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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Paul Gless Group at Ortlieb’s, JD McPherson at World Cafe Live, Up the Chain at MilkBoy and more

Paul Gless | via paulgiessmusic.com
Paul Gless | via paulgiessmusic.com

Bringing back some of the jazz history of the newly-remodeled Ortlieb’s, evocative Philly trumpet player Paul Gless plays a set tonight with his eight-piece band. His music ranges from interpretations of songs he heard growing up in a Unitarian Universalist church and emotive, introspective compositions. Outside of this group, Gless’ work has pushed the boundaries of what jazz can be, incorporating electronic textures and synthesizer sounds, and his trumpet playing has scored independent short films – including the surreal Des Images Clairesby Tailor Wilcox, where the score has a sultry Hollywood jazz vibe. Joining the Paul Gless Group tonight is Tom Moon’s Ensemble Novo. Tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Ariel Pink sparkled at Union Transfer

Ariel Pink
Ariel Pink | Photo by Kate McCann | katemccannphotography.com

If the first things you noticed about Ariel Pink were his royal blue-spiked heels, you were about to get doused in glitter. The rest of Union Transfer probably saw his messy bun, bouncing as he walked, as they watched from a distance. “We are Ariel Pink, and this is White Freckles,” he said as a frantic guitar began. Immediately there was glitter. A mosh pit of fans psyched off his new release, pom pom, began jumping and tossing entire jugs of glitter over the crowd.

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Dice Raw’s hip-hop musical The Last Jimmy will show at the Prince Theater next month

Photo by John Vettese
Photo by John Vettese

After the death of the Prince Theater’s board chairman and chief fundraiser, Herb Lotman, it seemed that the theater would be closing its doors for good. But next month, the Prince will be showcasing a new hip-hop musical, “THE LAST JIMMY!”

Created by local rapper and Roots affiliate Dice Raw, it is based on his socially-charged Jimmy’s Back mixtape, which is a call-to-arms against mass incarceration. The mixtape and musical were inspired by Dr. Michelle Alexander’s book The New Jim Crow, a study of race and the American prison system.  Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Bird Watcher at Johnny Brenda’s, Le Fits at Kung Fu Necktie, Bettye Lavette at World Cafe Live

Bird Watcher

Bird Watcher | photo via Facebook

Local indie rock / folk group Bird Watcher headline Johnny Brenda’s tonight. Founded by the duo of Jesse Soifer and Julian Booker (the latter also the host of Sleepy Hollow on Sunday mornings), Bird Watcher is now a full band and will be performing new songs taken from an upcoming full-length. Watch their video for “All You Suburban Mothers, I Depart Thee!” below and pick up tickets for the 21+ show with Dylan Jane and Ortolan here.

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The Tallest Man on Earth will headline the Tower Theater with a full band

The Tallest Man on Earth | via DeadOceans.com
The Tallest Man on Earth | via DeadOceans.com

Kristian Matsson, otherwise known as The Tallest Man on Earth, has just announced an extensive upcoming tour, in which he will grace the Tower Theater come May 16, a few days after the release of his upcoming album Dark Bird Is Home. This is the latest release since 2012′s There’s No Leaving NowTickets will go on sale on Friday, Feb. 27.

Comparable to the likes of Bon Iver and Sufjan Stevens, the Swedish singer-songwriter has given us a taste of the upcoming album with “Sagres,” a notably more involved track than his earlier, acoustic-centric material. Continue reading →

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Listen to The Juliana Hatfield 3′s first album in two decades

Juliana Hatfield Three | Photo by Johnny Anguish
Juliana Hatfield Three | Photo by Johnny Anguish

Nearly two decades after their hit 1993 album Become What You Are, The Juliana Hatfield 3 have reunited and released Whatever, My Love, through Connecticut label American Laundromat Records. Though Hatfield herself has released an outstanding string of solo work over the years, some of her biggest hits (“My Sister,” “Spin The Bottle”) are from that album with The Three. And as we heard in the album – released last Tuesday and streaming on the American Laundromat website – it sounds like the trio hasn’t missed a beat. Continue reading →