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Dance to the Beat: Belle and Sebastian and Lucius filled the Tower Theater with lush indie pop

Belle and Sebastian | Photo by Kate McCann
Belle and Sebastian | Photo by Kate McCann

Belle and Sebastian released their first album in five years, entitled Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, this past winter. The title reflects the attitude of the band’s new-found live energy: they’re at a fairly peaceful time in their career, and they really just want to dance.

Who can blame them? After years of dreamy, sleepwalking twee pop, the band has adopted a more accessible, club-worthy sound that still showcases their knack for songwriting.

Don’t like it? Well, Belle and Sebastian don’t care, simply because they’re Belle and Sebastian. They have the experience and magic charm to turn even the most top-40-sounding melodies into indie hits. Then they’ll just pull you up on stage and dance the negativity out of you. Literally. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: STS at Underground Arts, Belle and Sebastian at The Tower Theater, B.C. Camplight at Union Transfer and more

STS in the World Cafe studio | Photo by Rich McKie
STS in the World Cafe studio | Photo by Rich McKie

Philly rapper STS (aka Sugar Tongue Slim) opens the stacked lineup tonight at Underground Arts, joining Heems of Das Racist and Afrobeat electronic group The Very Best. This is STS’ first Philly show since the release of his latest, STS x RJD2, and the collaborative album joins his witty and oft-introspective rhymes with RJD2′s funky, party-ready backings and the occasional surprise guest hook from, oh, I don’t know, Amos Lee. Tickets and more info on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Feel the power of Sleater-Kinney, Operators and The Go! Team on tonight’s Indie Rock Hit Parade!

Sleater-Kinney | Photo by Charles Petersen
Sleater-Kinney | Photo by Charles Petersen

The Indie Rock Hit Parade is back with a vengeance tonight at 11pm on XPN. And by “with a vengeance,” I mean to say “a ton of new music that you won’t want to miss.” Tune in for a full two-hour show, starting immediately after Land of the Lost with Robert Drake! We’ll spotlight No Cities To Love, the first new album from the mighty Sleater-Kinney in a decade, plus hear a few of these fresh new tracks:

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Groove to new Belle & Sebastian, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion and Pond on tonight’s Indie Rock Hit Parade!

Belle And Sebastian | Photo by Søren Solkær
Belle & Sebastian | Photo by Søren Solkær

The Indie Rock Hit Parade returns tonight at 11pm on XPN! What should you expect to hear? Nothing but the best in new and classic indie stuff, of course! On tonight’s show, we’ll spotlight the newly released (and downright terrific) ninth album from Belle & Sebastian, Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance. We’ll also get to a these tracks, hot off the presses:

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Belle and Sebastian will headline the Tower Theater in June

Belle and Sebastian | photo via facebook.com/belleandsebastian
Belle and Sebastian | photo via facebook.com/belleandsebastian

Scottish indie pop band Belle and Sebastian just announced an upcoming stop at the Tower Theater. Coming June 9, this concert will mark almost two years since the group’s magical performance at the Mann Center. 

Tickets will go on sale Friday, Jan. 16 at noon, just a few days before the release of their ninth studio album, Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, via Matador Records. Continue reading →

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MusicNotes from the XPN Morning Show: Belle and Sebastian announce new album, Ozzy Osbourne confirms final Black Sabbath album/tour and TV On The Radio enlists Pee-wee Herman actor in “Happy Idiot” video

Photo by Søren Solkær Starbird
Photo by Søren Solkær Starbird

Glasgow indie-pop band Belle and Sebastian will release their new album, “Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance” on January 20th of next year. Read more & watch the video for the cover song after the jump. Continue reading →

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A magical night with Belle & Sebastian and Yo La Tengo (review, photos, setlist)

Belle and Sebastian | Photo by John Vettese
Belle and Sebastian | Photo by John Vettese

It’s hard to describe a Belle & Sebastian show without first describing—or attempting to describe—what exactly Belle & Sebastian mean to us. What makes Belle & Sebastian so special?

There are plenty of reasons to like a band. They might write catchy melodies, or great lyrics, or boast a really great stage show. None of these are the reason we love Belle & Sebastian, although all of these are certainly true about Belle & Sebastian. No, our love for Belle & Sebastian goes deeper. It’s the way they just seem to get us—the smart, the quirky, the maybe a little dorky, the cynical, the wandering, the artists. It’s the way they seem to effortlessly capture every emotion we’ve ever felt, from gleeful zest to detached nostalgia, while still providing something we can nod along to. They’ve been there for us since we were much younger, and as time has passed and other bands have faded to obscurity, they’ve grown with us, moving from tunes about awkward adolescence and life in the suburbs to the ennui of the workweek and the slow acceptance of always being broke. And last night at the Mann Center, they proved they’ll be sticking around quite a bit longer.

The first thing you notice when Belle & Sebastian take the stage is: there’s a lot of them. Continue reading →