Concert Review: Outsides, June 8, Chicago Ribfest


One of the first things I did when I moved to Chicago was drag my brand new friends to a free Lollapalooza after party. Turned out I had the date wrong and what I actually did was drag my friends through a sketchy part of town to an empty venue the day before a Lollapalooza after party. Luckily, I have great friends and they not only didn’t disown me, but they went with me the day after when the concert was actually being held. They ended up forgiving me because that was the day that we all discovered local Chicago quartet Skybox. They were poppy, they were quirky, they were nasal, they were catchy, they were killing it on the synth, they were a little angry and we all adored them. We followed them for a little while and then they disappeared on us.

Fast forward three years to Ribfest. Little known fact – at 15 years, Ribfest is actually one of the longest running music festivals in Chicago, and they apparently deal in miracles. Two years ago as I wandered (and by wandered I mean tripped over baby strollers and dogs) through the street I got to see Jukebox the Ghost consume a basket of ribs on a street corner. This year I not only discovered the world’s most delicious Falafel Pita at Brown Trout (it was so good that people who literally had a mouthful of ribs would look at my beautiful pita, cucumber, chickpea, tahini combo and ask “where’d you get that?”) but I also discovered what happened to Skybox.

Waiting at the Bud Light stage for California Wives to appear, I caught the end of the set for a group called “Outsides.” They were poppy, they were quirky, they were nasal, they were catchy, they were killing it on the synth and they were just a little bit angry. I was all about it. It was also maddening because it sounded so familiar, until the band broke into a cover of ‘In a Dream’ and then it all came together. I chatted with lead singer Tim Ellis, who used to be the frontman of Skybox, after the set. Apparently he’s made the move back to his hometown of Kansas City and Outsides is his new project. He told me that they’ll be headed to Chicago for a show in the near future. I can already tell you I’ll be there – hopefully on the right day this time. My friends have forgiven me at this point but I don’t know if our friendship could take a round two. Check out Outsides’ single “Seesaw” below:

Posted on by Celeste in Concerts