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Brooklyn indie pop quintet Snowmine and Philadelphia favorites Norwegian Arms team up for a show at Johnny Brenda’s tonight. The former are celebrating the release of their new record Dialects, a cinematic and textural experience that the band pulls off exquisitely in a live setting. Bright alt-folk trio Norwegian Arms released their impressive and immersive Wolf Like a Stray Dog LP in 2012, following it up last year with a 7″ single for “Jitterbug,” which you can listen to below. Tickets and information for the 21+ show with Dream Safari can be found here.
It’s a new month and that means A.K.A. Music has a new in-store appearance planned for First Friday this week. Local rock ‘n’ roll trio Lantern will be shaking the walls at the 2nd St. record store, playing tracks from their recent Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach LP. The Key dug into the bluesy goth-rock album in July’s edition of Unlocked - members Zachary Devereux Fairbrother and Emily Robb expounded on stylistic changes, horn sections and collaborations in the feature interview here and editor John Vettese reviewed the debut record here. The all-ages show at AKA Music begins at 7:30 p.m. and is free; more information can be found on the Facebook event page. Watch Lantern’s surreal video for “King of the Jungle” below.
There a lot of mood-unsettling surrealism in the new music video for Lantern‘s “King of the Jungle”, which premiered today over at Terroreyes.tv. The chugging anthem, at face value, is a bluesy and aggressive celebration of masculinity – but read between the lines, and it’s totally tongue-in-cheek sarcasm, something this video (directed by Jacqueline Lehance) underscores.
Our “king” is a pot-bellied dude who wakes up on his couch, surrounded by detritus of drinking alone at home, and embarks on a quest for more beer through a sprawling urban wasteland – and his journey turns undeniably creepy the further along he gets. Meanwhile, Lantern front-duo Zachary Devereux Fairbrother and Emily Robb act as a sort of Greek chorus, narrating our anti-hero’s plight while mocking him at the same time. Watch it below, and check out more from Lantern’s awesome new Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach here.
Unlocked explored Lantern‘s new album Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach this week. ”Evil Eye,” taken from the LP, boasts a killer baritone sax part and dance-worthy percussion. Check out the full Unlocked feature here and download “Evil Eye” below.
Local singer-songwriter Emmett Drueding and producer Grave Goods have merged to become Emmett Drueding & the Cowboy Killa. The first product of this collaboration is “Area 51,” a raw and twangy track accented with a strong and upfront beat. Stream and download the song below.
Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach is the debut LP from Philly garage-punk band Lantern, but it isn’t even close to their first release. Its Bandcamp discography comprises nine other releases; ten if you count the split cassette EP that Lantern’s Zachary Devereux Fairbrother released with Dirty Beaches in his old band, Oman Ra II. Here’s a selection of some of the band’s back-catalogue highlights; catch Lantern’s album release show tonight at Johnny Brenda’s and you might find some of these items at the merch table.
The Deliver Me From Nowhere… EP was the first release under the Lantern moniker, and it found Fairbrother experimenting with sounds and ambiance. The simmering tune above, “In The Night Alone” features a coda of drone created by mixing the sounds of rain pattering on the steel roof of a Fishtown warehouse with a time-stretched Beethoven piece. Continue reading →
When Philly’s Lantern first began to release music in 2010, singer and guitarist Zachary Devereux Fairbrother used the moniker to expunge a cache of lo-fi, home-recorded bluesy solo recordings. This was music he made in the wake of his previous band’s split (he fronted Montreal psych collective Omon Ra II), before he moved to Philly with partner Emily Robb to launch Lantern as a functioning band. Two and a half years and a handful of tours later, and it is releasing its debut long-player Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach – its first collection of music recorded collaboratively – next Tuesday on Sophomore Lounge Records. The release party happens tonight at Johnny Brenda’s, we’ve featured the album all week on The Key’s Unlocked series, and this afternoon, we check in with Robb and Fairbrother to chat about the growth, changes and adventures Lantern has seen in its lifespan so far.
The Key: A lot of what you’ve done up to this point has been either spit-cassette or 7”’s or EP’s – this is the longest thing you’ve released. What’s it like plotting out something of that scope versus something that’s only two or three songs?
