Download a free music sampler from Shovels & Rope

Photo by Molly Hayes
Photo by Molly Hayes

Shovels & Rope who return for a WXPN Welcomes show to Union Transfer on September 24th, are releasing a new album, Swimmin’ Time, on August 26. The self-described phrase of “sloppy tonk” is a perfect way to explain the music of the Charleston, South Carolina-based duo, Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent. They’re a high energy, roots rocking two-piece band who play beat up guitars, harmonica, keyboard, and a junkyard drum kit. They make more noise (in a good way) than a five piece band, and their live shows are incredibly fun.

The band’s new album two years after the band released their acclaimed debut, O’ Be Joyful. Below, via Noistrade, download a sampler of songs from their debut and the 2008 collection they released under their names before taking on the moniker of Shovels & Rope, and a video of a new song, “The Devil Is All Around” they performed at WXPN’s Non-COMMvention this past May.


Tonight’s Concert Picks: XPN Welcomes Toy Soldiers at Johnny Brenda’s, Steve Gunn at Little Berlin, XPN Welcomes Shovels & Rope at Union Transfer and more


Toy Soldiers celebrate the release of The Maybe Boys at Johnny Brenda’s.  The local roots / rock outfit recorded the LP with Bill Moriarty (Dr. Dog, Man Man) this year,  capturing most of the songs in a live set-up.  Live is the best way to experience the band – they’ve clocked in hundreds of shows on the road and know how to get the crowd invested.  Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show can be found here.  Check out Toy Soldiers’ Key Studio Session from earlier this week here and watch them perform “Tell the Teller” and “Forget How it Used to Be” below.

Steve Gunn returns to his home city for a show with Cian Nugent and Chris Forsyth at Little Berlin tonight.  The guitarist / singer has reached a new audience with his latest Time Off release, which he put out earlier this year through Paradise of Bachelors.  As he proved at the record’s release show in June, Gunn has a knack for blending playing styles from all over the world in an enthralling and transcendent way.  Tickets and information for tonight’s show can be found here.  Below, watch Gunn’s Tiny Desk Concert, presented by NPR Music.

Cold Roses headline MilkBoy Philly tonight.  The gravely-voiced local band released its debut EP The Georgia Fugue earlier this year and recently followed it up with August’s “The One You Love” single, taken from an upcoming LP.  Cold Roses echo the hard-lived grit of deep country rock but temper the edge with upbeat, danceable melodies.  Tickets and information for tonight’s show can be found here.  Listen to “Lose That Man” below.

XPN welcomes Shovels and Rope to Union Transfer.  The husband and wife duo have toured with Dawes, Jack White and Justin Townes Earle since releasing their debut LP O’ Be Joyful but are striking out on a headlining tour across the States this fall.  Based in South Carolina, Shovels & Rope perform foot-stomping , twangy and heartfelt country that is easy to sing along to.  Tickets and information for the show can be found here.  Watch the band perform “Gasoline” below.

Also happening: Hard Skin at Boot & Saddle; Randall Bramblett at the Sellersville Theater; Cheers Elephant at Ortlieb’s.  Tickets and information for all shows can be found on the XPN Concert Calendar.