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Nothing covers Nirvana’s “Something In The Way” for tribute comp

Photo by Shawn Brackbill
Photo by Shawn Brackbill

April 5th was the 21st anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s tragic death. Since then, we’ve had The Weaks release Bad Year - with two tracks that put a spin on the Seattle band’s song titles – and now we have Nothing’s cover of “Something In The Way.”

The Philadelphia shoegazers premiered the somber song through Noisey and the track will be featured on label Robotic Empire’s second Nirvana tribute album, Whatever Nevermind. The compilation, which includes covers off Nirvana’s 1991 album, Nevermind, features another Philly-based band’s, Circa Survive, take on “Drain You.” Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Diarrhea Planet at Underground Arts, Kississippi at Kung Fu Necktie, Cyberbully Mom Club at Johnny Brenda’s and more

Diarrhea Planet | Photo by Rachel Barrish | rachelbarrish.com
Diarrhea Planet | Photo by Rachel Barrish | rachelbarrish.com

Ridiculous band name, awesome band. Diarrhea Planet headlines Underground Arts tonight with their Philly-based tourmates Left & Right in tow. The blistering rock n’ roll six-piece dishes fierce fuzzy riffs and high energy not unlike their Nashville brethren JEFF the Brotherhood; 2013′s I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams is highly recommended listening. Tickets and more information on the show can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Philly Music 101: The basics everyone needs to know about the Philadelphia scene right now

Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | Jeremy-Zim.com
The Districts | Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | Jeremy-Zim.com

Philadelphia is a city of many wonders: a buzzing food scene, an established craft beer culture, and a parade of historical landmarks. But one aspect of our city that we are particularly passionate about is our magnificent local music community and all that is has to offer. Here at The Key, we often focus on the particulars of our scene – where artists will be playing each night, brand new local releases, etc. - so much so that we can forget how overwhelming it can be for newcomers to get their bearings.

So for those of you having trouble finding where to start, we are introducing this new Philly Music 101 series as your guide through the wonderful world of the Philadelphia music scene: all of its passionate, loving members, from artists to venues to studios and more. It’s meant to help new fans navigate the scene as much as emerging musicians looking to break in and behind-the-scenes folks trying to get their start. We hope it will illuminate just what makes it so damn exciting for music lovers to live here. To kick it off, here is a by-no-means-complete overview of the different pieces of the Philadelphia music scene that have come together to make up its sturdy foundation. Continue reading →

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Restorations, Young Statues and Broken Spirit captivate at Johnny Brenda’s

Restorations | Photo by Sameer Rao
Restorations | Photo by Sameer Rao

A brief, humble salutation by a recently de-beareded Jon Loudon preceded three snare hits before Philly’s own beloved Restorations launched into “Misprint” and kicked off a searing set at Johnny Brenda’s. This was the quintet’s first Philadelphia show in months, capping off a long tour in support of their excellent and sophisticated LP3, whose roomy and anthemic songs punctuated key points throughout the set (which also featured many songs from 2013’s LP2). Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Chelydra at Bourbon and Branch, Clark / Nosaj Thing at Johnny Brenda’s

Chelydra | Photo via facebook.com/chelydraoficial
Chelydra | Photo via facebook.com/chelydraoficial

Mexico City rockers Chelydra bring their U.S. tour to Philly tonight for a stop at Bourbon and Branch with Mazzerati and Dedos en Dos. The band released its debut record Retrato Oval last year, and it’s a gripping fusion of hard atmospheric rock styles – a little bit Faith No More, a little bit Soundgarden. Check out the lyric video for “Mexico City” below and get tickets and more information on the show at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Ai-Que at Obscura, Restorations at Johnny Brenda’s, Nathan Earl and Rachel Joy at Melodies Cafe and more

Ai-Que | Photo by HLS Photography | via reverbnation.com/aiquethemc
Ai-Que | Photo by HLS Photography | via reverbnation.com/aiquethemc

The seasonal hip-hop / soul / rock / poetry showcase Obscura holds its spring installment tonight at Sara’s Place in Brewerytown. Heading up the bill is Philly MC Ai-Que, a dude who spits thought-proviking verses over relaxed backings not unlike The Roots, Tribe, De La or any number of other 90s faves. You can listen to his track “Now or Never” below, and that alone should convince you to check this show out. Also on the bill are ethereal singer Aiani-Koli Mars, as well as rappers Cazzie Jetson and Rhetoric Wallace, and DJ John Morrison. Admission to the show is $5, more information can be found at its Facebook event page. Below, listen to a roundup of some of the performers.   Continue reading →

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Space Rock, Punk Rock, Wolves: Listen to a WXPN DJ set by Restorations’ Ben Pierce

Ben Pierce (center) of Restorations at the Howling Woods Farm Wolf Sanctuary | photo via twitter.com/benstorations
Ben Pierce (center) of Restorations at the Howling Woods Farm Wolf Sanctuary | photo via twitter.com/benstorations

Philly’s Restorations got back from a long U.S. tour this week, and guitarist / keyboardist Ben Pierce wasted no time heading right over to WXPN studios for a guest DJ set that aired on the Philly Local show last night. After several weeks driving from city to city, the band had spent a lot of time listening to music on Spotify and Pandora, and Pierce curated a playlist of some of their favorites van jams, from tourmates Hard Girls to space rockers Spiritualized, to a bit of stand up from Joe Sib – one of the founders of their label, SideOneDummy Records. Continue reading →

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Restorations’ Ben Pierce will guest DJ tonight on the XPN Philly Local Show

Pierce at Howling Woods Farm | Photo courtesy of the artist
Pierce (right) at Howling Woods Farm | Photo via instagram.com/restorations

Ben Pierce of Philly punk rock five-piece Restorations will guest DJ tonight on XPN’s Philly Local show.

The guitarist and keyboardist has prepped a playlist of what Restorations had been jamming to in the van while on their latest tour, which they’ll close out by headlining a hometown hangout at Johnny Brenda’s this Friday, April 3. Pierce has named some intriguing playlist highlights, ranging from ambient (A Winged Victory for the Sullen) and neo-psychedelic (Spiritualized) to folk-rock (Steve Gunn) and more.

Pierce will also explain why the heck he was recently hanging with wolves at Howling Woods Farm in Jackson, NJ (pictured above). Continue reading →

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TJ Kong return from tour with a show at Johnny Brenda’s

TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb | photo via www.facebook.com/tjkongandtheatomicbomb
TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb | photo via www.facebook.com/tjkongandtheatomicbomb

Bluesy folk four-piece TJ Kong And The Atomic Bomb will play a welcome home show at Johnny Brenda’s after their three-week southern tour and performances at SXSW. They perform with Le Fits (who have a new album in hand) and The Bernhardt Family Band on April 4th. Continue reading →

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Noremixes: New electronic label to host artist showcase at Johnny Brenda’s

Starkey | facebook.com/starkeymusic

Spacey Philadelphia electronic artist Starkey recently formed his own label, Noremixes, featuring some of the city’s boundary-pushing electronic artists. This Thursday, March 19, Johnny Brenda’s in Fishtown plays host to a label showcase highlighting seven of Noremixes’ artists. The evening will feature sets from the man behind the label, as well as chamber-pop act Oh! Pears, techno minimalist Mikronesia, as well as RVLVR, Beck-Fields, Winter Sleep, and ghostinthehills. Continue reading →