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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Tobias Jesso Jr at Boot and Saddle, Impressionist at Bourbon and Branch, The Cloth at Underground Arts

Tobias Jesso Jr | photo via tobiasjessojr.com
Tobias Jesso Jr | photo via tobiasjessojr.com

Buzzing Vancouver artist Tobias Jesso Jr. headlines Boot and Saddle tonight. The singer-songwriter and pianist writes smooth and sincere pop songs in the vein of Randy Newman, and was produced by members of The Black Keys and New Pornographers (and features drumming from Danielle Haim). His album Goon came out last week on True Panther Sounds. Watch the video for “How Could You Babe” below and get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Watch South Jersey’s Ju-Taun cover London Grammar’s “Strong”

Ju-Taun | Photo by Stan Golden | Via Facebook.com/jutaun
Ju-Taun | Photo by Stan Golden | Via Facebook.com/jutaun

South Jersey “band of brothers” Ju-Taun rocked SXSW in Austin last week, and their latest offering is a cover of London Grammar’s “Strong.”

British electro-pop trio London Grammar wowed Philly back in January at the Electric Factory, which marked their third time joining us in the past two years, so you may be well-acquainted with their sound.

Ju-Taun’s take on “Strong” is as ethereal as London Grammar’s, with just enough members to harmonize and bring a bluesy/folksy ambiance to the track. Continue reading →

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Check out Roses’ soul-searching Space Jam Session performance of “Boys”

Roses | Photo by John Vettese
Roses | Photo by John Vettese

Matt Scheuermann’s acoustic project Roses is a guitar-driven soul search. Formerly of indie rockers The Sidekicks, Scheuermann sat down to record a Space Jam Session of “Boys,” from his debut EP. “My past, my atmosphere / I can’t go back to change it all.” His soft vocals speak volumes to his lyrical dexterity. Balanced by simple acoustic chords and winsome melodies, this track and the two others off the EP are worth a heartwarming listen. Roses will be playing at Girard Hall with Field Guides, Chimney, Girl Dog, and Matt Holden (Legs Like Tree Trunks) on April 3; ore information on the event can be found on Facebook. Check out Roses’ Space Jam Session below. Continue reading →

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Listen to Laura Marling’s new album Short Movie, see her at Union Transfer August 1st

Photo via Laura Marling Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/lauramarling)
Laura Marling | photo via facebook.com/lauramarling

25-year-old English singer/songwriter Laura Marling just released her fifth full-length album, Short Movie. The self-produced 13-track LP explores an electric side of Marling’s music after she took a self-proclaimed gap year to travel and discover where she stood in terms of her music career. You can stream Short Movie in it’s entirety here and check out her live performance of the album’s third track, “I Feel Your Love”, below. Laura Marling will be coming to Philadelphia to play at Union Transfer on August 1st. Find tickets and more information by heading over to the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Listen to Courtney Barnett’s set at the Public Radio Rocks SXSW showcase, watch “Dead Fox”

Courtney Barnett | Photo by John Vettese
Courtney Barnett | Photo by John Vettese

It was her eighth and final set of a whirlwind SXSW, but Courtney Barnett showed no signs of exhaustion. When she and her band took the stage at the Public Radio Rocks showcase, it was the same loud and lively power trio we saw at the NPR Music Showcase on opening night.

The seven-song set played to a packed Convention Center ballroom was split between Barnett’s acclaimed Sea of Split Peas double EP (which came out in 2013), and the forthcoming Sometimes I Sit and Think and Sometimes I Just Sit (out Tuesday on Mom + Pop). Standouts were “Avant Gardener,” “History Eraser,” “Pedestrian at Best” and “Dead Foxes,” which you can watch a video of below. Continue reading →

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Listen to Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear’s set at the Public Radio Rocks SXSW showcase, watch “Daisy Jane”

Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear | Photo by John Vettese
Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear | Photo by John Vettese

Easily the biggest surprise of the Public Radio Rocks showcase at SXSW was Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear. The mother-son duo based in Kansas City writes acoustic folk songs with a classic sound, infused with touches of blues and gospel. Their voices blend effortlessly, and their warmth is clear and genuine.

The Wards opened with “Silent Movies,” the first single from their new LP Skeleton Crew, due out later this year via Glassnote Records, and played a punchy five-song set. Though many watching the showcase had not heard of them before, they left converted fans. Continue reading →