Choon Group Features



In Five Songs

The Internet

In anticipation of 4th LP Hive Mind’s July 20 release, Adithi Chandrashekar looks at five fan favorites, including solo tracks, that mark the journey of The Internet (the band) to date.


Pitchfork Chicago 2018, June 20-22

Matt Pierce, Dan Behrendt and Andrew Bailes report back from the 2018 Pitchfork Music Festival at Union Park in Chicago in the latest edition of “We Were There.”

We Were There: Quiet Slang

Schuba's – Chicago, IL, 16 June 2018

Brad Brubaker takes us to a set by Quiet Slang, the acoustic incarnation of Beach Slang, where punk simmers beneath the surface and the encore is longer than the main set.


Dos Santos

A House-Warming Party for the World

Prior to the drop of their first International Anthem LP “Logos,” members of Dos Santos, Chicago’s masterful quintet of Latin American rhythm and experimentation, sat down with Matt Pierce to talk their origins, improvisational process, and how their music can warm us amidst the current cultural craziness.

We Were There: David Byrne

Auditorium Theatre – Chicago, IL, 3 June 2018

David Byrne visited the Auditorium Theatre and ending up taking our Dan Behrendt on a journey towards something that resembled utopia. Read about his bucket list journey in our latest edition of "We Were There."

Lorde, Live!

A late-thirtysomething fan's journey to back to teenage utopia.

New Zealand pop sensation Lorde gets our Chris Conley to go to the suburbs, transporting her back to a time of underage drinking and solo cigarette purchases.

Politics, PBR, and Pulverizing the Patriarchy

An interview with Glitter Moneyyy

Ashley Renee Clopton and Taylor Dariarow have been pouring their souls into the city since moving from Florida, and the duo – formed in 2016 – has taken Chicago by a glitter storm. Under the names Queen TrAshley and TayyySlayyy, Glitter Moneyyy performs politically charged, self-empowering hip-hop anthems that are simultaneously provocative and hilarious. Their goal: destroy the patriarchy one show at a time.

We Were There: Amber Mark

Schuba's – Chicago, IL, 15 May 2018

Pop/R&B prospect Amber Mark, fresh off the release of her excellent new EP Conexão, commanded the Schuba's stage with her smoky voice and songwriting skills, giving strong indication she's a big star in the making. 

TRIBUTE: Scott Hutchison

1981 - 2018

Choon Group staff members Andrew Bailes and Daniel Behrendt pay tribute to Hutchison and reflect on their own relationships with his music, which was beloved by his fans for its unflinching emotional honesty and uplifting spirit in the face of pain.

We Were There: Yo La Tengo

Royal Festival Hall – London, 4 May 2018

Our London correspondent Alex Carter reports back from the New Jersey indie lifer's marathon gig at Royal Festival Hall and offers a career-spanning playlist for fans both longtime and entry-level.

In Five Songs: Janelle Monáe

Prepare yourself for Dirty Computer with an In Five Songs homework assignment

The long-awaited third LP and “emotion picture” from Janelle Monáe, Dirty Computer, arrives April 27. We break down five defining musical moments from a career trajectory sending her hurtling towards superstardom.

We Were There: Khruangbin

Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL – 19 February April

Texas trio Khruangbin sold out two nights at Lincoln Hall in Chicago last week. We were there to analyze how this mostly-instrumental group was able to draw such an engaged crowd.

Did I Dream that?

King Kong - "Me Hungry"

In this column, we’ll produce internet-based evidence to prove that a particularly improbable or mind-blankingly ridiculous event from pop culture history did in fact take place in this temporal reality. Verifying the validity of our waking weirdscape—No, you did not dream that.

Chicago Record Store Crawl

We visit 7 of Chicago's Finest

In preparation for Record Store Day 2018, Choon Group founders Matt Pierce and Seth Unger undertook a Saturday crawl of seven of their favorite Chicago shops for vinyl.

in five songs: unknown mortal orchestra

Career Standouts from Ruban Nielson's Psych-Funk Outfit

In anticipation of the 4th Unknown Mortal Orchestra long-player Sex & Food, their 3rd for Jagjaguwar, dropping on April 6, let’s listen to 5 early entries onto what’s quickly becoming a quality career compilation.

