DOWNLOAD: The 1900s - Babies (MP3)

1900s

When last we checked in with Chicago's 1900s, the band had just released the first MP3 from their forthcoming new album, Return of the Century, and the band were promising details on a tour. Well the album was released this week and The 1900s have a full set of tour Midwest/East Coast dates, including two next week in NYC: Thursday (11/11) at Mercury Lounge and then Saturday (11/13) at The Rock Shop.

Lyrically, Return of the Century is loosely based on The Incredible String Band's Licorice McKechnie's life after leaving band for a sojurn into the desert and wherabouts unknown. (The video for "Amulet," which you can watch below, is also loosely based on McKechnie's desert trip.) If the concept of concept albums scares you, the record is definitely enjoyable without knowing any of the backstory.

As I wrote before, Return of the Century downlplays the band's previous album's grandiosity just a touch (no oboe interludes this time) but hangs onto its strong points -- classically-constructed pop, gorgeous harmonies and sparkling arrangements. You can download "Babies" at the top of this post and stream the whole thing via a widget at the bottom.

They have no problems recreating their sound live either, definitely check them out if you can. In addition to their upcoming shows, The 1900s will play next month's Belle & Sebastian-curated Bowlie 2 in Summerset, UK. All tour dates are below.

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The 1900s - Return of the Century

The 1900s - Amulet

The 1900s on The Interview Show

The 1900s - 2010 Tour Dates
Fri. Nov. 5 - Chicago, IL @ Reckless Records (Wicker Park in-store - 5:30 PM)
Tue. Nov. 9 - Cincinnati, OH @ The Comet
Wed. Nov. 10 - Pittsburgh, PA @ Brillobox
Thu. Nov. 11 - New York, NY @ Mercury Lounge (early show - 6:30 PM)
Fri. Nov. 12 - Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda's w/ Buried Beds, Tunng
Sat. Nov. 13 - Brooklyn, NY @ The Rock Shop
Sun. Nov. 14 - Cambridge, MA @ Middle East (upstairs)
Fri. Dec. 3 - Chicago, IL @ The Empty Bottle

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