“I’ve been blinded by the reflection off the lake,” Emily Massey sings on the title track of Slow Pulp’s new LP, Yard. “The neighbors hear me singing, I don’t care ’cause I’m much too baked.” Massey was blinded by the light in a real sense during the band’s set at Lincoln Square’s Square Roots Festival in July; facing the full force of the late-afternoon sun from the main stage, she thanked a fan for borrowed sunglasses.

There were plenty in the crowd who would have gladly shared their shades. Slow Pulp arguably outdrew that night’s headliner, Real Estate, and quite a few fans could be seen singing along — signs of the growing following the winsome alt-rock four-piece (Massey, guitarist Henry Stoehr, bassist Alex Leeds, and drummer Teddy Mathews) has built in the five years since relocating from Madison to Chicago. That’s in spite of the fact that their first full-length album, Moveys, was released in October 2020, when live shows were off the table.

If the band picked up any rust during the pandemic pause, it’s shaken it off with ease. Even in a street fest atmosphere, Massey and her bandmates display total control of the crowd with their fuzzy guitars and sly lyrics. Their fans may not have known all the words to the new material this summer (Yard was due out September 29), but they surely will by the time Slow Pulp headlines Thalia Hall on November 11.

Photograph: Kelsey Hart

Divino Niño
The Latin-tinged indie-pop quintet comes home from its fall tour for a headlining set at Metro, with support from fellow locals Victor Internet and Heartgaze. Oct. 19

Photograph: Alexa Viscius

The Chicago post-punkers gained wider attention this summer with the first singles off third LP Careful!, their first on the Sub Pop label. They play Thalia Hall before heading out on a European tour. Oct. 26

Photograph: Lloyd Bishop/NBC

Liz Phair
The Winnetka native, among the most famous products of the ’90s Wicker Park music scene, joins the trend of Gen X album anniversary tours, playing 1993’s Exile in Guyville (plus some more fan favorites) at the Chicago Theatre. Nov. 18