XPN favorite Nicole Atkins headlined World Cafe Live on Thursday night. Touring in support of her 2014 LP Slow Phaser, Atkins performed a mix of new songs and favorites from Mondo Amore (2011) and Neptune City (2007). As the crowd excitedly awaited her entrance on stage, she surprised everyone by coming onto the floor and introducing herself in the midst of the crowd. Barefoot and dressed in a flowing white gown, she opened up the show singing a stripped down, acoustic version of “Neptune City” while completely surrounded by the audience. Once she stepped on stage, she delivered an energetic, heartfelt performance. With only a two-piece backing band, Atkins’ powerful and soulful vocals perfectly soared over the drums and guitar creating a full, rich sound. Continue reading →
Perhaps you’ve seen some of WXPN’s new Vinyl At Heart campaign signs around the city on billboards and on the sides of buses and trains throughout the city. There are three distinct images being used that include photos of musicians, and we’ve heard from XPN listeners asking “Who’s on that billboard?” and “Who’s on the side of that train?” Continue reading →
XPN sweetheart Nicole Atkins treated fans to a knockout performance on a sweltering Marina Stage. Still riding high after the release of her recent Slow Phaser LP, the Atkins we saw today, clad in a floor-length white dress and colorful necklace, was the visual antithesis to the Atkins we saw at Non-COMM back in May. Her set, though, was as strong as ever and by the end of set closer “The Tower,” she had the crowd in the palm of her hand.
Nicole Atikins put the task of creating a video for “Who Killed the Moonlight” in the hands of Ilinca Höpfner, an animator known worldwide for her work with Nick Cave and his side-project Grinderman. The result, premiered this week on NPR Music, borrows its narrative from the song’s lyrics, which were adapted from a dream Atkins had while recording the album. From Atkins:
“In the dream I lived next door to four magical and beautiful Sicilian sisters,” she writes. “They were preparing me for a wedding. As the night fell we went to the riverside to toast the new full moon with wine. As we toasted the moon slowly fell from the sky and landed in the river. Slowly flickering off and on like a light and dying. As it died, all the fish died, then the birds, then the air and everything with it. Yet [though] it was sad or scary, it was beautiful.”
Watch the clip below. Nicole Atkins will perform at this month’s XPoNential Music Festival. Tickets are on sale now here.
New Jersey native Nicole Atkins performed songs from her latest LP Slow Phaser, commanding the stage in a floor length black cape / gown ensemble with gold sequins and landing somewhere between Grace Slick and Florence Welch. Atkins’ new material explores the depths of disco through alternating gothic, pop and psychedelic angles, a large step away from her earlier, folkier sound. The crowd was happy to sing along with the chorus to “Cool People,” and danced right along with Atkins during the feel-good “Girl You Look Amazing,” two songs that hit at the core message of Slow Phaser both sonically and lyrically. Check out photos below and listen to the set in its entirety here (via the WXPN media player).
Dueling acoustic duo Rodrigo y Gabriela, eclectic New Orleans folk-blues combo Hurray for the Riff Raff, and stalwart rock n’ rollers The Hold Steady are just some of the 25 artists announced today in the full lineup of this year’s edition of the XPoNential Music Festival.
These acts will play the two stages in Wiggins Park from July 25th to July 27th of this year, alongside the festival’s headlining concerts at Susquehanna Bank Center featuring Ryan Adams, Jenny Lewis and Dawes (July 26th) and Beck, Band of Horses and The Districts (July 27th).
There is also an assortment of up-and-coming names like countrified Nashville singer-songwriter Caitlin Rose (featured on World Cafe’s Sense of Place: Nashville series); Bear’s Den, a UK rock trio with a flair for drama (they made a splash at the March Edition of the Communion Club Night at Underground Arts), the jazzy / folky vocal combo Lake Street Dive and the art-pop powerhouse Lucius, (who knocked our socks off at Free at Noon late last year.)
The greater Philadelphia scene is nicely represented as well. Bigger names like avant-garde rockers Man Man (who leaked their appearance last week), punk rock troubadour Dave Hause and reinvented folklorists Marah will mix with emerging artists Commonwealth Choir, Our Griffins, Marian Hill, The Lawsuits, Ginger Coyle and Viv and the Revival.
Three days passes for new and renewing WXPN members are available now here. Tickets for the general public go on sale on May 1st; as with previous years, three-day passes will include lawn admission to the Susquehanna Bank Center shows (seated tickets to those are on sale separately, here and here).
Below, listen to a Spotify playlist of the Wiggins Park lineup, and read the complete list of artists after the jump.
Rodrigo y Gabriela
Trigger Hippy (featuring Joan Osborne, Jackie Greene & Steve Gorman)
Lake Street Dive
The Hold Steady
Hurray for the Riff Raff
C.J. Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band
J. Roddy Walston & The Business
Viv and the Revival
Susquehanna Bank Center
Band of Horses
The rigorous rhythms and party atmosphere of Red Baraat stole the show at last summer’s XPoNential Music Festival, and they’ll return to town tonight for their Festival of Colors show at Underground Arts. Part of the band’s mission is celebrating bhangra music and introducing it to new audiences, and the motivation behind the Festival comes from a similar place. With featured openers Mandeep Sethi and Falu, Red Baraat wants to shine a spotlight on less-heard / less-seen South Asian artists in general. Read more in Shaun Brady’s writeup on the Festival, and get tickets and information at the XPN Concert Calendar.
“This song actually came to me in a dream,” New Jersey bred singer songwriter Nicole Atkins talks to Paste about the new single, “Girl You Look Amazing.” “It was being played in a big dance club and David Byrne was singing it.”
Premiered by Paste earlier this week, Atkins released the first track of her forthcoming album Slow Phaser, scheduled to come out February 4th via Oh’ Mercy Records. A seamless blend of late disco ambiance and raw country soul, Atkin’s simple lyrics really hit deep with any girl that may appear like she has everything together, but really is a mess inside. Check out the single for yourself below. Keep an eye out for Atkins during her headlining tour March 27th when she comes to Johnny Brenda’s.