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Folkadelphia Session: Joe Kille

During his initial email exchange between WXPN’s John Vettese and Philadelphia-area musician Joe Kille, Kille, while announcing the album release of his solo album Arkadelphia, admits that he’s “not too good at the internet.” Something about that little amusing acknowledgement provides a rather poignant picture in my mind – I imagine Kille coaxing his dial-up to provide a few minutes of connectivity, hunting and pecking on the keyboard with two fingers drafting the note to Vettese. Of course, it’s probably the furthest from reality. I’m being influenced by the rustic, homegrown nature and magic of Arkadelphia, with its fiddles blazing and bass jumping, and converting Kille’s Southern NJ into backwater Appalachia.

John Vettese kindly recommended the group to me. The Morning River Band, a group that Kille is associated with and who we’ve featured on Folkadelphia before also told us to keep our ears open for the fiddle player. I’m glad they did because Arkadelphia, a smart set of timeless sounding country-noir songs, has become a favorite of mine. If you haven’t heard the name Joe Kille before, it’s time to put him on your radar. Start with our session, recorded October 2013.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Macy Gray at World Cafe Live, Delco Pacers at MilkBoy, Astronauts Really Fly at The Blockley, and more

Photo by Jan Prunk
Photo by Jan Prunk

Ohio bred R&B artist and actress Macy Gray brings her unique vocals and whimsical musical sense to World Cafe Live tonight for the 14th anniversary of her 1999 release On How Life Is. Gray has released six album in the years since then, most recently appearing in 2012 with a full-album cover of Stevie Wonder’s Talking Book. Find tickets for tonight’s show here. Watch her Jay Leno performance of Stevie’s “Tuesday Heartbreak.”

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Delco Pacers release debut LP “Stereo Streets,” perform record release show at Milkboy 11/14

delco pacers

Suburban Philly natives Delco Pacers will release their debut LP Stereo Streets on Tuesday, November 19, the follow-up to last year’s acclaimed Riddlewood EP.

In celebration of the release of their full length Delco Pacers will hold a special record release show at Milkboy on November 14, with special guests Morning River Band (Philadelphia) and The Naked Sun (Philadelphia).

Delco Pacers- comprised of singer/guitarist Jonathan Pitts, bassist Evan Dick, and Philly raised drummer Pavlo Demkiv- have managed to revitalize early to mid 90′s indie pop/rock while adding millennial flare. Pitt’s uncanny vocal resemblance to early REM and Mr. Jones’ era Counting Crows, combined with catchy acoustic melodies and banging, syncopated drumming makes Stereo Streets an immediate upbeat favorite. But what really stands out on the LP are the tracks that digress from the usual, with heavier bass and electric guitar influence. On the track “Rooftops” the bass is palpable the whole way through, adding a darker undertone and balance to the more feel-good Americana style record. Take out the vocals, and you’d swear you heard some Smashing Pumpkins’ riffs.

The final track of the LP, a 6:39 number titled “Walls,” features and electric guitar/bass intro with intermittent drums that is so smooth, and so lulling, it’s like Explosions in the Sky jumped in for a quick opening before easily transitioning into quintessential Delco Pacers sound. The band has clearly grown in their last two years of touring, and it is fully audible in their debut LP Stereo Streets. You won’t want to miss the record release show at Milkboy!

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TJ Kong doing rare solo show at Ortlieb’s this Saturday 7/6

TJKongPhilly’s Dan Bruscewicz, often known by his onstage persona TJ Kong (of TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb), will be kicking it solo (a rare occurrence!) this weekend for a show at Ortlieb’s on Saturday, July 6th. He will be supported by a slew of fellow local groups, including Morning River Band, Psalmships, and Ton-Taun. There’s a 5 dollar cover charge at the door, and the show gets started around 7. Find more info here, and listen to the TJ Kong & The Atomic Bomb track “Rock and Roll Club Bathroom Cocaine Blues” below.

