Track Marks: How Illinois Became This Week’s Biggest Band In The World

Mar 19th, 2007 // 5 Comments

Welcome to another edition of Track Marks, in which your Idolators perform an autopsy on the latest band burning up the MP3-blogger charts.

Artist: Illinois
Hometown: Bucks County, Pa.
Album: What The Hell Do I Know? EP, released earlier this month
First blog mention: A Nov. 1, 2006 entry on Exitfare.
The Build-Up: In February, Ace Fu released a handful of free MP3s into the blogosphere–a tactic the label used last fall to build up steam for Annuals, and one that no doubt helped Illinois earn write-ups on the likes of Where Is Helsinki? and Wolf Notes.
The Dam-Break: March 12th kicked off a week-long rally, with Illinois garnering mentions on Muzak for Cybernetics, Side One: Track One and Some Velvet Blog; as of this morning, the group sits on both the “Hot Artists” and “Hot Tracks” lists on
Odds of Backlash: 5-1. We’re still about one year (or one huge-breaking artist) away from an anti-Pennsylvania backlash.
Are They Worthy?: Let’s take those two give-away tracks to task: “Alone Again” is a dark lament with a haunting “ba-ba-ba-bah” refrain, while “Screendoor” is typically pleasant–but hardly socks-knocking–backyard indie-pop. So we’ll split the difference, and wait for the LP.

Illinois – Alone Again [MP3, link expired]
Illinois – Screendoor [MP3, link expired]
Illinois [MySpace]


  1. niwi

    i’ve rarely seen so many annoying facial expressions in one photo before.

  2. MTS

    In order for the backlash to start, people from Philly need to know this band exists. THE BACKLASH BEGINS AT HOME

  3. Poubelle

    So can I start the backlash in my home state of Illinois, then?

  4. Faster

    Philly’s already sweatin’ Illinois. In fact, Illinois played the “Philly Jawn” at SXSW on Saturday 3/17 – the Jawn was a showcase of a bunch of Philly local bands, like Plastic Little (also supadope at the Jawn) and The A Sides, War on Drugs, Relay among many others. There are shots and blog entries about it on and I hear video of the set should be up on early this week. Check it.

  5. MTS

    Bahaha BAAAARF

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