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Review: Great Music, Good Atmosphere, 10/7/10

Atmosphere wrapped up their "To All My Friends" tour on Thursday, Oct. 7 at the Congress Theater, 2135 N. Milwaukee Ave., to a throng of hip-hop lovers. Special guests Blueprint, Grieves & Budo and DJ Rare Groove got the large crowd pumped for the main event, which started at 10:15 p.m. with a popular song off Atmosphere's "Lucy Ford" album, "Trying to Find A Balance."

Though the tour was in promotion of their new album that was released on Sept. 7, "To All My Friends, Blood Makes The Blade Holy: The Atmosphere EPs," Atmosphere stuck with many of their songs from previous albums, such as the last released in April 2008, "When Life Gives You Lemons." They played a 26-song set, which infused many shorter portions of songs into a gradual change. Atmosphere received the most crowd response during their most popular songs, "Sunshine" and "Yesterday."

Atmosphere is a Minneapolis-based hip-hop duo, consisting of rapper/MC Slug (Sean Daley) and DJ/producer Ant (Anthony Davis). For the album and the tour, and several previous, guitarist Nate Collis and keyboardist Erick Anderson accompanied the pair. Slug says the incorporation of the band to an Atmosphere show challenges the group more on stage and makes the album more dynamic.

Throughout the performance, Slug incorporated the crowd into his lyrics. During "God Loves Ugly" he sang, "Once upon a time in Chicago, we went to the Congress," to the crowd. He also strongly encouraged the audience to sign along and chant. He often taunts them if he feels he is not feeling enough love on stage.

The crowd at the Congress really started to get riled up during the second half of the set. It was as if Slug was feeding the fans every song they demanded. The cheers received from the crowd increased between crowd-favorites, "Guarantees," "Don't Ever.", and "Pour Me Another." Slug then requested four shots of Jameson be brought to the stage and dedicated them to all his friends - the crowd went wild and raised their glasses in response.

Three songs later, at what was supposed to be the end of the song, the crowd's chants and cheers were enough to bring Atmosphere back on for five more songs. Atmosphere even got the crowd's permission and support to sing "Say Shh," a song about Minneapolis. They ended the show with their new song, "Best Day." It was clear that Atmosphere felt right at home in Chicago.
Last Updated on Friday, 09 May 2014 19:57