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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Son Little at Dilworth Park, War on Women at First Unitarian Church, Sugar Tongue Slim at PhilaMOCA and more

Son Little | Photo by Kelsey Stanger
Son Little | Photo by Kelsey Stanger

Philly newcomers Son Little have a fantastic debut EP called Things I Forgot coming out on Anti- Records next month, and they headline a free outdoor show this evening at Dilworth Park at City Hall. Founded by Aaron Livingston, a local singer-songwriter-guitarist who has worked with The Roots and collaborated with RJD2 on the Icebird project, Son Little pushes his creative boundaries even further, dabbling in soul, hard rock, and Radiohead-esque minimal electronica. The band recorded a knockout Key Studio Session this week; download the song “Joy” below and get more information on the show here. Continue reading →

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The Key Studio Sessions: Son Little

One of the first things you’re likely to hear about Philly’s Son Little is its pedigree. The trio is primarily the songwriting project of singer-guitarist Aaron Livingston, who in the past has collaborated with The Roots and RJD2. Musical adventurers both, for certain, but those names as a point of reference doesn’t really clue you in to how expressive and eclectic his own songwriting is. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Purling Hiss at Johnny Brenda’s, Orenda Fink at First Unitarian Church Side Chapel, and Shakey Graves at World Cafe Live

Purling Hiss
Purling Hiss | photo by Aaron Biscoe

Philly garage rock outfit Purling Hiss will take on Johnny Brenda’s this evening. The band’s distortion-infused sound has made the group a Philly favorite and they have continued to gain a following around the country thanks to relentless touring. Their recent album Weirdon, released by label Drag City in September, has received enthusiastic reviews, with Consequence of Sound saying that it proves frontman Mike Polizze  “to be one of Philadelphia’s best, a tough feat considering the talent bursting out of the city.” For more information on tonight’s show, head over to the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Halfro releases Squalor, gets funky at album release show this Saturday

Photo by Dan Lidon
Halfro | Photo by Dan Lidon

To see Philly-based hip-hop quartet Halfro play live is to partake in one of the most fun and rare experiences a live show-lover can have: a young band with impeccable execution that gives its always-eclectic audience a raucous party while showing no sign of stagnation.  When the band drops their debut self-released EP Squalor at Saturday’s album release show at 3rd and Girard, audiences will get to hear that energy dropped straight into a lively, sometimes-existential-always-rollicking record that successfully captures a great deal of their live show’s immense power. Continue reading →

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Rick Parker and Li Daiguo bring global jazz to The First Banana

rick parker
Rick Parker and Li Daiguo | photo via www.facebook.com

Accompanying his wife, a Pace University communications professor researching youth culture in China, to Shanghai over the past decade, trombonist Rick Parker initially looked forward to the cultural exchange possible in the world’s most populous city. But over the course of several visits he found himself frustrated by the lack of local artists on the scene. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Courtney Barnett at Union Transfer, Something Like A Monument at Kung Fu Necktie, These Wild Plains at Tellus360

Courtney Barnett | Photo via facebook.com/courtneybarnettmusic
Courtney Barnett | Photo via facebook.com/courtneybarnettmusic

It’s been a whirlwind couple of years for Courtney Barnett, who went from a Melbourne musician with a couple of EPs to the toast of the indie singer-songwriter scene. Propelled by her wit and lyrical charm, perhaps best exhibited on the infectious “Avant Gardener” – the first single from her 2013 release A Sea of Split Peas – Barnett headlines Union Transfer for the second time tonight, and according to her recent interview with The Key’s Kate Bracaglia, will show off a few new songs from the album she’s releasing next year. Tickets and information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Below, watch a video of “Avant Gardener” performed live in the studio for World Cafe. Continue reading →

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Network for New Music celebrates 30th anniversary with musical “Exquisite Corpse” project

Network for New Music
Network for New Music ensemble | photo by Jacques-Jean Tiziou

Over the past three decades, Philly-based new music chamber ensemble Network for New Music has commissioned work by a host of notable composers, including renowned names like Alvin Curran, John Harbison, Bright Sheng, Jennifer Higdon, Toru Takemitsu, Shulamit Ran, and Todd Reynolds. So when your entire mission is dedicated to commissioning and performing music by living composers, how do you celebrate a landmark anniversary? Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Twin Peaks at The Barbary, Spuyten Duyvil at Ardmore Music Hall, and Zeus at Ortlieb’s

Twin Peaks | via facebook.com/twinpeaksdudes
Twin Peaks | via facebook.com/twinpeaksdudes

Chi-town garage rock group Twin Peaks will be headline an all-ages The Barbary tonight The group of 20-somethings has gained recognition for their light-hearted and happy approach to classic garage rock, combining the styles the three separate singers/songwriters in their band. Twin Peaks touring in support of its August release, Wild Onion, and will be supported by Tweens, Public Access TV, and Slow Animal. Below, check out Twin Peaks’ “I Found A New Way” and get information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: mewithoutYou at the Trocadero, Black Milk at Johnny Brenda’s, Phantogram at Union Transfer, and more!

mewithoutYou | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo | racheldelsordo.tumblr.com
mewithoutYou | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo | racheldelsordo.tumblr.com

Upper Darby-based rock group mewithoutYou brings its Catch For Us the Foxes 10-year anniversary tour to The Trocadero tonight. Their second full-length album came out in October of 2004 and cathartically explored the tension between heartache, faith and the complex emotions of youth. The record contained fan faves like “In a Sweater Poorly Knit” and “January 1979″, the latter of which won mtvU’s “Left Field Award for Most Original Artist,” and the album peaked at number 20 on Billboard’s “Top Heatseekers.” Joining mwY tonight are Lawrence, Kansas post-rock group The Appleseed Cast and Philadelphia art-punk favorites Hop Along. Tickets and information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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UPenn’s SPEC presents Skylar Grey and The Lawsuits at World Cafe Live

Skylar Grey | photo via skylargreymusic.com
Skylar Grey | photo via skylargreymusic.com

On Saturday, October 25th, University of Pennsylvania’s Social Planning and Events Committee is bringing singer/songwriter Skylar Grey to World Cafe Live. Grey is an accomplished composer and lyricist, having been credited with co-writing tracks like “Love The Way You Lie” by Eminem and Rihanna, “Coming Home” by Diddy Dirty Money, “Clarity” by Zedd, and “I Need A Doctor” by Dr. Dre and Eminem. Continue reading →