Author Archives: Katrina Murray

Singer-songwriter Abi Reimold celebrates her EP release this Saturday at Hong Kong Garden

Abi Reimold | Photo courtesy of the artist

Abi Reimold | Photo courtesy of the artist

Philly-based songstress Abi Reimold – also a photographer and occasional contributor to The Key – will celebrate the arrival of her new EP FORGET this Saturday at Hong Kong Garden and the new set of tracks isn’t dark for dark’s sake; it’s beauty and pain all rolled into one haunting confessional. There’s even a sense of fear on “Forget” as she repeats “I’m scared I’ll forget you” over a fleeting guitar riff ascends into fuzzy reverb before ending with a few solemn bass notes. Get the EP here and more details on the show here. Listen to “Your Shoes” below.

Review: Us Natives’ Oddiology

Artwork courtesy of the artist

Artwork courtesy of the artist

Local production duo ILL Clinton and John E. Cab have joined forces as Us Natives to create a super-compilation of instrumental tracks crafted by beatmakers all over the country for Oddiology. No rappers, just beats and it’s pretty impressive.

Opening track “War Chant” by Expo is half lullaby (thanks to a Fiona Apple sample) and half dubstep tribal chant as the title suggests and definitely has a Kanye West “Power” vibe to it. HLX’s “Black/White Mute” sounds like something a Southern rapper would want to have screwed and chopped as an outro to a song or maybe even an interlude. The pace picks up with John E. Cab whose track “How Ya Been” is designed to suit the best of hard-hitting flows and the electric guitar solo brings some grit and genre-bending edge to the table. Hirass goes for drama and cinematic vibes with “Werewolf” which opens up quietly only to expand into intergalactic territory.

You could almost hear Eminem having a “Berzerk”-esque lyrical fit on Carl Kavorkian’s hard rock instrumental “Slap Dance Extravaganza”. Coldplay lovers will certainly enjoy “Ambitions of Ruling the World” which features a loop of Chris Martin singing “when I ruled the world” from the band’s hit “Viva la Vida”. The rest of the record turns to soul (Drone Jones’ “Trouble”) and even minimalist delivery suited for a Drake-like ( think “Successful” or “Pound Cake”) flow on Krooked Smilez’ “Somewhere Else”.

Overall, this compilation’s fresh and exciting instrumentals are indicative of the fact that the music can speak volumes alone even without a single word spoken or sung.

Singer-songwriter Madalean Gauze depicts the reality of “American War”

Photo via facebook.com/madaleangauzemusic

Photo via facebook.com/madaleangauzemusic

There’s a lot going on in Madalean Gauze‘s “American War”. The Philly singer-songwriter sings “I’ll give you everything, but you can’t take my mind”. War is certainly a sensitive topic but Gauze won’t let her thoughts and perceptions of it be spoon-fed to her. Then, “the bad man’s coughing up blood and everybody’s fine” lyric may point to how much the public can tolerate enemy suffering, adhering to an us vs. them mentality.

For a few seconds, we get a happy “Sgt. Pepper”-esque melody shift before it jolts back into its original shape and finds Gauze proclaiming “see everything looks fine, when you’re locked inside a lie/ but the lie is the center of the war” leading to a bombastic instrumental break.

Although the music alternates between loud and quiet, one thing remains constant: Gauze’s stellar voice that’s as pleasant as a songbird juxtaposed with the conflict she sings of. Listen below and check out the rest of American War EP – which features Dave Hartley and Pat Berkery of The War on Drugs, and Dean Sabatino and Dandrew Stevens of Dead Milkmen – via Bandcamp here.

Tonight’s Concert Picks: Daniel Rossen at Underground Arts, S. Carey at Boot and Saddle, I Break Horses at Johnny Brenda’s

Photo courtesy of the artist

Photo courtesy of the artist

He may be best known as one-fourth of Grizzly Bear, but tonight Daniel Rossen will bask in the solo spotlight at Underground Arts. Rossen released his first solo EP Silent Hour/Golden Mile in 2012, which showcased his attention to mood, atmosphere and honest lyricism. Listen to “Silent Song” below and get tickets here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Roof Doctor at Kung Fu Necktie and Nina Persson at World Café Live

Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold

Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold

Philly’s Roof Doctor will bring its eclectic blend of surf, punk and indie rock to Kung Fu Necktie tonight. Their latest album Mobile Freedom Home arrived late last month just in time for Spring. Check out “Bulldog” below and get $5 tickets at the door before showtime at 8pm.

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You Do You derive some acoustic bliss from disco gem “Lil Birdie” in Random Tea Session

Photo by Tony Unander via facebook.com/youdoyoumusic

Photo by Tony Unander via facebook.com/youdoyoumusic

According to their Bandcamp page, Philly pop five-piece You Do You began “Lil Birdie” as a slow blues song – which is very different from how the song turned out on the band’s 2014 EP The Sweet Sounds of the Funky Sounds.

YDY’s performance kicks off the new season of Random Tea Session videos, and the band restores the uptempo disco track to its previous form. In this version of the song, singer/songwriter Katie Feeney’s vocal performance is raw, untouched, and straight from the gut as she nails each melisma. Marvel at this acoustic rendition or dance to the original below.

Catch You Do You live at their upcoming local shows: April 15th at Jose Pistolas (FREE) and April 27th at Boot and Saddle (tickets here).

“Go Back to San Francisco” with Philly newcomers Tangiers

Photo via facebook.com/tangiersband

Photo via facebook.com/tangiersband

There’s something about melodic lo-fi indie-pop that’s just inherently fun and Tangiers take full advantage of this on their debut EP End of the World. Released on April 1st, the record is still in its infancy but “Go Back to San Francisco” is a clear standout that’s poppy, carefree, and full of boy-girl harmonies you can’t help but sing along with. And with spring in the air who could deny a little San Francisco? Check it out below.