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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Sonnder at Bourbon and Branch, Mercury Radio Theater at Underground Arts, W.C. Lindsay at Union Transfer

Sonnder
Sonnder | photo via Facebook

Early this month, local atmospheric rockers Sonnder kicked off a monthly singles project – one new digital track a month, culminating in a full album by December. The song “Drifter,” which kicked the series off, takes a more subdued and haunting approach to their sound compared to the band’s vibrant Thief EP from 2014, but where it goes from here is a total mystery – and we’re totally into following the journey. The band plays Bourbon and Branch in Northern Liberties tonight; tickets and information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Lia Ices at Boot and Saddle, Philebrity Awards at Johnny Brenda’s, Chris Zurich at 2nd State Lounge

Lia Ices | photo by Michelle Montgomery | michellemontgomeryphotography.com
Lia Ices | photo by Michelle Montgomery | michellemontgomeryphotography.com

Experimental pop singer-songwriter Lia Ices takes to the stage at Boot and Saddle tonight. Her third LP, Ices, was released last year and signified a sonic shift for the New England bred, SoCal based artist – a move away from haunting piano compositions and toward alluring electronic jams. It was highlighted on NPR Music at several points throughout the year, including a First Listen showcase and a session on World Cafe with David Dye. Watch a video of “Higher” recorded during the Cafe session below, and get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker packed the house at World Cafe Live

Cracker | Photo by Chris Sikich | countfeed.tumblr.com
Cracker | Photo by Chris Sikich | countfeed.tumblr.com

The middle of January in Philadelphia means its time for one of the best live one-two rock ’n’ roll punches around — Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker. World Café played host to their sold-out performances Saturday and both bands were at the top of their game. Led by David Lowery, one of the foremost crusaders for fair compensation for musicians, they cruised mainly through California settings, transporting their frigid fans to sunny musical highs. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Pick: Rosu Lup, The Chairman Dances and Caroline Reese at World Cafe Live

Rosu Lup
Rosu Lup | photo courtesy of the artist

A solid triple bill of Philly music is setting up shop upstairs at World Cafe Live tonight. The symphonic, ethereal indie-folk outfit Rosu Lup is headlining the show; the project of songwriter Jonathan Stewart released its latest single, “Hem,” last week and is gradually shaping up a followup to their 2013 EP Currents. (Download their Folkadelphia session here.) Joining them are indie rock literati The Chairman Dances, whose 2014 record The Death of Samuel Miller was a conceptual narrative following the life of a single parent from the 50s through the 90s. (Read Kate Bracaglia’s interview with the band here.) Rounding out the lineup is Caroline Reese from Reading, a countrified pop songwriter with strong hooks and an engaging voice. She released her EP The Electric Year last may and also recorded a Folkadelphia session that you can download here. Tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Listen to music from each of the artists below. Continue reading →

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A scorching double-bill from The Vaselines and Amanda X at Johnny Brenda’s

The Vaselines | Photo by Chris Sikich | <a href=http://countfeed.tumblr.com target="_blank">countfeed.tumblr.com</a>
The Vaselines | Photo by Chris Sikich | countfeed.tumblr.com

Last Thursday Scottish punk masters The Vaselines captivated a sold out Johnny Brenda’s. Scorching through a 22-song set, they were a brilliant act to behold. And with Philly-based Amanda X opening, it was a perfect night of rock, both old and new.

Led by the charming duo of Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee, The Vaselines were entertaining in both song and banter. Their works immortalized by Nirvana — “Son of a Gun,” “Molly’s Lips” and “Jesus Doesn’t Want Me for a Sunbeam” — were riveting, with “Jesus” having a seeming air of nuanced poignancy. (And despite a seemingly out-of-place request by the audience of a Nirvana cover, they even played a brief riff from “Come as You Are.”)  Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Pick: Pat Donovan at North Star Bar Victorian Dining Room

Patrick Donovan

Pat Donovan | photo via soundcloud.com

Pat Donovan performs at North Star Bar’s Victorian Dining Room tonight. The recent St. Joe’s University grad released an EP last spring called Directions, marking a turning point in both his personal life and music career. When he’s not working on solo material, Donovan records with his former classmate Ernest Hospodale (E-Hos) for a hip hop / acoustic pop project. More information for tonight’s free show with Armani Lee can be found here. Listen to Directions below.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Laser Background and more at PhilaMOCA, Cheerbleeders at Kung Fu Necktie

Laser Background

Blistering Ephemera Fest continues today at PhilaMOCA with Laser Background and many other acts. Curated by local promoter Nick Duval to celebrate his five years of living in Philadelphia, the festival is a day-long affair with ten bands performing. Headliner Laser Background had a busy 2014, playing shows with Mac DeMarco, Jamaican Queens, White Fence just to name a few. More information on the show can be found here. Watch Laser Background perform “Fizzy Lifting Drinks” below.

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