Upstate Blues,” from, Intersections; “Brenham, TX,” and “Augusta GA,” from 12 Towns; and “Heartificial” and 22 Syllables” from 52 Weeks.

The band members also made it absolutely clear their opinions on the recent Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade. Joe George Shadid, has a sticker on his guitar stating, “Abortion on Demand & Without Apology.” Evan Thomas Weiss echoed the message posted on the band’s Facebook page. Whilst promoting a t-shirt to raise money for abortionfunds.org, Into It. Over It declares, “this band aids and abets abortion. it is our belief that abortion is a human right and we’ll continue to do what we can to fight for the human rights of US citizens.peace and love.”


For the band Downhaul, from Richmond VA, the SubT show marked the furthest from home the group has performed. Gordon Phillips, singer and guitarist for the group said it was during the middle of the tour so they were feeling pretty comfortable with their sets at that point. He did admit they might have been a bit nervous because they usually play venues much smaller than SubT. However, Downhaul received a very warm welcome and Phillips and the rest of his bandmates were very happy to have numerous good friends in the crowd. This group of friends included members of the Atlanta based band Worlds Greatest Dad, who were in the city on a night off from their own tour. They were also accompanied by Signals Midwest’s Max Stern on lap guitar. Up next for Downhaul? The members are finalizing, for release, some new songs they recorded in June and playing Fest for the first time ever. Needless to say, the band is very excited about its future.

Mush, the 5-member group from Chicago and Grand Rapids MI, was the first band to play. The band’s spirited set launched an enjoyable evening in the Bucktown/Wicker Park area of Chicago.


Please see below for more photos!

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