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The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: The building blocks of Buried Beds

Photo by Madeleine Lesperance

This month’s Key Studio VIDEO Session spotlights Buried Beds, a staple of West Philadelphia’s indie-rock community fronted by singer-songwriters Brandon Beaver and Eliza Jones. In our interview, Beaver and Jones tell us about the friendship that led them on a journey from folk duo to rock ensemble. They also discuss their fondness for meticulous, challenging, prog-rock style playing, and perform three songs from their new Small Stories EP. Watch the video below, and download a track from Small Stories here.

Key Studio Sessions #8 – Buried Beds from WXPN FM on Vimeo.

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The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: Going country with Arrah and the Ferns

For this month’s Key Studio Video Session, we profiled Arrah and the Ferns, the country-tinged four piece that self-released its latest EP, Soldier Ghost, in fall of 2011. In our interview, singer-guitarist Arrah Fisher talks about coming to Philadelphia from Muncie, Indiana; finding her voice as a songwriter; and the affinity for old country music she discovered after moving to a new city. Watch the video and download the Key Studio Session below, and catch the band in concert on March 2 when it plays Milkboy Philly.

Key Studio Sessions #7 – Arrah and the Ferns from WXPN FM on Vimeo. Video produced by Bob Giardini.

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Photo Preview: Arrah And The Ferns’ Key Studio Video Session

Last night, Arrah And The Ferns dropped by the XPN studios to record a Key Studio Video Session. In addition to the audio and video, we were able to shoot a few photos. As a preview, you can check out the photos above; the full session will be posted in a few weeks.

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The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: Pink Skull on making “music for record-store nerds”

Photo by John Vettese

For this month’s Key Studio Video Session, we profiled Pink Skull, the Philladelphia indie-dance quintet that, last year, released its third album, Psychic Welfare, on RVNG Int’l Records. In our video, band leaders Julian Grefe and J.G. Geller talk about bridging the divide between hooky pop songs and expansive disco epics, the growth of the electronica scene in Philadelphia, and the origins of their “music for record-store nerds.” Watch the video below and download their performance from December’s Key Studio Sessions Live concert at Johnny Brenda’s.

Key Studio Video Session #6 – Pink Skull from WXPN FM on Vimeo.

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The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: A decade of mewithoutYou

For this month’s Key Studio Video Session, we profiled mewithoutYou, the Upper Darby-bred experimental five-piece that bridges the divide between raw, introspective punk rock and lush, Neutral Milk Hotel-esque indie symphonies. This year, they celebrated ten years as a band, and in the spring they plan to release their as-yet untitled fifth album, recorded over the summer with Daniel Smith of Danielson – it’s their first since 2009′s It’s All Crazy! It’s All False! It’s All A Dream! It’s Allright. In our session, the bandmates reflect on their first decade together, discuss the forthcoming album and preview three new songs from it. They also played two favorites from Brother, Sister and Catch For Us the Foxes, which you can stream or download below. Catch the band on Friday Dec. 30 when they play the Theater of Living Arts for a pre-New Years’ co-headlining show with Thursday.

Key Studio Video Session #5 – Me Without You from WXPN FM on Vimeo.

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Photos: mewithoutyou’s Key Studio Video Session

Last week, the experimental quintet mewithoutyou dropped by the XPN studios to record a Key Studio Video Session. In addition to the audio and video, we were able to shoot a few photos. As a preview, you can check out the photos below; the full session will be posted in a few weeks.

For more photos by Eric Ashleigh, visit lefte.co.

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The Key Studio VIDEO Sessions: Songwriting with Ben Smith

For this month’s Key Studio Video Session, we profiled Ben Smith, a consummate songwriter and leader of the West Chester-based chamber-rock group Missing Palmer West. This fall, he digitally released his debut solo album Crooked Earth. For our session, a string trio and drummer joined Smith in the studio to perform the record’s highlights, revisit a tune from his late-’90s rock group Wise And Foolish Builders, and cover one of his all-time favorite cinematic pop songs: “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out” by The Smiths. (Listen for that on The Key Studio Sessions Hour on XPN2 tomorrow night at 7 p.m.). A high-school English teacher by day and film enthusiast all-around, Smith talks in our interview about how those elements—words and scenes—converge in his music. Stream and download highlights from band’s set and watch our video below; look for his CD-release party at Milkboy in Ardmore on January 20.

The Key Studio Session #4 – Ben Smith from WXPN FM on Vimeo.

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