4.29.11 | Digeometric, Genome, The Electric Boogaloo

Words, Photos & Videos by Frazier


I was finally getting settled into my new apartment but the pull of live music wouldn’t stop. Unpacking be damned, I was going to a show. This time it was a kickass of bill of dank, microbrewed Chicago talent that brought me out. Ace Bar has been putting together some really nice lineups lately and this night’s selection of Digeometric, Genome, and The Electric Boogaloo was no different. It’s just too bad the night had to end on a sour note…

When I got to Ace, I found the bands milling around with no stage setup going on at all. Apparently, there was another party scheduled as an “early show” and it ran a little long and subsequently bumped everything back a little bit. This was the beginning of the trouble…


The Electric Boogaloo finally hit the stage about 25 minutes later than they should have. Their set was a good one, but lacked the overall intensity of the set I saw at Abbey Pub. It was a decidedly groovier and more laidback version of the Boog. On this night I heard large doses of reggae rhythms and jazz signatures dressed in the prog rock suit I knew them for.


They were down one keyboard player and I could feel the difference in that gooey middle layer of sound that made the first set I saw so intimidating. Nonetheless, this set was still fun as Igor Voltchenko and Mike Sonnefeldt took turns exploring mindspace. The final jam, one called “Heezer Butler,” featured Kyle & Xavier from Genome and was the most aggressive piece of the set. It got the small but excited crowd moving with the most upbeat and complete of Boog’s offerings.


Up next was Genome, a recently formed and ambitious local band. Since it’s a Chicago jamtronica band, naturally Igor Voltchenko is a part of it. He’s the guitar chameleon, and blends into any jam-dance band with the perfect auditory hues. It also features a dual-headed horn monster of Xavier Galdon on trombone and Kyle Madson on saxophone (and flute) to add a rich & dynamic dimension to the sound.


Simply put, this band is energetic, forward-moving pure jamtronica. Galdon (on an Ableton) and Asif Wilson (on a Moog Voyager) brought that space traveling energy with their electro sounds while Drew Littel got nasty on the electric drum paddles. Together they created an tight & spacey ball of sound that danced upon the strong basslines of Patrick Dinnen. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but there was something I really enjoyed about his style & tone. It came through as strong as any bass guitar I’ve heard in jamtronic music. These guys whipped up a dance storm and pushed the edges of their set to the max.


By the time Digeometric hit the stage it was after 1:00 am, but I still figured they’d get a decent sized set done. They hit the ground right where Genome left off and shifted the pace & energy into maximum overdrive. Once again there was a two-pronged horn attack, but this time it was a couple of saxophones that committed the crime. Alex Francois and Marty Gierczyk held down the ecstatic end of the music with some funky bursts of horn sound. Gierczyk even busted out an Akai EWI for additional weird fun.


This set felt like a freight train running at full bore, which could be attributed the a machine gun rhythms from Michael Duffy. Dude meant business behind the skins and pounded out a shrapnel spray of lightning beats the whole set. It’s just a shame that set only lasted about 30 minutes. Right at 1:45, with no warning or prior discussion, the house lights went on and the sound was killed. Luckily they had just wrapped up a song, so it wasn’t as maddening as it could have been. I understand that Ace had a curfew dust-up the previous night, but this was still a harsh & abrupt way to end the night. Digeometric was raging and deserved another half hour to finish up their blitzkrieg…

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Jeremy Frazier is the editor-in-chief of Soundfuse.