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The Key Studio Sessions: Sonnder

Last December, I got an unassuming email from Ryan Weidman, frontman of Philadelphia modern rock outfit Sonnder. It was my introduction to him and the band, but I immediately liked what I heard: he basically laid out plans to launch a single-a-month project for the year 2015. I try to be a goal-oriented person myself, so I dig it when I see musicians doing the same thing – see also: Ben Hughes (album a month) and That Dream Was our Life (EP a month). Once I made up my mind to keep tabs on what Sonnder was delivering, it was hard to miss. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: John the Conqueror at Underground Arts, The Burgeoning at MilkBoy

John The Conqueror | Photo by John Vettese
John The Conqueror | Photo by John Vettese

Blues boys John the Conqueror open for JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound tonight at Underground Arts. The band, led by Mississippi-born Pierre Moore, is in the process of recording their third album – hopefully we will hear a preview of what they have in the works. It’s also worth noting that this is Moore’s last show as a Philadelphian before his move to Kentucky. Don’t worry, though: John the Conqueror will continue to tour and create more punk-blues goodness. Tickets for tonight’s 21+ show available here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The Wooden Sky at Kung Fu Necktie, Hollis Brown at Boot and Saddle, Alex Winston at MilkBoy

TheWoodenSkyPressPhoto1
The Wooden Sky | Photo via band’s website

Canadian indie folk band The Wooden Sky headline Kung Fu Necktie tonight, with Mail the Horse opening the show. Last year The Wooden Sky released their latest LP Let’s Be Ready to critical acclaim, and have since re-released the album in the U.S. This summer’s tour is in support of that re-release. Watch their video for “Saturday Night” below, and get tickets for tonight’s 21+ show here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Johnny Showcase at Underground Arts, The One2s at MilkBoy, and Buddy Guy at The Keswick Theatre

Johnny Showcase and The Mystic Ticket | Photo courtesy of the artist
Johnny Showcase and The Mystic Ticket | Photo courtesy of the artist

Discofied lounge act Johnny Showcase and his band The Mystic Ticket open for West Philadelphia Orchestra tonight at Underground Arts. Having established themselves in Philly as both musicians and performance artists, Showcase and The Mystic Ticket have a full-length LP called Love is the Message and a few EPs under their belt. When it comes to the stage, frontman Johnny keeps things energized during his sets, which feature a combination of funk and folk, and tonight will be no exception. Watch the music video for song “Sensual, Parts 1 & 2″ below, and get tickets for this evening’s 21+ show here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Ingrid Michaelson at The Mann Center, Bilal at World Cafe Live, Kansas Bible Company at MilkBoy

Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack
Ingrid Michaelson | Photo by Cameron Pollack

UPDATE: Due to inclement weather, tonight’s Ingrid Michaelson show will be moved from The Mann’s skyline stage to the amphitheater. Seating for the show will be general admission.

Pop / rock fave Ingrid Michaelson released her sixth album, Lights Out, just about a year ago, and tonight she brings the latest leg of tour in support of it to The Mann Center for her biggest Philly headlining show to date. The album is full of catchy jams, from “Girls Chase Boys” and “Afterlife” to “Time Machine.” Joining her on the bill tonight is perennial piano-led power trio, Jukebox The Ghost. Tickets and information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Trails and Ways at Kung Fu Necktie, John Mellencamp at Merriam Theater, Hemming at Milkboy

Trails and Ways | Photo by David Wallace
Trails and Ways | Photo by David Wallace

Pop group Trails and Ways have emerged with their first full-length, Pathology, this month, and tonight they headline Kung Fu Necktie. Their music resembles Beach Fossils by way of Passion Pit — certainly the type of sound to spend your summer evening enjoying. Watch video for “Mtn Tune” below, and get tickets to their 21+ show here. Continue reading →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: John the Conqueror at Spruce Street Harbor Park, Hey Marseilles at MilkBoy, The Felice Brothers at Ardmore Music Hall

Spruce Street
John the Conqueror | photo courtesy of the artist

John the Conqueror will take over Spruce Street Harbor Park for the first installment of this summer’s monthly music series, curated by The Key. The Waterfront Sessions will bring local music to the beautiful park setting next to the Delaware River all season long. John the Conqueror are a band of “blues-rock rabble rousers” that just got home from a European tour. Welcome them back at the free show tonight along with Song Dogs; more information can be found here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Paul Weller at Union Transfer, Lloyd Cole at World Cafe Live, Jacco Gardner at MilkBoy

Paul Weller
Paul Weller | photo via Facebook

Paul Weller headlines Union Transfer tonight. The prolific musician is touring in support of last month’s Saturns Pattern LP, his 12th solo record. Weller began his career as the frontman for British punk / mod-rivivalist band The Jam in the 70s before transitioning to The Style Council in the 80s. Watch Weller perform the title track from his new record on Later… with Jools Holland below and pick up tickets for the concert here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Communion Philly feat. Pine Barons at MilkBoy, Telequanta at Kung Fu Necktie, The Last Bison at Haddon Lake Park and more…

Pine Barons
Pine Barons | photo by Caitlin McCann

The Communion residency returns to MilkBoy with a stacked line-up of local and touring bands. Canadian Dan Mangan + Blacksmith and Detroit’s Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas join Philly acts Foxtrot & the Get Down and Pine Barons. The latter premiered a new track called “Clowns” on World Cafe‘s Sense of Place: Philadelphia program last week, a preview of the debut LP the band is working on. Check out the song below and pick up tickets for the show here.

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The Key Studio Sessions: Church Girls

Church Girls jumps out from the bustling crop of new indie rock bands emerging on the Philly scene this year, and there are a few reasons why. One, there’s no artifice about them – they play hooky rock songs with memorable melodies and solid playing. No fuss, no muss, no bullshit. There’s also singer and songwriter Mariel Beaumont’s voice, which is just effortlessly awesome, and it blends well with her songwriting style – as I described it in the past, “personal, honest and direct…a bit singer-songwriter but with a cutting punk edge.”  Continue reading →