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Tonight’s (Non-#KeyFest) Concert Picks: Spirit Family Reunion at Ardmore Music Hall, Milton at Hard Rock Cafe, Wild Orphan at Tin Angel and more

Spirit Family Reunion | Photo by Lauren Slusher
Spirit Family Reunion | Photo by Lauren Slusher

Okay, so #KeyFest night one was a smashing success last night, and it continues tonight with The Lawsuits, Rosu Lup and Dylan Jane. But I would be remiss if I didn’t highlight some of the other amazing live music happenings in the area tonight, beginning with Brooklyn folkies Spirit Family Reunion‘s gig at Ardmore Music Hall. They emerged in 2010 right around the music world’s fascination with folk, but unlike the big names that quickly went pop (you know who I mean), Spirit Family Reunion’s sound always leaned a bit more traditional, and they stuck with it over their ensuing albums – including the new Hands Together. Two years ago, their dance tent set was a Philly Folk Fest highlight; tonight, they bring the show to Ardmore Music Hall. Tickets and information can be found here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s (Non-#KeyFest) Concert Picks: Creepoid at Underground Arts, Cheerleader at Union Transfer, The Burgeoning at Bourbon and Branch

Creepoid | Photo by John Vettese

Okay, so Key Fest kicks off tonight, and that’s obviously the concert we’re most pumped about and think you should all go to. But we’ve been telling you about that all week – here are a few other live music options worth your attention, beginning with Creepoid‘s homecoming at Underground Arts. The band is moving back to Philly after spending the past year or so living in Savannah and writing their new record. Their new Cemetery Highrise Slum, is out on June 23rd via Collect Records, and the songs we’ve heard from it slay. Listen to “American Smile” below and get tickets and more info on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: RFA at MilkBoy, Hurray for the Riff Raff at World Cafe Live, Abi Reimold at Ortlieb’s

RFA | photo via rfaband1.bandcamp.com
RFA | photo via rfaband1.bandcamp.com

Local boys RFA just finished their freshman year of college and are still riding high on their Freaking Out EP, released back in January. The band plays snappy and hooky rock and roll a la The Strokes and The Stones, and tonight opens for Pine Barons and Clear Plastic Masks at MilkBoy. Tickets and more information can be found here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Donn T at Johnny Brenda’s, Dark Blue at Boot and Saddle

Donn T | via Donn T's Facebook
Donn T | via Donn T’s Facebook

Dynamic Philly soul singer Donn T is celebrating the release of her second album, Flight of The Donn T, tonight at Johnny Brenda’s. A collaborator of Marsha Ambrosius, Zap Mama and John Legend – and, yes, sister to a drummer named Ahmir Thompson, but let’s not make too big a deal out of that – she made a splash in 2010 with her album Kaleidoscopic, and last year founded her own D Tone Victorious label to release Flight. The album is vibrant and engaging, at turns recalling Erykah Badu and Sade, and tonight she celebrates it at the latest Re-Set party, curated by local fave Res and also featuring Kate Faust. Tickets and information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Rakim at Underground Arts, Bryant Eugene Vazquez at The Fire, Moon Bounce / Truewave at The Dolphin and more

Rakim | photo via facebook.com/rakimallah
Rakim | photo via facebook.com/rakimallah

Hip hop icon Rakim brings the heat to the Eraserhood tonight for a headlining show at Underground Arts. The Long Island MC first gained attention in the 80s as half of the pioneering duo Erik B. and Rakim; their albums Paid in Full and Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em remain classics of the genre – or, really, of any genre. He’s also released four albums as a solo artist, most recently 2009′s The Seventh Seal. We’re expecting a career-spanning set tonight, plus a fierce opening spot by one of our Philly faves, Chill Moody. Tickets and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The Retinas at MilkBoy, Trans Am at Boot and Saddle, Suzanne Vega at Levoy Theater

The Retinas | photo courtesy of the artist
The Retinas | photo courtesy of the artist

A rock four-piece made up of childhood friends, The Retinas busted onto the Philly scene last year with their debut LP Hello…My Name Is The Retinas. Like a slew of similar-minded Philly up-and-comers, the band has a fuzzy lo-fi garage rock sound a la Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes, and this winter released the new single “Take Me By the Hand,” which you can check out below. They play MilkBoy tonight opening for Lee Baines III and The Glory Fires; tickets and more information on the show can be found on the XPN Concert Calendar.
Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: For The Love of Gene at Ardmore Music Hall, Vita and the Woolf / Milton at Franky Bradley’s, Rhiannon Giddens at The TLA

Photo by Deneka Peniston
Photo by Deneka Peniston

He may have retired back in February, but the tributes to beloved Philly folk DJ Gene Shay keep on coming. Tonight, a crew of folk scene regulars – Hoots and Hellmouth, Ben Arnold, Burning Bridget Cleary and more – will gather at Ardmore Music Hall to celebrate Shay. Tickets and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Sufjan Stevens at The Academy of Music, SHLOHMO at Johnny Brenda’s, Delta Rae at The TLA and more

Sufjan Stevens
Sufjan Stevens | photo via www.sufjan.com

Celebrated indie-folk singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens makes a long awaited return to form on his current album and tour. Rather than being a zany holiday collection or an abstract electronic freakout, Carrie & Lowell is a return to Stevens’ contemplative acoustic roots, very much in the vein of 2004′s Seven Swans, and over the course of 11 songs it is an aching meditation on his mother who died in 2012. Tonight he returns to Philly to headline the Academy of Music and kick off his U.S. tour; tickets and information can be found at the XPN Concert CalendarContinue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Waxahatchee at Union Transfer, Lady Lamb at World Cafe Live, Damien Rice at The Academy of Music

Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee
Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee

As of this writing, there are still tickets available to tonight’s Waxahatchee show at Union Transfer. This is somewhat preposterous; I mean, what, did you need further convincing  after that epic New Yorker profile and the City Paper cover story (not to mention the Inquirer piece and our own interview)? The new Ivy Tripp came out yesterday, and it’s really good; even when you take into account the mob mentality of Waxahatchee-fawning and notch it down a few pegs, it still stands out in setting moods and evoking emotions, rocking out catchy jams like “Under A Rock” and simmering introspections like “Air.” Openers The Goodbye Party also rule – Chrissy Tashjian of Thin Lips is pulling guitar duties with them on this tour – as does indie pop duo Girlpool, who join us this week for The Key Studio Sessions too. Really, this is a show not to miss. Get tickets and more information at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Diarrhea Planet at Underground Arts, Kississippi at Kung Fu Necktie, Cyberbully Mom Club at Johnny Brenda’s and more

Diarrhea Planet | Photo by Rachel Barrish | rachelbarrish.com
Diarrhea Planet | Photo by Rachel Barrish | rachelbarrish.com

Ridiculous band name, awesome band. Diarrhea Planet headlines Underground Arts tonight with their Philly-based tourmates Left & Right in tow. The blistering rock n’ roll six-piece dishes fierce fuzzy riffs and high energy not unlike their Nashville brethren JEFF the Brotherhood; 2013′s I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams is highly recommended listening. Tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →