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After reading this, you’ll find yourself humming Roof Doctor’s newest album (released today!)

Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold
Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold

Punk Philly band Roof Doctor released their newest album in a way that’s as sweet as the album itself.

This morning, a link to Mobile Freedom Home was accompanied by one line: “Hey guys, here is our album. We love you. We hope you like it. <3”

The band’s fans have been anticipating the release for quite some time. Since November of 2012, in fact, and the album’s intimate sound and intricate instrumentation reflect their hard work laboring in at Fishtown’s Headroom Studio.

Mobile Freedom Home is the kind of album that you listen to once through and can’t quite distinguish track by track (except for “Bottle It Up,” man, give that one a listen), but instead familiarize yourself with the sound, finding yourself humming the tune as you mosey through your apartment. Then, you find yourself wondering, “What the hell is that song called?” only to return back the 10-track album hunting through the tracks discovering additional treasures off of the album. That’s how Roof Doctor gets you.

But upon second and third listen, you’ll start to notice the small jangly, irresistable details that accompany each track’s unmistakable vocals.

Join the band and their fellow punk and/or experimental friends Son Step, Mumblr and Soda Bomb as they celebrate the release of Mobile Freedom Home on Saturday at 8 p.m. at PhilaMOCA. Oh, and of course, take a listen to the album itself below.

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Roof Doctor set to release sophomore album Mobile Freedom Home at PhilaMOCA

Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold
Roof Doctor | photo by Abi Reimold

The “emo” genre can sometimes have a skewed connotation – often dubbed whiney, or flat out depressing – but local emo/rock band Roof Doctor have managed to completely redefine the term. Roof Doctor will be celebrating the release of their sophomore album, Mobile Freedom Home, at PhilaMOCA March 29th with Son Step, Mumblr and Soda Bomb. The album was recorded at Philly’s own Headroom Studios in Fishtown with Kyle Pulley.

The heartfelt and, yes, emotional lyricism of Mark Harper manages to weave beautifully with the band’s unbelievably catchy guitar riffs and intermittent sax-stylings of multi-instrumentalist Chet Williams. Roof Doctor have been compared to other emo-oriented bands like Built to Spill, but at Harper’s vocal height he comes eerily close to Neutral Milk Hotel’s Jeff Mangum – and it’s awesome. The sole single released from the album, titled “Dad”, takes the emo/punk route, and we can’t wait to hear what the album has to offer as a whole.

Get more info on Roof Doctor’s PhilaMOCA (Philadelphia Museum of Contemporary Art) album release show on the Facebook event page here. Stream and download “Dad” from Mobile Freedom Home below.

 

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Tonight’s Concert Pick: Broken Beak at PhilaMOCA

Photo via facebook.com/brokenbeakmusic
Photo via facebook.com/brokenbeakmusic

To celebrate the release of its new album Old Evil, Broken Beak (aka Beau Brynes) heads to PhilaMOCA tonight for a hometown show. Centered around simple acoustic arrangements, Brynes’ songs are marked by a trail of quiet, unassuming beauty. Listen to “Lucy” below and get details on the show here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: July Talk at MilkBoy, Dark Blue at PhilaMOCA, Caroline Smith at Boot and Saddle

Photo by John Vettese
Photo by John Vettese

Toronto-based rock four-piece July Talk makes it’s Philly debut tonight at MilkBoy. Channeling the gravel-voiced aggression of Tom Waits and the haunting tones of Denali, front-duo Peter Dreimanis and Leah Fay lead a dynamic band that is equal parts raw and mystical. Watch a World Cafe performance of “Don’t Call Home” below. Get tickets and and info on tonight’s show at the XPN Concert Calendar.

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Members of Clockcleaner, Paint It Black and Purling Hiss join forces in the rumbling new Dark Blue

Dark Blue | Photo by Ben Stas
Dark Blue | Photo by Ben Stas

A trio of Philly punk scene vets has joined forces in a new band called Dark Blue, blending elements of their various projects into a rumbling whole. Made up of singer-guitarist John Sharkey III (of Clockcleaner), bassist Andy Nelson (of Paint it Black and Ceremony), and drummer Mike Sneeringer (formerly of Purling Hiss and The Loved Ones), the band released it’s debut single for “Subterranean Man” today via Bandcamp, with a 7″ pressing via Katorga Works soon to follow.

As Nelson pointed out via email, the lineup is the same as Puerto Rico Flowers, Sharkey’s post-Clockcleaner recording project that was fleshed out into a live band in 2009. This group, he says, is meant to be more of a band-band.

