Say Yes to No :
Yes, No, I would come back and see you if you play Philly again. In fact I think that would be a brilliant idea ! Last night I went to the TLA to jam out to Work Drugs, a band that has been a consistent presence on Philly Indie, and see Electric Guest live. Heading in I read the sign with the head liner Electric Guest, followed by NO Work Drugs. At first I was pissed, no Work Drugs ?! They couldn’t have cancelled this late in the game…..Then I remembered that, NO, was the name of the other band playing that evening. ( Strangely I have similar problems like this when I was working at my college radio station. A caller asked for something by the Beatles. I said, “Ok anything you had in mind ?” to which he replied”….yeah ‘Something’ by the Beatles.”)
NO’s vocal styling is part Johnny Cash, with the deep sonorous baritone of lead singer Bradley Carter, and part Mumford and Sons with spell-weaving group harmonies. Their musical styling is quite frankly, an experience. The music is layered with complex melancholy melodies, the magnet drawl of a hazy electronic keyboard, and straight-forward brilliantly executed drumming. Although, this band hails from LA. I figured they deserved a shout out for repeatedly asking “If we come to Philly again, will you come see us ?” I can enthusiastically say Yes. Lets show them some brotherly love and see if we can get these guys to come back.
The swing vibe in conjunction with the mystical lyrics and the somehow-creepy-in-a-wondrous-way tone of her voice all flies by so fast that it will make you want to listen a few times just to catch all of the essence of just what Audrey Bean is feeling in this tune. I think it’s a good middle of the week song - upbeat yet minor.
The Weekend by Modern Baseball mixes the punk sentiment of uncertain youthful angst with a more melodic indie vibe. Although “The Weekend“ is a single, it caught our attention because it taps into the feelings of uncertainty underlying youthful bravado. It’s the musical version of a freshman trying to introduce himself as James Bond , when you really know he’s more of a ”Jimmy.” Your heart goes out to him, regardless. Everyone has been there and Modern Baseball makes this single wonderfully relatable. The Weekend is certainly worth the listen. Especially if your friends are in the middle of a nostalgia driven Dawson’s Creek marathon -
because the Netflix gods thought it would be a good idea to make that a possibility - and you realize that, that ”I Don’t Want to Wait” theme song was cute the first time, but not the 17th time. So if you’re finding it hard to relate to TV dramatizations , listen to The Weekend for some real relatability.
-A.H., with contribution from K.
Word Up, Band Round Up !
Looking to see some of the awesome artists we’ve written about in action ? Well here is the in-state September show round up of some of those very same bands !
Arrah and the Ferns: Saturday September 8th @ Milkboy in Philadelphia —> for Maasia Rising (check it out, it’s for a good cause !) http://www.facebook.com/events/452570908106693/
Roomtone: Saturday, September 8th (Record Release Party !!!) @ Maas Building, Philadelphia
The Fallen Troubadours: Saturday, September 8th @ The Tin Angel in Philadelphia.
Syrrah: September 12th @ Havana in New Hope, PA.
Dangerous Ponies: September 15th @ The Blockney in Philadelphia. Featuring River City Extension, Illinois, Brick and Mortar, Juston Stens, and Get the Real Gang
Toy Soldiers: September 27 @ Johnny Brenda’s for TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb’s Album Release party. also featuring Double King and The Looks Of It.
*(cowboy image from HarveyMackay.com. We don’t own it, it just seemed relevant.)
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The Fallen Troubadours: Tall Tales
Take one part of The Kinks, Muddle in a spoon full of The Beatles, layer with folk flair, dash in some blues bitters and that rockin’ concoction can be called The Fallen Troubadours. The self-proclaimed “Jangle Rock,” band has a surprising variety of emotional tonality in their songs and packs their album Tall Tales with a patch-work of musical influences. The diversity of the earnest emotion of The Fallen Troubadours” spans from feel good brit-pop-esque head-boppers to hurts so good blues, while staying loyal to the chiming guitars that classify the Jangle Rock. Take, for example, the jovial spirited sound of the songs “When We Were Young and The Good Fight.” These are the kinds of songs that you’d play when you’re messing around like a kid with your girl/boyfriend in a park. Yet, the songs “To the Ground” and “Raisin In The Sun” have a bluesy raw folk sound, that tugs at that relatable bruised heart pathos. With the odd harmonica wailing like wind blowing through cactus pines, this is the side of the Troubadours’ music that would be better suited to a swaying dance with a beautiful girl or a leisurely smoke and drink with friends while ruminating on loves lost.
We suggest that you give’em a listen and add them accordingly to your Labor Day BBQ playlist. Try them somewhere near an up-beat Beatles song or perhaps and R.E.M classic, just to add a little unconventional spice to your crowd pleasing play list.
It’s only fitting that one of the best local shows all summer is the one to help celebrate the end of summer. We’re big fans of all three bands playing tonight so instead of blabbering on about how great they are I’ll let their songs do the talking. A couple things to note here:
- Last time Work Drugs played in Philly, people were having sex in the middle of the dance floor
- Skrillex is guest listed tonight (let’s start the hype!)
- City Rain are celebrating the release of their Montage EP
There are a lot of tunes here so it should keep you occupied through the day. And once you’re done with the tunes be sure to make your way over to Johnny Brenda’s tonight!
We’ll be there. Tickets online (http://www.johnnybrendas.com/event/140458/) or at the door. <3 PHILLYINDIE