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Birds of Chicago: 2016

Birds of Chicago with "Sunday Supper" host John Platt (photo by Jeremy Rainer)

Birds of Chicago with "Sunday Supper" host John Platt (photo by Jeremy Rainer)

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Allison Russell had a successful career as a member of the Canadian roots quartet, Po' Girl, as did J.T. Nero with his band, J.T. Nero and the Clouds when they met on the West Coast in the early 2000s.

Within a couple of years they had formed Birds of Chicago, and while those other groups still nominally exist, nothing compares to the musical and personal chemistry Allison and J.T. achieve together. Combining Allison's soulful vocals with J.T.'s well-crafted songs, Birds of Chicago hit home with a powerful blend they call "secular gospel."

As he always does, producer Joe Henry brought out the best in them on their new album, Real Midnight.

Coming into Studio A ahead of their appearance at BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival with Josh Ritter and Martha Redbone on Friday, July 8, they proved they didn't need any studio gimmicks to deliver the goods.