Infected Mushroom, Jimmie Page @ Visions, Chicago

Yesterday, Tony, Erika and I made a little trip down to Chicago. Earlier in the week when getting caught up on "the scene" in Minneapolis, I broadened my search to see what was coming up in Chicago and noticed that Infected Mushroom was down there this weekend. The one thing I had planned this weekend was canceled, so I thought, "why the hell not?" I figured that Tony and Erika would want to come with so I invited them along ^_^

Chinatown

One place I've heard about in Chicago is Chinatown. Erika always mentions Chinatown when the subject of Chicago crops up in conversation. So we figured that would be an ideal location to visit. First, we got something to eat since we really hadn't had anything all day and then we took a look around at the area and the shops.

Chinatown was spread out much more than I thought It was going to be. I was thinking it would've been cramped together like the one in Nagasaki, or the type of thing you'd see in a Hong Kong action movie. Thing alley-ways with tons of shops. There were tons of shops, but it felt like an actual town, rather than a closet. I guess that's just the American environment at work... When they first laid the groundwork for Chinatown, they had the room to spread out. They were confined to a single square block.

They have some sort of festival coming up on Sunday July 20th sponsored by McDonalds that looks like it'd be fun. Unfortunately, I'll be in Minneapolis that weekend for my High School Reunion, so that's out. Maybe next year.

It'd definitely be neat to check out the other international areas of Chicago in the future. Erika mentioned a Greek Town and Korea Town.. maybe there's a little Italy in there somewhere. The one is probably full of mobsters, though.

Downtown

Afterwards, we hopped back on the trains and went downtown and killed a couple hours walking around and looking for stores that no longer exist. We came across the still under construction Trump tower that you might know from the first season of the Apprentice.

They still have a ways to go before they claim the title of tallest building in Chicago, though. We hung out around the river for quite a while as day turned to dusk turned to night.

We hung out at the two-story museum-like McDonalds for another hour until the doors finally opened up at Visions.

Visions

It had been a while since the last time I was at Visions. Actually, I'm not even totally sure when the last time was... Lemme see.. ah, it was Sasha in 2004. Luckily, I have all this crap written down, back when I really cared about it ^_^ 2004 was aksi when I started going to fewer clubs...

Anyways, there was actually a decent line forming in the front of Visions. People were pretty excited for Infected Mushroom ^_^ It wasn't too long before we got in, but they kept everyone waiting in that extra club that you usually go right through into Visions. Nope, they had the door shut and a guy posted at the entrance to keep people from actually getting into Visions. So all of us the fanboy crowd sat in there while we could clearly see others in Visions...

Oh well, at 11pm the dude opened up the doors and we all piled into Visions.

Jimmie Page

Jimmie Page greeted us into Visions with some fantastic tracks and kept them coming all night long. The pounding beats built into a mass hysteria of funk and house. I think I bought a CD of his a couple years ago and it sounded nothing like this. Honestly, I need to hold reservations on people until I hear them live. I think that's the true test of quality and ambiance. Can the performer really resonate with the crowd and build up the set keeping the audience in suspense while still giving them exactly what the want?

Jimmie Page proved he was that man, and he really blew me away. I got a demo CD from him too, so I can't wait to listen to that later on. ^_^

Though, the crowd began to slip away from Jimmie with the anticipation of Infected Mushroom and their vacant equipment sitting on the stage opposite of the DJ booth. Thankfully the fans weren't too rude by chanting "Infected Mushroom" or anything, but they were definitely there for the Mushroom.

Infected Mushroom

After a 2 1/2 hour set, Jimmie relinquished aural command and all eyes set themselves on the stage where Infected Mushroom was set to go. The fans went nuts. ^_^


I've heard of Infected Mushroom, but never actually heard them previous to this night. The name made me immediately think of PsyTrance on the order of Hallucinogen and such groups, but I was dead wrong with that classification. I'm not really sure what sub-sub-genre of Electronica they'd fall into, but they'd definitely be right next to Prodigy on the shelf. Tony was thinking Hardcore, or, at least, somewhere in that area, which sounds about right.

Infected Mushroom were fucking incredible, though.. I think they're my new favorite band, ^_^. For over an hour and a half they keep playing song after song after song and didn't quit. Bam Bam Bam Bam, like the thunderous body-pounding bass surging into your chest with every beat.

I don't think I've ever seen a crowd this energetic for anyone. Most of the DJs or bands I see are mostly low key or if they have a pounding beat are still strung together with a melodic ambiance that is still calming. Infected Mushroom is constant barrage. Bam Bam Bam Bam, punching you in the face, in the shoulder.. pushing you around. Their music has this surge of adrenaline that keeps you moving fist pumping in the air and yelling as loud as you can.

The night was quite amazing and I'm glad I asked Tony and Erika to come alone with. ^_^ This is the type of thing where'd I usually run off alone and not ask anyone to join me, but I figured they'd be interested in checking it out, at the very least.

More Pictures can be found here: http://www.theschlock.com/photo/080622_chicago/

The drive home

Bar curfews very from city to city. Minneapolis has a curfew that all bars and clubs must close by 3am on a Saturday night. I think, Madison is 2am.. But Chicago can go all the way to 5am. Fortunately, Infected Mushroom finished off their encore around 3am, so we didn't stay all that late in the windy city. I think we got out of downtown and back on the highways around 3:45am or 4am.

That drive home is always difficult for me because I've just come from this immense loud ear-damaging party, and now must drive for quite a while until I'm finally able to sleep. I've never made it all the way before.. Usually, I find some motel and sleep in the parking lot for a few hours to muster the energy to finish the trip later or stop off at one of those Oasis McDonalds and buy enough food to keep me busy. I almost made it to Rockford this time ^_^. Erika offered to drive the rest of the way to Freeport and Tony drove the rest of the way back to Madison. We got to watch the sunrise as we trotted along the highways.

Anywho, today I'm so completely sore. I feel like I was thoroughly beaten up. It was really more of love beating, though. It'll be tough to top last night with the several events that are coming up in the next few months, but they're spread out enough that shouldn't ruin them. Hopefully I can find something decent in Tampa for the July 4th weekend....




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