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Foxtrot & the Get Down debut new songs to full house at Johnny Brenda’s

Foxtrot and the Get Down | photo by Dylan Eddinger for WXPN | dylaneddinger.com

Proud Philadelphians Foxtrot & the Get Down premiered new songs off a forthcoming EP to the most excitable crowd I’ve ever seen at Johnny Brenda’s. The band, who have just been signed to Soundly Music, have definitely earned their place as one of our hometown’s most recognizable local acts. Just this past summer they played several sets at Dover, Delaware’s Firefly Music Festival and made their national TV debut on Fox’s The Q, and they don’t have any plans to slow down.

Foxtrot also shared last night’s lineup with longtime friend and fellow Philly native artist Brianna Judge. Fun fact: singer and guitarist Colin Budny told me that he and Brianna played their first ever shows together back in 2012 down the street at the local bar Kostas – though then called The M Room.

The setlist for the night included old favorites like “Shine,” a newer bluesey track called “Down & Out” (which also features a brand new music video that you can watch below), a brand new week-old tribute to the 27 club called “Legends Never Die,” and a sneak peak of a single dropping this Friday called “Battered & Blue,” which will be featured on their forthcoming EP under Sony. Continue reading →

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Lighten Up, Buttercup, because Hippo Campus blew away Union Transfer last night

Hippo Campus | photo by Dylan Eddinger for WXPN | dylaneddinger.com

Last night, Minnesota indie rockers Hippo Campus joined the crowd at Union Transfer to celebrate the release of their newest LP, Bambi. They brought to the stage their instantly recognizable bubbly, ethereal, and smooth-yet-edgy sound to the stage, and then amplified it times ten. Singer Jake Luppen dove right into the new stuff, opening the show with the relaxed and pulsing track “Bambi,” followed by “Honestly,” and then the off-kilter, electro-rock “Doubt.” What a way to kick things off, honestly. These guys are loads of fun, and the set was atmospheric and loud and both gentle and aggressive when the tracks called for a change of pace. Ever appreciative of the crowd, as most bands who roll through Philly are, both Luppen and guitarist Nathan Stocker thanked us several times just for being there. Continue reading →

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Free At Noon Flashback: Muscle Tough brings the futuristic funk to World Cafe Live

Muscle Tough | photo by Senia Lopez | senialopez.photography

Philly instrumental improv trio Muscle Tough spent the afternoon downstairs at World Cafe Live to share what was possibly the most interesting Free At Noon concert I’ve seen in a while. I went in not knowing what to expect, and left having witnessed psychedelic robo funk, super heavy guitar and drum battles, and even jokey synchronized dance moves from guitarist Ross Bellenoit and bassist Jonathan Coleman. It was entertaining all across the board, and cheers of “When I say Muscle, you say Tough!” were prevalent throughout the entire forty-five minute set, just to remind the crowd that they were awesome. Continue reading →

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Vampire Weekend makes an atypical entrance, announces new album at Lollapalooza

Vampire Weekend at Lollapalooza | photo by Timothy Hiatt | via Billboard

When Vampire Weekend took the Lallapalooza stage in Chicago last weekend, the crowd went wild for their opener “A Punk,” their first big hit from the start of their career.

And then they went wild again when the band played it a second time.

And then they figured something was up… Continue reading →

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Circa Survive will bring La Dispute and Queen of Jeans on tour this fall

Circa Survive | Photo by Sydney Schaefer for WXPN | sydneyschaeferphotos.com

Philly alt rock staples Circa Survive are hitting the road again this October in support of their 2017 release, The Amulet. The last time we caught them was at the Electric Factory in November with Thrice, so we haven’t had to wait long for a return. Circa just recently wrapped up an Australian/Pacific Coast tour earlier this summer, and frontman Anthony Green just ended his Avalon 10 Year Anniversary tour earlier this week. No rest for these guys, as they’re already ready to get back on the road again for most of this fall.

Though it’s been almost a year since Circa has put out any new releases, the individual band members have done anything but relax. Green released his newest solo album, Would You Still Be In Love, at the beginning of June, and was joined by Circa Survive’s Brendan Ekstrom on the Avalon Tour. Continue reading →

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Mac Miller delivers first live performance of Swimming at NPR Music’s Tiny Desk

Mac Miller | photo by Elsah Attar for NPR

Pittsburgh MC Mac Miller just dropped Swimming, his fifth studio release, on Friday, and fans have gotten their first glimpse of a live rendition before he takes the Swimming Tour on the road thanks to NPR’s Tiny Desk.

Miller, who hasn’t released anything since The Divine Feminine in 2016, is quickly taking the hip hop world by storm after re-emerging into the scene with almost no notice. After quickly announcing singles just a few weeks before the LP’s due date, fans shifted their attention away from Miller’s personal life and whirlwind breakup from singer Ariana Grande and refocused on why they loved him to begin with: he’s an artist, and Swimming is brilliant show of his skill. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Grateful Dead’s Bob Weir & Wolf Bros will play The Fillmore this fall

Dead & Company | Photo by Sydney Schaefer for WXPN | sydneyschaeferphotos.com

Grateful Dead founding member and guitarist Bob Weir has just announced a fall tour spanning through October and November with a new trio project, Bob Weir & Wolf Bros. The group is set to rework classic Dead tunes as well as old tracks from Weir’s repertoire in the form of guitar, Don Was on upright bass, and Jay Lane on drums. Continue reading →

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Nick Cianci’s High Fidelity Depressed is anything but a downer

Nick Cianci
Nick Cianci | photo by C.J. Moy | photo courtesy of the artist

Philadelphia-rooted singer-songwriter Nick Cianci‘s debut EP High Fidelity Depressed is a high-energy take on themes of angst and loneliness. With beautifully intricate guitar melodies and clear, eager vocals, the recent NYU grad via the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music has proven that he’s clearly not new to the game. His sound is incredibly mature and perfected, even though he’s a solo artist. Not only is he a gifted musician and songwriter, but he also understands the technicalities of production. That’s his edge right there. Continue reading →

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XPN Fest Recap: Mt. Joy is a Silver Lining among other Marina Stage performances

Mt. Joy | photo by Natalie Piserchio | nataliepiserchio.com

L.A.-via-Philly up-and-comers Mt. Joy played the second slot on the Marina Stage for the last day of XPN Fest, and their set was vibey and wild and enigmatic. It was all over the board in the best way. These guys are sort of chameleon rockers – each song is so different from the last, but still fits in the pocket of indie soul folk if you had to categorize their sound. Continue reading →

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XPN Fest Recap: Sunflower Bean burns it down on the Marina Stage

Sunflower Bean | photo by Ashley Gellman for WXPN | agellmanphotos.com

Brooklyn natives and WXPN regulars Sunflower Bean shared more of their Twentytwo in Blue record with the day two crowd as the sun beat down on the Marina Stage. To open the show, they played the fan favorite “Burn It,” and front woman Julia Cumming’s signature alto-toned vocals welcomed the crowd back to Twentytwo. Interspersed with quick drum fills and lead bass tones, the band was tighter than ever. Continue reading →