The Key’s Year-End Mania: Kurt Vile shares his favorite songs and albums of the year with XPN’s Mike Vasilikos

Kurt Vile | photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN |

Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2016 incredible. Today, we get the best songs and best albums Kurt Vile heard in 2016 — along with an interview from XPN’s Mike Vasilikos.

Philly’s constant hitmaker Kurt Vile appeared on the air on WXPN this week for a wide-reaching conversation with host Mike Vasilikos recapping his 2016. In the mix, he shared some of his favorite music of the year.

As far as albums, Vile cited Steve Gunn’s Eyes on the Lines – “he’s from my hometown of Lansdowne, a fingerpicking guitar player, a likeminded fellow,” says Vile. He also cited Nathan Bowles’ Whole & Cloven – “he’s hypnotic on the banjo as well as the drums,” says Vile.” “And he also turned me on to a really good banjo company called Buckeye Banjo, and that’s what I play on ‘I’m An Outlaw.'” Lastly, he expressed admiration for Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ Skeleton Tree, which he called “a devastating record, very sad.” Check out all those albums below, via a Spotify playlist.

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Grabbing beers with Spill on the eve of their album release

Spill | photo via

Andrew Gelburd, Marco Florey and Brandon Gepfer decided that, after the end of their previous project (emo-punks Placeholder), they wanted to keep going together, but didn’t feel right continuing under that band name. Fast-forward to today in December of 2016. Their new project Spill just released its first full length, Top Ten, via No Sleep Records.

“I’m feeling pretty good,” guitarist / vocalist Gepfer says. “I’m happy to finally have it out there and to be able to touch the physical product.”

After initially tracking it in March at the Headroom with Kyle Pulley, the band spent their summer shopping the record to labels, finally inking a deal with No Sleep, whose stable has included The Wonder Years, Balance and Composure, La Dispute and more.

“It was a lot like applying to college back in ’07,” Gepfer says. “A lot of wait lists, but when I finally got accepted to one I really felt a part of the team and family, and became proud. Parents were nervous, but I knew it was the perfect fit.” Continue reading →


Watch Carroll top off their “blue period” with the tranquil “Private Moon” on the latest Shaking Through

Carroll | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN |
Carroll | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN |

Miner Street Recordings’ music production web series Shaking Through welcomed the Philly-by-way-of-Minneapolis psych-rockers of Carroll to its most recent episode. In a way, it was a welcome home for the group since their 2014 single “Bad Water” was recorded with Miner Street’s Jon Low. Continue reading →


Just Announced: Sheer Mag, Tigers Jaw and more come to Boot and Saddle for charity “Peace and Noise” series in January

Boot and Saddle can always be counted on to host killer shows and bring together good people for good causes whenever the chance comes their way.

This January is no different: the South Philly music venue just announced a three- series in January called “Peace and Noise.” Each show will benefit a charity of the headliners choice. Tom May and Greg Barnett of The Menzingers open it up on January 11th, Sheer Mag continues on the 18th and an acoustic set by Tigers Jaw on the 25th. Continue reading →


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Mac Miller at The Fillmore, Rosali at Ortlieb’s, Afroman at Kung Fu Necktie and more

Mac Miller | photo via facebook
Mac Miller | photo via facebook

Pittsburgh rapper Mac Miller is making his way through Philadelphia tonight in support of his September 2016 release The Divine Feminine. Come support the Pennsylvania native on the tour for his fourth studio album. Tickets and information can be found on the WXPN Concert Calendar. Check out the video for his Anderson .Paak collab “Dang” below. Continue reading →


Give yourself to the introspection in Clap Your Hands Say Yeah’s new “Fireproof”

Alec Ounsworth of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah | photo by Michael Regan | via NPR Music

Philly band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah is back with “Fireproof,” the first single released off their forthcoming record The Tourist. This plucky synth-heavy track details the dangers of being “fireproof,” or overly confident. The song features numerous bass and vocal driven buildups that trail off into instrumental interludes, giving way to introspection on the end of both listeners and singer Alec Ounsworth. Continue reading →


Just Announced: PWR BTTM returns to PhilaMOCA in February

PWR BTTM | Photo by Michelle Montgomery for WXPN |

New York queer punk duo PWR BTTM is headlining a show at PHilaMOCA on Friday, February 17th. The band just finished a fall tour showcasing music from 2015’s outstanding Ugly Cherries LP. The band will be joined by Mal Blum & The Blums and Naked Giants, and tickets go on sale at 12 p.m. on Wednesday the 14th of December . You can get more information and tickets for this all ages event at the WXPN Concert Calendar. Watch the video for “I Wanna Boi” below. Continue reading →


Tonight’s Concert Pick: You Won’t at Johnny Brenda’s

You Won't | photo via
You Won’t | photo via

Massachusetts indie-folk duo You Won’t is rolling through Philly tonight for a show at Johnny Brenda’s. Opening the show will be Philly psych-pop duo Carol Cleveland Sings and The Suitcase Junket. The latter has been touring with them since the April 2016 release of their record Revolutionaries. Get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar and check out the video for “Ya Ya Ya” off their latest LP below. Continue reading →