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Incoherent Love Songs: P.S. Eliot reunite LIVE on the Indie Rock Hit Parade!

p.s. eliot | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN
p.s. eliot | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN

Tonight’s Indie Rock Hit Parade is even more special than usual, and it’s all thanks to our latest Live Studio Session. Listen in at 11pm ET on WXPN (shortly after the September edition of Making Time RADio with Dave P) for, among other things, a live session with p.s. eliot. The band, formed by twin sisters Katie “Waxahatchee” and Allison “Swearin’/The Fizz” Crutchfield, are currently on a short reunion tour commemorating a new reissue of their entire recorded output, 2007-2011. They stopped by our studios to warm up and play a few of the beloved band’s songs live. There’s a lot of excitement around this session, and you can see why thanks to our friends at NPR Music and Vuhaus, who are hosting a video clip of one of the session’s songs. Check that out HERE.

Also in the mix tonight, a spotlight on the new album from noisy NY/Philly rockers Cymbals Eat Guitars, swirling psych from Montreal’s Elephant Stone and the first-ever solo song from Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon released under her own name. Preview those (and more) below…

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Get flashy with Beach Day, The New Pornographers & Literature on the Indie Rock Hit Parade!

Beach Day | Photo by Kimmy Drake
Beach Day | Photo by Kimmy Drake

The Indie Rock Hit Parade returns to the XPN airwaves tonight at 10pm! Tune in for a colossal assortment of brand new tracks from Beach Day, The New Pornographers, Tennis, Alvvays and more! And don’t miss our album spotlight on the newly released sophomore LP from Philly’s own Literature! Here’s a sampling of what’s in store tonight:

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A Lifelong Quest: Two Philadelphia effects pedal companies strive for the perfect sound

TSVG
The TSVG Team: Perry Shall, Yamil Emedan, and Mike Klein

On a recent Thursday morning, I went to the new headquarters of TSVG, the boutique effects pedal company that relocated from West Philadelphia to the Fairmount neighborhood a few weeks ago. “Headquarters” is actually the home of Mike Klein, the pedal designer who founded TSVG in 2011. He has two designated workspaces in his new home, one in a small spare bedroom, and the other in the basement. Making pedals is now Klein’s full-time job, but he claims there aren’t any plans to move TSVG into a larger, separate workshop.

“I really don’t need any more room than I already have,” explains Klein while standing in his kitchen. “It’s not like there are a bunch of people working in here. It’s just me and sometimes one other person. I eat my breakfast, and then I go downstairs and start making pedals. That’s what my days are like now.”

Klein’s living room is doubling as a conference room this morning. On top of his coffee table are the six pedals TSVG is currently pushing: a fuzz box called the Angry Jeff; the Emperor, an overdrive pedal; two boost pedals called Hard Stuff (one designed specifically for basses, the other for guitars); a 1960s/70s-inspired fuzz pedal called Keystone Fuzz; and the Red Eye, an overdrive pedal TSVG’s website describes as “perfect for living out your ‘Arena Rock’ fantasy.”

Sitting around the table with Klein are his high school pal Perry Shall, whose artwork appears on all of the pedals, and Yamil Emedan, a longtime friend who has recently become Klein’s apprentice. All three of them are pedal-junkies who play in local bands. Shall’s in Dry Feet, Emedan is in Can You Canoe and Tortuga, and both Klein and Shall are in Hound. As you might expect, they all use TSVG pedals.

tsvg pedals
The TSVG Pedals

“I’ve played a million boost pedals before, but these are the first ones that actually work,” says Shall, who admits he’s incredibly biased. “Most boost pedals just don’t boost. I play loud music all the time, and these pedals really explode, man!”

Shall’s not alone. Among the musicians currently using TSVG pedals are Best Coast’s Bobb Bruno, Screaming Females’ Marissa Paternoster, Circa Survive’s Brendan Ekstrom and Philadelphia guitarist Nick Millevoi, of Many Arms. “The Hard Stuff pushes my tone into some seriously aggressive territory,” says Millevoi. “I’ve never used another pedal that’s able to overdrive my amp in this way. The fact that it’s hand-wired point-to-point is a serious bonus. I think it gives them a vintage tone you won’t find on any pedal that was built from a circuit board.” Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Cymbals Eat Guitars with Quicksand at Union Transfer and Andrew McMahon (of Jacks Mannequin) at Chameleon Club

It’s serendipitous that Cymbals Eat Guitars are opening for Quicksand. The Staten Island Cymbals are heavily influenced by 90’s grunge rock and Quicksand’s most popular album, Slip, came out in 1993. While neither band has released anything new lately, that’s hardly a reason to miss Cymbals openening for Quicksand tonight. Cymbals Eat Guitars’ 2009 album Why There Are Mountains, was heavy enough on delicate guitar riffs and general angst, that their sound felt timeless. Their 2011 follow-up Lenses Alien was successfully anachronistic, as well. For some nostalgic alternative rock, throw on your cargo pants and head down to Union Transfer. Tickets for the all ages event are sold out, but information can be found here.  Below, watch Cymbals Eat Guitars play their track “Plains Clothes” live.

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Win limited edition Cymbals Eat Guitars merch (band performs Oct. 25th at First Unitarian Church)

Fans of Cymbals Eat Guitars who are eagerly awaiting their Philly show this fall can enter a Stereogum contest to win copies of the band’s upcoming sophomore album Lenses Alien, as well as a t-shirt, buttons, and a custom guitar pedal created by the band.

The deadline to enter is August 29th at 5:30 pm. Visit Stereogum for a complete description of the rules and to enter.

Cymbals Eat Guitars play the Church October 25th with Hooray For Earth and Beige.