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Stop The Presses: Hop Along and Waxahatchee to headline Connor Barwin’s 3rd annual Make The World Better Benefit at Union Transfer

Hop Along | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo racheldelsordophotography.com
Hop Along | Photo by Rachel Del Sordo racheldelsordophotography.com

Philadelphia Eagle Connor Barwin’s Make The World Better Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to “enriching the lives of Philadelphia’s youth by providing safe and fun places for artistic and athletic development,” just announced the line-up for their 3rd annual fundraiser…and it’s a fantastic Philly double-hitter of Waxahatchee and Hop Along. Continue reading →

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The Key’s Top 15 Albums of 2015

The albums that moved us in 2015
This is the music that moved us in 2015

It was a year of powerful records. Of loud guitars and brazen beats, of electronic tapestries and vocal abandon. It was a year of personal introspection and rallying cries for social change. It was a year when music felt inextricably tied to the world around us. When it felt more important than it had in a long time. Like we’ve said before, to narrow 12 months of incredible music down to a “top 15 albums of 2015” list is to exclude dozens of other worthy releases. This year, we had 26 writers and photographers cite a collective 82 albums as their favorites – you can view everybody’s top fives here, and I know fully well that had I asked The Key crew to give me top tens, I’d be easily looking at quadruple the titles. But we’ll go deep when our annual Year-End Mania roundup launches tomorrow. Today we take the long view and explore what rose to the surface of consensus in 2015, from the expressive moments of Kamasi Washington, Joanna Newsom and Jamie xx, to the pop permutations of Carly Rae Jepsen and Grimes , rock and/or roll from Courtney Barnett and Alabama Shakes, Philly representation from The Districts, Waxahatchee and of course, Hop Along‘s incredible breakout LP Painted Shut, which alongside the great Kendrick Lamar rose right to the top of our voting. Let’s recap the year. 
Continue reading →

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Watch the offbeat, scenic new video for “La Loose” from Waxahatchee

 

Waxahatchee | Photo by John Vettese
Waxahatchee | Photo by John Vettese

Waxahatchee, the moniker of Philly by-way-of Alabama singer-songwriter Kate Crutchfield, has had a hell of a year, and this week released a light, scenic video for “La Loose”, a standout track from 2015’s Ivy Tripp.

The band first made a name for itself back in 2013, with her critically-acclaimed and wholly surprising debut LP Cerulean Salt. What was immediately evident was Crutchfield’s powerful vocal presence, one that cut through the noise and demanded to be noticed. She kept things going in 2015, following up her debut with a sophomore effort that she still has plenty to say.  Continue reading →

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Watch Waxahatchee cover Lucinda Williams’ “Greenville”

Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee
Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee

It seems the Crutchfield sisters have quite the affinity for Lucinda Williams. Way back in January, Allison (the frontwoman of Swearin’) covered Williams’ 1992 track “Something About What Happens When We Talk.” Now, twin sister Katie has taken to covering Williams’ “Greenville” during her shows as Waxahatchee. Continue reading →

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A Day Without Love kicks off a 90 Covers in 90 Days project with Waxahatchee’s “I Think I Love You”

Brian Walker |Photo by Abi Reimold
Brian Walker | Photo by Abi Reimold

Brian Walker of the Philadelphia emo rock band A Day Without Love is nothing if not ambitious. In the last year alone, he has released three different albums on his Bandcamp, ranging from the more polished Young Professionals to the literally-recorded-in-his-own-bedroom Songs for the Lonely. Now, Walker’s set his sights on an even more ambitious project: recording 90 different covers in 90 days. Continue reading →

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B’lieve This One’s a Winner: Kurt Vile at Union Transfer

Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | http://jeremy-zim.com/
Photo by Jeremy Zimmerman | http://jeremy-zim.com/

Kurt Vile made me fall asleep. Well, sorta. Last week when he played a surprise warm-up show at Johnny Brenda’s, I was there (cue James Murphy screaming “I. WAS. THERE.”) in the front row, jamming out. Right up until the part where I fell asleep. Okay, okay, so it wasn’t KV’s fault — the show didn’t start until 11:15, way past my bedtime, you get the picture. But this time, I knew I wouldn’t nod off. Friday night, game on. Continue reading →

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Philly artists make Stereogum’s list of best albums of 2015 (so far)

Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee
Waxahatchee | photo by Michael Rubenstein | via facebook.com/waxahatchee

Stereogum recently released their list of the top albums released in the first half of 2015, and three local favorites made the cut. Hop Along’s Painted Shut (“[a record that] impresses without pretension”), Girlpool’s Before The World Was Big, and Waxahatchee’s Ivy Tripp all receive high praise. The article also lists #XPNFest performers My Morning Jacket (The Waterfall) and Courtney Barnett (Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit) as standouts. Continue reading →