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The Week Ahead: The Wombats, PnB Rock, The Dove and the Wolf, Passion Pit and more

PnB Rock at The Roots Picnic | Photo by John Vettese for WXPN

Now this is a bit more like it. Last Tuesday’s edition of The Week Ahead was a bit tighter, a quiet first week of year. This week, though, we’ve got 18 shows for your consideration, from Brit rockers The Wombats at Union Transfer to the heavy atmospherics of True Widow at Johnny Brenda’s, Philly rapper PnB Rock headlining a homecoming gig at The Fillmore, and a lot more. Add into the mix a healthy slate of continuing Philly Loves Bowie Week activity, and you’ve got plenty of reasons not to stay in from the cold. Continue reading →

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Creepoid reveal stacked undercard for final show

Creepoid | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN | silvestography.com

Towards the end of 2017, Philly indie-rockers Creepoid announced they would be playing their final show ever, slated for Saturday, February 17th at Union Transfer. Just recently the group announced the list of openers, a melting pot of noisey acts hailing from Philadelphia and its surrounding areas. While the styles of each opener reflect the various sounds in Creepoid’s own work, the lineup on paper promises an unforgettable final show. Here’s the rundown on the opening acts. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Steely Dan and The Doobie Brothers will play BB&T Pavilion in July

Steely Dan | photo by Brian Rasic for Getty Images | via Pitchfork

Smooth pop / rock staples Steely Dan and The Doobie Brothers have just announced their “Summer of Living Dangerously” tour, a co-headlining jaunt that brings them around North America — including a stop at Camden, NJ’s BB&T Pavilion on Wednesday, July 11th. Tickets go on sale Friday, January 12th at noon, and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Ten ways to celebrate Philly Loves Bowie Week in 2018

David Bowie at Veteran’s Stadium for a pre-show cookout in 1987 | photo by Charles Krupa for the Associated Press | via PhillyVoice

Quick — what cities do you associate with shape-shifting rock icon David Bowie?

London…for sure, it’s where he was born, and where he got his creative start. Berlin…hard to dispute that, it’s where he lived in the late 70s and early 80s, recording his most artistically daring run of albums with Brian Eno.

But the Philadelphia region has just as strong a bond with Bowie. While he was on tour in support of Diamond Dogs, he recorded his July 1974 two-night stand at the Tower Theater, releasing it as the double album David Live. He also worked on his incredibly successful 1975 album Young Americans at Sigma Sound, soaking in the influence of the city’s R&B and soul scenes and and developing a following of “Sigma Kids” — devoted super-fans who hung out in and around the Chinatown studio while Bowie worked inside with Tony Visconti.

In 1987, the North American leg of his ambitious, theatrical Glass Spider stadium tour kicked off with two sold-out nights at Veteran’s Stadium in South Philly. In 1996, he gave an intimate (for Bowie) performance at the Electric Factory on the Earthling tour. And since the mid-thousands, an archive of Bowie’s master tapes from the Sigma years has been housed at Drexel University.

In summary, Bowie clearly loved Philadelphia…and Philly Loves Bowie, as evidenced by Philly Loves Bowie Week becoming an officially-proclaimed municipal happening last year on the anniversary of the rocker’s 2016 passing. It returns this year with 20+ events spread all over the city, from happy hours to film screenings to a closing tribute concert at Union Transfer. So put on your red shoes and dance the blues: here are our picks for ten ways to celebrate Philly Loves Bowie Week. Continue reading →

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Philly Jazz Guide: Top picks for live music around town in January

Bobby Zankel | via PhillyFunGuide

As 2017 gives way to tentative hope for a better (-ish?) New Year, there’s one last bit of misery to report before blocking that appropriately reviled year from our collective memories for good. Just one day after Christmas, singer Michelle Lordi’s Huntingdon Valley home was destroyed in a horrific fire. Michelle, her husband and three children all escaped the flames safely, but everything else was a complete loss. She was back on stage for her regular Wednesday night gig at Vintage Bar & Grill in Abington the next night, so drop by there or for Sunday jazz brunch each week at Walnut Street Café. A GoFundMe page has been set up, and Jazz Bridge is accepting tax-deductible donations to help the family recover. Continue reading →

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Philly MC King Shampz kicks off 2018 with two new singles, “Cigar Smoke” and “Pop Shit”

King Shampz and Azaan | Photo by Bob Sweeney
King Shampz and Azzan | Photo by Bob Sweeney | courtesy of the artist

Philly rapper King Shampz has been on our radar since the 2014 release of his All Hail The King mixtape. For the past couple years, he’s been focused on Dead Wrong Records — the digital label he manages with his brother and production partner Azzan — and building their roster, including impressive Chester spitter Frio.

But to kick off 2018, Shampz dropped two new solo tracks — premiering one on Spitfire Hiphop, and dropping the other on Soundcloud.

Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Vacationer headlines Peace + Noise at Boot & Saddle on 1/24 (the latest in the venue’s month of benefit gigs)

vacationer
Vacationer | photo by Matt Schwartz

After ringing in 2018 at Fishtown’s Frankford Hall with local buddies Commonwealth Choir, Philly’s Vacationer — the electronic pop project of bassist and songwriter Kenny Vasoli — just announced that they will headline Boot & Saddle’s Peace and Noise benefit series on Wednesday, January 24th. They’ll join opening acts Palmas and Younger me on a show that will raise money for Project H.O.M.E., an outreach and advocacy nonprofit that helps Philadelphia’s homeless. Tickets for the 21+ show are $15 and on sale now; more information can be found here. Continue reading →

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The Week Ahead: Shannen Moser, Dream Syndicate, Stratus Quartet, Greg Sover and more

Shannen Moser | photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN | racheldelsordophotography.com

Welcome to 2018, and welcome to our new concert picks! To aid in your advance planning, we’ll be coming at you weekly with a roundup of shows not to miss for the next seven days — hence, The Week Ahead. This week, indie folksinger Shannen Moser kicks off the Lame-O Records residency at Boot & Saddle, while string-laden new music ensemble Stratus Quartet plays World Cafe Live, bluesman Greg Sover hits The Twisted Tail, plus six other shows. Dig in below. Continue reading →

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Listen to Lefty’s Deceiver’s new record, celebrate their return at Boot & Saddle on Friday

Lefty's Deceiver | photo courtesy of the artist
Lefty’s Deceiver | photo courtesy of the artist

You may remember Lefty’s Deceiver as a core staple of the late nineties / early 2000’s Philly indie scene, or maybe you just love some early aughts gumption, and are being introduced now; whatever the case, after a new material absence of fourteen years, Lefty’s Deceiver has returned to tune-making. Continue reading →