Arranged Autobiographically


In the third entry of Arranged Autobiographically, Matt Pierce chronicles an attempted "month off the sauce" from his record-buying addiction, and how in the end, it's okay to "Get Merched."

Xmas Steps

Mogwai and What I Found Under the Post Rock


Guest columnist Alex Carter takes us down a musical rabbit hole through post-rock and beyond, beginning with his teenage discovery of Scottish standard bearers Mogwai. 

Firepower by judas priest

The End of a Metal Era

Dr. Patrick Julian explores his personal history with metal legends Judas Priest as they embark on a farewell tour in support of new album Firepower.

Call It A Supergroup

An Interview with Lifted Bells

Andrew Bailes catches up with Bob Nanna and Matthew Frank from Lifted Bells to discuss their new record, Minor Tantrums, over Old Style and shots of tequila.

In five songs: Portlandia

A Look Back at the Music-Infused Sketch Giant

The final episode of IFC’s Portlandia airs March 22, ending an 8-season/77-episode run of affectionate and often absurd social satire. With apologies to Squiggleman, here are five musical moments that made us laugh at The Scene and ourselves, and love Portlandia.

We Were There: Miguel

Riviera Theatre, Chicago, IL – 5 March 2018

Miguel, fresh off a plane from performing Oscar-winning song “Remember Me” at the Academy Awards the previous night, rolled into Chicago to support his War and Leisure album to a sold-out crowd of 2,500.

A prog folk primer

See You Around by I'm With Her

Aaron Stephenson primes your folk palate for I’m With Her’s debut album See You Around.

we were there: ezra furman

Thalia Hall, Chicago, IL – 26 February 2018

It would be hard to ask for a better venue for a double-homecoming show from Ezra Furman and Detroit transplant Anna Burch, touring together off of new releases, fresh for 2018.

The 90th Annual Academy Awards

Breaking Down the Music Categories

The 90th edition of the Academy Awards go down on Sunday, March 4th. Here at Choon Group, we pay special attention to the music categories. Follow along with us as we roll that red carpet into our ear holes, dim the lights, and break it down.

Arranged autobiographically

Cassette Singles

The recording industry replaced the 7-inch 45 rpm vinyl single with the cassette single as the dominant form for cheaply selling the pop hits of the day. Matt Pierce dives into his collection and delivers a 1989-1994 era playlist.

We were there: Bon Iver

Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI – 17 February 2018

Bon Iver’s now seemingly timeless debut, For Emma, Forever Ago, turned ten years old this month. To celebrate, Justin Vernon and Co. staged a special performance at The Bradley Center in Milwaukee.

Arranged autobiographically

Forgotten Dollar-Rack Classics of the CD Era

Six super-solid front-to-back LPs released from 1992-2001 that then could have been found for $1, and now can be resurrected through streaming to share with friends once more. 

We were there: Rostam

Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL – 10 February 2018

Matt Pierce survives a snowy Saturday in February to weigh in on whether Rostam (Vampire Weekend's former multi-instrumentalist and indie producer extraordinaire) can cut it as a frontman.

In five songs: Tune-Yards

Career Standouts from Merril Garbus

Upon the release of her fourth studio album, we look back at nearly a decade of standout tracks from Merril Garbus' Tune-Yards project.

Jesus jones jeopardy

Episode 4: Tournament of Champions

Choon Group's best and only music trivia game show podcast. If you haven't been listening you're missing out.

2017 Albums of the Year

Results From Our Annual Poll

In 2017 we received an historic amount of votes –and it led to an epic contest, with two former poll champs being narrowly bested by the truly transcendent artist of the year.

2016 Albums of the Year

Choon Group's favorites from the class of '16

2015 Albums of the year

A closer look at the albums that impacted our 2015