Musically, Dark Blue dishes melodic rockers that sound a bit sinister – credit Sharkey’s pensive baritone to that – but it also hints at the nihilistic aggression and acerbic wit of Clockcleaner (consider the b-side, “Skinhead Wedding In Canberra”) as well as the nervy tension heard in Nelson’s Paint It Black. Maybe I’m stretching just a touch here, but it even seems that structural sensibilities Sneeringer honed in his past bands keeps his present bandmates reined in, making this a lively meeting ground between their oi! and proto-punk influences and timeless rock and roll. Recommended if you like The Cramps, The Buzzcocks, Flipper or The Replacements.

The band will make its Philly headlining debut on Tuesday, March 4th at PhilaMOCA; tickets to the all ages show are $5 and available here. Listen to the “Subterranean Man” 7″ below and get a name-your-own-price download at Bandcamp.

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Retrace the roots of Kentucky art-rock band Slint in new documentary Breadcrumb Trail

Photo via facebook.com/slint
Photo via facebook.com/slint
When they emerged in the late ’80s as band of teenagers from the countryside, Slint made great music that managed to stay below the radar. Their debut album Tweez arrived in 1989, but their critically acclaimed masterpiece Spiderland came in 1991. A mix of art-rock and emo, the album didn’t stir major buzz upon release and they disbanded soon after but outlets like Pitchfork, NME and Spin, retrospectively attend to its brilliance featuring it in “best-of” lists. Slint reunited to play shows in 2005, 2007, and most recently last year. But the story doesn’t end there. In fact, Bad Grandpa cinematographer/director Lance Bangs decided he’d tell the rest of it via a documentary centered on the band and its Louisville roots. PhilaMOCA will screen the Philadelphia premiere of Breadcrumb Trail followed by a feature-length presentation of other musical short-films for two consecutive nights, March 14th and 15th. Bangs and Slint guitarist David Pajo will also host a Q&A session for attendees. Get tickets here and check out the trailer below.

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Get schooled on underground hip hop at PhilaMOCA’s screening of Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton: This is Stones Throw Records next month

Stones Throw Records founder Peanut Butter Wolf | photo via www.facebook.com/pbwolf
Stones Throw Records founder Peanut Butter Wolf | photo via www.facebook.com/pbwolf

Ahead of its SXSW screening next month, Stones Throw Records’ documentary Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton: This is Stones Throw Records will have a Philadelphia premiere at PhilaMOCA on March 3rd.  Founder / DJ Peanut Butter Wolf will be in attendance to take part in a Q&A, followed by a live set at Boot & Saddle.

Started in 1996, Stones Throw Records has had a hand in releasing many critically acclaimed underground hip-hop, funk and R&B albums, including Madlib and MF DOOM’s Madvillainy collaboration, a re-issue of J Dilla’s Donuts and the commercially successful Good Things from Aloe Blacc.

Through interviews, live and archival footage and photographs, Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton explores the influence and history of the Los Angeles label.  Kanye West, Questlove, Snoop Dogg, Mayer Hawthorne and more discuss the role of Stones Throw in their own lives and its importance in the evolution of hip hop.  Tickets and information for the screening can be found on the Facebook event page here.  Check out the trailer below, followed by a track from Peanut Butter Wolf’s debut LP with Charizma.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: The Districts at A.K.A. Music, On The Water at PhilaMOCA, Cheerleader at Kung Fu Necktie

Photo by Eric Ashleigh
Photo by Eric Ashleigh

Central PA natives The Districts will celebrate the release of their first EP on Fat Possum Records tonight with a free show at AKA Music in Old City. The Americana-rock band is about to head out on a winter tour with White Denim, with a South By Southwest appearance and spring shows on the horizon. Pre-order the EP here, and watch the band’s HotBox session performance of “Radiator” below.

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Get “Clotheslined” with Seattle four-piece Special Explosion this March at PhilaMOCA

Special Explosion | Photo via facebook.com/specialexplosion
Special Explosion | Photo via facebook.com/specialexplosion

Just a few weeks after inking a deal with Topshelf Records, Special Explosion have released a new track “Clotheslined” from their upcoming EP The Art of Mothering (due February 25th). The band serves up a plate of indie-rock a la Death Cab for Cutie on the new track that begins at mid-tempo with a groovy guitar riff then gets progressively bigger and louder by the end. The Seattle natives are also booked to support Teen Suicide at its upcoming reunion shows. Get tickets to their March 1st show at PhilaMOCA here.

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Phosphorescent at Union Transfer, Swear and Shake at World Cafe Live, and Smoother at PhilaMOCA

by Eric Ashleigh
Photo by Eric Ashleigh

Phosphorescent (aka singer-songwriter Matthew Houck) will play Union Transfer tonight. The indie-rock singer-songwriter released his sixth album Muchacho via Dead Oceans last year which, as he told Pitchfork, was inspired by his experiences on tour. Paste Magazine named the record its #1 Album of 2013. Watch the video for “Ride On / Right On” below and get tickets here.

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