Category Archives: The Key

Maitland, Abi Reimold, and Square Peg Round Hole make for a killer lineup at Johnny Brenda’s

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Maitland, Abi Reimold, and Square Peg Round Hole make for a killer lineup at Johnny Brenda’s

Maitland | photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN | racheldelsordophotography.com

Following Maitland‘s recent appearance at SoFAR Philly and Abi Reimold‘s slot on the Philly Music Fest, both artists are teaming up on November 9th to play Johnny Brenda’s with Square Peg Round Hole

Between Maitland’s woodsy folk, Reimold’s cathartic rock and Square Peg’s hypnotic instrumental groove, this show is nothing short of a must-see. Tickets for the show are on sale now, more information at the XPN Concert Calendar.



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Weller hangs with pals self-doubt and paranoia on new track, ‘Learning Curves’

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Weller hangs with pals self-doubt and paranoia on new track, ‘Learning Curves’

Weller | photo by Emily Dubin | courtesy of the artist

Philly’s cheeriest basement dudes, Weller, are gearing up to release their first full length, the self-titled Weller, on October 20th. But before then, we get a slice of the upcoming album by ways of their new single, “Learning Curves.”

Produced by Jake Ewald, the track radiates the energy of Modern Baseball and the narrative storytelling of Slaughter Beach, Dog, while all the while wrapped in a blanket of trademark wholesome Weller fun.

But it can’t possibly be all fun here, we find out, so it’s gotta be games. At least ...

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PREMIERE: Cherry breaks down the myth of maturity on the Dumbness LP

Source: The Key (WXPN)

PREMIERE: Cherry breaks down the myth of maturity on the Dumbness LP

Cherry | photo courtesy of the artist

A couple weeks ago, Russell Edling spent a weekend on the coast of Maine, camping with his girlfriend Gabby in Acadia National Park. After spending the daylight hours hiking miles up rocky cliffs and across mountain trails, they returned to their campsite – where their neighbors were, eh, not exactly chill.

“It was a bunch of dudes drinking and smoking and giggling until really late at night,” he recalls. “They could be 14, but I bet when Monday rolls around they’re going to tie their Windsor knots and get back to the office. It’s ...

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Free At Noon Flashback: Josh Ritter celebrates his new Gathering at World Cafe Live

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Free At Noon Flashback: Josh Ritter celebrates his new Gathering at World Cafe Live

Josh Ritter | photo by Liz Waldie for WXPN

Friday was a big day for Josh Ritter: it marked the official release of his ninth studio album Gathering following 2015’s excellent Sermon on the Rocks, and he and the Royal City Band were able to bring their foot-stomping, fast-talking tunes to World Cafe Live before flying to Minneapolis to kick off the record’s tour.

The singer-songwriter has long been a favorite of XPN and its members, and the crowd that had been steadily lining up outside quickly filled the venue to capacity in anticipation of his triumphant return. As one of the ...

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Just Announced: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds to flock to Merriam Theater this February

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Just Announced: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds to flock to Merriam Theater this February

Noel Gallagher | photo via artist’s Facebook page

Soon enough, birds will flying home for the winter. And by home, I mean Philly. And by birds, I mean Noel Gallagher’s 2010-started project, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. Okay, yes I too cringed at that long stretch of word play, but you get the picture.

Anywho, the past Oasis member will be bringing his crew to Merriam Theater on February 13th. Tickets for the show go on sale this Friday at 10 AM; grab those here, and listen to “Ballad Of The Mighty I” below.

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Get a look inside Live Nation’s renovations Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Get a look inside Live Nation’s renovations Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House

The Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House in 1937 | via Curbed

Earlier this year, Live Nation signed a contract to lease the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House on 858 N. Broad Street in order to renovate it and turn it into their next big concert venue. With construction well underway, the historic theater is set to reopen as early as the end of 2018, and last week the folks at Curbed Philly got an inside look at the new venue.

The Met has been considered all types of venues  – everything from a movie theater to a circus to, most recently, a church. ...

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Brian Wilson presents Pet Sounds at the American Music Theatre, Taiwan Housing Project at PhilaMOCA

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Tonight’s Concert Picks: Brian Wilson presents Pet Sounds at the American Music Theatre, Taiwan Housing Project at PhilaMOCA

Brian Wilson | photo by Kate McCann for WXPN

Founding Beach Boy Brian Wilson is currently on a world tour for the 50th Anniversary of Pet Sounds. The tour comes to the American Music Theatre in Lancaster tonight. During the previous shows for his tour, Wilson has been accompanied by a full band of multiple guitars, percussion, keyboards, and bassists to capture the full effect of such a sonically important album as Pet Sounds. You can listen to the soundcheck and performance of his Wallingford, CT show here. Tickets and more information on the the Lancaster, PA show ...

