Posts Tagged ‘Pennsylvania’

Katie Ellen’s debut album, 2017’s Cowgirl Blues, saw frontwoman Anika Pyle kicking against the traditions and norms that come with adulthood—namely, love, major life changes, cohabitation, and domesticity. She penned the anti-marriage anthem with “Sad Girls Club,” a standout track that featured the defiant heartbreaker of a chorus: “Sad girls don’t make good wives.” On the Philly band’s new, five-song EP, Still Life, Pyle is still trying to wrap her head around these things.

On opener “Lighthouse,” Pyle reckons with warring thoughts—wanting to be brave enough to swim into life’s uncharted deep end, but feeling tied down by the anchor of fear and anxiety. Later, on the EP’s title track, she surrenders to the idea that love is more powerful and wild than our capacity to tame it: “You can’t make love stay / Do your best to hold it in place.”

Musically, Pyle flexes a few new tricks she’s trying out, like on “Still Life,” where her voice spirals into borderline operatic delivery, a far jump from the quick and dirty style she cut her teeth on in her former pop punk project Chumped.

Still Life is out on Lauren Records.


released June 3rd, 2018


KISSISSIPPI promo photo

Since 2014, Zoe Reynolds has been making music under the Kississippi moniker, but the release of her debut full length, Sunset Blush signals a change for the artist.

Following a series of demo releases and EPs, Reynolds believes she has finally found her voice, calling Sunset Blush an honest recognition of the music she always wanted to make.
The album fully immerses listeners in Kississippi’s sincerely heartfelt world, with Reynolds sharing every strength and struggle that fueled her writing.
The album’s namesake comes from a flavor of boxed wine that’s frequently appeared throughout Reynolds’ adulthood; consumed on rooftops reached by ladders or in between sets at house shows.
The album enlivens these moments saturated in nostalgia for listeners, Sunset Blush is more than just a debut, it’s Reynolds’ reassurance to herself and others that even when things are at their worst, brighter days are ahead, and you have the strength needed to get through it.


This is a solid new album. Zoe’s voice sounds more confident and quirkily charming than ever. From the get-go the band feels tighter and more agile than on any previous release.

Katie Bennett’s voice rarely rises above a whisper on her lo-fi indie-pop band’s new album, on which thinly strummed guitars and gingerly tapped drums sound like they’re being played by a band of lounging cats struggling to wake up after a very successful Sunday nap. But her sturdily crafted songs still echo around in your head, full of vivid personal detail, melodic charm and the thrill that comes with witnessing a wide-open heart and mind discovering the world — even when the people in it don’t always reflect her generosity back. The guitars of “Around You” swirl and chime as Bennett sings about finding someone new to hang out with; the slowly drifting “Be Home Soon” wrings every instant of joy from a work-week-ending subway ride home; “Tom Or Mike Or Pat Or” is a gentle spree of sensual imagery (a mouth full of sunflower seeds, a fast car, bare legs, red lips, a bug bite on her ass) over glistening jangle. Though they are slight, the snow globe sound worlds Free Cake For Every Creature create have a summery verdancy, and Bennett displays a sneaky way with one-liners all over the place (“our bodies were like spaghetti, tangled and sauce-less,” she observes on “Whole World Girl”). Pretty impressive for a band that doesn’t play loud enough to disturb a lounging cat.


Released August 3rd, 2018

all songs by Katie Bennett
all songs recorded by Katie Bennett, Francis Lyons & Heeyoon Won at home in West Philly
mixed & mastered by Mike Ditrio

Katie Bennett– main vocals & guitar, keys
Heeyoon Won– bass & vocals
Francis Lyons– drums, keys, guitar, vocals on “Be Home Soon”
Meghan Center- vocals on “In Your Car” & “Shake it Out”
Meg McCauley- vocals on “Around You”
Pete Gill- pedal steel on “Sideline/ Skyline,” “Sunday Afternoon,” “In Your Car,” “Hometown Hero” & “Be Home Soon”
Felix Walworth- banjo on “In Your Car”
Evan Marré- guitar on “Riding into the Sunset in a Busted Car” & “Tom or Mike or Pat or”

Image may contain: 4 people, people smiling, people standing

In its most direct form, pop punk tends to deal in immediate emotional states, a megaphone blaring about the here and now. But Swearin’ has a more complicated relationship with time. After putting out two lean albums in 2012 and 2013, they slipped into hibernation and return now with a song about the uncanny perspective granted by growing older. “Grow Into a Ghost,” is the first single from the band’s forthcoming Fall Into the Sun LP, pounds with the kind of urgency you might expect in a song about confused youth, even though its lyrics concern a hard, long look at the past.

