Fans of the Promise Ring and Joan of Arc twin pillars of late-'90s Midwestern emo know that both bands sprang from suburban Chicago's Cap'n Jazz, whose sole studio disc bottled a bit of musical lightning between emo's brainy beginnings and its eventual mall-punk fate. (Two telling covers from the group's repertoire: A-ha's "Take on Me" and the theme song from Beverly Hills, 90210.) But it's probably safe to say that many, if not most, of those fans never actually saw Cap'n Jazz during the group's original run. I didn't, and I owned a copy of that sole studio disc, whose full title, by the way, would take up the rest of my space here (look it up). So this summer, the band is on the reunion-tour circuit playing songs that 15 years ago somehow felt as immediate as they did profound. Think they can still pull that off?
Sat., Aug. 28, 2010