Preview: The Album Leaf/Bottom Lounge (Newcity)

Published September 13, 2011 (

The Album LeafThe lonesome recording artist Jimmy LaValle, a.k.a. The Album Leaf, is set to bring to life his ambient, dreamy electronica soundscapes at the Bottom Lounge with the help of a live band. The intricate pieces that LaValle creates on record are not simply reproduced straight from the studio, but rather added to and re-imagined with the help of the three musicians that tour with him. The songs are kept sounding fresh so that they may continue to evolve regardless of the fact they have been committed to record. When considering that the latest full-length release in 2010, “A Chorus of Storytellers,” took a whole three years to write and perfect, it is impressive that LaValle can find room for improvement and adaptation. While The Album Leaf is not exactly a shoegaze band, there is certainly ample amounts of shoe-gazing during its drawn-out, complex instrumentals, which does not exactly translate to an abundance of stage presence. Thankfully, the ebb and flow of The Album Leaf’s swooping compositions are subsequently aided by beautiful visual art and light displays that provide a unique backdrop to each of the songs, and give those in the audience with a little less attention span something to keep themselves occupied. What’s more, The Album Leaf has a policy that any fans inked permanently with their artwork have the privilege of getting into their shows free, so if you’re that dedicated a fan, prepare to bare skin. (Ben Small)

September 23 at Bottom Lounge, 1375 West Lake, (312)666-6775, 9pm. $14. 17+.


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