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The Revivalists are a knockout alongside American Authors at The Met

The Revivalists | photo by Dylan Eddinger for WXPN | dylaneddinger.com

New Orleans natives The Revivalists played hit after hit for all their Philly friends at the still-new Metropolitan Opera House Saturday night. Supported by Boston’s American Authors, known for their hit “Best Day Of My Life” a couple years back, both bands brought a mostly seated crowd to their feet for the whole night. Featuring a cover of The Killers’ iconic “Mr. Brightside” and several just-released tracks, American Authors continuously thanked The Revivalists for including them on this tour after they played a show together early last year. The catchy pop-rock songs and engaging frontman made for the perfect opener. Continue reading →

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The Extraordinaires have rebooted for 2019, and will play PhilaMOCA next month

The Extraordinaires | courtesy of the artist

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from infamous Philly rockers The Extraordinaires. The band released its last album, Dress for Nasty Weather, back in 2012 and have pretty much kept quiet ever since, its members moving on to new projects. Until now, that is.

This year, Extraordinaires songwriters Jay Purdy and Matt Gibson are bringing the band back. Their entire catalogue, most of which is currently available on Bandcamp, will be released on Spotify next month. But them most exciting piece of news is that in just a few short weeks, we’ll be able to see The Extraordinaires live, as they take the stage at PhilaMOCA on February 6 to revisit their storied past with a deep dive into their catalogue, which reaches back to the early aughts. Continue reading →

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Free at Noon Flashback: Guster gears up for a busy 2019 at World Cafe Live

Guster | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

Guster is about to be extremely busy: in just one short week, the band will release Look Alive, their first album in four years, and head out on an extensive world tour. But this week they’ve been reveling in the calm before the storm, rehearsing new songs, and prepping their live set for a real-life audience. Their official release week festivities began just this afternoon, right here in Philly, as they joined us for a sold-out Free at Noon performance.

Many in the extremely packed audience seemed to be enthusiastic Guster fans (some might have been here for the band’s last Free at Noon, almost exactly four years ago), and their anticipation was palpable as they rushed to fill the room; only increasing with every second of the additional ten-minute wait for the band to come onstage. We soon found out why the band was running late — they have a lot of fancy technological aspects to their performance, some of which it seems like they’re still getting used to. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Phish will play three nights at BB&T Pavilion this summer

Phish | photo by Dylan Eddinger | dylaneddinger.com

If perennial jam scene faves Phish don’t make a multi-night stop in this Philadelphia region, does summer even happen? This year, Trey Anastasio and company will headline three nights at Camden’s BB&T Pavilion on June 28, 29, and 30th. Tickets and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Tedeschi Trucks Band will bring Signs to The Met

Tedeschi Trucks Band | photo by Shervin Lainez | courtesy of the artist

Perennial blues rock favorites Tedeschi Trucks Band recently announced that their new album Signs will be released on February 15, and they’ll be heading out on a tour that includes a stop at the new Met Philadelphia on Feb. 26. Signs will be the band’s fourth studio album, and its lead single “Hard Case” is out now. Tickets for the Philly show are currently on sale. Continue reading →

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Beautiful: The Carole King Musical redeems its showbiz schmaltz with timeless songs

Sarah Bockel as Carole King in Beautiful | photo by Joan Marcus | courtesy of the Kimmel Center

Look up a list of jukebox musicals, and you’ll notice a ridiculous trend; there were more of them in the first five years of the 21st century than there were in the previous three decades.

Part of that is doubtless due to audience demographics, as one generation’s rabid young pop music fans age into another generation’s nostalgic theater-going retirees. Part of it traces to the blockbuster success of Mamma Mia!, the progenitor of the current wave some 20 years ago. Some productions are equally as successful, others are forgettable. Some try to tie together a popular artist’s catalog to a loose fictional storyline (Movin’ Out and its story of Tony, Brenda and Eddie, plucked from the songs of Billy Joel); others have a built-in narrative already (Green Day’s American Idiot). In particularly rare circumstances, you end up with the person who actually wrote and recorded the songs up there singing them back to you in the throes of a moving two-hour soliloquy — though is it fair to call Springsteen on Broadway a jukebox musical?

Amid all of that is Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, which opened at the Academy of Music last night and runs through January 20th.  Continue reading →

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The Week Ahead: Littlun, Aaron Neville, The Revivalists, The Retinas and more

The Retinas | photo via facebook.com/theretinas

We’re at that point of the winter where gigs come in concentrated blocks. So even though you can look below to find more than a dozen suggestions for your concertgoing itinerary this week, most of the action is on Thursday and Saturday. Tonight and tomorrow are mostly quiet, as is next Sunday — which will prove helpful to those of who who are stoked to watch the Eagles take on the New Orleans Saints. In between now and then, get to a gig or two. Here are  Continue reading →