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Download The Key Studio Sessions Vol. 7 (feat. Waxahatchee, Pissed Jeans, Ruby the Hatchet + more)

kss vol 7

The latest edition of our Key Studio Sessions compilations is out today – now streamable and downloadable from Soundcloud!  Check out this year’s in-studio appearances with The Key Studio Sessions Vol. 7, including the down-tempo folk stylings of Waxahatchee, the thrashing punk of Pissed Jeans and the all-out rock jams of Ruby the Hatchet.  Thanks to production assistants Fred Knittel, Madeleine Lesperance, and Dan Malloy as well as photographers Rachel Del Sordo and Kate McCann, and videographers The Angry Mountain, HotBox Studios and Out of Town Films for sharing their work.

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Watch By Surprise’s new “Criteria” video (playing Girard Hall on 3/8)

By SurpriseSouth Jersey emo foursome By Surprise premiered a new video for their single “Criteria” on If You Make It this morning. The playful and surreal clip follows singer-guitarist Pat Gartlind as he wanders from home to the office, with his bandmates Rob Wilcox, Devin Carr and Dan Saraceni (pictured above) standing in as his furniture and household appliances. Says Wilcox:

The video was a lot of fun for us. Granted, we try to not take ourselves too seriously, and I think we managed to uphold that standard while still doing the song justice. Pat and his fiancé actually own the house together, so it made recreating his morning routine all the more fun, and for the most part, pretty accurate.

Keep your eyes peeled for an Everyone Everywhere Cup O’ Joe in the video, which you can watch below, and catch By Surprise in concert next Friday, March 8th, when they play Girard Hall with Nicknames, Sparrows, Secret Plot to Destroy the Universe and Pocket.

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The Week’s Best MP3 Downloads, incl. Caitlin Rose, Arctic Splash, Rev. John Wilkins

Pissed Jeans sure know how to make the most of two and a half minutes.  The first single from the local band’s upcoming Honeys LP is called “Cathouse,” and it’s a relentless punk jam with a killer shred explosion two minutes in.  Honeys will be out on Sub Pop on February 12th, with a record release show at Underground Arts on February 15th.  Tickets and information for the 21+ show can be found here. Download the song via Soundcloud here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The National Rifle at Johnny Brenda’s, Everyone Everywhere at The Barbary, The Weeks at MilkBoy, JD Malone at Burlap and Bean, XPN Welcomes Lee Fields & The Expressions to World Cafe Live

With an album release a mere two weeks away, The National Rifle headline Johnny Brenda’s tonight.  Almost Endless will be the Philly band’s first full-length, following up four EPs that span a seven year career.  With glam rock vocals, spacey synths and a pulsing bass line, The Nationals Rifle’s new recordings move the quartet away from the punk vibes of their previous releases and into the world of Bowie and M83 dipped in dream pop.  Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show with The New Connection and Crills Wilson can be found here.  Below, stream “Glass Line” from Almost Endless.

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Double Booked: Everyone Everywhere vs. Matt Pryor and James Dewees

It is a problem that has plagued modern society. It has jolted you out of your sleep in worry and cold sweats. It has left you crippled with regret. It can literally ruin your night. It is the dreaded double booking. Two potentially dope concerts, one potentially dope night. Here on Double Booked, we’ll help make your decision easier by breaking down the two shows by category, and deciding which reigns supreme. Let’s do this.

This week we pit young guns Everyone Everywhere and their merry bunch of hooligans, who play at The Barbary tomorrow, against old emo fogies Matt Pryor (of The Get Up Kids and The New Amsterdams) and James Dewees (formerly of The Get Up Kids and Reggie And The Full Effect), who play North Star Bar. Who will reign supreme? Read and find out. Continue reading →

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The Week So Far: 12 must-read stories on The Key

Birdie Busch‘s latest LP, Birdie Busch and The Greatest Night, gets profiled in Unlocked [link]

World Cafe‘s Sense of Place series explores the musical heritage of Memphis [link]

Philly synth-poppers Vacationer announce a monthly music showcase at Underground Arts [link]

Gracie releases a free download and EP details [link]

Emo four-piece Everyone Everywhere records a Key Studio Session [link]

My Morning Jacket’s Jim James announces a solo appearance at Johnny Brenda’s [link]

Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic gives Bleeding Rainbow a shoutout via Twitter [link]

