22-year-old London singer and songwriter Nilüfer Yanya makes music that brings together R&B, jazz and pop in warm, familiar, yet refreshing ways. With several EPs to her credit, Yanya’s emotionally packed nonchalant music brings to mind the songs of Sade and Lianne La Havas. Continue reading →
On first listen, the most noticeable thing about The War On Drugs‘ “Nothing To Find” from recent album A Deeper Understanding is its sunny, classic rock-inspired sheen. With that lighthearted tone in mind, the song’s new music video, out now, may catch you off guard with its touching emotional depth. Continue reading →
Each spring for the past four years, Get Better Recordshas thrown an event that always leaves us looking forward to the next. The local independent label just announced Getter Better Fest 5, happening over three days in May at two locations — this year it’s the First Unitarian Church and LAVA Space. Not all of the bands have been announced yet, but with initial lineup we have so far, it’s already shaping up to be a stacked weekend of tunes. And Get Better Fest is as much about the community as it is the music — the festival always seeks to promote a diverse and inclusive lineup, all while raising money for local and national organizations. Continue reading →
You were given a warm introduction to new local super-group Big Nothing last week when we premiered their power-chord heavy, helluva ride of a single, “Cincinnati.” Now you can become even more well-acquainted — become pals even — by listening to the band’s full self-titled EP. Though officially out on July 28th, the crew has shared an early streaming of the EP via Brooklyn Vegan. Continue reading →
There’s an undeniable pedigree to new locals Big Nothing, pointing strongly back to the bustling West Chester punk scene. Guitarist Matt Quinn played in Crybaby with Ed McNulty of Beach Slang, while Pat Graham (also on guitar) fronted WC heroes Spraynard. A bit geographically separate, but no less connected, is bassist Liz Parsons — who hails from Flemington, NJ’s Casual — and drummer Chris Jordan, of Gainesville, FL’s Young Livers (a group that, incidentally, took their name from a great Rocket From the Crypt song).
Basically, it’s a crew of rad people who love hooky, riff-driven punk with strong pop sensibilities, who found themselves living in Philadelphia and wanting to start a project in the vein of Superchunk, The Pixies and The Replacements. Or, as Graham puts it over email, “we’re four Philadelphians coming together to explore the existential void…Big Nothing exists in order to never lose sight of doing what makes you happy. We are here to have fun, break things, and do whatever we want all of the time.”
That begins with “Cincinnati,” a track we’re stoked to premiere for you today. Continue reading →
Cleveland indie rock band Cloud Nothings played a killer, high-energy set to close out a four-band bill at Lancaster’s Chameleon Club on Sunday night. Blending the grittiness and raw power of garage rock with the high energy of pop punk, the band went in heavy and unrelenting; throughout the set, lead vocalist and guitarist Dylan Baldi was one of the hardest playing guitarists I’ve seen live.
The quartet performed songs from their latest release, Life Without Sound, as well as tracks from older releases including “I’m Not Part of Me” from Here And Nowhere Else. They had great energy in their musicianship, but the stage presence could’ve been a little more enthusiastic. The crowd nonetheless showed their enthusiasm for Cloud Nothings’ music through singing along and much head bopping. I wasn’t so keen on the muddy layering of instruments and vocals; I’ve seen countless bands in my life and it’s always bothered me when the instruments and vocals aren’t balanced. On the other hand, I’m wondering if it’s part of the band’s live sound. Continue reading →
We’ve been pretty fairly hyped about Harmony Woods recently released debut album, Nothing Special, over here at The Key. We profiled the band early this week and we’ll be there at their album release party at JJ’s Diner. So it’s no surprise we’re also pretty fairly hyped about the band’s recent stop at WTSR Studios. Continue reading →
It’s hard to believe that Harmony Woods hasn’t even been a going concern for a year, and yet they’re ready to make a huge impact on the Philly music community. The project of singer-guitarist Sofia Verbilla went fromknocking us out at basement shows in the fall to the announcement this spring of Nothing Special, the band’s debut long-player set for release on May 5th via Honest Face Records.
In addition to possessing a classically awesome voice that totally slays in an indie rock setting but could also slay in a pop sense given the chance, Verbilla is a gifted scene-setter and storyteller, and the attention to narrative detail all across the record reminds me a lot of Death Cab For Cutie’s The Photo Album — particularly on “Jenkintown-Wyncote,” Nothing Special‘s first single, which made its way into the world back on April 1st. Continue reading →
We first met Michael Cormier as the drummer in Friendship, a trio of Mainers that officially rooted down in Philadelphia about two years ago. They won over our hearts with pensive songwriting and aching, soulful arrangements, anchored by Cormier’s expert percussion at live gigs and on their 2015 highlight You’re Going to Have to Trust Me. Now Cormier will step out from behind the kit, announcing his own debut solo LP Make Believe It’s Nothing and sharing a pair of lead singles.