Reviews \

The One AM Radio Turn the Dial to ‘Stellar’

CHICAGO: The L.A.-based collective layers cathartic songcraft with inspiration for diverse crowd.

You can’t go wrong with the free admission and $1.25 PBRs every Monday night at Chicago’s iconic Empty Bottle, but fortunately for the city’s ever-growing population of skint-living cool kids there’s also some seriously excellent music. The One AM Radio, the indie electronic project of Hrishikesh Hirway, set the ashtray floors and grimy walls of the Bottle awash in organ-drenched melody last night (Aug. 27), commanding the rapt attention of a normally rowdy and always eclectic crowd that included plenty of your usual indie scenesters, neighborhood regulars, and two (count ‘em — TWO) dudes in white pimp suits. Drawing heavily on songs from the band’s latest, the city-themed This Too Will Pass, the exceedingly polite and humble Hirway and Co. delivered a harmony-heavy set of thoughtful, thickly textured and slow-building pop songs that brandished all of the introspective power of the singer-songwriter tradition with none of the woe-is-me mope.

We asked: The One AM Radio recently ran a contest on their website to make the best mix tape inspired by the new album, This Too Will Pass. If you were making a mix tape to enter the contest, what would the first track on it be and why?