Caveman headline Johnny Brenda’s tonight in support of their self-titled sophomore effort. The Brooklyn band turned heads with their 2011′s CoCo Beware debut, an album that displayed an affinity for theatrical synths and instrumental phrases threaded and revisited throughout the tracks. The four-piece employs that cohesiveness again on the new LP, with guitar riffs in lead single “In the City” being reprised in “Over My Head” and even echoing hooks from CoCo Beware standout “Old Friend.” Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show with Son Step and Pure Bathing Culture can be found here. Stream “In the City” below.
Caveman began sharing snippets of their new record in late January with the majestically enticing “In the City,” a track that set the bar high for the rest of the self-titled sophomore effort. Now with the release just a week away, the Brooklyn band’s multifaceted pop / rock album is streaming in full through NPR’s First Listen feature. With slow burners like “Ankles” and “I See You” supporting the instantaneous allure of “In the City,” Caveman have followed up their 2010 debut CoCo Beware with an album that gets better and better with each listen. The five-piece will be in town on April 11th for a show at Johnny Brenda’s with Pure Bathing Culture and Son Step; tickets and information for the 21+ show can be found here. Stream the album via NPR here and stream “In the City” below.
Earlier this week we posted about the upcoming Grandchildren show this Friday, and we couldn’t help but notice the promise in supporting act Son Step. This Philadelphia four-piece’s sound is hard to pin down, as they are constantly dabbling in various genres and sounds, but there is a definite air of experimentation, with elements of indie, pop, and even some garage-rock. Members are constantly trading instruments, giving each song its own feel. The group is incredibly tight, and they play a mean live show – just one more reason to get yourself to Underground Arts on March 1st. Below, watch a performance of their song “In Da Hot Tub” for Brighton Sound Sessions.
With a new LP and tour on the way, all eyes are on Philly’s Grandchildren. This week the expansive orchestral-pop outfit shared the first track off of the album Golden Age, a majestic and soaring piece called “Sunrise.” Golden Age was produced by Man Man drummer Chris Powell and engineer Bill Moriarty (Dr. Dog) and will be released on May 7th. From record label Ernest Jenning Record Co.:
Golden Age reads like a scrapbook in homage to that elusive era that serves as a reference point for how we’d like to remember “the way things used to be”, how they “ought to be”, but probably never really were. The recordings stem from this concept musically, pulling from a vast array of influences, and thematically, swirling around it from all angles with songs of hope and disillusionment, optimism and doubt, nostalgia and anticipation, caution and regret.
Gearing up for a showcase at the music industry’s most talked about festival and conference, local experimental pop outfit Grandchildren will perform at Underground Arts on March 1st before heading to Austin, Texas for SXSW. They’ll be joining the likes of local guys Cheers Elephant, Bleeding Rainbow, and recent Philly resident Daniel Bachman. Grandchildren announced last week that their next record Golden Age is mastered and will be released by Brooklyn’s Ernest Jenning Records, following up 2010′s debut Everlasting. Though the indie band has swelled into a small orchestra with multi-instrumentalists swapping tools both on stage and in the studio, the six-piece has stayed true to its roots as an acoustic folk / electronic pop based project. More information for the 21+ show with Buried Beds and Son Step can be found here. Watch a video of Grandchildren performing “Into Gold” from Golden Age below, filmed by Out of Town Films at SXSW 2012.
Yesterday evening, Andy Molholt of Philadelphia psych-pop group Laser Background and his longtime friend Brendan Mulvihill of the junkyard folk act Norwegian Arms moved into Dreamcastle, a house-show space in South Philadelphia. They’re living there temporarily, leading up to the kickoff show of their house show “tour” tomorrow night. The plan is an imaginative one: the band is performing four DIY spaces in Philly over the next four weeks. They have to live in each house for two days prior to the show, possibly constructing a pillow fort. They must adhere to “a strict food / drug regimen.” And they’ve got to write music, and perform the results. I grabbed drinks with Molholt and Mulvihill last week to talk about the unconventional residency series, its ambitions, and their affinity for Philly’s vibrant DIY scene.
THE KEY: Let’s sum up this mini-tour (that you’re not leaving the city for). You’re playing four house shows, and the rules are you have to stay in the house two days before playing the show, and collaborative preparational activities will take place while you’re staying there…
ANDY MOLHOLT: Collaborative preparational activities, I like that.
BRENDAN MULVIHILL: That’s really good.
AM: Make sure you put that in there.
TK: …and a song may result that you’ll perform at the show?
AM: More like a song must result.
BM: It’s a must?
AM: It’s a must! We’re good enough songwriters.
BM: We’re in this house for three days, we might as well do something.
AM: We didn’t really ever talk about if the song was going to be collaborative or not, we still have to figure that out. I thought we’d each write a song for our respective projects and perform them as our respective projects. But since I play in Norwegian Arms, and Brendan’s going to play in Laser Background for one of these shows where some of the guys can’t make it, maybe we can do that too.
BM: We’re not entirely sure what’s going to happen. It’s kind of just a big experiment. We might get into a fight. Or we might make out, that might be cool.
TK: It reminds me of the Netherfriends project where he lived in each state, had to write a song in each state. I guess that project is still ongoing. Was at all an influence on this project?
AM: If any of that factored in, it was definitely unintentional. I used to play with Netherfriends for a little bit, but I didn’t think about that. Residencies are kind of a silly idea to begin with – why would you want to go see a band in the same venue every night for four weeks straight?
BM: Not every night! “Come see us play 31 times…”
AM: [laughs] You know what I mean, though. I get that it’s good for the venue if the band’s popular enough. And you get different crowds each night because there’s different openers playing. But I just think it’s kind of silly. I thought it would funny to self-anoint our own residency at house shows. Then the actual living there idea developed, and Brendan had the idea that we had to write songs too.
BM: I mean, why not, right? Only seems natural.
AM: Brendan and I have known each other since we were 13, so these kinds of ideas come naturally.
BM: And we’re used to sleepovers. Continue reading
Experimental Philadelphia four-piece Son Step brings its wacked out, prog-infused vibes to Kungfu Necktie tonight, opening for like-minded enthusiasts of unconventional time signatures, Oh! Pears. The band recently released its EP Here Comes Dreamboat; stream it in the player below and expand your mind. Son Step performs with Oh! Pears, Leverage Models and In One Wind, at Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 North Front Street, tonight at 8 p.m. Admission to the 21+ show is $8.