Posts Tagged ‘Adam Weiner’

   

 

     

         

     

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This band from Philadelphia has always sounded like rock & roll purism with a future. With an imminent new album, “Dirty Pictures (Part 2)”Low Cut Connie – led by singer-pianist-songwriter Adam Weiner – are now an act on the verge. Their sound is of Fifties rock & roll dynamics and controlled-Replacements vigor. Weiner swept the ivories of his road-beaten keyboard in a short-sleeve gold lamé jacket over a Stanley Kowalski undershirt – budget-Elton John flair meets Jerry Lee Lewis menace. A cover of David Bowie’s “Diamond Dogs” – recently cut for a Bowie tribute project curated by Howard Stern – highlighted the Seventies glam that runs through Low Cut Connie’s electric-roadhouse guitars.

But the first single from the next LP, “Beverly,” was next-level songwriting. Building on the solid hooks and charge of previous albums – set-list pillars like “Dirty Water” and “Shake It Little Tina” – Weiner has pushed the vintage-Philly soul in his choruses to a rousing elegance at the intersection of Todd Rundgren, Gamble and Huff and Sun Records.

Low Cut Connie showed their usual party-out-of-bounds. They have also brought a bonafide hit, ready for crossover.

With the title of their 2017 release, Dirty Pictures (Part 1), Philly rockers Low Cut Connie had already telegraphed what was on the way.

“What a schmuck I would be if I didn’t have a part two, right?,” frontman Adam Weiner says,

The songs on Part 2 were largely conceived along with the band’s brothers and sisters on Part 1 – but the new batch is less a continuation than a mirror image; a flip side of the coin.

Over the course of four albums since 2011, Low Cut Connie has been hailed as carriers of rock ‘n’ roll’s torch, drawing comparisons ranging from Jerry Lee Lewis in his piano-arsonist prime to the New York Dolls, the Replacements, and others voted most likely to go completely off the rails. The reputation for true analog danger was earned by putting on wildly physical live shows, where Weiner was as likely to climb his battered upright as pound its keys, and where everyone involved, onstage and in the crowd, wound up drenched in sweat.

Dirty Pictures (Part 1), still for the most part barreling full-tilt, veered into introspection, both commentary (“Death and Destruction”) and mourning (a passionate cover of Prince’s “Controversy”). Recorded at Memphis’ Ardent Studios, Part 2 digs deeper into emotional complexity, with inward cuts like “Beverly,” a propulsive heart-buster about intimacy; the yearning, propulsive power ballad reveals the gulfs of space that can grow between people, pushing them worlds apart even when they might be in the same room.

“I had an idea that there were two different vibes, two different kind of groups of songs, but you never know what happens until you get in there and start swinging away,” Weiner explains. “About halfway through the process, I knew that it kind of had an A and B trajectory, in my opinion. Like there were all these songs that felt really grimy and dirty, and then there were these other songs that felt a little more emotional, a little more fully realized in a way.”

Part 2, he says, is more “character driven, exploring the way people and their emotional lives are a little more than this bar-culture thing that we had been doing for a while.”

The push toward interiority is no tone-down for Low Cut Connie. “Beverly” leaves its spare, poignant string intro quickly behind, snowballing downhill into a glam-tinged piano plea for re-connection and recovery of what’s been lost. Stretching songwriting muscles to encompass the wider, complicated spectrum of human emotion, after all, need not preclude a breathless rager of a performance.

Dirty Pictures (Part 2) comes out May 18th via Contender Records.

“Touch my body, touch my soul, revolution rock & roll,” singer-pianist Adam Weiner sings at this Philadelphia band’s SXSW getdown, like a preacher certain that he’s firing the Lord’s work across the room. Weiner may look and sound like a missionary from a distant age – sporting Marlon Brando’s tenement-lothario T-shirt from A Streetcar Named Desire; hammering his ivories like Jerry Lee Lewis, bent over from a standing position on his piano seat. But Low Cut Connie, who are a roaring quintet that sounds as loud and full as the early E Street Band, are absolutely contemporary in their drive to old-school joy.Tracks  “Revolution Rock n Roll” and “Dirty Water,” both on this album, Weiner’s showmanship in the cover of Prince’s pneumatic march “Controversy,” also on “Dirty Pictures.” Live He spends time strutting through the crowd, passing out high-fives; standing on the bar in the back, conducting the Connies then, after the big, final chord, Weiner jumps to the floor and marches out the door to the street. Low Cut Connie, like the Seventies Elvis, had left the building. For a good time, be there when they get to your town.