Claypool's Musical Mutant Mischief

Review: Les Claypool's rocks The Riv

Les Claypool brought the sideshow to center stage Saturday night at The Riv. The Oddity Faire: A Mutated Mini Fest entertained with the strange, complete with intermissions any circus would be happy to house. Fire breathing, disappearing drill bits, cloaked strings, and a light up tuba were just some of the unique tidbits that dotted the evening's performances.

See Photos from the Show

Early this month, Les Claypool began his tour supporting his latest release, Of Fungi and Foe. The tour has hosted a variety of opening acts including Devotchka, Saul Williams, and Secret Chiefs 3, all of whom appeared at Saturday's show.

Costumes and unusual instruments were a common thread weaving through an array of fantastic sounds. The openers built a steady foundation, climaxing with Devotchka's performance of "How it Ends," the title track from their 2004 album highlighted in trailers for Little Miss Sunshine and Gears of War 2.

The eerie album art from Claypool's Of Fungi and Foe provided an appropriate backdrop for Les and his band of masked musicians. The moody atmosphere of greens and blues complemented the abstract styling of Claypool. His extended set crept toward midnight, pleasing fans looking for a heaping portion from the bass guitar's master.

 The set included a percussion battle, some xylophone tinkering, and a performance of the latest single "Mushroom Men".

 Maureen Vana is a member of the NBC Chicago Street Team blog. Check out more of her concert photos at

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