Photo of Kate Crutchfield of Waxahatchee by Rachel Del Sordo
The Hot Philly 15 is a completely subjective list of Philly-made and Philly Local music happenings we love this week. It’s somewhat informed by what we’re playing on the radio, what we’re blogging about and what you’re talking about.
2 – The Delfonics – Who would have thought 45 years after the release of “La La Means I Love You,” William Hart would still be kickin’ it? Listen to Adrian Younge Presents The Delfonics here. Download the new song, “Enemies” here.
3 – Keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel: Philly Bands heading to SXSW include: DRGN KNG, Blayer Pointdujour and The Rockers Galore, Creepoid, Lantern, Bleeding Rainbow, Norwegian Arms, A Life Once Lost, Dangerous Ponies, The Fleeting Ends, Lushlife, The Kalob Griffin Band, Katie Frank & The Pheromones, Nothing, Cold Fronts, Free Energy, Thee Idea Men. If we forgot you, sorry. We never got your press release.
4 – Chill Moody: We want him to be the mtvU Freshmen Video of the Week. Vote for him here.
The Lawsuits | Photos by Matthew Smith | Montage by Bryan Schreck
Local band Tin Horses released their second LP, A Life Of Trouble, last Friday as a free stream on their Bandcamp page. The group is led by singer/guitarist Kiel Everett, who founded it as an outlet for his songwriting outside his bass duties for local psych-rockers Purling Hiss. Rounding out the band’s lineup are Michael Sobel on guitar/lap steel, Patrick Hickey on bass/backing vocals and Stephen Rockwell on drums/backing vocals.
The new album picks up right where their impressive debut, American Radiance, left off. Tin Horses’ sound is a mixture of twangy Americana and long, gritty guitar freakouts reminiscent of Neil Young’s work with Crazy Horse, if they were into late 80s’ indie rock like Dinosaur Jr.
What sets A Life Of Trouble apart from their debut is the harder rock edge found on some of the songs, such as “Sad Dust Glories.” The track starts off with some feedback and some some guitar interplay before going into the songs main riff over a rumbling drum beat from Rockwell. For the last minute of the song Everett proves there’s more than just one guitar hero in Purling Hiss, cutting loose on one of the albums many blistering solos.
The juxtaposition of more straight forward bluesy roots rock songwriting alongside longer, more jam-oriented tracks filled with impressive guitar work makes A Life of Trouble an interesting listen. Check it ou in the player below.
Local scuzzy, blown-out noise thrashers super-polished, hard-rocking outfit Purling Hiss have shared a track from their upcoming major label debut Water On Mars and it’s a brand new look for them. On “Mercury Retrograde,” Mike Polizze and his bandmates have done away with their excessively distorted bedroom guitar rock in exchange for a Dinosaur Jr.-esque fuzzy-but-melodic sound. Water On Mars will be released on March 19th through Drag City. Information on the Johnny Brenda’s show on April 5th can be found here. Stream “Mercury Retrograde” below.
Photo by Peter English for Shaking Through | shakingthrough.com
Philly fuzz-rockers Purling Hiss have good reason to celebrate this spring – and it has to do with a little bit more than the photographic possibilities of foliage. The band’s brand new LP Water on Mars comes out on Drag City Records on March 19, and their local release party is set for April 5th at Johnny Brenda’s. The album covers a lot of ground under the guitar-rock umberella. There’s the heaviest of the heavy – “Lolita,” which you heard last year in a Shaking Through session – but then there are some moments that are roped-in and a little more “classic rock” (you’re gonna love “Mercury Retrograde”), others that are hooky and practically sing-along-able (check out “Rat Race,” filmed live at Johnny Brenda’s back in November by Pilgrim’s Progress). Tickets for the show go on sale Friday at noon; for more information, consult the WXPN Concert Calendar.
Once code for the searing solo experiments of former Birds of Maya guitarist (and Kurt Vile and the Violators associate) Mike Polizze, Purling Hiss has mutated into a frightening, full-fledged power trio of late, as captured last year on an Adam Granduciel-curated episode of WXPN’s Shaking Through series. Afforded the opportunity to record with a budget, Polizze and his bandmates offered up “Lolita,” a headbanger whose chorus we’ve been humming ever since.
Nightlands’ Oak Island is out on Secretly Canadian Records on January 22, with a release show at Kung Fu Necktie on the 26th. Spin called Nightlands main man Dave Hartley a “rugged bedroom pop individualist, layering watery synthesizers and roaming percussion with delicate, desperate choir boy vocals.” Check out both writeups here, and watch Purling Hiss tear up The Bowery Ballroom with “Almost Washed My Hair” below.
“I’m not going to stand here and tell you when it’s midnight,” Adam Granduciel told the New Year’s Eve crowd at Johnny Brenda’s. “You can work that out amongst yourselves.”
If he was attempting to play coy – like this was just another rock and roll show, rather than one of the biggest nights of the year with one of the biggest bands in Philly - Granduciel’s true excitement to be ringing in 2013 with The War on Drugs showed through in other ways. He handed out streamers to the capacity crowd before the set. He had a posterboard of multi-colored Jello shots spelling out the band’s name waiting in the wings (Key contributor Nikki Volpicelli posted a photo of this on her Philadelphia Area Music Showcase blog). And he timed the set perfectly, so the krautrock rhythms of “Your Love Is Calling My Name” raced nearly to midnight, then dipped into the genteel space jam “The Animator” while the clock (somewhere) struck 12. As streamers popped open, confetti flew and champagne was poured, the band closed the trilogy with an outstanding, moving rendition of “Come To The City,” the centerpiece of their 2011 album Slave Ambient. But the show was just getting going. Continue reading →
Last night The Hold Steady brought its trademark rambunctious and animated live show to Bethlehem’s Musikfest Cafe as its winter tour moves onward. Tonight, the band headlines a sold-out Union Transfer with Swearin’ opening; last night, they were joined by Philly shredders Purling Hiss. Check out a photo recap of the Bethlehem show in the gallery above and either get excited for tonight’s show if you have tickets, or see what you’re about to miss if you don’t.