Key Studio Sessions Sneak Preview: Lauryn Peacock

Photo by John Vettese

When she went into Familyre Studio last year with producer Daniel Smith of Danielson, Philly’s Lauryn Peacock emerged with a solid album of piano-driven indie pop called Keep It Simple, Let The Sun Come Out…and a handful of tunes that didn’t quite fit. Those outtakes, which range from a country hoedown romp to a cinematic anthem, are being released next week as the Fairly Busy Wife EP, and Peacock is celebrating with an appearance on tonight’s Folkadelphia Presents lineup at Historic St. George’s Church in Old City. Might also call her a fairly busy songwriter (especially now that she’s finished her UPenn master’s thesis on Bob Dylan); this week, Peacock recorded a Key Studio Session with a knockout band featuring guitarist Carl Cheeseman (of Honey Watts and Johnny Miles & the Waywards), drummer Tom Bendel (of Buried Beds) and cellist Dan Delaney, and the setlist featured four songs that are newer than the new EP. We’ll release it on The Key later this summer, but today you can get a sneak preview with the haunting “All My Mind.” Download it below, check back to The Key for the full session on Aug. 8, and catch Peacock in concert tonight. Lauryn Peacock, Prairie Empire and Jacob Augustine play Historic St. George’s United Methodist Church, 235 N. 4th Street, Sunday July 1 at 7:30 p.m. Admission to the all-ages show is $8.


Key Studio Sessions Sneak Preview: Hurry

Photo by Madeleine Lesperance

It began as the shy side pursuit of Everyone Everywhere bass player Matt Scottoline – a place for him to dig deeper into his love for jangley dreampop, from Black Tambourine and My Bloody Valentine all the way back to early LPs by The Cure. But over the course of the past six months and some, Hurry has grown into a real, functioning thing that gets out of the studio, plays live shows and releases LPs. The band’s latest is set to drop this Wednesday, along with its Key Studio Session, which we recorded last month. Below, you can grab a sneak preview of what you’ll hear – the twin-guitar fuzz number “Tonight.” And remember to check back to The Key this Wednesday, May 16 for the entire six-song session.


The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: Carsie Blanton on showing some backbone

Photo by Eric Ashleigh

This month’s Key Studio VIDEO Session spotlights Carsie Blanton, a free-spirited singer-songwriter who for the past six years has called Philadelphia home. This year she self-released her third album, Idiot Heart, and in our interview, Carsie talks about the album’s central ideas of bravery and passion, tells us about working with nationally-renowned producers The Wood Brothers, and recalls an exciting string of gigs opening for Paul Simon. We also see Carsie and her band performing three songs from the album in our studio. Watch the video and download the session below, and catch Carsie and her band in concert at Phoenixville’s Steel City Coffee House on May 25.

Video by Bob Giardini |


Key Studio Sessions Sneak Preview: Carsie Blanton

Next week we’ll release our latest Key Studio Session video spotlighting Philadelphia-based singer-songwriter Carsie Blanton. She’s made big strides for someone whose career is still relatively young; last year she toured with Paul Simon, and recorded her latest album – Idiot Heart, released in January – with Oliver Wood of The Wood Brothers fame. The video will be released on Wednesday, but for now, you can get a taste through Eric Ashleigh’s slideshow above (for more of his photography, visit and through the performance of “Idiot Heart,” which you can stream or download below.


The Key Studio Sessions: Little Big League

With its debut 7″ celebrating a release this weekend, and only a handful of local live shows under its belt, some might say it’s jumping to gun to get all super psyched about Philly indie foursome Little Big League. On the other hand, you can just tell sometimes when a band is going to do great things. I’m opting for the latter in this case. Sure, the group has an impressive pedigree – former members of Post Post, Golden Ages and Titus Andronicus – so it’s almost like we sort of know them already. But joined as one, they do something else entirely. It puts an east coast megalopolis spin on the slow-burn woodsy tones of Built to Spill and early Death Cab (“Holes in Shape,” and that debut single mentioned above, “Tokyo Drift”), then catapults into spunky, soaring power pop (“My Very Own You,” and the spirited “St. Johns”). Two of the four songs the band recorded for its Key Studio Session are unreleased, and I’m thrilled to be presenting them to you for the first time. But if you’ve seen them live, you’ll totally remember hearing them, since they really are that catchy. If you haven’t caught them live…well, fix that already. Little Big League plays this Sunday, April 29, at Kungfu Necktie (8 p.m., 21+, $10), and then joins the stellar bill at The First Unitarian Church on June 1 for Hop Along’s record release show.


Key Studio Sessions Sneak Preview: Little Big League

Photo by Shamus MacGroggan

There’s such a sense of instant likeability to Philly’s Little Big League, it’s easy to forget that the poppy indie-punk foursome only has one piece of recorded music out there in the world (“Tokyo Drift,” which we spotlighted in a Philly Local Phile a couple months back). The next week and some ought to remedy that, though, since the band is releasing its debut 7″ in a show at Kungfu Necktie on April 29 (the b-side, “St. John’s”, is incredible), and then on Wednesday, we’re releasing the band’s Key Studio Session. It features two more songs that will be familiar to those who have seen Little Big League live – like I said, this is instantly likeable and memorable stuff – but for everybody else, it will give you another reason to pay attention to this fast-moving Philly band. For now, we’ll give you a sneak preview – the soaring “My Very Own You,” which you can download below. Check back on Wednesday, April 25, to hear the whole session.


Key Studio Sessions Sneak Preview: Peasant

Photo by Heidi Schlenzig

Before playing their CD release show at World Café Live late last month, Bucks County indie trio Peasant – fronted by singer and songwriter Damien DeRose – recorded a Key Studio Session just downstairs from the stage they’d be playing. While DeRose’s songs are notably soft and introverted, the material on his new Bound for Glory LP sees the lead Peasant reaching in different sonic territories, from chugalug 70s rock structures to classic 50s Nashville tones. You’ll hear the spectrum when the Key Studio Session releases next Wednesday, April 11, but for now, get a sneak preview below with the snappy pop number “Amends.”


Just Announced: Andrew Lipke to celebrate the release of The Plague at Tin Angel on Sept. 24th

WXPN favorite Andrew Lipke is gearing up for the release of his long-in-the-works third full-length, The Plague, and has scheduled the record-release show for September 24th at Tin Angel. He’ll be backed by the strings of West Chester’s Azreal Quartet (which also appears on the album). Earlier this summer, Lipke appeared on our Key Studio Sessions 2011 Sampler and performed alongside Hezekiah Jones at the XPoNential Festival (you can listen to the audio of the full performance here); next month, Lipke will perform with Hezekiah Jones at our inaugural Key Studio Sessions Live concert at World Cafe Live, which you can register for here. Andrew Lipke performs at 10:30 p.m. Saturday, September 24th, at Tin Angel; tickets to the 21+ show are $10.