Posts Tagged ‘Philadelphia’

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.

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released June 3rd, 2018

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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.

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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.

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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”

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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.

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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 

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Each Anthony Green album has been a invitation to read his most personal pages of his secrete journals. We get to experience every drop of the grief, joy, anguish, torment, self-doubt, destruction, hope, unification and brilliance this one man has to offer. His bare soul lives between the melodies. These albums are a measure of not only his own self-preservation and redemption but throwing the rest of us a life line;

Keep Your Mouth Shut by· Anthony Green from the album Would You Still Be In Love on Memory Music Records

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.

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The Philadelphia five-piece likes amps and layers of guitars, loud clouds of thick noise that saturate every inch of available space. Their new lead single “The Red Door” off their upcoming fourth album LP5000 tumbles towards you, bursting with their usual rolling energy. It’s a satisfying anthem with a deeper, more cynical backbone.

The pains of gentrification weigh heavy, glaring through the desperately repeated lyric, “What remains? Every corner, a new name.” A red door becomes an omen of gentrification’s sweeping damage, both physical and emotional. Lead singer Jon Loudon recently spoke of his own neighborhood’s transformation saying, ”Philadelphia (and perhaps your town, too?) is rapidly changing. I wonder about where people go when they can’t afford to live in these new neighborhoods anymore. The red doors on all the new buildings feels like some kind of warning sign.”

Band Members
Dave Klyman – Guitar/Backing Vocals
Jon Loudon – Guitar/Vocals
Ben Pierce – Keys/Guitar/Backing Vocals
Dan Zimmerman – Bass/Backing Vocals
Jeff Meyers- Drums/Percussion

Restorations “LP5000” out 9/28/18 on Tiny Engines Records

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Same To Me is the second single Philadelphia’s Oldermost have shared ahead of the release of their new album How Could You Ever Be The Same? (out 13th July).

It follows the rollicking lead single The Danger of Belief, . This introspective new song was one of the first written for their new album, and is a gorgeous, hazy stand-out, highlighting the bands’ penchant for creating era-blending Americana-infused rock & roll with a more indie rock vibe in the vein of The War On Drugs (their Philly contemporaries!) or Wilco.

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Released by: AntiFragile Music

Philadelphia-based musician Rosali (Long Hots, Wandering Shade) wrote the songs for her second album, “Trouble Anyway”, seeking empowerment by sharing openly on love, power, aging, suffering, confusion, self-doubt, and anger. Resulting in a full-bodied record that is at once sweeping and intimate. A vulnerable and powerful exploration of emotional narratives, Trouble Anyway showcases her background in diverse musical styles from free improv, garage rock, country, pop, to folk-infused song-craft. Following up her 2016 debut Out of Love (Siltbreeze), named one of the top 100 records of 2016 by Uncut Magazine, Trouble Anyway is a cohesive collection of lush, intimate rock songs, featuring her warm, natural vocals and powerful riffing and rhythm guitar, approaching the sublime when Rosali finds expression beyond lyricism, utilizing her voice as a human instrument.

Backed by A-list musician friends, the collective instrumentation simultaneously accentuates Rosali’s singular sound and magnifies its orbit. Trouble Anyway is both otherworldly and straight-forward. Lyrical and wordless intensity, alongside intuitive musical arrangements, make for a powerful sophomore release. With collaborations from musician friends – Nathan Bowles (Steve Gunn, Black Twig Pickers), Dan Provenzano (Writhing Squares, Purling Hiss), Mary Lattimore, Paul Sukeena (Angel Olsen, Spacin’), Charlie Hall (The War on Drugs), Mike Polizze (Purling Hiss), Mike Sobel (Oldermost), and Gretchen Lohse (Carol Cleveland Sings)—Trouble Anyway was recorded and mixed by Uniform Recording’s Jeff Zeigler, who has also engineered records for The War on Drugs, Allison Crutchfield (also of Waxahatchee), and Kurt Vile, among others. 

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I first fell in love with Rosali’s songs for this reason, the way her work takes you straight to that brave and big-hearted dream within songwriting. Every song stands strongly as it’s very own world, well-worn by the history of the underground but accessible as daylight.”
Meg Baird, Spring 2018

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On August 24th, Philadelphian band Nothing will return with a new studio album titled, Dance on the Blacktop. Due out through Relapse Records, it follows 2016’s Tired of Tomorrow and serves as the band’s third LP overall.

For the nine-track effort, the noise-rock outfit enlisted the talents of producer John Agnello (Dinosaur Jr., Sonic Youth). Tracking took place at Dreamland Studios in Woodstock, New York, following 23 days spent demoing in a “coffin-sized NYC apartment”. Much of Dance on the Blacktop draws on the life of founding member Domenic Palermo. In particular, Palermo was influenced by his time spent behind bars and the recent diagnosis of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, a neurodegenerative disease found in people with serious head injuries. Throughout the LP, there are songs that tell stories of self-loathing and self-destruction, as well as paranoia and anxiety stemming from his new illness.

The title, which is prison slang for a fight or altercation, is a “symbolic interpretation of the album’s philosophy.” Palermo elaborates in a statement, saying, “I’ve learned to bask in the absurdity of it all — in the chaos… There’s beauty in the confusion if you can learn to hold its hand.”

Dance On The Blacktop is due out August 24th

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