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All These Sick Scenes: Los Campesinos! at the TLA

Los Campesinos! | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | jeremy-zim.com

“Enjoy this night, because I know for a fact that we’re not likely to be invited back.” It seems impossible that it’s been six whole years since hearing those words, the last time Los Campesinos! played in Philadelphia. At one of the first ever shows at the newly inagurated Union Transfer, the Welsh post-twee band celebrated the same thing they always have been — that the present is the only thing we’re ever guaranteed, even as bleak as it may seem. It’s a common theme in the band’s work, and existence as a whole. Even while remaining prominent cult favorites, eleven years into their so-called career, the future band has never been assured. At the TLA on Wednesday night, they approached the end of an impossible US tour and proved that there’s a certain kind of charming nostalgia hidden within bitter nihilism. Continue reading →

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Of All Things: Joyce Manor rip through first of two sold out shows at the Church

Joyce Manor | Photo by Sydney Schaefer | sydneyschaeferphotos.com
Joyce Manor | Photo by Sydney Schaefer | sydneyschaeferphotos.com

There’s nothing quite like a mid-fall gig at First Unitarian Church, except, of course, the fact that it felt increasingly more like a show in the middle of the dog days of summer with each step taken down to the basement on Friday night. After all, isn’t that the charm of it? Forfeiting sanity, personal space and healthy body temperature regulation just comes with the territory — and there was no better place than here to hold Joyce Manor’s back-to-back sold out Philly dates. Supported by New York up-and-comers Crying and alt heavy-hitters The Hotelier, the night was a showcase of powerful emotions, manifested in intricately diverse forms. Continue reading →

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All Grown Up: Modern Baseball comes of age at the TLA

photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | Jeremy-Zim.com
photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | Jeremy-Zim.com

Well, they finally went and did the damn thing. Modern Baseball sold out. Sold out The TLA, that is. On Thursday night, the loveable West Philly punks headlined an absolutely stacked lineup of bands and defended pop punk, hard. The evening was marked with smiles, tears and even some special guests, and the homeboys clearly enjoyed working their largest hometown crowd to date.

The evening kicked off with several quick sets from four up-and-coming bands who share the scene with Modern Baseball, and know how to rock the stage almost as well. First up was Boston’s Somos, whipping through a quick set of tunes from their debut LP Temple of Plenty. While their set was solid, it also didn’t have much in the way of memorable moments, and was quickly overshadowed—for me, at least—by the bands who followed them up on the bill. Continue reading →

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You Blew It!, Prawn, Crying, Marietta, and Secret Plot bring ‘The Emo Revival’ to the Fire

You Blew It! | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo
You Blew It! | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo

The Fire held an all-emo showcase Sunday night, bringing together Florida punk four piece You Blew It! alongside New Jersey’s Prawn, New York’s Crying, and Philly’s  Marietta and Secret Plot to Destroy the Entire Universe. Each band brought their emotional cues forward in their own way, showcasing how creative and loud they can be with the copious amount of tiresome energy that come through in their music.

Secret Plot To Destroy The Entire Universe | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo
Secret Plot To Destroy The Entire Universe | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo

Secret Plot opened up the night with a set of their vocally-driven and abrasive songs. Teetering in that delicate spot between destructive and beautiful, this band sure knows how to get their feelings across, especially live. New songs filled their performance, and the band mentioned that an album is in the works. Keep an eye out for that, and check out their other stuff on Bandcamp.

Local emo four piece Marietta was up next, playing a set of tracks from their debut album Summer Death. Their twinkly riffs and huge crescendos made for a terrific sing-a-long experience. The band plays faster and yells a little harder live, which really showcases their punk influence and how invested these guys are in the feelings of their songs. Drummer Andrew Weigel was especially crazy to see live; during some of the build ups he would be absolutely pounding on his toms while also shouting the lyrics at the top of his lungs. Listen to Summer Death here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Phosphorescent at Union Transfer, You Blew It! at The Fire, and Potty Mouth at Kung Fu Necktie

Photo by Dusdin Condren
Photo by Dusdin Condren

WXPN welcomes folk / Americana luminaries Phosphorescent at Union Transfer tonight. Rescheduled from a snowed-out show last month, the show will feature singer-songwriter Matthew Houck and his bandmates showcasing material from last year’s critical favorite Muchacho, as well as the band’s extensive back-catalog. Tickets for tonight’s all-ages show are $18 and can be purchased here.

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Twinkly pop-punkers Marietta and Secret Plot rekindle at The Fire this Sunday

marietta
Marietta plays at the Golden Tea House this past January | photo by Jasmine An | facebook.com/whereismarietta

Not one, but two Philly pop punk favorites will be playing together this Sunday at The FireSecret Plot to Destroy the Entire Universe and Marietta will be playing with out-of-staters state punkers Crying, Prawn and You Blew It!

After a month-long tour together along the Northeast, Marietta and Secret Plot will reunite for the show. Though Secret Plot hasn’t released any new music since its last album, I Only Miss You When I Want To, came out in December 2012, they might share some of the new material they’ve been working on for a reported full-length on Kit Kat Records. This will be one of Secret Plot’s last shows in town until they return from a month-long March tour.

Joining them are twinkly pop punk band Marietta, who released their 8-track album Summer Death appropriately in October. In late January, the band announced a limited-edition new pressing of the eight-song album on marbled “red and white wine” vinyl in honor of “Wineuary.” The reissue will come out via Soft Speak Records.

The all-ages show starts at 6:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door for $10, or in advance for $8 here.

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Just Announced: Crying to play The Fire 2/9

Photo courtesy of the artist
Photo courtesy of the artist

Electro-pop force Crying have started off the new year right with the announcement of a few new live shows. The band released their infectious Get Olde EP back in August. Local fans of the band are in luck; Crying will bring their irresistible synth pop to The Fire on February 9th. Stay tuned for more ticket information and listen to “Bodega Run” below.