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Kurt Vile covers The Rolling Stones for Spotify Singles session

Kurt Vile | photo by Samantha Bloom | courtesy of the artist

Hometown hero Kurt Vile recently stopped by Spotify HQ recently to record a pair of singles, including a cover of The Rolling Stones’ “No Expectations.” The track, from the Stones’ 1968 album Beggars Banquet, is reimagined in Vile’s signature style and stripped down for the session, with drawn out vocals and harmonica. The B side is an acoustic version of “Loading Zones,” off Vile’s recent album Bottle It In. Listen to the singles below via Spotify. Continue reading →

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Kurt Vile performs “Yeah Bones” on Late Night With Seth Meyers

Kurt Vile on Seth Meyers | photo by Lloyd Bishop | via Matador Records

Philly’s Kurt Vile returned to late-night television this week for a performance on Late Night with Seth Meyers. The band rocked a speedy and skittish version of “Yeah Bones,” a song from last year’s Bottle It In that is instrumentally complex (the closest Vile has gotten to math rock, perhaps) but is melodically incredibly poppy. Which is trademark KV: mixing the weird with the widely accessible.  Continue reading →

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Kurt Vile is characteristically laid back in his first solo Tiny Desk Concert

Kurt Vile | photo by Cameron Pollack for NPR

Kurt Vile‘s familiar chilled-out tunes sound great in any setting, but his laid back vibe makes him an outlier at NPR’s Tiny Desk, where most artists experience some degree of nervousness. Vile recently visited NPR headquarters to record his first solo Tiny Desk Concert; he previously appeared behind the desk with Courtney Barnett while promoting their 2017 Lotta Sea Lice collaboration. Continue reading →

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Kurt Vile returns with the expansive “Bassackwards” from his new album Bottle It In

Kurt Vile | photo by Jo McCaughey | courtesy of the artist

When Philadelphia’s newest concert venue, The Met, opens this December, hometown hero Kurt Vile will be there to celebrate. Vile has just announced that his new album, Bottle It In, will be released October 12 on Matador Records. Following the release, Vile will embark on a lengthy tour throughout the fall, winter and spring that will take him through many of the world’s iconic venues, but playing one of The Met’s first shows will certainly be a highlight. Along with today’s announcement Vile has also shared a new song off the forthcoming album, the nearly 10-minute “Bassackwards,” which Matador calls “the album’s beating heart.” Listen below.

The Met, once known as The Metropolitan Opera House, was built in 1908 but sat dormant for years before its recent rehabilitation, which intends to restore it to its former glory as a key piece of Philadelphia’s cultural scene. The North Broad Street venue will be Philadelphia’s largest non-arena venue and will host a variety of performers; its initial lineup of shows has just been announced and will include performances by Bob Dylan, Weezer, Amos Lee, and several more music and comedy acts. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: John Prine will be joined by Kurt Vile at Merriam Theater this April

John Prine | photo by John Kurc | courtesy of artist

Not only will legend John Prine grace the Merriam Theater this spring, he’ll also bring Philly hero Kurt Vile along for the wise ‘n folky party on April 14th.

This year, Prine released a songbook titled John Prine Beyond Words through his own independent label, Oh Boy Records, which featured selected songs from Prine’s catalogue and the stories behind them. Kurt Vile has been rocking his incredible tour with Courtney Barnett, which recently brought an intimate-feeling gig to Philly at Tower Theatre. Continue reading →

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Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile take Lotta Sea Lice to the seaside for Pitchfork Live

Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile | photo by Danny Cohen | courtesy of the artist

The powerhouse collab that is Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile released their album Lotta Sea Lice earlier this month, and now we can watch a live performance of the duo’s chill and laid-back songs right where they belong — by the seaside. Hometown favorite Vile and Melbourne, Australia’s Barnett teamed up with Pitchfork Live to record a full 50-minute set comprised of their collaborative songs from the new album and some of each artist’s own solo work. Continue reading →

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Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile provide comfort and compassion with their new single, “Continental Breakfast”

 

Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile | photo by Danny Cohen | courtesy of the artist

Indie singer-songwriter heavyweights Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile have returned with another teaser of their upcoming collaborative album, Lotta Sea Lice, coming out October 13th. The new “Continental Breakfast” is a worthy follow-up to Barnett and Vile’s lead single “Over Everything”; their vocal chemistry is great and they exhibit an ability to mix back and forth lyrical dialogue with seamless harmony-based choruses. Both artists have established themselves as two of the more influential songwriters in the indie rock scene, so this album is shaping up to be a tour de force. Continue reading →

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Watch Kurt Vile cover John Prine for Beyond Words

Kurt Vile | still from video

In the grand scheme of American music, of influential musicians and genre-leaders, John Prine is undeniably one of the greats. The living legend recently published an autobiography titled Beyond Words: John Prine’s American Songbook on his Oh Boy Records label that is filled with memorabilia and stories from his childhood to the beginnings of his prolific career as a singer-songwriter, as well as original handwritten lyrics of some of his most famous songs.

The magnitude of the Americana-folk-country singer’s influence is clear, as next-gen (or much-later-gen) musicians come forward to celebrate John Prine. At this year’s Eaux-Claires Festival, Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) put together a big-name collaborative set titled “Bon Iver presents John Prine and the American Songbook,” featuring Vernon, Jenny Lewis, Spank Rock, Jeff Tweedy, and Prine himself among others.

Musicians are also celebrating the release of Beyond Words. Watch below as Kurt Vile sings a snippet of the Prine 1978 classic “That’s the Way the World Goes Round,” although his young daughter is much more impressed with the magic of her slinky toy. Continue reading →

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Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile made a record together, are touring together, playing the Tower Theater in November

Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile | photo by Danny Cohen | courtesy of the artist

This is just too much good news in one shot, so we’ll do our best to keep our excitement in check.

Remember that story this spring about Philly’s Kurt Vile being spotted in Melbourne’s Newmarket Studio with Courtney Barnett? Yeah, well they weren’t just tracking a one-off single or doing some for-funsies collab…it was part of a full record they recorded together.

Better still: they’re taking the album on tour together across north America this fall.

And they’ve an all-star group of players, or what Vile is terming “A cookin’ band and an intercontinental country duo for the ages-minus the country.” The band will be a revolving cast of Janet Weiss (Sleater-Kinney, Wild Flag), Stella Mozgawa (Warpaint), Rob Laakso (The Violators, The Swirlies, Mice Parade) and Katie Harkin (Harkin, Sky Larkin and touring member of Sleater-Kinney and Wild Beasts) They’re calling themselves The Sea Lice.

Oh, and they’re playing The Tower Theater in Upper Darby on Friday, November 3rd. Tickets go on sale this Friday, June 9th, at 10 a.m. More info at the XPN Concert Calendar. (Phew.) Continue reading →