Feel the power of Sleater-Kinney, Operators and The Go! Team on tonight’s Indie Rock Hit Parade!

Sleater-Kinney | Photo by Charles Petersen
Sleater-Kinney | Photo by Charles Petersen

The Indie Rock Hit Parade is back with a vengeance tonight at 11pm on XPN. And by “with a vengeance,” I mean to say “a ton of new music that you won’t want to miss.” Tune in for a full two-hour show, starting immediately after Land of the Lost with Robert Drake! We’ll spotlight No Cities To Love, the first new album from the mighty Sleater-Kinney in a decade, plus hear a few of these fresh new tracks:

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Listen to Chromeo and Toro Y Moi make a funk fantasia on “Come Alive” (playing Union Transfer 5/14)

Photo courtesy of artist
Photo courtesy of artist

Somewhere between funk, disco, yacht rock and electro boogie sit (or actually, dance) Montreal duo Chromeo (Dave 1 and P-Thugg). Their soon to be released new album, White Women, is their first since 2010′s Business Casual and featured contributions from Solange Knowles, Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig, and on the new song below – “Come Alive” – Toro Y Moi. The band is playing Union Transfer on Wednesday, May 14th. Tickets go on sale this Friday, January 10th at Noon. “Come Alive” is a funk fantasia with grooves that bring to mind Mayer Hawthorne and Earth, Wind & Fire with a little Seventies styled Fleetwood Mac thrown into the mix.


Firefly Day Three Roundup: Passion Pit, Vampire Weekend and more

Passion Pit | Photo by John Vettese

The Firefly Music Festival wrapped up its second year in a giant field off of the Dover International Speedway with some rain, considerably more mud, an army of inflatables and a lot of fun.

Haim‘s poppy, percussion heavy set greeted us as we entered the grounds, followed by LA singer LP early on – she had a bright blue suit, a ukelele, a voice reminiscent of Chrissie Hynde, a stylish 90s alt-pop sound and a great command of the crowd; when the skies opened up for the first time in the afternoon in the middle of her set, folks kept dancing. The second rainstorm happened a little later during Matt and Kim‘s set, but their insanely catchy songs and practically mandatory crowd participation won out over the storm clouds just as handily (check out a video of a balloon / beach ball release here). That said, holy cow those are two ridiculously perky people, and not necessarily in the best way.

Thankfully Kishi Bashi was a nice comedown – the versatile indie violinist (Of Montreal, etc) and sound loop artist created a portable chamber orchestra show on the festival’s backyard stage. He worked through his 151a album and shouted out the fan in the crowd waving a Ron Swanson flag apropos of nothing. Next, California band Trails and Ways played an impressive set of wandering, worldly pop-rock on the festival’s (unfortunately) under-promoted Coffeehouse Stage. Through the woods and across a field, Toro y Moi delighted their crowd with a set of synth-groove disco as the clouds broke and the sun beamed in.

Passion Pit frontman Michael Angelakos bounded on the mainstage with tremendous energy, determined to atone for the band’s cancellation at Firefly 2012 (when, he explained, “I was in the hospital, it was fucked up, I didn’t think I’d ever play a show again”). He grumbled a bit about allergies, then went on to tear across the set, sounding great but maybe overdoing it a bit since his voice blew out near the end. He explained this, and said “I’m really going to need you to sing along on these last few.” Though it initially seemed like gimmick to drum up singalongs, by the ending notes of “Little Secrets,” you could hear his falsetto straining and wheezing. But Angelakos kept pushing it further – poor dude.

