Music » Livewire

Jimmy Chamberlin Complex

With Wake Up and And Say We Did. Saturday, May 7, at the Agora Theatre.


Jimmy Chamberlin Complex
  • Jimmy Chamberlin Complex
As a Smashing Pumpkin, drummer Jimmy Chamberlin undercut his bombastic backbeat with a smack habit that got him fired. But his Complex cuts alternative rock with jazz, à la Weather Report, Bitches Brew, and Tortoise, to produce something coolly unstoppable.

Pummeling, rolling, sometimes just pattering, Chamberlin and co-writer/bassist Billy Mohler mostly lay down jazzy, jammy instrumentals that act as expansive rock epics. "Owed to Darryl" rips with Mohler's elemental bass figures, Chamberlin's ghostly yet acrobatic stick work, Sean Woolstenhulme's blazing guitar, and Adam Benjamin's free-floating keyboard jabberwocky. Former Catherine Wheel frontman Rob Dickinson lends throaty grit to the biting title track and roughly croons the life-affirming undertow of "Love Is Real." Elsewhere, starlight guitars prick and pierce dark synth sweeps on "Lokicat," on which a subdued Billy Corgan guests, sighing tragic, Chamberlin-penned musings to the night sky.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.