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The Aluminum Group

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Biography

Named in honor of a line of furniture designed by Charles and Ray Eames, the Chicago-based chamber-pop outfit the Aluminum Group was led by brothers John and Frank Navin, longtime staples of the Wicker Park music scene who first surfaced in 1983 as members of the hardcore band Women in Love. Always harboring a secret affecton for the music of the Carpenters and Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66, the Navins eventually formed the Aluminum Group, stubbornly pursuing their brand of lushly orchestrated pop until the sound actually became newly fashionable during the mid-1990s. Three years after self-releasing the lackluster Wonder Boy in 1995, the band — also featuring guitarist John Ridenour, keyboardist Liz Conant, bassist Eddie Carlson and drummer John Blaha — issued their superb sophomore LP Plano on local indie Minty Fresh. The Jim O'Rourke-produced Pedals followed in 1999; Pelo was issued a year later.