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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Hiss Golden Messenger at World Cafe Live, Kweku Collins at Johnny Brenda’s, Wolf Alice at The Trocadero, and more

Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

The ever-changing personnel and spectrum of recordings from Hiss Golden Messenger is anchored by the uber-talented compositional abilities of band leader M.C. Taylor. The Durham, North Carolina resident, whose instantly recognizable voice straddles Bob Dylan and Jim James, maintained his high level of songwriting and acoustic indie rock on Hiss Golden Messenger’s 2017 project Hallelujah Anyhow. Taylor writes of religious questioning, homesickness, and unexpected love on the new album with a bluesy conviction driving the project along. World Cafe Live hosts Taylor and Hiss Golden Messenger tonight, and the set is sure to impress. Pick up tickets quick from the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Watch Hiss Golden Messenger perform “Domino (Time Will Tell)” on Late Night with Seth Meyers ahead of their Philly show

Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

XPN favorite Hiss Golden Messenger made a recent television appearance on Late Night With Seth Meyers to perform “Domino (Time Will Tell),” from their new album Hallelujah Anyhow. The North Carolina band appears in rare 10-piece form for this rendition, packing the late night stage with their magnetic presence. Hiss Golden Messenger is fronted by vocalist and songwriter M.C. Taylor, who says that the new album is intended to combat the darkness in the world with messages of hope and positivity. Watch the video below. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Hiss Golden Messenger at Union Transfer, Red Baraat at Exit 0 Jazz Fest and Anderson East at Ardmore Music Hall

Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Andy Tennille | courtesy of the artist
Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Andy Tennille | courtesy of the artist

Tonight Union Transfer will host North Carolina-based band Hiss Golden Messenger. The group touches on genres spanning from country, blues and rock. The show tonight is one of many stops on their Heart Like A Levee tour promoting their newest album released on October 7th via Merge Records. Check out the video for “Tell Her I’m Just Dancing” below, and click here for more information on this all ages show. Continue reading →

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Free At Noon Flashback: Whitney and Hiss Golden Messenger are two sides of the same rootsy coin

Whitney | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Whitney | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

In just a few short hours, Whitney will play a sold-out show at Philly’s First Unitarian Church. It’s sure to be a life-changing, self-actualizing event, but not for me, because I didn’t get tickets in time. This would normally be cause for heartbreak, but this afternoon, I got a taste of what I would be missing when the septet took to the World Cafe Live stage for an all-too-brief, half hour set.

Whitney has been touring steadily since the release of their excellent debut, Light Upon the Lake, and it shows. Thanks to songwriting duo Max Kakacek and Julien Ehrlich, they have Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s sense of groove and Smith Western’s ear for arrangement, but they’ve translated it into a sound that’s all their own. The band may have only had time for six songs, but that constraint assured that they were all highlights. From the infectious, breezy “No Matter Where We Go” to the singalong catharsis of “Golden Days”, they sounded lively and polished, even if they had admittedly “partied too hard” the night before. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Hiss Golden Messenger playing Union Transfer in November

Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Andy Tennille | courtesy of the artist
Hiss Golden Messenger | photo by Andy Tennille | courtesy of the artist

Hiss Golden Messenger has announced a Fall into early Winter tour with a stop at at Union Transfer on Sunday November 13th. Last week the band announced that their new album, Heart Like A Levee, will be released on October 7th. It comes two years after their last release, the critically acclaimed Lateness of Dancers. Continue reading →

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XPN MusicNotes: See Bruce Springsteen literally “dance in the dark,” hear a new Hiss Golden Messenger track

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have become legendary for their  energetic, never-ending performances, but Monday night in Paris the Boss proved too much for the power supply at AccorHotels Arena as they blew a main electrical fuse during the show- cutting electricity to the stage for about 20 minutes and forcing Springsteen to do a little impromptu dancing in the dark.  Watch.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Laura Stevenson at The Fillmore, Family Vacation at Boot and Saddle, Hiss Golden Messenger at Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center

Laura Stevenson | Photo courtesy of the artist.
Laura Stevenson | Photo courtesy of the artist.

Long Island singer-songwriter Laura Stevenson released her fourth studio album, Cocksure, last month via Don Giovani Records. Tonight her tour in support of Matt Pond PA hits the Foundry at the Fillmore. Her set tonight is sure to feature some new songs off of Cocksure, as well as some of her classics from earlier records like 2013’s Wheel. Get tickets and show info at the XPN Concert Calendar, and check out Laura’s brand new music video for “Jellyfish.” Continue reading →

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Hiss Golden Messenger to include World Cafe recording of “Southern Grammar” on new EP

Hiss Golden Messenger
Hiss Golden Messenger | Photo by Rich McKie

After his World Cafe session aired on XPN in October, Hiss Golden Messenger‘s MC Taylor hinted that something else related to those recordings was in the pipeline.  Now the North Carolina-based musician has announced a new vinyl EP called Southern Grammar to follow up this year’s Lateness of Dancers full-length, an effort that will feature the World Cafe performance of the title track.

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Hiss Golden Messenger boasts a rugged rock backbone at JBs

Hiss Golden Messenger | Photo by John Vettese
Hiss Golden Messenger | Photo by John Vettese

If all you know about Durham country-folk outfit Hiss Golden Messenger is that it’s the contemplative project of songwriter M.C. Taylor, think again. The band’s newest, Lateness of Dancers, was released this year by Merge Records and Paradise of Bachelors, and it expands the band’s vernacular into the realms of rugged country and hard-hitting rock and roll beats, in addition to the spaciness and solemnity that we’d heard previously. Along the same lines, the Hiss Golden Messenger live experience has expanded from Taylor and longtime collaborator Scott Hirsch playing a low-key set to a more robust, invigorating experience that was in fine form last Tuesday night at Johnny Brenda’s. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Hiss Golden Messenger at Johnny Brenda’s, Smooth Hound Smith at PhilaMOCA, and York Street Hustle at Boot and Saddle

Hiss Golden Messenger
Photo via www.facebook.com/HissGoldenMessenger

Indie folk duo Hiss Golden Messenger take over Johnny Brenda’s tonight following the recent release of their fifth album Lateness of Dancers. Former members of heavy punk band Ex-Ignota and alternative rock group The Court & Spark, MC Taylor and Scott Hirsh have been performing together for over two decades, and broke off to try their hand at a different genre. Their first album Country Hai East Cotton was released in a limited edition of 500 records produced on Taylor’s personal record label. For tickets and more information check out the XPN Concert Calender. Below, watch their recent performance of title track “Lateness of Dancers.” Continue reading →