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The Key Studio Sessions: Kiska

When Owen Staszewski isn’t pounding the drums in Ruby The Hatchet, he’s at the mic for another band of heavy rocking Philadelphians – Kiska. The new four-piece is actually relatively seasoned; it formed from the ashes, as the expression goes, of Philly modern rock outfit Desoto Jones. That long-running band had been experiencing shifts in lineup as well as sonic directions, and last year came to the conclusion that it had become a different band altogether. Rounded out by Owen’s brother Adam Staszewski on guitar, alongside bassist Ean Kyler and drummer Adam Francois, Kiska was born, and set to work recording its debut LP. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The Retinas at MilkBoy, Trans Am at Boot and Saddle, Suzanne Vega at Levoy Theater

The Retinas | photo courtesy of the artist
The Retinas | photo courtesy of the artist

A rock four-piece made up of childhood friends, The Retinas busted onto the Philly scene last year with their debut LP Hello…My Name Is The Retinas. Like a slew of similar-minded Philly up-and-comers, the band has a fuzzy lo-fi garage rock sound a la Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes, and this winter released the new single “Take Me By the Hand,” which you can check out below. They play MilkBoy tonight opening for Lee Baines III and The Glory Fires; tickets and more information on the show can be found on the XPN Concert Calendar.
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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Joy Ike at Burlap and Bean, Fursaxa at The First Banana, The Suffers at Boot and Saddle

Joy Ike | via joyike.bandcamp.com
Joy Ike | via joyike.bandcamp.com

Pittsburgh singer-songwriter Joy Ike comes to Burlap and Bean in Newtown Square tonight. In 2013, she released her third LP, All or Nothing – a collection of whimsical arrangements, pop melodies and personal lyricism that caught the ear of her local radio station WYEP as well as NPR’s All Songs Considered. Listen to “All or Nothing” below and get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Up The Chain releases its first new single as a fully-commited trio

Up The Chain |  Photo by Caitlin McCann | via Facebook.com/UptheChain
Up The Chain | Photo by Caitlin McCann | via Facebook.com/UptheChain

Up The Chain used to encompass frontman Reed Kendall and various musicians enlisted for live performances. Now, a fully committed trio has been formed, and the first release from the group, a track titled “The Hardest Stone” – which you might remember the band playing during its Key Studio Session last year. The song is crisp display of Kirby Sybert on drums and Noah Skaroff on bass, mixing fittingly with Kendall’s smooth vocals and guitar riffs. You can listen to the track via Baeble Music. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Tobias Jesso Jr at Boot and Saddle, Impressionist at Bourbon and Branch, The Cloth at Underground Arts

Tobias Jesso Jr | photo via tobiasjessojr.com
Tobias Jesso Jr | photo via tobiasjessojr.com

Buzzing Vancouver artist Tobias Jesso Jr. headlines Boot and Saddle tonight. The singer-songwriter and pianist writes smooth and sincere pop songs in the vein of Randy Newman, and was produced by members of The Black Keys and New Pornographers (and features drumming from Danielle Haim). His album Goon came out last week on True Panther Sounds. Watch the video for “How Could You Babe” below and get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Church Girls at Boot and Saddle, Son Little at MilkBoy, Gang of Four at The TLA and more

Church Girls/ via facebook.com/churchgirlsmusic
Church Girls/ via facebook.com/churchgirlsmusic

A folk-rooted duo with a punk edge, Philly’s Church Girls headlines a show tonight at Boot and Saddle. Primarily the work of singers and songwriters Mariel Beaumont and Evan Anders, the five-piece band celebrated the release of its self-titled debut EP last month at MilkBoy. Tonight they’ll be joined by Sonnder, who are in the midst of their single-a-month project that will culminate in a new LP by December. Tickets and information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert CalendarContinue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Milton at Bourbon and Branch, Dan Wilson at World Cafe Live, Bondage and Discipline at Boot and Saddle and more

Milton | Photo by John Vettese
Milton | Photo by John Vettese

It’s a night showcasing the new sound of Philly soul tomorrow at Bourbon and Branch with a performance by Milton, who just a year ago released an impressive, eclectic record called Simple Pleasures. Jacqueline Conatance opens the show, and we’re hoping she does her knockout Sylvan Esso cover. Tickets and more information can be found here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: July Talk at Boot and Saddle, Something Like A Monument at Ortlieb’s, Leon Chavis and Koray Broussard at World Cafe Live and more

Photo by John Vettese
Photo by John Vettese

Canadian art-rockers July Talk will make a return visit to Philly tonight, headlining a show Boot and Saddle. An acclaimed band in the Toronto scene since they formed in 2012, the band released its self-titled debut LP in 2013, which is finally getting its U.S. release this March via Island Records. The meeting of co-frontpersons Peter Dreimanis and Leah Fay blend the aggressive and the ethereal into catchy rock and roll, a catchy blend that cuts through particularly strongly on “Guns and Ammunition.” Check out the music video for that song below and get tickets and information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Meddlesome Meddlesome Meddlesome Bells at Boot and Saddle, El Malito at Underground Arts, Beausoleil at World Cafe Live and more

Meddlesome Meddlesome Meddlesome Bells | via facebook.com/meddlesomebells
Meddlesome Meddlesome Meddlesome Bells | via facebook.com/meddlesomebells

Philadelphia-based heavy psych five-piece Meddlesome Meddlesome Meddlesome Bells headlines Boot and Saddle tonight in celebration of its self-titled new LP. It’s the third release from the band – whose brooding, distortion heavy sonic tapestries recall PJ Harvey as easily as Black Sabbath – and it will be available at the show on limited edition pink vinyl. Tickets and more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Listen to the single “Willow Willow” below. Continue reading →