The Astronomer's recently completed 2nd disc, "You Could Be Something When You Disappear", evokes the song construction and lyricism of The Band and mid-period Kinks, while sonically akin to releases by Brian Eno and Brian Wilson. The Astronomer's self-titled debut (available through Carrot Top Records' distributor, CTD Ltd) is a collection of hopeful and naive tales wrapped in rustic orchestrations of pedal steel, vibraphone, upright bass, creaking electronics and floating voice.
Charles Kim has played with bands and aritsts such as Pinetop Seven (Truckstop/Atavistic), Sinister Luck Ensemble (Perishable), Will Oldham (Drag City), Boxhead Ensemble (Atavistic), Ken Vandermark (Atavistic), Pan American (Kranky), Fruit Bats (Sub Pop), and Chris Mills (Powerless Pop). He's also a film, TV, and theatre composer, working for Showtime, Chicago's Redmoon Theatre, and author Joe Meno. Jason Toth has drummed for The Handsome Family (Carrot Top Reords), and Geoff Dolce fronts Chicago's Lacona. The Astronomer has performed Low, Akron/Family, and Canasta.
'Charles Kim certainly ranks as one of Chicago's most prolific songwriters- and one of its best... The beautifully ethereal disc simply called 'The Astronomer', is full of evocative, hushed melodies.' The Onion, January 19, 2006'
(Charles Kim is) one of Chicago's most unsung talents." Time Out Chicago, July 10, 2008
'The Astronomer’s delicate art-pop songs, filigreed with pedal steel, vibraphone, and electronics, have a distinctly otherworldly feel despite their occasional rootsiness—it’s as though Kim learned songwriting by picking up radio signals in low earth orbit.' Chicago Reader, July 10, 2008'
Cinematic space trip Americana!' Marty Lennartz, WXRT 93.1 Chicago
'If you haven't heard, The Astronomer is out with their second album. It's called "You Could Be Something When You Disappear" - and the title track, like much of their work, features hauting melodies and spacious, lush orchestrations. Their captain is Charles Kim - one of Chicago's most respected songwriters and arrangers.' Chicago Public Radio, 2010