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Skillet spreads love and hard rock at The Electric Factory

Skillet | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN | spotlightviews.com
Skillet | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN | spotlightviews.com

This past Friday, Christian rock band Skillet filled The Electric Factory with a diverse crowd made up of intricately tattooed adults, head banging couples and and families spanning multiple generations — yes, a family friendly general-admission rock show. The band is just beginning the second leg of their “Unleashed” tour, promoting their latest album and celebrating over 20 years as a band. Lead singer John Cooper tried to give the audience a break from politics and sang lyrics with messages that everyone can relate to and interpret in their own way. “I’m not saying that what’s wrong with the world is not enough parents let their kids listen to Skillet…. But it might help” he jokingly noted. Continue reading →

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Free at Noon Flashback: Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White put a psychedelic twist on hits old and new

Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

What do Nico, Frankie Valli, and Frank Ocean all have in common? Their wonderful tunes take a different shape on Gentlewoman, Ruby Man, the wonderful new album from the pond-crossing pair Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White. Lucky for us in the Free at Noon crowd, we got to experience the duo put their psychedelic twist on some classic tunes from the aforementioned trio and beyond.

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Genre-mixing pros Issues bring triple-headliner to The Fillmore

Issues | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Issues | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

This winter’s The End Is Here tour brought together metalcore bands Issues, Motionless In White and Falling In Reverse — and the show stopped at The Fillmore Philadelphia on Saturday, January 28. With tastes of EDM, pop, R&B and even country sprinkled into the three headliners’ and two openers’ setlists, there was a little bit of something to satisfy everyone at this show. Despite all the genres that were present, head-bangning, mosh-pit encouraging music was the clear, overall theme and Motionless In White’s desire for everyone to leave the show with a “bangover” (bangover, noun, 1. a sore neck resulting from headbanging too hard) was definitely achieved. The sold-out crowd of around 2,500 dance, sang and crowd surfed for 5 bands straight.

Dead Girl’s Academy started off the show bright and early, playing to an already almost completely full venue at 6 pm. Their matching, all-black outfits and primarily red lighting set the tone for an intense set. They slowed it down with their new song “Conversation,” easing into a more laid-back style of rock.  Up next was Dayton, Ohio rock four piece Dangerkids. Vocalist Tyler Smyth poked fun at their Ohio roots and expressed how excited he was to no longer be playing for just “the other bands, the moms and the grandmas.” Their brand new album blacklist_ was just released the day before and Smyth described it as essentially a collection of his life’s work. They closed their set closed with popular single “Kill Everything.” Continue reading →

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The World Is a Beautiful Place manages to fit on PhilaMOCA stage for intimate gig

The World is a Beautiful Place at PhilaMOCA | Photo by Chris DeFlitch
The World is a Beautiful Place at PhilaMOCA | Photo by Chris DeFlitch

Under the lone disco ball of Philadelphia’s premiere art house, The World Is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die held an intimate gig at PhilaMOCA, part of a quick four-city tour across the each coast, bringing out all artistic guns that proved how damn good these emo revival front burners still are.

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Free at Noon Flashback: Ron Gallo brings his raw power and character to the World Cafe Live stage

Ron Gallo | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Ron Gallo | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

Man, this Ron Gallo guy, he’s something special. His eloquent lyricism, blues-like guitar riffs, and overall raw attitude defines him as his own, and it all came into full effect as he took the World Cafe Live stage for a round of pure rock and roll.

Gallo’s return trip to XPN found him performing material from his soon-to-be-released record Heavy Meta, along with some of his past discography. Matching the manic nature of all those damn stage lights, Gallo and friends flowed through fifty minutes of some fantastic garage rock, as songs like “Young Lady, You’re Scaring Me” and “Kill the Medicine Man” felt like a White Stripes and Costello Music baby. Continue reading →

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Boiler Room brings the heat to The Fillmore with DJ Jazzy Jeff, Kur and more

DJ Jazzy Jeff | photo by John Vettese for WXPN
DJ Jazzy Jeff | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

Normally, a chilly Tuesday night in January would not be the most ideal setting for a raucous dance party, but when the renowned music and lifestyle brand Boiler Room descends upon the city of Philadelphia, a party is sure to jump off. For the past four decades Philly has been (rightfully) celebrated as a breeding ground for elite DJ talent. This reputation along with a thriving hip-hop and dance music scene made this Budweiser-sponsored meeting with Boiler Room a match made in nightlife heaven. Continue reading →

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Load-In to Load-Out: Eliza Hardy Jones celebrates her breakout year at Boot & Saddle

Eliza Hardy Jones | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com
Eliza Hardy Jones | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

It’s a dark night in a city that knows how to keep it’s secrets. But on one of the first truly bitter days of December, as the wind howls down South Broad, there’s true warmth to be found inside Boot & Saddle. Hometown hero Eliza Hardy Jones is playing the Boot in a celebration of sorts. As the year ends, she’s commemorating the first year of making and playing music under her own name, a project entirely her own. After years as a crucial member of many other cherished Philly projects — you’re thinking of Buried Beds, Strand of Oaks, and Grace Potter’s band — this is her year. Continue reading →

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Wednesdays in the Danger Room: Run The Jewels at the Electric Factory

Run The Jewels | Photo by Cameron Pollack for WXPN | <a href=http://cameronpollack.com/ target="_blank">cameronpollack.com</a>
Run The Jewels | Photo by Cameron Pollack for WXPN | cameronpollack.com

Run The Jewels inspires confidence. They exude it in their records, flaunt it in their interviews, and as they proved last night, on the first night of this tour, they embody it in their live shows too. Killer Mike and El-P, two middle aged rappers at the top of their game, walked out to thunderous applause from a crowd that sold the room out in five minutes, singing along to the chorus of “We Are The Champions.” Their smiles could trick you into thinking, just for a while, that the world isnʼt all that bad. Continue reading →