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Philly needs an all-ages show space. TWOB Fest wants to make that happen.

The Hotelier | photo by Rachel Del Sordo
The Hotelier plays an all-ages show at The Fire. They headline TWOB Fest this weekend | photo by Rachel Del Sordo

DIY punk’s openness, accessibility and ability to survive (and thrive) hinges upon the existence of the right mix of venues. For the most part, Philadelphia has just that. The scene here is so nurturing that just about anyone can start a band, write a few songs, practice them and eventually, play a show. That conduciveness can almost seem passé sometimes just because we’re so acclimated to it, but the reality is that it’s just not like that in most cities. It takes a lot of hard work, some clever maneuvering, and the right mix of personalities to save a subculture from stagnation. In Philadelphia, that means a plethora of non-traditional, not-exactly-legal venues. Pennsylvania’s draconian alcohol laws, along with operating costs that are almost universally prohibitive for broke punks, mean that the vast majority of all-ages punk shows here are happening off the grid in musty basements, dirty kitchens and cavernous lofts, which makes for a uniquely wonderful, but perhaps unsustainable experience.

Daniel Anderson wants to create something sustainable. Since 2011, he and his roommate Ruben Polo have run local label Kat Kat Records, while booking shows both in their own West Philadelphia basement and at others across the city. They’ve also booked festivals of their own, beginning with Kat Kat Phest and culminating with the inaugural TWOB Fest this weekend, which will see local favorites like Kite Party, Marietta and By Surprise performing alongside out-of-town acts like Laura Stevenson, Sundials and The Hotelier to raise money for an all-ages, DIY show space in Philadelphia to hopefully open in the fall. Continue reading →

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Family Vacation announce new album Trails, stream “Mountain Dreams” now (playing Moonbase Nix on 9/6)

FamV

Family Vacation is a quartet out of Temple that released a debut EP last year, landing a spot on The Key’s favorite Philly music discoveries of 2012.  The up-tempo and reflective songs on the self-titled recording presented a mix of styles, from the Youth Lagoon-esque “Vacations” to the more Americana vibey “Call Me Guilty, Say I’m Blind.”  The four-piece will follow the EP up with a full-length next week called Trails.  We’ve already heard “Goosebumps” from the new record and this week we get “Mountain Dreams” – a poppy, brightly recorded track that shows a lot of sonic growth from the EP.  Stream the track below and celebrate the release of Trails with the band at Moonbase Nix on September 6th.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Hey Marseilles at Sellersville Theater, Joey Bada$$ at the Trocadero, Joan Baez at the Mann Center, Saintseneca at Moonbase Nix

MG_7783-HEY MARSEILLESWEB2013Seattle indie band Hey Marseilles play Sellersville Theater tonight with stellar duo Lucius.  After releasing a highly acclaimed debut, To Travel and Trunks back in 2010, Hey Marseilles followed up with another gorgeous record, Lines We Trace last March.  This band has mastered the art of making songs that are both catchy and meaningful.  Check out the video for their latest single, “Heart Beats” below (watch Lucius’ “Don’t Just Sit There” video too) and click here for tickets and more information.

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