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Just Announced: Bouncing Souls revive early material with How I Spent My Maniacal Summer shows in Croydon and Wilmington

Bouncing Souls | photo courtesy of the artist

Jersey punks The Bouncing Souls make their comeback with a Northeast tour called How I Spent My Maniacal Vacation. That’s right, that the band will revive material from 1996’s Maniacal Laughter and 2001’s How I Spent My Summer Vacation in one monster setlist.This weekend Bouncing Souls has a gig at Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co in Croydon, PA, about an hour outside of Philly. In December they return with a set at The Queen in Wilmington, joined by cabaret punks The World/Inferno Friendship Society and Worriers. All tour dates are listed below; more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Sharon Van Etten will headline Union Transfer in February

Sharon Van Etten
Sharon Van Etten | photo by Ryan Pfluger | courtesy of the artist

After taking several years off to go back to school, launch an acting career, and start a family, singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten returns to music with her fifth album, Remind Me Tomorrow, which comes out January 18th on Jagjaguwar Records. The record was announced with an urgent rocker called “Comeback Kid,” a high-energy earworm that very directly addresses her re-emergence. Continue reading →

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Bri Steves is cutting checks in the new single “Miami”

Bri Steves | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

When we last heard from Philly rapper Bri Steves, she was onstage at Made In America with Kendrick Lamar, singing her summertime jam “Jealousy” for the crowd gathered on the Ben Franklin Parkway. Late last week, she released her latest single, a jam called “Miami” that creates a compelling contrast between the dreamlike, downtempo beat and Steves’ rapid fire, aggressive delivery. She spits truth about music industry sexism, and the challenge of grinding and hustling to get to the boss-level she’s attained, creating a song that reflects on her journey so far while looking ahead to what’s next. Continue reading →

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Watch Cat Power perform “In Your Face” on KCRW

Cat Power | photo by Michelle Montgomery for WXPN | michellemontgomeryphotography.com

Cat Power, the longtime recording project of songwriter Chan Marshall, recently released Wanderer, her first album in six years. Before heading out on tour in support of the new LP, Marshall stopped by Los Angeles NPR member station KCRW for her first live radio session behind Wanderer. She chose one of the album’s slower tracks, “In Your Face,” and stripped it down even further for a raw and emotive performance. Watch it now via NPR Music. Continue reading →

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Worriers sign to 6131 Records, reissue an extended version of Survival Pop

Worriers
Worriers | photo by Molly Adams | courtesy of the artist

A year ago, Lauren Denitzio’s geographically roving punk outfit Worriers released their latest LP, the excellent Survival Pop. Now, after a busy year of touring behind the release, Worriers have announced that they’ve signed with the Richmond-based label 6131 Records, which has reissued Survival Pop with two new tracks. It’s out now digitally, and will also be available on CD and vinyl (pre-order here).

The extended version of Survival Pop includes the addition of a previously unreleased track called “The Saddest Little Waffle House in Eastern Pennsylvania.” Continue reading →

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Two to Tango: Mirah and Sammus

Mirah, Sammus
Mirah | photo by Shervin Lainez | courtesy of the artist // Sammus | photo by Zooloo Brown | courtesy of the artist

Brooklyn-based (but Philadelphia born) Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn would seem radically different from the Ithaca-raised, Philadelphia-based SAMMUS (Enongo Lumumba-Kasongo) at first, with one playing askew folk pop and the other hip hop. Yet, both women keep their musical and melodic processes raw, and both lyricist/vocalist/rappers are emotive, clever and cutting in a fashion that you may not recognize until after the song or the set is over. The subtle glories of Mirah and SAMMUS sneak up you – as you shall find when the make a tour stop at Johnny Brenda’s tonight.

This interview was conducted late this week, via email, and sadly SAMMUS fell off the email chain, but I think the essence of the “tango” is still shared between these two women. Continue reading →

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Speedy Ortiz shares new track “DTMFA” for Adult Swim Singles

Speedy Ortiz | photo by Shervin Lainez | courtesy of the artist

Speedy Ortiz recently announced a new string of headlining tour dates behind their recent album Twerp Verse, and now they’ve added a new single to their catalogue to mark the occasion. “DTMFA” is a catchy, riff-filled song that Sadie Dupuis has had on the back burner for awhile. The songwriter reportedly considered it for her 2016 solo album Slugger, and then again for Speedy’s latest LP, but it never quite made the cut. Continue reading →

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Free at Noon Flashback: The War and Treaty warm up the World Cafe Live crowd

The War and Treaty | photo by Taylor Johnson for WXPN

XPN’s August Artist to Watch, The War and Treaty, returned to World Cafe Live this afternoon for a special Free at Noon performance in between two local shows opening for the Indigo Girls. The Michigan-based duo of Michael Trotter and Tanya Blount Trotter have become a rising act in the soul/Americana world this year, and recently released their debut album, Healing Tide.

The singers started off today’s set with the album’s opening track, “Love Like There’s No Tomorrow,” and although they perform it a cappella, it’s anything but sparse. Both members of The War and Treaty have powerhouse voices that they use to their fullest potential in the band’s evocative songs, which genre-wise run the gamut from gospel to R&B to blues to folk. A third musician joined The War and Treaty onstage for the rest of their set, playing guitar and upright bass, but most of the focus stayed on the husband-and-wife Trotter duo, who share vocal duties while Michael plays keys and Tanya adds occasional tambourine. Continue reading →

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Watch Kurt Vile cover Tom Petty’s “Learning To Fly” in a Sirius XMU session

Kurt Vile | photo by Jo McCaughey | courtesy of the artist

Whether you can hear it or not (and it definitely took me a minute), Kurt Vile has always been a huge Tom Petty fan, and takes any opportunity he gets to sing his praises. And sometimes, actually sing his songs. In a new acoustic session recorded for SiriusXMU, Vile puts his spacey drum machine stamp on “Learning to Fly” from Petty’s 1991 album Into the Great Wide Open. Give it a watch below, and catch Kurt Vile at The Met Philly on December 29th; tickets and more information on the show can be found here. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Swearin’ returns to Philly for an Everybody Hits gig

Swearin
Swearin’ | photo by Ali Donahue | courtesy of the artist

A quick note about Swearin’, the revived indie rock four-piece fronted by songwriters Allison Crutchfield and Kyle Gilbride. Firstly, their show in the basement of the First Unitarian Church last night smoked. Sarah Hojsak will have a full report on the proceedings tomorrow, so I won’t steal her thunder, but I will add that if you missed the gig — fear not! Swearin’ just announced a return to their hometown on Saturday, December 8th, when they’ll headline everybody hits, alongside Skeleton Key fave Dark Thoughts. Tickets go on sale tomorrow at noon, more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar.
Continue reading →