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Philly Local Philes: Bridge Underwater’s “Take a Piece of Me”

Tonight, minimal Philly psycheduo Bridge Underwater plays at the latest Bands in the Backyard showcase – the No Alternative video party at Silk City. Joining them on the bill of this free show are sludge rockers Spirit Animal and harmonizing folkies Market East. To give you a taste of what’s in store, dig in to today’s Philly Local Phile – the latest Bridge Underwater single, “Take A Piece of Me.” The the 808-esque drumloop and odd samples peppered throughout give this a nice Flaming Lips vibe, but note bandleader Pat Mellon’s melodious voice and jangly playing underneath. It gives the song such appeal that – as with most Bridge Underwater singles – I’d be just as eager to hear it stand-alone, without the stylizations, as I am to listen to it all warped and weird. We’ll see which way they swing tonight. Bridge Underwater plays the BITBY No Alternative Party at Silk City tonight a 8 p.m. with Spirit Animal and Market East; admission to the 21+ show is free.

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Philly Local Philes: Po Po’s “Let’s Get Away (Diplo RMX)”


Call it the week of Po Po. The minimal Philly psychedelic punk act released its eagerly anticipated, years-in-the-making debut full length Dope Boy Magick on Mad Decent Records last Tuesday. It was warmly received in blog-land, getting enthusiastic nods from the Philly scene-watchers over at The Deli and all the way up to nationally-revered indie outpost Stereogum; Po Po’s main man Zeb Malik even dropped by XPN2 last week for an appearance on DJ Eddie Austin’s show Get Stoked Radio. Probably the most in-depth thing you’ll find on the band is Philly Weekly’s excellent cover story detailing Malik’s musical and spiritual journey, written by the paper’s music editor Brian McManus. Give that a read while you’re listening to today’s Philly Local Phile – a Diplo remix of Dope Boy’s “Let’s Get Away” – and get pumped for Po Po’s album release show tonight at The M Room.

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Philly Local Philes: The Only Ghost In Town’s “Waterfall”

I’m noticing a quasi-trend of Philly-area punk rock bass players who are really into dreampop and shoegaze on the side. In today’s Philly Local Phile, we introduce you to The Only Ghost in Town, the place where By Surprise bassist Dan Saraceni goes to indulge his fondness for e-bow and the tremolo bar, for Hum and Ride. “Waterfall” is the opening track on the band’s new All of the Stars are for You; Saraceni and his fellow ghosts rocked out the three-song set just two weekends ago in a Clarksboro recording studio, and it was digitally released a week later – gotta respect that efficiency! I’m liking the whole EP enough that I’ll just post the entire thing for you to listen to below; for more, check out The Only Ghost in Town’s Bandcamp page.

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Philly Local Philes: Dear Althea’s “Oh Today”

For the first month in its new location at Kungfu Necktie, Sugar Town didn’t skimp on the lineup. This weekend’s installment of the monthly women-in-rock showcase that local promoter and writer Sara Sherr has organized for over a decade features Key faves Slutever, the post-Post Post popsters Little Big League (who we told you about in last week’s Philly Local Philes), NYC punks Mannequin Pussy and DJ Julia Factorial from WPRB. Rounding out the bill is Dear Althea, a fantastic new Philly foursome that evokes post-riot grrl touchstones like Veruca Salt, 80s punk frontrunners like The Plasmatics, and going way back, foundational acts like The Cramps and Screaming Lord Sutch – some of the people who first made rock n roll freaky. In today’s Philly Local Phile, we dig into their song “Oh Today” – give it a listen or download it below, and catch it in person Saturday night at 8 – tickets to the 21+ show are $8.

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Philly Local Philes: Chill Moody’s “What Took You So Long”

Last week, West Philadelphia rapper Chill Moody released Who Do You Love?, his third annual Valentine’s Day collaboration with producer Hank McCoy. This time, R&B vocalist Beano was recruited to add some melodic hooks to the mix. You can download the entire mixtape at Chill’s website, and get a taste in today’s Philly Local Phile with “What Took You So Long.” Its soul sample, sharp raps and romantic refrain are a trip back to the days of the Boomerang Soundtrack. Listen below, and catch Chill in concert at Silk City next Tuesday Feb. 28.

