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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Young the Giant at Tower Theater, Evening River Band at The Fire, and Pill Friends at the Trocadero

Young the Giant | photo via www.facebook.com/youngthegiant
Young the Giant | photo via www.facebook.com/youngthegiant

After achieving indie-rock stardom with their 2010 debut, Young the Giant took some time to regroup before readying its follow-up Mind Over Matter which arrived last month. Tonight, they’re in town for a show at the Tower Theater in support of the new release. To channel fans’ creativity, the band recently announced a Mind Over Matter-themed poster design contest. Before drafting your sketches, grab tickets to their show here and check out “It’s About Time” below.

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Pill Friends’ new LP Blessed Suffering streaming on Bandcamp

a1230121774_2The new LP from local quartet Pill Friends is now streaming on Bandcamp. Titled Blessed Suffering, it features previously released tracks “Forget Me” and “Satan Is Your Master”, as well as eight brand new ones. Produced and recorded in Philly by Scott Stitzer during the last couple of months, the album stays consistent with the band’s established sound and the style, offering up a unique mix of acoustic arrangements and intriguing, very dark lyrics. Check it out in its entirety below.

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The Week So Far: 10 must-read stories on The Key (incl. David Wax Museum, Pill Friends, At Fest)

DWM

This week’s show announcements include The Last Bison and David Wax Museum at World Cafe Live, Hop Along and The Sidekicks at The First Unitarian Church, Man Man at Union Transfer [linklink and link]

Stream and download Laura Stevenson‘s Folkadelphia Session [link]

You gotta hear “Find a Way” by Elastic Bond this week [link]

Get a free download of Wild Ones‘ bubbly “Curse Over Me” from their debut LP [link]

Local dream-poppers Lockets share b-side “Girl” from their upcoming single release [link]

Steady Hands release new video, free download for “I Swear Like a Sailor” [link]

Get inside the studio with Jesse Baker Band in the video for “We’re Gonna Make It” [link]

Stream two new tracks from Pill Friends‘ new LP Blessed Suffering [link]

The Trocadero will screen the world premiere of Philadelphia Folk Festival documentary At Fest on 8/7 [link]

Explore Alex Savoth’s new direction with The New Black [link]

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Stream “Forget Me” and “Satan Is Your Master” from Pill Friends’ new LP

pill friends

Endearing bummer-pop outfit Pill Friends have set the stage for their second studio release of the year with two new singles, “Forget Me” and “Satan Is Your Master.”  Both tracks appear on the local four-piece’s Blessed Suffering, a full-length coming out soon via Brooklyn/Philly microlabel Birdtapes.  Despite the painfully catchy melodies and pop stylistics of the two tracks, the lyrics tell a different tale entirely with phrases like “I’ll wipe the blood from your tears” and  ”devour me” worming around.  This juxtaposition of sentiments is represented in the opening lines of “Forget Me,” during which a young girl’s voice recites an excerpt  from Sören Kierkegaard’s The Sickness Unto Death.  While you’re waiting for Blessed Suffering to be released, download a free recording of Pill Friends’ June 8th show at local show space The Soup Kitchen here.

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Pill Friends release free EP of acoustic Soup Kitchen show

a0851006741_10_0Local group Pill Friends have just released a recording of a show they did at DIY space The Soup Kitchen this past June, and made it available for free via Bandcamp. The recording features six tracks, all performed entirely acoustically – some old and some new, which will be featured on Pill Friends’ proper forthcoming full-length. The recording quality holds up quite nicely, and never fails to remind you that it’s live, featuring the always-endearing noises of the those in the audience. Stream and download it in full, below.

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Watch My Basement is a Sh*thole, a student-produced documentary on Philadelphia’s DIY scene

Photo by Teresa Salinas
Photo by Teresa Salinas
Students at Temple University produced a short documentary on Philadelphia’s basement show and DIY scene, examining the culture’s trajectory from the seventies (mentioning when WXPN had a hand in hosting punk shows) to today.  The film was created by Evan Lescallette, Luke Proctor, Ayanda Sithole, and Tina Lam for their Genres in Media Studies class and features interviews with Joe Reinhart (Algernon Cadwallader / Headroom Studios), John Redden (The Barbary) and Mark Walsh (Secret Plot to Destroy the Entire Universe / IHOP / Double Deuce) as well as live set clips of Rasputin’s Secret Police, Pill Friends, Bleeding Fractals (pictured above) and more.  Check out the documentary below and visit DIYPHL for a comprehensive list of house / DIY shows in the Philadelphia area.

