Vortis has long been a mainstay of Chicago’s thriving Punk Rock underground, releasing quality albums for over two decades. Formed in 2000, the band released two albums via Chicago-based Thick Records fronted by F.T. (a.k.a. “the Fellow Traveler” Michael Weinstein, a 60-year old professor of political philosophy at Purdue University). The Professor eventually left, and sadly passed, but the band played on. Vortis kicked into higher gear with subsequent lineup changes and the band self-released four more albums.
On their latest release, an album entitled The Miasmic Years, the band their assault against complacency and institutional injustice. With 17 furious tracks that clock in at under 30 minutes, the new release underscores both the band’s prescience (“Quarantine,” inspired by the true-life story of a luxury line stricken by an onboard virus which predates the pandemic) and its ability to reshape the past into cogent commentary on today’s headlines. Their “Covid Blues” is a reinterpretation of Essie Jenkins’ “1919 Influenza Blues,” about the epidemic that decimated a generation during Woodrow Wilson’s presidency.
Recorded during the pandemic on a DIY budget and self-released, The Miasmic Years takes aim at a working class blind to its own plight on “Everything’s Going My Way,” translates generational angst into a swing blues ala’ Black Flag via “Seeing Red,” and delineates American divisiveness on “Accretion.”
Stream The Miasmic Years below and keep checking back for more from Vortis!
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