There are few singers in today’s multitudes of rock acts with a voice as distinctive, layered, and emotionally exposed as Chicago's Dylan Rice. Growing up an outsider in the blue laws of Utah, Dylan overcame his Episcopalian choir-boy desolation by clinging to his Fender Strat and reveling in the moody Brit-pop of crooners like Morrissey, Dave Gahan, and Peter Murphy. Mix that with a penchant for writing fevered folk-rock melodies in the spirit of Chris Isaak, Cowboy Junkies, and Camper Van Beethoven, and you have a rare talent with a singular voice that's all his own.
Fast forward to late-90's Chicago, where, after graduating from Northwestern University's poetry writing program, Dylan fronted various rock acts in the city's club and festival scene. From there Dylan quickly emerged as a passionate live performer with a knack for writing memorable hooks combined with smart, character-driven storytelling. But it was the release of his debut "Wandering Eyes"—a playful homage to the world of scorned lovers—that really put him on the indie rock map. The CD captured critical praise in local and national media, making The Advocate’s "Top 10 Indie CD's" list and winning an Outmusic Award for "Best Debut Recording." Dylan eventually caught the attention of Columbia Records, which chose his song "The Lie" for the "Music With A Twist: Revolutions" (2007) compilation, alongside The Gossip, Sarah Bettens, and Ivri Lider.
Riding on the creative momentum of "Wandering Eyes," Dylan has teamed up again with producer Blaise Barton (Bob Dylan, Liz Phair) for the follow-up CD, "Electric Grids & Concrete Towers," recorded over a 3 year period at Joyride Studios in Chicago. Featuring collaborations with Wilco's John Stirratt ("Motel Daughters"), Polish jazz chanteuse Grazyna Auguscik ("Eggshells & Landmines"), Northwestern-trained guitarist Dave Mendez, and jazz-inflected drummer Larry Brown, "Electric Grids & Concrete Towers" traverses a range of literal and emotional landscapes. Some are real, some fantastic, but all are rife with sexual and religious tension: from the gay underground in Papal Rome...to tragicomic laundry workers in an Interstate 80 Nevada motel; from a bisexual experience at Judgment Day...to mile-high pleasure seekers on a doomed airliner. Slated for release in late 2009/early 2010, "Electric Grids" will secure Dylan's reputation in the rock world as one of its most promising and illuminating singer-songwriters. "Electric Grids" will turn plenty of heads. Let the buzz begin.
"It's been more than five years, but 'Electric Grids & Concrete Towers'...has finally arrived. The jangly alt-country track 'Motel Daughters' features the handiwork of Wilco's John Stirratt while 'Eggshells & Landmines' is equal parts heaven and heartbreak."
-- Time Out Chicago (Featured review)
"Dylan Rice's deep, rich voice has the kind of natural gravitational pull singers dream of. Your ears can't turn away. This collection of tracks puts the voice front and center, right where it should be."
-- Matt Spiegel, Founding Producer, NPR's Sound Opinions
"Dylan Rice once again creates an album of emotional songs with powerful lyrics that showcase his distinctive voice."
-- Matt Farber, Founder of MTV's LOGO and Music With A Twist
"On his much-anticipated sophomore outing, 'Electric Grids & Concrete Towers,' Dylan Rice delivers timeless pop rock."