Providing the perfect wrap-up before we hit the road, Vampire Weekend played a 90-minute set on the festival’s Lawn Stage, hitting the old favorites (“A-Punk,” “Cousins”), the vibey deep cuts (“Diplomat’s Son,” “Ladies of Cambridge”) and a good portion of the excellent new Modern Vampires of the City (“Everlasting Arms” sounded incredible, “Hannah Hunt” was sweet too). We’re pretty excited for their return to Philly in September. More photos from the festival after the jump, and earlybird preorders for Firefly 2014 (June 20 through June 22) go on sale Wednesday. Continue reading →


The Week So Far: 12 must-read stories on The Key (incl. Bleeding Rainbow, Kurt Vile, Attia Taylor and Pissed Jeans)

Photo by Rachel Del Sordo

Happy Valentine’s Day from Helen Leicht – get free downloads of Philly Local love songs [link]

Philly punks Pissed Jeans ravage the Key Studio Sessions [link]

Indiepop five-piece Catnaps releases a prom-themed music video for “Novelty” [link]

WXPN will broadcast Sunday’s Mumford & Sons concert from the SBC in Camden [link]

Bleeding Rainbow‘s new LP Yeah Right is the subject of the Unlocked showcase [link]

Philly’s Abi Reimold is spotlighted in a Folkadelphia session [link]

See photos from Toro y Moi‘s appearance at Union Transfer [link]

Five Things That Inspired Mary Lattimore’s Debut Album, The Withdrawing Room [link]

Watch local actors, fashion designers and musicians Khari Mateen and Elegant Animals collaborate in a video called The Living [link]

Explore Philadelphia with Dave Hartley of Nightlands and BlackBook Magazine [link]

Kurt Vile announces a headlining Union Transfer show, shares a free download [link]

Philly space-rocker Brendan Codey shares a new track called “Twin Chimney” [link]

UK experimental trio Beak> plays Underground Arts on a snowy night [link]


Photo Recap: Toro y Moi and Wild Belle at Union Transfer

South Carolinian synth-popper Chaz Bundick and his cohorts in Toro y Moi headlined Union Transfer last night in support of their new LP, Anything In Return. The Chicago group Wild Belle opened the show; check out a recap of the night in the photo gallery above.


Photo Gallery: Toro y Moi’s World Cafe Session (playing Union Transfer tonight)

Since Chaz Bundick and his bandmates in Toro Y Moi were in town for tonight’s show at Union Transfer, they swung by XPN Studios this afternoon to record a studio session for World Cafe with David Dye. Take a look at some images from the session in the photo gallery above; tickets for tonight’s show are still available, more information can be found here.


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Toro y Moi at Union Transfer, XPN Welcomes Citizen Cope to Musikfest Cafe

Indie chillwave artist Toro y Moi comes to Union Transfer tonight.  Born Chaz Bundick, the South Carolina native just released his third studio album Anything in Return.  Where his previous recordings were experimental collages of sonic textures and patterns, Anything in Return broadens Bundick’s palette to pair jazz and R&B structures alongside his staccato production style.  Tickets and information for tonight’s all-ages show with Wild Belle and Dog Bite can be found here.  Below, watch Toro y Moi’s latest video for “So Many Details.”

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Toro Y Moi releases video for “So Many Details” (Playing Union Transfer 2/11)

Chillwave / indie pop artist Chaz Bundick, known better by his stage name Toro Y Moi, gets spiffy in the video for “So Many Details,” the first single from Anything in Return (scheduled for release January 22nd). In the video, Bundick poses as the blase counterpart to a classic beauty, totally unfazed by a lavish lifestyle cruising in fancy cars, sharing a sunset at the beach and hanging out in a pretty rad mansion. Toro Y Moi is performing with Wild Belle at Union Transfer February 11th; find tickets and info at our concert calendar. Below, check out the video for “So Many Details.”


Watch a new music video for Wild Belle’s “Keep You” (opening for Toro Y Moi at Union Transfer on 2/13)

Wild Belle – the dub-inspired electronic pop project of Chicago siblings Natalie and Elliott Bergman – premiered a new music video for their ultra-catchy dancehall jam “Keep You” at Rolling Stone today. Watch the video below, and catch the band in concert this winter when they open for Toro Y Moi at Union Transfer. Tickets and information on the show can be found here.