Shamong Township sits about 35 miles south east of Philadelphia, smack dab in the center of New Jersey, but it’s practically a world away.
More of a geographical boundary than a bustling municipality, it’s sliced down the middle by Route 206 and dotted with diners, delis, liquor stores and a gun shop called Pistol Pete’s. At the south border is the mouth of the massive Wharton State Forest, the nucleus of Jersey’s storied Pine Barrens region –- an area with such acidic soil that nothing but evergreens can grow, home to cedar water and the Jersey Devil. It’s from this territory that Shamong-born indie rock five-piece Pine Barons lifted its name…and to a degree, its persona as well. Rugged and adventurous, mysterious and mystical, yet totally affable – these are Jersey guys, after all.
“It wasn’t so much that there was a scene [in Shamong],” recalls bassist Shane Hower of his band’s origins, pausing to look around the room. Several of his fellow Pine Barons are shaking their heads; there was, in fact, no scene in their childhood town, at least not as far as their brand of oddball hallucinogenic indie rock goes.
Guitarist Brad Pulley acknowledges that “another band or two” popped up in their high school, but they were more along the lines of Warped Tour-aspiring pop punk and hardcore; those kids hung out at the Cherry Hill Mall. He preferred the woods.
“I think it was moreso the isolation that brought us together,” says Hower. Continue reading →
When Keith Abrams isn’t rocking out as frontman for Pine Barons, or helping to produce other legendary albums (i.e. The Districts Popular Manipulations,) he gets strange and experimentally lo-fi as his side-project, Tremellow. From all the recent and much deserved hooplah of Pine Barons’ and The Districts’ new releases, it’s crazy that Abrams has time to let alone breathe. But here he is, releasing a new Tremellow track — which is unsurprisingly a total jam. Continue reading →
A Belle and Sebastian performnce is reason enough to head out to the Mann Center on any night, but throw in Andrew Bird and Porches to the lineup and you’ve got an unmissable show on your hands. The Scottish seven-piece’s last record was 2015’s Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, and they have a new album promised later in 2017 on Matador. Listen to the new single “We Were Beautiful” that the group dropped over the weekend, and check out the XPN Concert Calendar for tickets and more information. Continue reading →
Local indie rockers Pine Barons officially announced their sophomore record The Acchin Book last month, the first big project since their self-titled debut in 2013. The new record is set for official release on August 4th on Grind Select, and they have been playing shows around Philadelphia in the meantime. Continue reading →
It’s official – Pine Barons have at last set a date and a name for the release of their long-time-coming follow up record to 2013’s Pine Barons. Mark your calendars for August 4th, when the five-piece group of indie rockers from Southern New Jersey will debut The Acchin Book after dropping hints and vague timelines for what feels like forever.
The lead single “Alliterate Breed” came last fall in the form of a trippy music video, but the band has been largely quiet in terms of new music since then save frontman Keith Abrams’ project Tremellow and bassist Shane Hower’s solo project Everyone released last month. In conjunction with the official record announcement the band has released a second single via Consequence of Sound. Continue reading →
With a new record on the way, Pine Barons lead the bill at Boot & Saddle tonight. The concert is a benefit for March On Harrisburg, a week-long protest that will take walkers from Philadelphia to the state capital in support of a better democracy. The indie rockers shared a new single called “Alliterate Breed” last fall; watch the video below and pick up tickets for the 21+ benefit here.
On May 13th, a group of Pennsylvanians will march from Philadelphia to the state capital in protest of a dysfunctional government. Leading up to the seven day March on Harrisburg, a local bill led by Pine Barons will support the movement’s efforts with a benefit show at Boot & Saddle on Sunday, May 7th.
Brooklyn-based singer, Kelsey Byrne, makes dark, indie electro-pop under the moniker, VERITE. She’s been releasing a slew of infectious singles and EP’s since 2014, with her debut album, Somewhere In Between, due out on June 23rd. Before then, you can experience VERITE’s expansive sound fill Union Transfer tonight when she opens for Betty Who. Find more info on tickets here and watch the tour video of VERITE’s awesome cover of The 1975’s, “Somebody Else,” below. Continue reading →
Haggert McTaggert, aka the duo of Braden Lawrence of The Districts and Keith Abrams from Pine Barons, contributed to a new split single called Doom Paste with local pals Tremellow. Their contribution is the lo-fi bad trip of “Franny,” a manic and robotic modern take on a Mystery Science Theater 3000 theme, finding galactic ambiguity of psychedelic proportions while managing to pick up a hint of Daft Punk along the way. It’s as cute and intimate as it is terrifying. Continue reading →