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The Ghost In You’s new video for “Singing Sirens” will break your heart

The Ghost In You

The Ghost in You | photo courtesy of the artist

The Ghost In You‘s Billy Pollard not only excels at crafting intimate bedroom songs, he also has a talent for creating animated videos on his Nintendo DS.  In 2011 he made a “flipnote studio” visual for a demo version of his song “Singing Sirens” off of Wet Wood, but just this month fastened the official album cut of the track to video instead.  The clip is reminiscent of The Snowman, showing a lonely snowman looking into a frosted window at a couple snuggling in front of a (presumably) crackling fire.  Watch the video below and get Wet Wood here. Continue reading →

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The Week’s Best Free MP3s, incl. Alvvays, Caroline Rose, The Fleeting Ends and more

Alvvays

Alvvays | Photo by Eric Schuman

Alvvays recorded a special live session for this week’s Indie Rock Hit Parade.  The Toronto outfit was in town a couple of weeks ago to support its self-titled debut and performed two cuts from the LP along with an unreleased new one called “New Haircut.”  Stream and download the session below.

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Go underground in “Rather Die,” an experimental hiphop collaboration between Nah and GIVV

Nah | Photo by Jonathan Minto
Nah | Photo by Jonathan Minto

Experimental Philly-via-Lancaster outfit Nah released released their record WOE in August, a diverse set featuring guest vocalists Prince Asshole, GIVV, and Tzii, and showing a range in hip hop styles, sometimes utilizing one-hit sampling and white noise as in “Knelt Over Body”, and some using aggressively arpeggiating synths with a smack-down drum beat like in “Born.” One of the standout tracks on the album, however, was one of Nah’s collaborations with GIVV, “Rather Die.” Continue reading →

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Folkadelphia Session: Andrew Jackson Jihad

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In my mind and for at least a good chunk of years now, Andrew Jackson Jihad have occupied a musical sector between sweaty basement punk rock and outspoken brash folk (I picture Billy Bragg or even Woody Guthrie) and I guess, the two are not so very different after all. Lyrically driven, songs with meaning, songs with humor, songs with a message, songs about life and living it and being a part of the world. They can be action oriented, acidic in delivery, absurd and totally irreverent in narrative, and sometimes very sweet. Many have done it before AJJ and many will do it after – to speak openly, to sing loudly, to share widely, but AJJ does it with a certain style unique to them. I became a fan late in the game and it’s with their new record, Christmas Island, that the band has totally made me a through and through devotee (I’m having a blast digging into the back catalogue), but even before this point, the band held a weighty stature for me in my imagined hierarcy of music. I always pictured AJJ live performances to be on par with religious congregations, with people chanting, waving their hands and moving wildly, maybe even violently. I see the room as blur of bodies and raw sensory stimuli where my own senses can’t quite get a solid read on anything. But it’s the unknowingness, the uncertainty, the fever pitch of it all, that makes the performance relevatory. I think folks would agree with that scene and I know I’ve heard many dazzled accounts by attendees of AJJ concerts.
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WKDU’s Electronic Music Marathon sets now available online!

WKDU Electronic Music Marathon
Some of the DJ setup for WDKU’s Electronic Music Marathon

From October 11th to the 13tg, Drexel’s student-run radio station WKDU hosted their 11th annual Electronic Music Marathon, featuring DJs from all over the city live mixing on the show for dedicated timeslates over the entire course of the weekend. Listeners were asked to donate to the event as well, which benefited Musicopia and Village of Arts & Humanities, two local non-profit organizations that focus on promoting music and the arts in Philadelphia and exposing kids to music and the positive effects and influence it can have. Continue reading →

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The Key Studio Sessions: Dark Blue

While setting up for his Key Studio Session, John Sharkey III of Dark Blue remarked that he’d just revisited some of his old Echo and the Bunnymen records. “People keep comparing my voice to Ian McCulloch, so I figured I should listen,” he said. “Man. They wrote some fantastic songs.” While it might be a stretch to call Dark Blue a direct descendent of the Bunnymen – or any post punk band specific, despite what your Joy Division meter might be telling you – one commonality they share is placing mood and ambiance at an equal level of importance as tight songwriting. Continue reading →

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MusicNotes from the XPN Morning Show: Bono’s surgery forces U2 to postpone “Tonight Show” residency, & watch Marcus Mumford, Elvis Costello & Dawes’ Taylor Goldsmith- aka “New Basement Tapes” perform on Ellen

Bono

Bono has injured his arm an apparent cycling accident in New York’s Central Park which will require surgery to repair, and has forced the postponement of U2′s week-long residency on the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon this week. Continue reading →

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Carrera Shante is Philly’s next hip-hop soul singer

Carrera Shante | Photo via facebook.com/carshamus
Carrera Shante | Photo via facebook.com/carshamus

Hip Hop Soul is a sub-genre of R&B that fuses soul, blues and gospel sounds over hip-hop beats. Thanks to artist such as Mary J. Blige, TLC, R. Kelly, Montell Jordan, and Jodeci, hip hop soul exploded in the mid 90s and is still considered a classic genre to this day. It seems as if one up-and-coming Philly artist is planning on bringing the vintage sound back to limelight. Throughout the The Vintage Tape, you can hear songbird Carrera Shante impressively using her deeply soulful voice over classic hip hop beats. Continue reading →