Allison Crutchfield sings about the phenomenon of drifting away from someone who used to play a huge role in your life—a scenario that could fit into a somber, wistful tune, but has more wallop amid Swearin’s bright, crunchy guitars and pounding drums. “I hang out with old friends/And they unknowingly remind me/Of who I was before we met,” she sings over insistent scrapes of bass. At the chorus, which ranks among the catchiest Swearin’ has written, she repeats the phrase “I watch you” until the words start to jumble together. The phrase is lodged inside a question“Will I watch you grow into a ghost?”—but the incessant repetition of those three words implies that Crutchfield has already answered it as she peers back over the years. A thundering return, “Grow Into a Ghost” crystallizes Swearin’s skill for headbanging away the thoughts that might leave another band hanging their heads.


releases October 5th, 2018

Swearin’ is
Jeff Bolt
Kyle Gilbride
Allison Crutchfield

All songs written by Allison Crutchfield (Domino Publishing Company [BMI]) and Kyle Gilbride 

Kississippi released one of our favorite records last year with We Have No Future, We’re All Doomedan up-close-and-personal collection of songs that don’t just tug at heartstrings, they rip them apart. With anticipation for new material high, singer-songwriter Zoë Allaire Reynolds has now shared a snippet of a new demo over Bandcamp called “who said it first.” The sub-minute track has a simple, looping feeling as layers of guitar and synth float along with Reynold’s hypnotic, almost whispered vocals.


There’s a lot of heart in every project Maryn Jones touches. Her lyrics – which project struggles with self-doubt and depression, and a penchant for self-reliance, graceful and introspective. And her voice is powerfully expressive, whether combined with the muscular, fuzzy guitars of All Dogs – the indie punk band she fronts — or providing delicate harmonies for Saintseneca, the folk-rock group of which she’s a member. But often with those projects, the uniquely tender, vulnerable aspects of Jones‘ singing and songwriting run the risk of being buried, or, at the very least, not getting their chance to be heard.

Jones released an album called The Offer under the name Yowler in 2015, those facets were finally given space to be a centerpiece. The songs on The Offer are sparse, relying mainly on just Jones‘ voice and guitar. They’re deeply intimate and enveloping, both emotional and physical.

Maryn’s unique voice suits these songs perfectly. Here, I can’t get enough


Petal, the indie pop project of Kiley Lotz, will release a new album, Magic Gone, on June 8th. Petal is an American rock band from Scranton, Pennsylvania, currently signed to Run For Cover Records. The band consists of only one permanent member, Kiley Lotz, with the rest of the band a rotating group of musicians from other bands such as Ben and Brianna of Tigers Jaw and members of Three Man Cannon, Halfling, Wicca Phase Springs Eternal, and Captain, We’re Sinking.

Recorded over the course of a month at Studio 4 in Conshocken, PA, Magic Gone is a bitingly honest look at adulthood, accountability, responsibility, and mental health and the difficulties that go along with each of them. “There comes a moment where all the paranoia, anxiety and pain become too much and you realize the structure you built to survive is no longer is going to serve you,” says Lotz of the three year period that inspired the album. “I had to make some very big life changes to make sure I didn’t die. It was not easy taking that level control over my life after spending many years worrying about upsetting others and being the best and most successful person I could be.”

Lotz  songs include the themes of mental health, identity, and adulthood that inspired the record.

“Tightrope” by Petal from the upcoming album ‘Magic Gone’, out June 15th, 2018 on Run For Cover Records.