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Just Announced: Juliana Hatfield and Wesley Stace will play Ardmore Music Hall next month

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Just Announced: Juliana Hatfield and Wesley Stace will play Ardmore Music Hall next month

Juliana Hatfield | photo by Josh Pelta-Heller for WXPN

A double bill of singer-songwriters Juliana Hatfield and Wesley Stace comes to the Ardmore Music Hall on Thursday, October 12th.

Earlier in the year, England-born, Philly-based singer-songwriter Stace released his second album under his own name: Wesley Stace’s John Wesling Harding. The tracks were picked from the backlog of unused songs accumulated over the years, which must have numbered in the hundreds considering John Wesley Harding has released 17 studio albums spanning decades. Acting as Stace’s backing band is alt-country outfit The Jayhawks.

Joining the bill is the versatile singer-guitarist and songwriter Hatfield, ...

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Dig in to Hardwork Movement’s first full-band EP, For the People

Dig in to Hardwork Movement’s first full-band EP, For the People

Hardwork Movement | photo by Danny Gevirtz | courtesy of the artist | via instagram.com/dannygevirtz

Hardwork Movement are for the people. If you need any convincing, throw on their new EP, appropriately titled For the People. After a performance-filled Summer to remember for the Philly nine-piece, the group is kicking off the Fall by giving back to their fans in the form of their first EP with the full live bandThe 9-member neo-soul infused hip-hop group held things down at Delaware’s Firefly Music Festival this past June, blessed the stage at our own XPN Fest the following month, and capped the summer off with a headlining set at Underground Arts this past weekend to celebrate the release of the EP.

This project is the culmination of the Movement’s live performances around Philly over the past two years. For the People’s second track, “Wandering,” features a laid-back instrumental holding the song together. Soft, almost lounge-like, keys flow throughout the song. When combined with the crisp drum breaks and clean brass parts, the instrumental provides a solid foundation for the raps laid down by the group’s multiple MCs — Sterling Duns R.B. Ricks and Rick Banks, with Jeremy Keys on the hooks.

Other times, the vocalists prove they don’t need the backing band, as apparent on the the smooth and powerful a cappella track “Don’t Block the Sun,” sung by trumpet player Becca Graham and flautist Dani Gershkoff. The near 7-minute long closing track, “Becca’s Jam,” highlights the best in all of the group’s members. The finale ties the entire 8-track project together, featuring a catchy hook, a solid instrumental featuring brass solos at times, and clean bars from the group’s MCs.

Stream the full project below, and keep tabs on the band via Facebook for word of their next appearance.

XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of the Week: “Highway Tune” by Greta Van Fleet

Source: The Key (WXPN)

XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of the Week: “Highway Tune” by Greta Van Fleet

Greta Van Fleet | Photo by Michael Lavine

Greta Van Fleet are a four piece rock and roll band from Frankenmuth, Michigan, about an hour and a half North of Detroit. The band was formed in 2012 by brothers Josh (lead vocals), Sam (bass and keyboards) and Jake (guitar) Kiszka, and includes Daniel Wagner on drums. They released their debut EP, Black Smoke Rising, in April.

Greta Van Fleet play a mix of classic rock with touches of blues. With influences including Muddy Waters, Wilson Pickett, Joe Cocker, Sam & Dave, and Howlin’ Wolf, there’ve been lots of comparisons ...

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R.I.P. Charles Bradley, the Screaming Eagle of Soul, gone at age 68

Source: The Key (WXPN)

R.I.P. Charles Bradley, the Screaming Eagle of Soul, gone at age 68

Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires | photo by Jeremy Zimmerman for WXPN

Very sad news to report this afternoon; charismatic soul singer Charles Bradley has passed away at age 68. According to a post on Bradley’s Facebook Page:

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of Charles Bradley.
Mr. Bradley was truly grateful for all the love he’s received from his fans and we hope his message of love is remembered and carried on. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the following ...

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Strand of Oaks at Philly Music Fest, Soraia at MilkBoy, Thundercat at Union Transfer

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Tonight’s Concert Picks: Strand of Oaks at Philly Music Fest, Soraia at MilkBoy, Thundercat at Union Transfer

Strand of Oaks | photo by Tom Beck for WXPN

It’s day two of the inaugural Philly Music Fest at World Cafe Live, and Strand of Oaks take the stage for a headlining set. The festival’s eclectic lineup seeks to showcase local musicians and encourage Philadelphians to support our scene. Also performing today are Steve Gunn, Deadfellow, Ivy Sole, Shannen Moser, and lots more. Check out the festival’s website for tickets, set times, and more info. We most recently saw Strand of Oaks rocking the Marina Stage at this year’s XPN Fest; read a recap of ...

