On Wednesday July 16th, The Fire hosted one of the best emo rock shows of the summer. Hailing from San Diego, California, Weatherbox headlined the sold-out show in support of their new record, Flies in All Directions, released this year via Triple Crown Records. On tour with Weatherbox is Dikembe, from Gainesville, on tour in support of their new record, Mediumship, released this month via Tiny Engines.
The surprise local support for this show was Philly favorites Modern Baseball, who was only announced a day before the show, and Hightide Hotel. This sold out show was easily one of the best line ups of the summer and was a truly incredible night full of stage dives, crowd surfing, sing alongs, and sweat.
Durham, NC electro-folk duo Sylvan Esso join tUnE-yArDs tonight at Union Transfer for a fun, funky and alternative show. Lead singer Amelia Meath has a smooth, haunting tone to her voice that manages to give more depth to the repetitive synths and beats. She bends her vocals so they compliment the abstract rhythms and somehow it just works. The single “Coffee” has a cool melody with lyrics that repeat “get up get down, get up get down.” Very good music to listen to while walking down the street on a sunny day. Doors open at 8 p.m., and make sure you arrive early to this sold out show!
Lancaster garage punks Placeholder will be at The Fire tonight to put on a high-energy show. The band released a digital 12″ back in February called I Don’t Need Forgiveness which you can stream here. Unlike some punk groups who can sometimes be all over the place with their sound, the foursome maintains a steady control throughout the 12-track long LP. Their live show will definitely guarantee gritty guitar solos along with commanding vocals.
Skinny Lister hail from the UK and if you listen closely, you can detect a slight bluegrass twang in their music. Dual lead vocalists Dan Heptinstall and Lorna Thomas don’t outshine each other, but use each others voices to enhance the quality of the music. I could picture these guys playing on a street corner in Dublin or London, captivating passersby. You can find tickets and info for their 21+ show tonight at North Star Bar here.
Tweens at Underground Arts ($10, 21+, 8 p.m.)
Uncle/Father Oscar at Kung Fu Necktie ($5, 21+, 3 p.m.)
Indigenous at Sellersville Theater ($22, all ages, 7:30 p.m.)
Pop-punk Philly band Modern Baseball will kick off their summer tour this afternoon at The Barbary. Earlier this spring, the guys participated a Key Studio Session where they successfully lit up the room with their charismatic energy. You can listen to a full album stream of their 2012 LP Sports here and watch the video for “Your Graduation” from this year’s awesome You’re Gonna Miss It All below. Get tickets for this afternoon’s show here (while they are still available!)
Philly psych-pop band Weekender prove there ain’t no rest for the wicked. After headlining Kung Fu Necktie last night, the fuzzy dreampop outfit is playing a slew of shows in Philly this summer, including local stops at Bourbon and Branch May 31, KFN June 11, the Firefly Festival in Delaware June 22, and then closing out at The Fire June 27. With pop beats, cutting riffs and droning guitars, Weekender is an ideal summer soundtrack.The band has promised a follow-up album to 2013′s EP Spanish Peaks this summer, but no word yet on a date. In the mean time, check out their very psychedelic Off the Avenue live session in Savannah, Georgia below.
Today Root Down in the Shadow released its latest Cover Club session with Philadelphia’s Katie Frank. The local singer played a cover of Joan Jett’s classic “I Love Rock n’ Roll,” accompanied by her bandmates Josh Werblun on acoustic guitar and Joe Bissiri on electric. The cover is a stripped-down version of the hit that really lets Frank’s voice shine, but sticks close enough to the Joan Jett original to show that Katie Frank & The Pheromones can battle any rock band. Watch the video below, and catch Frank this weekend at the Sundrop Music Festival at The Fire (check out the full lineup here).
Singer / songwriter and guitarist Jessica Lea Mayfield brings her ethereal vocals and creeping, crunching guitar riffs to Johnny Brenda’s tonight in support of her recent album release Make My Head Sing…. Sometimes touching on psychedlic shoegazey rock, other times inserting her bluegrass roots (she was in a bluegrass band with her family as a young girl), Mayfield’s sound is unique and all her own. Get tickets and info on the 9:15pm show here.
TJ Kong and The Atomic Bomb will rock Johnny Brenda’s tonight in celebration of their latest EP KONG. The Philly-bred four-piece are a pleasant mix of garage rock and jump blues that’s far from predictable. Check out “Telephone Blues’ below and get tickets here.
It’s like the crash after a long night of throwing back Lagers and oily pepperoni pizza and wondering where the rest of your friends are. In their new music video for the single “Convinced,” we see Philly modern rock crew Goodnight Lights throw a party for drummer Michael Ziegler…who, alas, doesn’t show up. Slices are consumed, awkward dances are danced, Jameson is pounded and the band, drummerless, passes out on a suburban couch. Is this a metaphor for band-life, or a jab at Ziegler for running late? We hope it’s not the latter, since Goodnight Lights has two pretty sweet shows on their concert agenda: this Friday, April 18th at The Fire with Monday Appreciation Society, and Saturday May 31st at Johnny Brenda’s with Rexedog and Joy Riding. More information on both at the XPN Concert Calendar.
If you want a clear depiction of what modern hip-hop sounds like, take one listen to Curly Castro‘s EP Brody.
Castro’s got an incredible talent of espousing socially-conscious ideas while spitting out rhymes with impeccable energy. Throughout the EP, guitar samples and movie dialogue overlap powerful lyrics, making it irresistible to listen to all six head-bobbing songs.
You can catch Castro with his producer (and fellow MC in the Wrecking Crew) collective, Zilla Rocca, Saturday April 19 at The Fire. The show starts at 9 p.m. and the $10 tickets to the 21+ can be purchased here. If you want more of Castro, check out his The Key Studio Session this past September, at or his solo show a bit away on June 14 (also at The Fire).