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The Week’s Best MP3 Downloads, incl. Literature, Market East, Morning River Band

Photo by Abi Reimold
Photo by Abi Reimold

Recent Philly transplants Literature previewed four new tracks in this week’s Key Studio Session. With a sound made for indie dance club nights, Literature are a surf-y, high energy bunch of polished musicians with well-coiffed songs. Stream and download “Court Date” below and check out the full session here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: XPN welcomes Charles Bradley to Union Transfer, Morning River Band at MilkBoy, XPN welcomes Mary Chapin Carpenter to the Keswick Theatre, MAD Dragon Anniversary Concert at The Trocadero

charles bradley

XPN welcomes Charles Bradley to Union Transfer tonight.  The “Screaming Eagle of Soul” entertained the crowd during a recent Free at Noon performance with his exuberant showmanship and knock-out funk / R&B songs.  Following up his 2011 full-length debut, the 64-year-old crooner released Victim of Love earlier this year.  Tickets and information for tonight’s show with Paul & the Tall Trees can be found here.  Watch the former James Brown impersonator perform “Why Is It So Hard?” live on the Public Radio Rocks stage at SXSW below.

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Folkadelphia Session: Morning River Band (and their record release show on Fri. 5/17 at Milkboy Philly)

mrb

I always thought Philly to be more of a bluegrass town, what, with its West Philly front porch jam sessions and train terminal busking, but that sweet-and-sour country style is alive and well in our fair city and giving us cause to celebrate. We have here a session from local twang connoisseurs Morning River Band, who came to us on the verge of releasing their brand new LP To Suzie.

For me, Morning River Band serve up just what the doctor told you not to order, but goddamn, you’re gonna order it anyway — songs of hard luck, hard times, and harder liquor. You may be sent goin’ down the road feelin’ bad, but you’ll have some fine tunes to whistle courtesy of the Morning River Band.

Head over to Milkboy Philly tomorrow, Friday, May 17th for the Morning River Band’s record release show for their new album To Suzie. The bill features fellow homebodies The Miners and John Train. Don’t forget to tip your bartender.

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Listen to “Lefty’s Last Blues” from Morning River Band’s new LP (playing MilkBoy on 5/17)

morning river band Building up the anticipation for their forthcoming record To Suzie, local country outfit Morning River Band have made lead single “Lefty’s Last Blues” available for streaming.  With sauntering, strummy acoustic guitars and twangy pedal steel guitars backing up some down-home, porch-swinging vocals, the initial summery sound of the track hides the seriousness of its message, namely the consequences of alcoholism.  Morning River Band will release To Suzie on May 21st and will celebrate with a show at MilkBoy Philly on May 17th with John Train and The Miners.  Tickets and information for the 21+ show can be found here.  Stream “Lefty’s Last Blues” below.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Key Studio Sessions Live at Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Morning River Band at Kung Fu Necktie, Ecomog at The Trocadero Balcony, Acid Mothers Temple at Johnny Brenda’s

SwedenExperience the Key Studio Sessions live tonight at Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.  The free event will showcase three of the Philadelphia area’s top acts: folk-rockers and two-time Tri-State Indie Award winners New Sweden, vocal powerhouse and in-demand collaborator Ali Wadsworth and local man-about-town Joey Sweeney with his new band The Long Hair Arkestra.  Admission for the show is free but space is limited; RSVP on the XPN website and get more information here.  Below, watch New Sweden perform “Mama” and download their Key Studio Session from March 2012 here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Turning Violet Violet at Kung Fu Necktie, Bleeding Rainbow at Johnny Brenda’s, Mary Lattimore at Kung Fu Necktie, Philebrity Valentine’s Day special with Juston Stens at Underground Arts, plus more

Local indie group Turning Violet Violet play Kung Fu Necktie tonight.  The Key Studio Session alums carve out chamber alt-rock songs on the fringe of art-rock that seem bathed in a purple glow, though that might just be residual effects of their band name.  Either way, the songs on Turning Violet Violet’s debut full-length Double Cure are swathe-y, sweeping compositions that strike all the right feelings chords.   Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show with TeamMate and Donora can be found here.  Revisit Turning Violet Violet’s Key Session here and watch their video for “Cold Bread” below.

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