Lively frontman JC Brooks and the ever-hip Uptown Sound form an unexpected heat wave traveling south from their hometown of Chicago to St. Louis.
The group is young, both in terms of the members' ages and its formation less than five years ago. Yet time has been transcended with the release of its two celebrated albums including the recent "Want More" that features a glittering rendition of Wilco's "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart" as well as catchy originals such as "Sister Ray Charles."
Last year, JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound exhibited their edgy take on modern soul with shows at the Firebird and Off Broadway, both to exuberant crowds. The group also visited the KDHX studios in July 2011 to perform several unique versions of their diverse catalogue including "Missing Things" with guest musician Gabriel Stutz on steel guitar.
This time, the band burns through the title track to the new album, reworks their notorious Wilco cover and digs deep into the garage for an unexpected and excellent Clash-inspired cover of "Brand New Cadillac," originally written and recorded by Vince Taylor.
A scheduled winter show at the Pageant, with headliner JJ Grey, marked the expansion of a fan base -- one that already includes the likes of Chicago mayor, Rahm Emanuel -- that JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound has earned with its post-punk influenced style and charismatic stage presence.
All photos by Chris Bay. See more at his Flickr stream.