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Working Stiffs: White Denim, Kristin Kontrol and Night Moves on the Indie Rock Hit Parade!

White Denim| Photo by Drew Anthony Smith, courtesy of Downtown Records
White Denim| Photo by Drew Anthony Smith, courtesy of Downtown Records

The Indie Rock Hit Parade will be delivered directly to you tonight at 11pm ET, right after Land of the Lost on WXPN. Let it be known that on tonight’s show, we’ll have a spotlight on the ferocious new album from the Texas band White Denim. Furthermore, we will dig into new tracks from Kristin Kontrol (a.k.a. Dee Dee from Dum Dum Girls), Big Thief, Night Moves and so much more. Skip the rest of the formalities and check out a few of the tracks that’ll be in the mix below:

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Hear the Best (and nothing but the best) of the Indie Rock Hit Parade tonight!

Future Islands | Photo by Timothy Saccenti
Future Islands | Photo by Timothy Saccenti

As 2014 draws to a close, it’s time to make your picks of the best music of the year! Tonight’s Indie Rock Hit Parade features two full hours of the best of what 2014 had to offer. Starting at 10pm, we’ll hear tracks from some of our favorite newcomers as well as grand returns from old friends. And don’t forget to vote for your own Top 10 Songs of 2014 in the XPN Year In Review!

Here are a few things you’ll hear tonight:
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Download the Dum Dum Girls’ World Cafe performance of “Rimbaud Eyes”

Photo by James Orlando
Photo by James Orlando

Dum Dum Girls recently made their debut on World Cafe. With hooked filled songs, flavored with lots of reverb and deftly walking a balancing act between lo-fi garage rock and sheeny pop, they played songs from their recent album, Too True, on Sub Pop Records. Listen to the full session here. Below, download their Cafe performance of “Rimbaud Eyes.”

Support for My Morning Download, from Flying Fish Brewing Company
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Get weird with new music from Dum Dum Girls, Liars, Cloud Nothings and more on tonight’s “Compact” Indie Rock Hit Parade!

Dum Dum Girls | Image courtesy of the artist
Dum Dum Girls | Image courtesy of the artist

Another month brings us to another Final Friday which, in turn, brings us to another one-hour ‘Compact’ edition of the Indie Rock Hit Parade on XPN! Stay tuned after Robert Drake’s Land of the Lost for a showcase of new and exciting tracks that have been boiled down to their highest concentration of cool. Here are a few of the things you’ll hear in the mix tonight starting at 11pm:

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Dum Dum Girls bring passion, mystique to Johnny Brenda’s

Dum Dum Girls | Photo by Kate Bracaglia | underwaterexplosions.blogspot.com
Dum Dum Girls | Photo by Kate Bracaglia | underwaterexplosions.blogspot.com

In the world of rock’n roll, there are two ways to become a star. You’re either born with it—as a natural performer/songwriter—or you work really hard, and gradually achieve it. In the case of Dee Dee Penny, Dum Dum Girls front woman, it’s definitely the latter. For six years now, the raven-haired Penny (real name: Kristin Welchez) has written and performed as Dum Dum Girls, transitioning from a shy, librarian-type, who buried her vocals under a wall of feedback—to a confident pop star, in complete control of her voice and her vision. Last night at Johnny Brenda’s, the latter Dee Dee came to play, bewitching the sold-out crowd with her passionate vocals and commanding presence.

The past few years have been a turbulent time for Penny—her 2011 LP, Only in Dreams, was inspired by the passing of her mother, and spurred passionate, affecting ballads like the stunning “Coming Down.” Throughout her career, she’s overcome extreme stage fright and vocal chord injuries that threatened to derail her. The first time I saw Penny perform, in March 2011, she was passionate but fragile, like a baby lion testing its roar. Last night, she proved undisputed king queen of the jungle, slinking through numbers like a feline seductress, and roaring into the mic with abandon.

She was joined for evening by her backing band: two more guitarists, a drummer, and a bassist, clad all in black, like a goth-pop version of Jem and the Holograms (plus one dude). Together, they rocketed through 15 songs in just under an hour, never pausing to address the crowd (save one coy “you make me feel so good about myself” from Dee Dee, amidst cries of “I love you!”) and ripping through tunes with a detached cool. Opener “Bedroom Eyes,” off Dreams, was warm and hooky, the chorus ringing out through the fog, while “He Gets Me High,” off the EP of the same name, was a swaggering, hazy journey through fuzzed-out vocals and undulating bass. New tune “Rimbaud Eyes” was a set highlight, its blustery refrain casting the girls as new wave stars—while “Lord Knows” proved a moment of real musical catharsis, Dee Dee gripping the mic tightly to croon: “I want to live a pure life.”

