90 Day Men with Ring, Cicada and Climber

Friday, Aug. 3; Rocket Bar

Although the 90 Day Men seem to perform in our fair city as often as some of our hometown bands, these transplanted St. Louisans (and a Kansas Citian), have called Chicago home for most of their five-year career. Formed from early '90s West County house party and Bastille circuit bands Caffeine and Grimace, the 90 Day Men have been touring hard across the U.S. and Europe for years, even though their debut album (It (Is) It) Critical Band (Southern Records) was just released a few months ago.The band plays a fantastically detached style of post-punk guitar rock in which the individual parts add up to an amazing whole. Drummer Cayce Key skitters and dances around the beat, rocking when needed but more often than not implying the rocking out; guitarist Brian Case unleashes cool bursts of atonal and discordant guitar and sing/shouts in a voice that manages to sound both uninterested and passionate. Recent addition Andy Langsangan adds Rhodes-piano shading to the band's rough edges, but the driving force of the 90 Day Men may very well be bassist Rob Lowe (no, not that Rob Lowe). Lowe originally joined the band on trumpet and backing vocals but soon switched to bass, thereby becoming the glue holding the band together. His solid and creative playing is heavily funk-inflected but not so much in a Rick James or Flea way as in a Mike Watt, Dave Allen (Gang of Four), Tobi Parks (the Star Death) kind of way. The band's willingness to take chances and experiment in a live setting ensures that no two shows are ever the same, so even if they've been through St. Louis recently and they're probably going to be back again soon, you should never miss a chance to see the 90 Day Men.