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The Week’s Best MP3 Downloads, incl. Calexico, Quilt, The Naked Sun

Bringing their sunny psychedelic sounds to Philadelphia, Boston’s Quilt recently stopped by the Folkadelphia studios to record a live session full of warmth and color.  The 60s vibe of the band seems so natural it’s easy to slip into a dreamy daze while listening to the five tracks they recorded.  Stream and download “Arctic Shark” below and head over to Folkadelphia’s Bandcamp to get the rest of the session.  Quilt will be back in town this Saturday, February 16th for the 2013 Northern Liberties Winter Music Festival at The Fire.  Tickets and information can be found here.

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Free Download: Get a snapshot of the Philly DIY scene from across the globe in this Slovakian digital compilation

Start Track is a new digital label based in Slovakia that showcases bands and local music scenes from other corners of the world for the Central European audience. Their latest comp, Philly, was released yesterday, and provides a thorough snapshot of the Philly DIY / house show / basement punk circuit, from Key Sessions alums Cousin Brian and groove-poppers Night Panther, to singer-songwriter Abi Reimold and nihilistic rockers Pill Friends, who provided the inspiration for the set. Says the compiler, who goes only by Filip:

this mixtape has been collected by a great homie Ryan Wilson from Pill Friends pillfriends.bandcamp.com

all bands are active in a beautiful music scene formed in Philadelphia and its neighborhood and they will be pleased with your support

there many other incredible bands from this scene which are not covered in this compilation, but you should definitely listen to them

You can listen to the compilation and get to know some of your neighbors – from an across-the-globe perspective – in the player below. To grab a free download, head to Start Track’s Bandcamp.

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Meet Philly’s Pill Friends, download their new track “Please Murder Me For My Sins”

“Hell’s a place where I feel fine
 as long as your not mine” — Pill Friends “Bummertime”

Punk…death…and friendship. The lo-fi/indie trio Pill Friends’ recent  2012 release, It’s Kyle’s Birthday Everyday, is a chaotic yet heartfelt reunion with emotions usually reserved for an intervention. With just three members (as well as a bass player who is supposedly “missing”), Pill Friends creates a full orchestra from only a guitar, drums and cello. The beauty in this album comes from all the unoccupied space between the notes that is filled in a unique and personal way be each listener. The group has an affinity for using their limitations to their advantage, allowing the vocals on each track to crawl from beneath the noise – on it’s hands and knees – like being one shot shy of an overdose. Pill Friends, sonically, have settled somewhere in the realm of folk music, infused with a heavy dose of morphine, and then played through headphone speakers while mowing the lawn. It’s Kyle’s Birthday Everyday is sparse, its eclectic and extremely discomforting– and that’s what makes it satisfying to listening to. You can download It’s Kyle’s Birthday Everyday, Pill Friend’s first official EP, on Bandcamp. Last week the band released an even newer track called “Please Murder Me For My Sins” – download it below.

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Download Roof Doctor’s “I Am Going to Die” (playing Maggot House tonight)

We met Philly DIY collective Roof Doctor back in October when The Key interviewed lead guitarist/vocalist Mark Harper about his band’s beginnings and desire to start a beef with Conor Oberst.  While the beef never happened, the folk-rock-with-a-saxophone band has been busy since that interview, remastering their first album I Am Going To Die for CD release, starting work on their follow-up called Mobile Freedom Home (expected spring 2013) and opening for New Jersey pop/punk outfit The Front Bottoms.  With word spreading down Broad Street of Roof Doctor’s energetic baroque folk, now’s a great time to grab a name-your-own-price copy of I Am Going To Die from their Bandcamp and to check them out live tonight at Maggot House with Alex G., Pill Friends, Kiddo Marink, Traffic Nightmare and Kendrick.  More information can be found on the event page here.  Below, stream “Ocean City.”