The band ended its set with a stirring two-song encore, juxtaposing the sultry, kittenish “Lost Boys and Girls Club” with the devastating slow-burner “Coming Down.” If anyone arrived at the show unsure of Penny’s star power, they certainly left converted.

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Stream new Dum Dum Girls track “Rimbaud Eyes” (playing Johnny Brenda’s 3/23)

Dum Dum Girls | Photo by Lauren Dukoff
Photo by James Orlando

Dum Dum Girls have released a new track from their upcoming album Too True which arrives January 28th via Sub Pop Records. “Rimbaud Eyes” references 19th century poet Arthur Rimbaud who influenced musicians such as Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, and Trent Reznor. It has an ’80s rock vibe that you can’t help but groove to. Listen below and get tickets to the band’s show at Johnny Brenda’s on March 23rd here.

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Dum Dum Girls bring their new Too True to Johnny Brenda’s on 3/23

dum dum girls
Photo by James Orlando | jamesorlandooo.tumblr.com

Noise pop / dream pop rock four-piece Dum Dum Girls announced an East Coast run that brings them to Philly and Johnny Brenda’s on March 23. Their new Too True is due out January 28 via Sub Pop records. The indie-pop meets garage rock outfit puts on a show that’s both melodic and edgy, angsty and ethereal, and the venue couldn’t be more appropriate. Tickets go on sale Friday, December 13 at noon here. Watch the video for “Lost Boys and Girls Club” from Too True below.

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Preview tonight’s all-new Indie Rock Hit Parade! (and recap last week’s show)

Dum Dum Girls | Photo by Lauren Dukoff
Dum Dum Girls | Photo by Lauren Dukoff

Tune in at 10p tonight for another full-length edition of the Indie Rock Hit Parade on XPN! Tonight’s show is heavy on the new music, including a few new excursions from familiar friends. We’ve got new music from groups that feature members of The New Pornographers, TV On The Radio and Foxygen, plus all-new tracks from M.I.A., Chvrches, Blood Orange and more!

Here are a few things you might just hear in the mix tonight:

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Weekend Picks: Making Time with Dum Dum Girls + Veronica Falls at Voyeur, Andrew Lipke at Milkboy Philly

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10th
The members of Dum Dum Girls have always dressed to impress. Since hitting the scene with its debut album, I Will Be, in 2010, the ’60s-inspired quartet is almost always found clad in matching black nylons, red lipstick, and heavy eye makeup, hiding behind a veil of thick, glossy bangs. Though the ladies have always looked quite mature, their second album, last year’s Only In Dreams, carries a sound that has finally caught up with the group’s aesthetic. Though still creating a nice balance between beachy grooves and low-fi subtleties, the group’s latest batch of songs sounds less like adolescent heart doodles and more like someone who’s mastered the complexities of The Bell Jar. Born in the wake of lead singer Dee Dee’s mother’s lost battle to cancer, Only In Dreams strays from the typical boy-crazy narratives and instead acts as a cathartic confession of insomnia, restlessness, and change. Dum Dum Girls performs with Veronica Falls at 9 p.m. at Voyeur; tickets to the 21+ show are $15. —Marielle Mondon

Also Playing: This Will Destroy You + Mountains, Amen Dunes, Power Animal at First Unitarian Church (8 p.m., all ages, $12); Ryan Cabrera + Jennings at Tin Angel (10:30 p.m., all ages, $15); Vintage Kicks + Clone Justice, Bulletproof Tigers at Milkboy Philly (9:30 p.m., 21+, $8–$10)

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 11th

Andrew Lipke performs with Exit Clov and Marc Silver at 9:30 p.m. at Milkboy Philly; tickets to the 21+ show are $10–$12.

Also Playing: Umphrey’s McGee + Work Drugs at Electric Factory (8:30 p.m., all ages, $25); The Summer Set + The Cab, He Is We, Days Difference, Paradise Fears at Union Transfer (6:30 p.m., all ages, $15); Man The Fire + Scoop The Freak, The Naked Sun at North Star Bar (9 p.m., 21+, $7–$9)

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 12th
Woollen Kits + Pet Milk at The Level Room (9 p.m., 21+, $7); Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe Presents The Rolling Stones “Sticky Fingers” at Union Transfer (8 p.m., all ages, $20)