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Line Leader releases hard-hitting, sonically disorienting album wilt

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Line Leader releases hard-hitting, sonically disorienting album wilt

Line Leader | photo via lineleader.bandcamp.com

Line Leader‘s debut EP wilt is a strong opening statement for the Philadelphia natives. The production on is very garage sounding, with a raw grittiness throughout the entire album. What wilt lacks in sensitivity they make up for with volume and sound instrumentation; the band rocks hard and first couple tracks are reminiscent of bands like Sonic Youth in terms of their repeated riffs and stressing of big major chords. Give the record a listen below, and give Line Leader a follow on Facebook for more about their upcoming gigs.

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Listen to Caracara’s debut album Summer Megalith ahead of their Everybody Hits show

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Listen to Caracara’s debut album Summer Megalith ahead of their Everybody Hits show

Caracara | photo by Emily Dubin | thedubyscoop.com | courtesy of the artist

Philly indie rockers Caracara hit us with a few teasers from their debut album Summer Megalith last month, and the anticipation has been building ever since. Now, the waiting is over, release day is here, and Summer Megalith is finally out in the world. Not to be mistaken for the bird, Caracara create the kind of spirited, honest, pour-your-soul-into-it music that is so essential to the Philly scene right now. Spattered with fuzzy instrumentals and woven with dense and reflective lyrics, the 12-track album (engineered and mixed ...

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Just Announced: Morrissey will play at The Fillmore this December for his Low in High School tour

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Just Announced: Morrissey will play at The Fillmore this December for his Low in High School tour

Morrissey | Photo by Joe Del Tufo | joedeltufo.com

Morrissey has released the dates for his North American tour in support of his upcoming album release of Low in High School. The former Smiths frontman released the first single, “Spent The Day In Bed”, for the new album just three days ago. The Low in High School tour comes to Philly on December 4th at the Fillmore; tickets go on sale September 29th at 10 a.m., more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar.

 

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Easygoing Vibes, Explosive Force: The War on Drugs makes a powerful homecoming at The Dell for a good cause

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Easygoing Vibes, Explosive Force: The War on Drugs makes a powerful homecoming at The Dell for a good cause

The War on Drugs | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

When it was announced that Connor Barwin’s fourth annual Make The World Better Foundation fundraising concert was being held at the Dell Music Center and that The War On Drugs would headline, questions arose. For some, the question was “What the heck is The Dell?” and for those familiar with the city-run venue in Fairmount, the question was “Why The Dell?” The answer to the latter is that the venue is looking to throw in an occasional rock or country band to their normal summer mix of funk, R&B and soul ...

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Listen to the audio of The Clash’s 1979 show at the Walnut Street Theatre

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Listen to the audio of The Clash’s 1979 show at the Walnut Street Theatre

The Clash in Philadelphia | Photo by Todd Heft

English punk rock icons The Clash rolled through Philadelphia on this day in 1979 for a show at Walnut Street Theatre. They were only a few months away from releasing the critically acclaimed London Calling, the record that boasts the legendary photo on the album cover of Paul Simonon smashing his bass guitar. This photo has been called one of the greatest in rock and roll history and is almost universally recognized.

The Clash (at least in my opinion) are one of the greatest punk-rock bands to ever exist. Unfortunately, their run was ...

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Screaming Females return with new “Black Moon” single and a fall tour

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Screaming Females return with new “Black Moon” single and a fall tour

Screaming Females, photo courtesy of artist

With an extensive discography under their belts already, Screaming Females add another single to the list: “Black Moon,” their first release since their 2015 album Rose Mountain. And after more than ten years of touring, they’ve just announced a fall tour as well, which kicks off on September 24th.

The band is revered for their heavy rock and roll style driven by singer-guitarist Marissa Paternoster, as well as their heart-wrenching lyrics, and describes “Black Moon” as “[a] four-minute long ripper about the earth abandoning humanity, syphoned through the near-universal experience of ending a relationship.” The single was made available ...

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PREMIERE: Secret American bring us California sunshine in “Warmth & Shelter” video

Source: The Key (WXPN)

PREMIERE: Secret American bring us California sunshine in “Warmth & Shelter” video

Secret American | photo by Bob Sweeney | courtesy of the artist

Secret American, the new solo project of Cheers Elephant‘s Derek Krzywicki, is back with a delightful video for their second single “Warmth & Shelter,” and we’re excited to premiere it right here on The Key. The title track from the yet-to-be-announced debut album coming our way later this fall, “Warmth & Shelter” exudes the sunshine-filled California spirit with an unmistakable gritty Philadelphia edge that makes Secret American’s sound so unique.

