Feature photo by easybored

Bragging rights are everything. Thanks to pride, we can enjoy the small things in life. We like being proud of our cities by telling people that something epic happened once, right where we live.

Well Chicago, grab your rhumba boots, ’cause this one’s all ours. Add this to your list of reasons to catch Tegan and Sara Quinn at the Aragon on the 26th: It was right here, during their show at the Riveria Theater in October 2008, where their latest album, Sainthood was conceived as the lovechild of the Quinn sisters and Death Cab for Cutie’s Chris Walla. When Walla got a glimpse of their live rock potential, he suggested they work on another collaboration ASAP. This time, with a fresh spin.

As explained by Tegan to TV Guide in a 2009 interview, “We were in Chicago, touring… We’d done some dates with Death Cab, and are good friends with Chris after working on The Con with him. He came one night and saw the show. We were all sitting around backstage and… he was just raving about the live shows. [He told us,] ‘You’re a live band! You sound great! We should make a band record!’ We flew to L.A. and set up in a studio…famous for it’s giant room that everyone can set up in, so you get the illusion of playing as a band.”(Guide)

The ‘band’ reference Chris emphasized ended up as Sainthood’s main focus; highlighting the dynamics of revved-up instrumentals set to fun, energized beats. A stark contrast to the album’s predecessors, most of which were adamant about drawing the attention to their haunting lyrics or vocal versatility. Tegan and Sara spent a better part of their high school career shoved in an on-campus recording studio. We can assume they’ve taken little time off since then, with 6 albums released professionally since 1999. Averaging almost a record every year and a half, the musical evolution of the twindie sensations show us exactly what’s to gain when an artist isn’t afraid of change.

Veteran artists know healthy risks can propel careers; it keeps things fresh in the long term relationship with their fanbase. Like when your girlfriend buys lingerie. One thing is true about Sainthood: seasoned fans seem to either love it hard or wince at its ‘mainstream tendencies’ and pine for something more akin to So Jealous.

However, we should queue all naysaying until we’ve had the chance to experience the Quinn sisters’ live band project the way they truly wanted us to enjoy it… live, and with a band (instead of yanking it from LimeWire). My guess is that they’re not going to play their hearts out anywhere harder than the place they got the idea for it all almost two years ago. Here, in Chicago.

So don’t feel bad if you find yourself bragging just a little.

Aragon Ballroom
8:00 PM Friday, March 26, 2010
1106 West Lawrence Avenue
Chicago, IL
(773) 561-9500

Sainthood – Tegan & Sara

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