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Philly Local Philes: Lightninging’s “Squiggles”

Photo by Tyler Beck

Tonight, emerging indie-prog outfit Lightninging celebrates the release of its debut full-length record, Like a Kid Would Say, at Underground Arts at the Wolf Building. In today’s Philly Local Phile, we highlight “Squiggles,” a song that works through erratic Dismemberment Plan-inspired structures at the same time as it belts out hooky pop choruses. Give a listen below, and check out the show tonight. Lightninging plays Underground Arts at the Wolf Building, 1200 Callowhill Street, with Tutlie and Faux Slang. The all ages show begins at 9 p.m., tickets are $8.


ComScore

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Philly Local Philes: Little Big League’s “Tokyo Drift”

After burning bright on Philly’s indie scene for two solid years, local popsters Post Post fizzled out somewhere around late 2010/early 2011. Thankfully, that band’s jangley guitars and uplifting melodies continue in a post-Post Post project, Little Big League. Singer-guitarist Michelle Zauner and bassist Kevin O’Halloran carry the torch, teaming up with friends from Titus Andronicus (Ian Dykstra on drums) and Strand Of Oaks (Deven Craige on guitar). To date their only release has been the single “Tokyo Drift”, today’s Philly Local Phile that you can grab a free download of below. You definitely hear Zauner’s songwriting stylings carry over, from her distinctive elastic vocals to the ever-building structure of the song. But her counterparts have put their stamp on it as well, imbuing the song with a less saccharine, more contemplative tone. To hear what else Little Big League has up its sleeve, check out its next Philadelphia appearance in the monthly women-in-rock showcase Sugar Town, now in its new location at Kung Fu Necktie, on Saturday Feb. 25.

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Philly Local Philes: Power Animal’s “Exorcism”

Last week, Philly psychedelic popsters Power Animal premiered the title track from their forthcoming Exorcism EP on Soundcloud. The cassette release, which drops on Feb. 21, is worth seeking out for a few reasons. One, it’s a great collection of the whimsical, imaginative songwriting we’ve come to expect from Keith Hampson and his collaborators. Two, it also collects solid remixes by the likes of Lushlife and Golden Ages. Three, it’s for a worthy cause. The EP is being released on Hampson’s charitable label, Human Kindness Overflowing, and money from each purchase of the cassette – as well as each download of the album on Bandcamp – goes to Philabundance, and providing meals to those in need. Remember, folks – giving isn’t just for the holidays. Power Animal performs Friday Feb. 10 at the First Unitarian Church with This Will Destroy You. Tickets to the all ages show are $12.

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Philly Local Philes: Tours’ “IJS”

You might know Philadelphia’s Tours from “Dirty Dreams,” the track they collaborated on to mark the first birthday of Key favorites Work Drugs. The music they make in their own right is also pretty sweet, as we hear in today’s Philly Local Phile, “IJS,” a song from their recent Stay EP. If you dig on these homegrown chillwave vibes, you’ve got two chances to check them out this weekend. Tonight, the band plays as part of the Philadelphia Bandcamp Hunter showcase at Johnny Brenda’s and Saturday it plays Maxwell’s on Main in Doylestown.

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Philly Local Philes: DRGN King’s “Barbarians”

With each new song they drop, I get all the more antsy to hear DRGN King‘s debut full length Paragraph Nights. The Philly-based eclectic pop four-piece plans to release the album later on this spring, but it’s been teasing us with songs since September. A few weeks ago, the band unveiled the latest track from the record, “Barbarians,” featured in today’s XPN2 Philly Local Phile. Of the five songs the band has shared to date—the anthemic single “Holy Ghost,” the somber title track, and two tracks debuted in DRGN King’s Key Studio Session, “Caught Down” and “Lookin’ At You”—this number is easily the darkest, the most introverted, the most intense. Opening on a whirring sci-fi synth drone, singer-guitarist and co-songwriter Dominic Angelella’s pensive vocals make a fierce entrance amid static pops and unsettling sounds. The band kicks in at just about the 50-second mark, and we’re into a grim rocker reminiscent of Fragile-era Nine Inch Nails. Which might not be quite the reference point Angelella and Ritz Reynolds had in mind, but one thing about both Reznor and King – they both have an undeniable affinity for Prince. Stream or download “Barbarians” below, and catch DRGN King live this Thursday, Feb. 2, when it plays Johnny Brenda’s with Nicos Gun and Fort Lean.