Krzywicki once called Philly home, but now dwells among the cacti out on the West Coast. The ...

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Still Freaky After Thirty Years: Revisiting Philly’s fearless EDO ahead of their School of Rock gig

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Still Freaky After Thirty Years: Revisiting Philly’s fearless EDO ahead of their School of Rock gig

Edo, circa 1994

Philadelphia always gets typecast as the underdog, this city of illusion-of-grandeur miscreants that drastically wants to be NYC or D.C. or whatever else but can’t. You probably know of the “6th Borough” label or the Rocky lovable loser trope or any of the articles that question why anybody would even try and find success in our wonderful city. Hell, even the Fresh Prince had to move to Bel-Air before he could make something of himself.

This is nonsense. Philly doesn’t want to be New York or anywhere else. Like we’re supposed to care about what goes on in ...

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Cayetana at Philly Music Fest, Jay Som at the First Unitarian Church, David Bromberg at Sherman Theater

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Tonight’s Concert Picks: Cayetana at Philly Music Fest, Jay Som at the First Unitarian Church, David Bromberg at Sherman Theater

Cayetana | photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN | racheldelsordophotography.com

The Philly Music Fest kicks off tonight at World Cafe Live with Cayetana headlining a night of Philly music, from Kississippi to West Philly Orchestra and more. Cayetana’s latest album, New Kind of Normal, is one of the year’s highlights, with the South Philly power trio expanding the range of its sonic palette, from slow burners to charging ragers. Watch the video for “Bus Ticket” below and get tickets and more info on the festival here.

This spring, Bay Area indie rocker Melina Duterte returned with the second ...

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“A Concert for Charlottesville” featuring Dave Matthews Band, The Roots and more will be live-streamed on Tumblr

Source: The Key (WXPN)

“A Concert for Charlottesville” featuring Dave Matthews Band, The Roots and more will be live-streamed on Tumblr

Dave Matthews Band | photo by Doug Interrante

On Sunday September 24th at 6 PM ET, there will be “an evening of music and unity” led by Dave Matthews Band in response to the recent events in their hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. Other artists set to perform at A Concert For Charlottesville include Pharrell Williams, Justin Timberlake, Chris Stapleton, Ariana Grande, The Roots, Brittany Howard, Cage the Elephant, and more.

Today comes word that this free benefit show will be live-streamed live-streamed from Tumbler. Bookmark the page, tune in this weekend, and find more info and background about ...

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Watch Ron Gallo’s fearless, frenzied music video for “Put the Kids to Bed”

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Watch Ron Gallo’s fearless, frenzied music video for “Put the Kids to Bed”

Ron Gallo | photo by John Vettese for WXPN

The newly-released “Put the Kids to Bed” is the third video from Ron Gallo‘s breakout album Heavy Meta, an album  based on a dysfunctional relationship from Gallo’s past. Remnants of this relationship are very evident in the new video which, despite its simplicity, is both emotionally and visually striking.

The song itself is very hard-hitting and raw, but the setting for the video is a sunny backyard with a bed in the middle, dressed in plain white sheets — this sets the scene for a major contrast between the song and the ...

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Time For Acchin: Weird N.J. rockers Pine Barons reflect on the road to their debut LP

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Time For Acchin: Weird N.J. rockers Pine Barons reflect on the road to their debut LP

Pine Barons | photo by Ben Wong for WXPN | brotherlylost.com

Shamong Township sits about 35 miles south east of Philadelphia, smack dab in the center of New Jersey, but it’s practically a world away.

More of a geographical boundary than a bustling municipality, it’s sliced down the middle by Route 206 and dotted with diners, delis, liquor stores and a gun shop called Pistol Pete’s. At the south border is the mouth of the massive Wharton State Forest, the nucleus of Jersey’s storied Pine Barrens region –- an area with such acidic soil that nothing but evergreens can grow, ...

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Bruce Springsteen releases live album from 1978 Houston show for Hurricane Relief

Source: The Key (WXPN)

Bruce Springsteen releases live album from 1978 Houston show for Hurricane Relief

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band | photo by Joe Del Tufo for WXPN | deltufophotography.com

Good news for fans of The Boss as well as giving to those in need; Bruce Springsteen has released a 26-track recording from a 1978 live show in Houston, with all of the revenue going to MusiCare’s hurricane relief fund. There have been video bootlegs of this show circulating in the past, but this is the first full-concert audio-only release. As well as being available for digital download, CDs of the show will be available beginning on October 9th. Watch “Badlands” from the concert below, and purchase ...

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