Zachary Devereux Fairbrother: Before, it always sort of felt like we releasing sketches, almost. They were very rough recordings, and someone would be like “wanna put it on tape?” and we’d be like “yeah sure.” So we’re piecing things together, and there’s definitely more of a transparency – which is kind of interesting with tape culture, and lo-fi kind of stuff – transparency between where it’s created and when the people hear it. It’s very natural, like you’re getting the raw footage of something. For this, we wanted to branch out in a new direction, going into a studio, and challenging ourselves. The studio was a great eye-opener. We learned a lot about what we could do with sound. It was fun conceiving this record. A lot more was on the line, a lot more was at stake. We were paying to do it, and we wanted it to sound really good, and there was this added pressure.
Emily Robb: Also, because we had never recorded in a real studio before, we didn’t really know what to expect. I remember recording our first song and then going in and listening to it in the mixing room, and being like “whoa, this is what we sound like when we’re recorded well?” [laughs] It was like re-meeting ourselves. Also, with the LP, it was definitely a longer, more played out journey than the EPs are. Especially because with the EP previous to the album, Zach pretty much wrote all the music and did all the track-listing, whereas with the album, I wrote songs, we worked on some together, some separately. It was just a major collaboration. Deciding how to mix them and how to order them and all that was much more of collaboration, which I think probably takes longer than if one person just does it. I think it was just a bigger thing.
TK: Emily, your involvement is notable on “Evil Eye”, a song where you take lead. How did you come to take lead on more of these songs?
ER: I just wanted to. I wanted to write more, I wanted to play guitar more. Previously, on all our EP’s, I pretty much solely play bass. So I just wanted to do my thing more. Zach actually wrote “Evil Eye” and did a demo of it with himself singing.
ZDF: It was just sort of in the studio we we’re like “well, why don’t you try singing it?” and it was like “ok, that sounds cool.”Continue reading →
A thing about Lantern, the band we’ve been spotlighting all week on Unlocked. Sure they make solid recordings, and their new one – Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach - is easily their best. But they can play. You could append that to say “play circles around” plus whomever you’d like to compare. Seriously – they’re tight, they’re charismatic, they high-precision and unhinged at the same time. Plus, if you’re lucky enough to catch them on a show with drummer Chris Wilson (of Ted Leo’s Pharmacists) or saxophone player Dave Fishkin, it’s an all-out throwdown. Below, we’ve gathered a collection of videos from the band’s Philly appearances this year. Documented by YouTube videographers Pilgrim’s Progress and Live Philly Concerts, we see Lantern playing Kung Fu Necktie in January, opening for Pissed Jeans at Underground Arts in February and at Johnny Brenda’s in April. Watch them and get amped to see Lantern at JBs again this Friday for the Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach release show.
Let’s try a bit of free-association. Loud amplifiers and long hair. Crackling vocals, screaming voices. Blues riffs in B, watch me for the changes, try and keep up. Howlin’ Wolf and John Lee Hooker. The sound of a tom drum, a bari-saxophone, a bass and a cymbal colliding, with a handclap on the downbeat. These are the things that kick “Evil Eye” into motion (okay, I’m not entirely sure it’s in B, I just liked the Back to the Future quote), and with it the debut long player from Philadelphia’s Lantern roars out the tracks.
The band is known around these parts for being hard working and hard touring. They’ve criscrossed the country at least three times since we first heard of them a couple years ago. Their discography, as we mentioned yesterday, is a lengthy assemblage of limited-run, lo-fi, home-recorded singles or three-track EPs. It’s a collection showing the affinity that partners (creative and otherwise) Zachary Devereux Fairbrother and Emily Robb have for blues music, early rock ‘n’ roll, and the lore that goes along with it.
The new Rock ‘n’ Roll Rorschach, out next week on Sophomore Lounge Records, shows what those fasciations sound like when taken out of the basement. With a dramatic increase in production value (and a generous retention of sonic grit), these songs are big, booming, aggressive and unruly. This album is Lantern realizing the potential of its vision. Continue reading →