If Beach Slang is James Alex fawning over The Replacements, Quiet Slang is him head-over-heels for The Magnetic Fields’ Stephin Merritt.” Their first two and a half years as a band (2014-2016) saw them release two great EPs and two great full-length albums, and that’s not counting their cool covers EPs where they pay tribute to the artists they very openly love. If they were to put out a “greatest hits,” it’d be one of the most rock-solid punk albums of our time, and frontman (and only remaining original member) James Alex has sort of done just that with his new solo album as Quiet Slang. Titled Everything Matters But No One Is Listening, it’s stripped down versions of ten of Beach Slang’s best songs, from their first EP to their latest album, re-arranged for piano, cello, and voice.

This is an utterly gorgeous record that moves, inspires, and invites mixtape inclusion at every turn, Alex’s punk rock transformed into ethereal hymns to love and comradeship. A true delight.”

“Musically, these new versions feel totally natural, with Slang’s melodies holding up to scrutiny and the simple chord patterns leaving room for piano and cello to decorate the songs.

Beach Slang can be a raging punk band, but they’ve always had a sweet side to their songs, and that comes through loud and clear (well, quiet and clear) on Everything Matters. The songs sound beautiful with these arrangements, and in their own way, they’re just as effective as the originals. Who knew that the headbanging punk of “Filthy Luck” could work as a minimal piano ballad, or that the fist-raising “The night is alive, it’s loud and I’m drunk!” shouts of “Noisy Heaven” could flow so gorgeously into a sea of cello? It’s a really special record, one that could easily appeal to longtime Beach Slang fans and newcomers alike, and we’re excited to be premiering a stream of the whole thing. Listen, along with the just-released video for “Future Mixtape For The Art Kids,” .

Considering that, there’s something almost cheeky about the title of his new project: Quiet Slang. As the name implies, Alex is embracing minimalism, smothering the fuzz in favor of a cello, a piano, and his voice. In October, Quiet Slang released We Were Babies & We Were Dirtbags, an EP comprised of two Beach Slang songs and two covers from The Replacements and Big Star. Consider it an introduction to what Alex calls “chamber pop for outsiders,” because it simply serves as prelude to Everything Matters But No One Is Listening, a collection of 10 Beach Slang covers that’s set to drop on May 18th.


That’s when he turned to the project’s key influence: The Magnetic Fields’ Stephin Merritt. Merritt’s influence lent itself not only in his heartrending use of cello and piano via his work with the Fields, but also in one of his most famous lyrics. “Why do we keep shrieking/ When we mean soft things?” goes the final lines of “100,000 Fireflies.” “We should be whispering all the time.”

“That just always stuck with me,” Alex says, “how quiet can sometimes be more powerful.” He continues, “If Beach Slang is me fawning over The Replacements, Quiet Slang is me head-over-heels for Stephin Merritt.”

Quiet Slang

Katie Crutchfield’s southern roots are undeniable. The name of her solo musical project Waxahatchee comes from a creek not far from her childhood home in Alabama and seems to represent both where she came from and where she’s going.


Philly indie folk act Kississipi have announced the release of their upcoming debut album, ‘Sunset Blush’.

The Philadelphia-based project have announced that their debut full-length will come out in just a little over two weeks. The album’s called Sunset Blush, The opening track starts off pillowy and warm, the synths making space for Zoe Reynolds’ voice the same way she’s trying to be more accommodating for the person she’s singing about. “Up to now I’ve given all I’ve got/ You could always keep it if you want/ I’ll make myself easier to love,” she sings. The song operates in a grey area — its final hook of “I didn’t think it would be you” suggests that maybe all that change was worth it, but some of the verses seem to lean towards the other end of the spectrum, giving up too much of your independence in order to be there for someone else. That’s true of the constant push-and-pull of an adult relationship, though, balancing autonomy with partnership.

It will be released in April next year via SideOneDummy Records


Performed by Kississippi, Kyle Pulley.
Drums by Michael Tashjian.
Backup vocals on Cut Yr Teeth by Mary Allen.
Backup vocals on Easier to Love and Shamer by Kaylen Alan.
Backup vocals on Lash to Lash by Sofia Verbilla of Harmony Woods.
Guitar Feature on Cut Yr Teeth by Katie Capri of Fern Mayo.
Cello on Shamer by Luke Shefski.