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Soccer Mommy shows she’s not “Your Dog” in kickass, self-assured single

Soccer Mommy | photo via artist’s Facebook

Nashville-bred NYU student Sophie Allison has been releasing “chill but kinda sad” lo-fi tunes on Bandcamp for years now under the moniker Soccer Mommy. Less than a year after the release of her debut full length Collection, Soccer Mommy’s biting new track,”Your Dog,” not only anticipates the upcoming album, Clean — out on March 2nd via Fat Possum Records — but also hints at a more expansive, no-nonsense direction.

Remastering some tracks from earlier EPs, last year’s Collection flowed in the same kind of hopelessly heartsick blue vein of Soccer Mommy’s bedroom-recorded tracks, where Allison oft dreamt up stories of falling in love with perfect strangers and far-away crushes. All of which, I adore, as there’s nothing wrong with vulnerability and hopeless romanticism standing there right alongside the strength and independence of a badass lady.

Embracing the latter characteristics on the for young hearts EP-featured “bloody honey,” and Collection’s shining anthem, “Out Worn,” these songs glimpsed at someone who didn’t just sulk in sadness when wronged, but fought back with knock-out self-assuredness. With the release of “Your Dog,” though, we find that these tracks had offered just a teeny, tiny sliver of the kick-assery that Allison can dish out. Continue reading →

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Sunflower Bean turns the “Crisis Fest” of 2017 into a charged anthem for their fellow youths

Sunflower Bean | photo by Hollie Fernando | courtesy of artist

It’s been a year to say the least, and Sunflower Bean is quite aware. Though the youthful classic rock trio had planned on taking some time off after their debut full length, Human Ceremony, the then twenty-year-olds found themselves right back in the studio, where they turned their frustrations and observations from 2017’s political climate into a more danceable, productive result. Two and a half years later (hint, hint: each member will be twenty-two) Sunflower Bean is releasing their sophomore record, Twentytwo in Blue, on March 23rd via Mom + Pop. Continue reading →

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Watch Sylvan Esso perform new single “PARAD(w/m)E” live, see them at the XPoNential Music Festival

Sylvan Esso
Sylvan Esso | photo by Lindsey Kennedy and Meow Wolf | courtesy of the artist

Synthpop duo and all-around pop powerhouses Sylvan Esso released spirited single “PARAD(w/m)E” today, their first new release since 2017’s sophomore LP, What Now. Characterized by a groovable BPM (116, for those counting at home – or out on the dancefloor), crunchy low-end synth hits, and bubbly, percolating synthlines, the duo crafts a fun yet progressive pop track in terms of production. Amelia Meath’s vocals have the power to transport you to brighter warmer days, enticing the listener to “P A R A D with me.” Continue reading →

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Free at Noon Flashback: Ben Arnold and the 48 Hour Orchestra break through the clouds with soulful jams

Ben Arnold | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

To kick off 2018 and the 13th year of WXPN’s Free at Noon concert series, long-time friend Ben Arnold, who is no stranger to World Cafe Live’s stage, performed a sleek and soulful set despite the abysmal weather currently inhabiting Philadelphia. Appearing in the Free at Noon series in its first year as a trio, the Philly-native returned with a backing band 10 members deep this time around. Dubbed “The 48 Hour Orchestra,” the band provided a spirited brass section, punchy drums assisted by congas, and heartfelt backing vocals to the set. Continue reading →

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Ceramic Animal release sunsoaked single, “So Familiar”

Ceramic Animal | photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN | racheldelsordophotography.com

Earlier this week, Philly-via-Doylestown rockers Ceramic Animal released the long-awaited followup single to their 2016 debut LP, The Cart. Seemingly always donning suits and channeling young love through a psych-tinted filter, “So Familiar” picks up right where the band left off without a drop in quality in the slightest. Continue reading →

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Jam to Phil Lesh, Gov’t Mule, and Joe Russo’s Almost Dead at Peach Music Festival this July

Phil Lesh | photo via artist’s Facebook

Scranton PA is more than just the fictional home of The Office. It’s also the non-fictional home to the beautiful Montage Mountain, where the Allman Brothers Band-inspired Peach Music Festival has been jamming for seven years now. Today, the festival revealed their lineup which features headliners Phil Lesh and the Terrapin Family Band, Gov’t Mule (playing two sets,) and Joe Russo’s Almost Dead. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Kelela will headline the TLA next month

Kelela
Kelela | photo by Daniel Sannwald | courtesy of the artist

R&B / electropop singer and songwriter Kelela impressed us twice last year: first with an early afternoon appearance at the Made In America Festival, and later with the release of Take Me Apart, one of our Top 15 Albums of 2017.

Of the record, our Rob Huff wrote:

A masterclass in tension and release, it cuts to the feeling of finally knowing what you want, in love and in life, and not being willing to wait for it anymore. And it expresses that with a determination and vulnerability that feels anthemic.

This week, Kelela announced a run of Winter tour dates with The xx in New Zealand, and a handful of stateside engagements upon her return — and one of those includes a February 27 gig at the TLA on South Street. Continue reading →

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Watch Slingshot Dakota’s asskicking Audiotree Live set

Slingshot Dakota at Audiotree | via facebook.com/slingshotdakota

Bethlehem punk duo Slingshot Dakota wrapped by going on a U.S. tour with their New Jersey neighbors in Prawn, and on the way through Chicago on December 14th, they stopped through to record an asskicking live set for the good folks at Audiotree.

Singer / keys queen Carly Commando and drum machine Tom Patterson rock through a five-song set, featuring “Paycheck,” “Doreen” and the title track from 2016’s excellent Break; they also performed “Rasta Bacca” from 2012’s Dark Hearts; and “Grudge” from last year’s Broken EP. Continue reading →

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Hurry’s new album Every Little Thought will be out next month; listen to “Waiting For You”

Hurry
Hurry | photo by Scott Troyan | courtesy of the artist | scotttroyan.com

Philly indie rock three-piece Hurry is back in formation this winter, with its new LP Every Little Thought due out next month on Lame-O Records.

The band’s followup to 2016’s Guided Meditation continues their progression into shimmering power pop territory, as we hear in the new single “Waiting For You.” The song reflects on themes of distraction, disconnection and loneliness — “Do you really feel fine when you’re at home? / Always looking at your phone / spending all your time alone,” sings songwriter Matt Scottoline.

In the music video, directed by Scottoline’s former Everyone Everywhere bandmate Brendan McHugh (currently a filmmaker in New York), the band plays live in a greenhouse, awkwardly ignoring and interacting with a replica of Michaelangelo’s David. Continue reading →

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Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, Arctic Monkeys, The Killers, SZA, Alt-J and more will play Firefly 2018

Kendrick Lamar | via Billboard.com

The seventh annual Firefly Music Festival in Dover, Delaware will feature acclaimed stars of rap and rock, with Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, Arctic Monkeys and The Killers in the headlining slots.

The Detroit rapper, otherwise known as Marshall Mathers, released his ninth studio album Revival in 2017, and is making his Firefly debut. Compton’s Lamar is on his second Firefly slot on the strength of last year’s universally praised DAMN. LP – he first appeared in 2013, following good kid, m.A.A.d city. Arctic Monkeys and Killers are returning on players too, having played in 2014 and 2015, respectively. For the former, it’s their first concert in three years (per Pitchfork) and they have an album on the way in 2018 as well.
Continue reading →