This formula just doesn’t add up. Add one part Blake Smith, guitarist for Caviar, one part Mike Willison, bassist for Caviar, and one part Scott Lucas of Local H, and the end result should be a new local rock supergroup. However, the finished product that I’m getting is anything but rock. Where are these beats coming from? Why do I want to start dancing like a robot? Something is definitely going wrong in the lab. I’m about to lose control, but I think I like it. This new three-headed electro beast calls itself The Prairie Cartel. Rising from the flat plains of Middle America, these former rockers are now united to “put the spine back into electronic music.” Indeed, while their music is sure to be a hit with the club kids, it does have some gusto. In fact, some have described Prairie Cartel as “the sound of very sharp knives having sex.” However, this may be a rather misleading tag as the Cartel’s music is neither metallic nor painful. It’s actually quite melodic despite its high piss-and-vinegar content. I’d advise checking out this highly volatile mix before it explodes. (Brad Knutson)
The Prairie Cartel play live at Dark Wave Disco with DJs Trancid and Mark Gertz at Sonotheque, 1444 West Chicago, (312)226-7600, on June 15 at 9pm. No cover before 10pm, $8 after.