Catnaps premier a playful new music video for “Cherry Lips” [link]

Shorty Boy-Boy also premiers a video for the ultra-catchy “Closer” [link]

Download a song from Kurt Vile‘s reissued Hunchback EP [link]

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds release a lyric video for “Jubilee Street” [link]

Brooklyn singer-songwriter Jason Myles Gross appears in a Folkadelphia session [link]

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The Key Studio Sessions: Everyone Everywhere

Philly emo four-piece Everyone Everywhere might move at their own pace – touring Europe when their new record came out, then waiting nearly six months to play a hometown album release show – but that’s okay.  These dudes are strong enough players and stirring enough songwriters that I’m totally along for the ride. Whether you’re listening to their album, watching their creative music videos, or digging into their performance in this week’s Key Studio Session, you can tell they’re doing it because they love it, and don’t want to ruin that enjoyment with careerist distractions. “Let’s rip, guys!” Brendan McHugh cheerfully urged as their performance started off. You can hear that he means it – you can tell that the three guys playing with him aren’t just bandmates, but also friends. Stream and download their session below, and catch them in concert this weekend when they play an all-ages show at The Barbary with Band Name, Glocca Morra and Slingshot Dakota.

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The Key Studio Sessions: Glocca Morra

Okay, let’s get right to it and start of 2013′s Key Studio Sessions with a bang. Glocca Morra is a feisty and fun punk rock group from Philadelphia. Last year the band toured a lot, released the broad-reaching Just Married LP and the scuzzy follow-up An Obscure Moon Lighting an Obscure World, and expanded its lineup to include Nate Dionne, late of Lehigh Velley underground faves Snowing. Like that band, Glocca Morra has an unbridled, cathartic, barely-holding-it-together sound that hearkens back to influential emocore band Cap’n Jazz. But it doesn’t fall apart, it plows forward – jagged guitars, gut-wrenching screams and all. On January 19, the band plays The Barbary, opening for Everyone Everywhere’s album release show. Get a taste of their feverish live sound with the five session tracks they recorded in our studio.

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Does cover art make the album? (plus 10 great album covers from the Philly scene in 2012)

Hideaway
Hideaway Music in Chestnut Hill uses album art as wall art

We can all agree (I hope) that the old “can’t judge a book by its cover” adage applies just as easily to albums. From Magical Mystery Tour to Rumours, The Talking Heads to The Smashing Pumpkins, and even this year’s standout Cat Power LP Sun, there’s a rich history of great music hiding behind heinous artwork. So does album art matter?

I think no and yes. “No” in that it’s about the music, not the packaging. In a world of digital listening, we interact with the songs themselves more immediately than ever before – there’s not that barrier of a bizarro / ugly sleeve to “get over,” in the event you find the sleeve bizarro and / or ugly. But also, “yes” in that cover art is still a way an musician represents themselves and their work. It may no longer be a first impression, but it is an impression, and you can almost look at it as an indicator of how much care they put into their overall project. And even on a more practical end, sure, physical releases no longer drive sales, but they are prized by collectors – the 180 gram vinyl editions and so forth are the sort of thing where people use the download card, then frame the LP cover and hang it on their wall. Would you really want to have Grimes’ frantic scribbled acid freakout hanging in your living room? (Okay, maybe you do.)

This week, UK music and culture blog The 405 listed their worst and best album covers of the year – lively reads, always – and it got me thinking about the role album art plays in 2012. Do you ignore it? Do you (like me) get antsy when your iTunes doesn’t have artwork for all its mp3s? What was the worst decade for album covers? (Hint: the 90s.) Which album covers blew you away this year? Which made you wretch? Discuss in the comments section, and check out some standout Philadelphia album covers from 2012 after the jump. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Everyone Everywhere playing a record release show at The Barbary on 01/19

Everyone EverywhereIt’s a slightly-delayed record release party for Everyone Everywhere!  The Philadelphia four-piece put out their second self-titled album (which we Unlocked) this past August and promptly fled the country for a tour through Europe.  The good news is that the band is back in their hometown and will be playing a show at The Barbary on January 19th with a stellar line-up local punk rock openers in Slingshot Dakota, Band Name, and Glocca Morra.  Tickets go on sale this Friday, December 7th at noon.  Head over to our Concert Calendar for more information.  Below, watch Everyone Everywhere’s music video for “Queen Mary II.”

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