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Listen to a new Dark Blue song, “Here On My Street”

Dark Blue | Photo courtesy of the artist
Dark Blue | Photo courtesy of the artist

Philly’s Dark Blue are Clockcleaner’s John Sharkey III, Paint It Black/Ceremony’s Andy Nelson and Strand of Oaks’ drummer Mike Sneeringer. In May, the band released their debut 7-inch single for Jade Tree, “Just Another Night With The Boys.” This week they announced their debut full length, Pure Reality. Continue reading →

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Why you should listen to Bear in Heaven’s new album in a thunderstorm

Bear in Heaven | Photo by  Shawn Brackbill
Bear in Heaven | Photo by Shawn Brackbill

Bear In Heaven’s latest record, Time is Over One Day Old, has a telling song called “Dissolve the Walls.” It song starts off as a faraway confusion of conversation, blitzy synth running down a long tunnel as an upbeat womanly chorus chants: “Let the walls dissolve/ till there’s no room at all/ there’s no ceiling, no floor/ no windows, no door.”

Given this particular track and the cover art of the 2014 album (on which I can’t help but see a galactic rolling paper), you might think you could easily file it under ‘other worldly weirdness,’ right next to 2001: A Space Odyssey. But the group never has stopped with just one sonic style compartment, so you really can’t file this album as a whole under anything (and not next to any of the group’s previous releases, either).

“We’re always talking about output or creation, so it’s certainly not this, ‘alright, let’s definitely make this an effort to strip things back…’” says Adam Wills, guitarist and co-founder of Bear in Heaven, and writer of the song. The group, which headlines Johnny Brenda’s tonight, began 10 years ago as a project between Wills and co-founder/vocalist Jon Philpot. Continue reading →

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Philly native Orrin Evans talks about paying tribute to a friend in Liberation Blues

Orin Evans | Photo by Jimmy Katz
Orrin Evans | Photo by Jimmy Katz

It was a time before cell phones when Orrin Evans moved to New York City in 1996 with friend and trumpeter Duane Eubanks. So when he’d meet other musicians on the scene he’d simply tell them, “Call me at Duane’s crib if you need to find me.” The only problem was that Evans and Eubanks had been preceded by another Philadelphian named Dwayne a few years earlier – bassist Dwayne Burno. Evans realized his mistake when he received a phone call from the none-too-pleased bassist, who skipped past the pleasantries and proceeded to play an answering machine full of messages intended for the young pianist. Continue reading →

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Clocked In: A conversation about the difficulties of working and touring with Little Big League’s Michelle Zauner

little big league

I called Michelle Zauner on the phone a couple weeks ago and this is what she said to me: “I forgot this was happening.”

It is easy to forget things are happening, especially in the summer. Plus Zauner was on vacation, in Oregon, the state where she grew up and where she lived before attending college at Bryn Mawr, before making Philadelphia her home and before starting the band Little Big League.

It was recently announced that Little Big League signed with Run For Cover, the Boston label that released the new album by fellow Philadelphians Modern Baseball, You’re Gonna Miss It All. A new Little Big League LP, the follow-up to the well-received These Are Good People (Tiny Engines; 2013), is expected to arrive later this year.

In addition to her work as the singer and guitarist in Little Big League, Zauner also makes music under the name Japanese Breakfast. Last month, the Seagreen Records label released her cassette American Sound & Where Is My Great Big Feeling?

Zauner is clearly very busy with music, but when she’s not on tour, she works elsewhere. For this new installment of Clocked In, we spoke with Zauner about her non-music-related work history, from clerical work at her dad’s truck broker business, to bossing a grill at Bryn Mawr, to holding down the comic shop Brave New Worlds. Continue reading →

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Listen to A Day Without Love and Uncle/Father Oscar’s split EP A Day Without Oscar

A Day Without Love
Photo via facebook.com/adaywithoutlovemusic

Local bands A Day Without Love and Uncle/Father Oscar recently released a split EP, fittingly titled A Day Without Oscar. Alt-rock four-piece A Day Without Love, who just released their latest EP Confessions of the Innocent Mind earlier this year, starts out the EP with “Lost Children,” a song with the same apocalyptic feeling the band explored on Innocent Mind. However, during ”Broken Bridge”, the band puts on a more intense rock vibe, a slightly new direction.

Also featured on the bill is Uncle/ Father Oscar, whose band name is an awesome, hopefully intentional reference to Arrested Developement. Continue reading →

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A trio of Tedeschi Trucks Band performances with special guests on the bill at Keswick

Photo by Mark Seliger
Tedeschi Trucks Band photo by Mark Seliger

Tedeschi Trucks Band fans, rejoice! WXPN Welcomes the blues rock ensemble, currently touring in support of their 2013 release, Made up Mind, to the Keswick Theatre. They will be headlining three nights of performances this December with special opening guests on each bill. Continue reading →