Canadian indie folk singer Basia Bulat performs at Boot and Saddle tonight with Twin Lamb. Bulat, who performed a Free at Noon for XPN back in January, is touring to support recently released album, Good Advice (which was produced by Jim James). For tickets and more information, check out the XPN Concert Calendar.Continue reading →
Psychedelic folk guitar instrumentalist Don Bikoff released his most recognized album, Celestial Explosion, back in 1968, but don’t think that that’s the end-all of his career. Bikoff re-emerged in recent years, self-releasing his album HallowedGround and playing a handful of live appearances around the country, including tonight at Little Berlin for the last Folkadelphia show of the 2014 season. Tickets and information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Below, listen to (and download) Bikoff’s 2013 Folkadelphia session. Continue reading →
Canadian experimental rock outfit Caribou announced today that it will release its sixth studio album, Only Love, on October 6th. The brainchild of lead singer Dan Snaith, Only Love is built around “hip-hop inspired beats, muted house basslines, and a love of shuffling garage.” The album will feature collaborations with Jessy Lanza and Owen Pallett, both eloquent artists in their own right. Caribou will start their North American Tour in July and play Union Transfer on November 13th. Before downloading the full album in the fall, stream “Can’t Do Without You” below.
Tonight, audiences will get the best of both worlds. After touring together in 2012, singer / songwriter Aimee Mann and punk / indie guitarist Ted Leo have teamed together for a new project, The Both. On April 15, the two released their first and self-titled album via Mann’s Super Ego Records. (Fun Fact: The Both was the first band to play at the newly opened Boot & Saddle.) Check them out tonight at Union Transfer. The show starts at 9 p.m. and tickets are $24.
If you’re into heavenly bedroom-pop, Jessy Lanza’s debut Pull My Hair Back is a must-hear record. Lanza’s take on minimalist R&B is hypnotic and colorful in a mellow, quietly captivating way. Taking cues from dance-inspired R&B of the early ’90s, the Canadian songstress delivers delightful midtempo jams just as well as her slower, moodier tunes. Watch “Kathy Lee” below and get tickets to her Philly debut, May 3rd at North Star Bar, here.
It’s been almost a week since the four-day nonstop multisensory rush that was the 2014 editon of Austin’s annual South by Southwest music conference, which has given me just about enough time to catch up on sleep, edit my way through thousands of photos and sort out my thoughts about the experience. Here are eight artists that grabbed my attention at this year’s SXSW, beginning with the woman you see above.
Kelis – The transformation of the onetime “Milkshake” hitmaker didn’t take me as unawares as it may have taken other festival-goers. A few years back, I caught her on tour with Robyn at The Trocadero, and saw that she’d moved on from her bubblegum dance days to a sleek and more sophisticated electropop sound. But still, this was impressive – her backing band was a dozen members strong, it had a sharp horn section and a disco-funk sound to die for, and the singer had enough awareness of nostalgia’s power that she dropped “Milkshake” in the final third of her late-night Friday set at the Hype Hotel. Which was totally fun, but it would have been a powerful performance without. Her sixth album, Food, was produced by Dave Sitek of TV on the Radio and is out April 18th on Ninja Tune Records.
Feathers – These Austin locals just got off a European tour opening for Depeche Mode, and their sound sits nicely alongside the 80s icons’ dark synth-dance tones. I caught them Saturday at the goth-leaning Red River club Elysium, and frontwoman Anastasia Dimou freaking owned the packed room. While their sound is decidedly hard-hitting, she has the presence and command of a pop singer – or, say, an alt-pop singer a la Emily Haines of Metric. Even when the power momentarily cut out, Dimou kept singing a cappella and off mic. Their Only One EP dropped in January.