Chicago minimalist crew Smallwire’s pretty, obviously titled “Songs for Sleeping In” on Moorworks is daring in its restraint and, by its very nature, humble in its presentation. The vocals from Kristin Barendregt and Kristina Dutton reach ethereal marks only found in the best of gazers and, backed by clean, quiet guitars and effortless piano and string pieces, the harmonies speak in waves. The nearly perfect arrangements are never obtrusive on the songs’ melodies—and the brief and emotional string finale to “Blur the Lines” might just be the best damn thing on the album. It sounds like a beautiful drowning. The band plays as part of Schubas’s Magical Musical Showcase Series at the MCA, so the show’s early in the evening. Don’t miss it. (Tom Lynch)
Smallwire plays February 5 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago, (312)280-2660, at 6:30pm.