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The Key’s Year-End Mania: The Django Pages 2018 – A.D. Amorosi’s greyhound rates the hits, disses the misses of the year gone

Django Amorosi at Kimpton Hotel Monaco | photo by Reese Amorosi | courtesy of the artist

Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2018 incredible. Today, Key contributing writer A.D. Amorosi turns to his greyhound Django for another pass at the year’s hits and misses.

After the rush of respect, acclaim and fame from 2017’s The Django Pages at The Key – his critical debut – my fleet greyhound certainly felt a serious sense of responsibility when it came to documenting his continued love affair (and occasional disgust) with the music around him, and the multi-culturalism surrounding that. Plus, he got a gig writing for Pitchfork, something that has, so far, alluded me during my career as an arts journalist.

As it was a weird year (politically, socially), so much of what Django took in, and appreciated/dissected had to be filtered through the noise of rhetoric and correctness. With that came an addition to his usual outward signs of approval and disapproval (relaxed ears or laying with legs akimbo for the former, grimace and growls for the latter): a side-eyed glare as if to say, “c’maan, really?” Many of these looks got shot at me at the sound of anything having to do with Kanye West (from his innumerable rants to his Kids See Ghosts), Asia Argento, Jeff Sessions, 6ix9ine (even though his performance at Made in America was stellar), Larry Krasner and Justin Timberlake (really, just JT’s whole Man in the Woods burly guy routine. Everything else is cool). Continue reading →

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The Key’s Year-End Mania: The Django Pages – A.D. Amorosi’s greyhound rates the hits, disses the misses of the year gone by

Django Amorosi | photo by Reese Amorosi | courtesy of the artist

Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2017 incredible. Today, Key contributor A.D. Amorosi turns to his trusty greyhound Django for some musical feedback.

Your best friend does not always like the music that you like. That’s what friends are for. At least this is the case of Django, our greyhound, with whom my wife and I share a loving bond and living/listening space on a daily basis. It’s his house, he just lets us live there.

If I am reviewing a Migos single with Pharrell Williams, he is reviewing it too.  Same with a Johnny Cash box set, a Sheer Mag download, an Archie Shepp YouTube moment, or what-have-you.  If I am laughing at Love & Hip Hop: New York and watching the dilemma between Remy Ma and her husband/manager Papoose, chances are Django is observing this behavior – and my reaction – with his ears pricked high. Does he enjoy everything on Love & Hip Hop? No. Can I tell the difference? Yes. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Ruby The Hatchet and HOUND will take over Ortlieb’s on New Year’s Eve


If you plan to attend some boring New Year’s party, we suggest you opt out of that and hit Ortlieb’s for an evening of psychedelic hard rock delivered by Ruby The Hatchet and HOUND.

The New Jersey natives Ruby The Hatchet an extraordinary acid rock band, and favorites around here at The Key — their latest record, Planetary Space Child, came out earlier this year on Tee Pee Records. Similarly, the Philly native hard rock crew HOUND dropped a killer album smartly named Born Under 76 in October and since have received much love from the Philly rock community. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Vita and the Woolf at Johnny Brenda’s, Radiator Hospital at the First Unitarian Church, HOUND at Space 1026, and more

Vita and the Woolf | photo by Ebru Yildiz | courtesy of the artist
Vita and the Woolf | photo by Ebru Yildiz | courtesy of the artist

Philly’s own Vita and the Woolf return to town for the final show of their fall tour tonight. The Johnny Brenda’s gig also includes fellow locals Ellen Siberian Tiger and Baltimore’s Soul Cannon. Vita and the Woolf released their excellent debut LP TUNNELS back in June, and they’ve followed it up with a series of stunning music videos — watch the haunting video for “Sun Drop” below. Find tickets and more information on tonight’s show over at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Watch HOUND rip up “Born Under a Blacklight” in WXPN Studios

HOUND | photo by John Vettese for WXPN
HOUND | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

Last November, Philly power trio HOUND brought some much needed sonic catharsis to WXPN studios for a ripper of a post-Election Day Key Studio Session. Under the leadership of singer-guitarist Perry Shall — who’s also a noted visual artist and occasional gig promoter — and powered by rhythm section Patrick Hickey of Shape Breaker on bass and Chris Wilson from Ted Leo’s Pharmacists on drums, the band raged away on two songs from its 2015 LP Out of Space and introduced a couple new selections from its album-in-the-works as well.

That record, Born Under 76, is seeing the light of day this Friday on Let’s Pretend Records — you can get an early listen if you’re so inclined — and the world it will make its way into is still very much in the need of sonic catharsis. So we dove back in and found footage of HOUND’s performance, aired on a cable access music video program and subsequently circulated among fans via bootleg VHS (or maybe that’s just videographer Jeremy Quattlebaum of The Angry Mountain working his magic). Continue reading →

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HOUND packs two new tracks with a punky urgency and devilish heaviness

HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist
HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist

Philly hard rockers HOUND are gearing up for a release of their new album BORN UNDER 76, and with the weather at last conjuring its charged, ominous atmosphere of spookiness, there’s no better time for some new HOUND tracks; the entire record is streaming now over at Allmusic, but we’d like to highlight its two new singles to jam to. Continue reading →

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Hound has a few words for he-who-shall-not-be-named in heavy-hitting track, “Aqualamb”

HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist
HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist

With the the world being the world it is right now, it’s nice and fine to take a breather for a sec. But you know what’s also nice? Raging in anger to Philly hardcore rockers, HOUND’s new track, “Aqualamb,” thats what.

The new song blazes in heavy, charged resistance as a blatant middle finger to you-know-who. Continue reading →

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Download 100+ songs from Cayetana, Screaming Females, Solarized, Palehound, and more in the Get Better Records benefit comp

Solarized | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

In the wake of the recent violence in Charlottesville, local punk label Get Better Records solicited contributions from artists local and national to raise funds to help those injured in the wake of the protest.

There was an outpouring from the scene, and today the label released a compilation of music from 100+ bands including Cayetana, Potty Mouth, Screaming Females, Sadie Dupuis, S-21, Worriers, Cameron Boucher, Palehound, Radiator Hospital, Mannequin Pussy, Roger Harvey, Solarized, Joe Jack Talcum, Dominic, King Azaz and more. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Palehound at Boot and Saddle, Pronoun at Kung Fu Necktie

Palehound | Courtesy of the artist

Along with all the other albums we’ve been waiting years for, Palehound‘s sophomore LP A Place I’ll Always Go was recently released on June 16th on Polyvinyl and it is as much fantastic as it is pure emotion. The trio from Boston brings their indie rock lo-fi sound to Boot and Saddle tonight as the second stop in their US tour in support of the new release. Joining them are Philly’s Queen of Jeans and Ursula at the 21+ show. For more information, see the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Hound at Everybody Hits, Steve Miller Band at The Mann Center, Megadeth at The Fillmore

HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist
HOUND | photo by Dawn Riddle | courtesy of the artist

Sometimes you need to headbang on a Tuesday. Philly’s own hard rockers HOUND will be raging at Everybody Hits tonight along with White Rope and local act Mint. HOUND is set to release their third LP in the fall, so the trio will be sure to include new tracks in the setlist that you will not want to miss. For more information on the show, click here. Check out the band’s performance at the dearly departed Golden Tea House, recorded in 2015 but only discovered this year. Continue reading →