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Nothing pilots a retro van across the galaxy in the “You Wind Me Up” video

Nothing
Nothing | photo by Ryan Lowry | courtesy of the artist

Nothing‘s latest music video veers away from the dark, nightmarish streak that we’ve seen before, instead giving us a glimpse at the band’s softer, more whimsical side. “You Wind Me Up” is a lush and dreamlike track off the Philly shoegazers’ new album Dance On The Blacktop, and the video matches that vibe with its outer space setting; a retro Dodge van with Pennsylvania plates serves as an unlikely spaceship, floating through the stars as Earth grows smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror. Continue reading →

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The Week Ahead: Jupiter & Okwess, Stef Chura, Nothing, Soul Glo and more

Soul Glo | photo by John Vettese for WXPN
Soul Glo | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

Can we collectively agree to retire the aughties hipster cliche “Rocktober”? Not because the tenth month of the year is no longer jam-packed with live music — it absolutely is, moreso than ever, as any casual glance at the calendar will tell you — but because there are many more offerings at your disposal this month than mere rock.

This week alone, there is Nigerian-tinged R&B, homegrown hip-hop, jazzy folk, folky punk, and so much more. Here are 27 concerts you can see in Philadelphia in the next seven days, with a whopping eight options on Saturday night. Heck, even Monday has four shows you can choose from — Monday! GTTG, Philly.

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Watch Nothing’s surreal nightmare in “I Hate the Flowers”

Nothing
Nothing | photo by Ryan Lowry | courtesy of the artist

Nothing is fueled by nightmares. Their latest effort, “I Hate Flowers,” directed by Matt Newman, is another entry in the series of visually captivating music videos for Dance On The Blacktop. The video follows an agoraphobic man leaving his NYC apartment, thrashing as he’s dragged by some invisible entity in a sort of Fight Club scene. Flickering collages flash between clips of the man shearing his head and lathering his face in gold paint. In this surreal, apocalyptic world, the narrative becomes frayed and disconnected, reflecting the paranoid thoughts and disintegration of the character’s mind. Continue reading →

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Belly of the Beats: Why Nothing’s Domenic Palermo is turning his sights to prison reform

Nothing
Nothing | photo by Ryan Lowry | courtesy of the artist

Domenic Palermo has been thinking a lot about his old neighborhood lately.

He thinks about the people he spent his childhood with; he thinks about how much things have changed and how much they have not. It makes sense, since the places we grow up shape us in innumerable ways. They’re our first impression of the world; they’re the center of our young universe. Our neighborhoods help us decide where we want to travel with our lives, whether we want to get as far away as possible or if we’d rather just stay in place. And the ramifications of those choices somehow touch the lives of people we knew; our family, our community. Even though he’s up in Brooklyn these days, the frontman of Nothing is constantly thinking about his childhood in the Frankford and Kensington sections of Philadelphia…and the things he can do to make it a better place in 2018.

This Friday, Nothing releases its third LP, Dance on the Blacktop, via Relapse Records; it’s an explosive and highly personal record, touching on themes of mortality, addiction and family, and after a long build-up of writing and working in the studio with producer John Agnello, the band will spend Saturday unwinding with family and friends in the Port Richmond section of Philly — just a short jump down the river wards from his old home.

The Nothing Record Release Block Party is just what its name suggests: a gimmick-free gathering with a DJ, games, food and fun; no Nothing live set, just a day-long hang. “We didn’t want it to be like a Diplo block party, we wanted it to be very neighborhood-friendly,” Palermo says when I caught up with him via phone last week. “We really just wanted to have a few hours where we can just see people enjoying themselves. I imagine that most of the people that show up to this block party aren’t even going to know why it’s really there, which is kind of the point. It’s purely just a Philadelphia celebratory kind of thing.”

For Palermo and his bandmates, its a way to kick back before getting into the grueling stress of another album cycle. But even in choosing the spot, he had a lot to think about. Continue reading →

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Jay Som announces new collaboration with Justus Proffit, EP Nothing’s Changed out next month

Jay Som and Justus Proffit | photo by Kris Kirk | courtesy of the artists

California songwriter Jay Som‘s recent move down the coast resulted in not just a new home, but a new collaborative project. When Melina Duterte, the musician behind Jay Som, relocated from the Bay Area to Los Angeles following the release of her acclaimed 2017 debut LP Everybody Works, she met singer-songwriter Justus Proffit, and a just-for-fun jam session soon turned into a new musical project entirely. The duo will release an EP, called Nothing’s Changed, on September 28 via Polyvinyl. Continue reading →

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Nothing pours it all into the 7-minute ballad “Carpenter’s Son”

Nothing
Nothing | photo by Ryan Lowry | courtesy of the artist

Each song Philly shoegazers Nothing drops off highly anticipated Dance On The Blacktop, out August 24th on Relapse, is another tile in the mosaic masterpiece this album promises to be. Frontman and songwriter Domenic Palermo holds back nothing on latest track “The Carpenter’s Son,” pouring his entire self into this 7-minute ballad. Continue reading →

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Nothing channels Ophelia and mourns addiction in “Blue Line Baby” video

Nothing
Nothing | photo by Ben Rayner | courtesy of the artist

Philly doomgazers Nothing unveiled a surreal and ominous video for “Blue Line Baby,” the second single off their third album, Dance On The Blacktop. In a statement, frontman Domenic Palermo described how the lyrics focus on how the opioid outbreak of the 1990’s devastated the communities of North Philadelphia, particularly the Kensington / Frankford area.  Continue reading →

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Found Wild channels deeply personal themes into beautiful country tones on “Nothing Gold Can Last”

Found Wild
Found Wild | photo courtesy of the artist

When I met up with Tim Arnold and Keith Goodwin last week at Spruce Street Harbor Park, they had a big week ahead of them. Tour was a week away, and they had to rehearse for three completely different sets. One is for singer-songwriter Anthony Green (of Circa Survive and more), whose backing band they play in; he will be performing his debut solo album Avalon in full for its tenth anniversary. Another is for their long-running band, Good Old War, who is direct support the show and celebrating an anniversary of their own; Only Way To Be Alone, the album that launched them into the folk-infused modern rock zone with the super poppy “Coney Island,” is also ten years old.

But most significantly for these two Bucks County born-and-raised musicians is the opening band for the night: Found Wild, their new duo project based around Arnold’s songwriting. Though he’s always been a vocalist as part of Good Old War’s three-part harmony ensemble, this project marks his first time singing lead. It’s also his first time as the primary songwriter in a band, and after an emotionally taxing handful of years, he had a lot to sing about.

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The Stray Birds return with a hopeful and vulnerable note on love, “Nothing To Say About It Now”

The Stray Birds
The Stray Birds | photo courtesy of the artist

Lancaster folk trio The Stray Birds recently announced their new album, Let It Pass, set to release September 7th via Yep Roc Records. The album is reflective of the band members’ tumultuous relationship in creating music together in the wake of the dissolved romantic relationship between multi-instrumentalists and vocalists Oliver Craven and Maya De Vitry. Continue reading →