Friday, November 30, 2007

Weekend Regional Concert Highlights

I know, it has been rather quiet around here lately. I have had a rather awful November on the personal side of things and that has kept me away for most of the month. Those of you who have spoken to me, know how ridiculous it has been. Between bizarre illnesses, strange accidents and other random events, I haven't been in a state to write much. Anyway, I promise that December will be better. We have a lot of things coming up, including the return of one of our most popular features of '06 and our various best of lists. In the meantime, I'll leave you with the weekend regional show highlights.

These United States - credit

Washington, DC
Ra Ra Riot/Jukebox The Ghost/These United States @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel

Baltimore, MD
M.I.A. @ Sonar

Philadelphia, PA
The Teeth/The High Strung/Via Audio @ North Star Bar
The Caribbean @ Tritone

M.I.A. @ Electric Factory
Celebration/Dragons of Zynth @ Johnny Brendas

The Clean @ Johnny Brendas

Ra Ra Riot - Can You Tell
Jukebox The Ghost - Good Day
These United States - Burn This Bridge
M.I.A. - Paper Planes
The Teeth - It's Not Funny
The High Strung - The Baddest Ship
Via Audio - We Can Be Good
The Caribbean - The Go From Tactical
Celebration - Heartbreak
Dragons of Zynth - Get Off
The Clean - Tally Ho

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This Week's Mix

Back to the mixes after a week off for the holiday break. Thought I'd make this week all about upbeat music to get everyone still in college ready for finals. Enjoy!

Girl Talk - Can't Stop
Battles - Race In
Scissors for Lefty - Ghetto Ways (Baron Von Luxxury Remix)
Middle Distance Runner - The Sun and Earth
Ghostland Observatory - All You Rock & Rollers
Bjork - Earth Intruders
Firefox AK - Zodiac
Faithless - Spiders, Crocodiles and Kryptonite
Animal Collective - For Reverend Green
Holy Fuck - Royal Gregory

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Dinosaur Jr./Dead Confederate

Dinosaur Jr. - credit

Dinosaur Jr. make their return to DC tonight. They will be playing a show at Black Cat. Awesome Color and the excellent Dead Confederate will be providing support.

Dinosaur Jr. - Just Like Heaven (The Cure Cover)
Awesome Color - Grown
Dead Confederate - The Rat

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Cold War Kids/Richard Swift/We Barbarians

Cold War Kids - credit

Cold War Kids are out on the road yet again and they are about to infiltrate IA land for the final time this year. For this trek, they are joined by Richard Swift and We Barbarians. You can check them out as follows:

11/27/07: 9:30 Club, DC
11/29/07: TLA, Philly

Cold War Kids - We Used To Vacation
Richard Swift - I Would Die 4 U (Prince Cover)

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

Philly Post-Turkey Day Blues Be Gone!

Get out of that food coma, people! Saturday night in Philly will wake you up. Come join me as I check out the latest installment of Geek Rock Gods, They Might Be Giants at The TLA. They have a new album out, The Else, which harkens back to the older albums. That is to say, do these songs really make sense? Did he really use that as a song lyric? I say, Who cares? The live shows are always a treat, you never know what antics John and John will pull out of their collective brains. Opening is Oppenheimer, a pure electronic pop duo from Northern Ireland with catchy melodies and danceable songs.

Something equally as strange at The Tower are Philly's own Ween, also supporting a new album, La Cucaracha. Check out what craziness Dean and Gene will do.

They Might Be Giants - The Mesopotamians
They Might Be Giants - Ana Ng (live)
Oppenheimer - Saturday Looks Bad To Me
Ween - Your Party

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Two Weeks of Releases

School consumed my life last week, so I was not able to get you your weekly release post. Fear not, because I have combined both weeks into one massive post.

Week of 11/6:
Last week was a week of EPs. It seems that a number of our favorite artists could not wait to give us some new music, so they put out EPs to hold us over while they finish their new albums.

The first EP for the week is from one of my favorite bands of the year, Tokyo Police Club. This was the official release date for the Smith EP, but it has been on iTunes since early summer. I actually didn't realize that it was never officially released, as I have been listening to it for months. Similar to their other releases, it is a short 3 song EP that is full of great music. I featured "Box" on a mix awhile ago and if you have had the chance to see them live, then you will be very familiar with all of these songs.


Sigur Rós released a dual EP box set called Hvarf/Heim. It has been described as beautiful, can't miss and a work of greatness. They have always been too mellow for me, but I cannot dispute the fact that these guys are some of the most talented artists out right now. There is a DVD out by the band on 11/20 that is supposed to be a beautiful visual take on their music.


Grizzly Bear's Friend EP is a ten song album (and a bonus track tacked on to the end of the last song) with a few covers of such indie favorites as Band of Horses and Atlas Sound. A few of the songs appeared on Grizzly Bear's first album Yellow House, but have been totally reworked and sound extremely different from their first recordings. The entire album weighs in around 30 minutes and could be considered a full LP, if all of the songs were original recordings. I consider it a strong enough release to stand on its own against Yellow House. This album is sure to delight its listeners and is sure to hold fans over until the next LP comes out next year.

He Hit Me

The next EP is from Wild Sweet Orange, who hail from Birmingham, Alabama. I have been following this band for a long time and eagerly await any release from them. The Whale EP has been hard to track down, but the preview songs sound great. There are rumors that their full length is due out early next year, so lets hope that holds true.

Wrestle With God

Great Northern has an iTunes only EP out now and it sounds pretty good. It happens to be the prequel to their full length. After seeing them at Black Cat, they had to be one of the best opening bands not from DC that I saw all summer. So I look forward to listening to any additional music that they put out.


The final release of the week that I want to tell you about is White Williams' Smoke. This is the first full length from this electronic band. I saw them open for Girl Talk a couple of months ago and they are really talented. They have a similar appeal to most of the indie electronic dance bands. If that is your thing, you won't be disappointed by this.

The Shadow

Other Releases This Week:


Untrue - "Shell of Light"

60 Watt Kid

60 Watt Kid - "Ocsicnarf Nas"

The Black Swans

Change! - "Change"


Becoming All Things: "Trumpets" & "Becoming All Things"


The Rise and Fall of Love and Hate - "The Rise and Fall of Love and Hate"


A New Hope - "Like I Do"

This Week:
Not much was released this week, but there are a few good releases from some notable artists.

Led Zeppelin

Mothership (Greatest Hits) - Full Album Stream

LCD Soundsystem

45:33 - Full Album Stream

Os Mutantes

Live - Full Album Stream

Christine Fellows

Nevertheless - "Nevertheless"


Matchless Years - "Seventy Jane"

Dirty on Purpose

Like Bees EP - "Mind Blindness" & "Girls & Sunshine" (from Sleep Late For A Better Tomorrow)

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Friday, November 16, 2007

This Week's Mix

If you haven't noticed, Joe has been M.I.A. this week with a pretty serious illness. The good news is that he is finally recovering and was just cleared by the doctor, so he should be back in circulation by next week. Anyway, I wanted to do more of a rock infused mix this week to help him get his energy back. Enjoy!

Pelican - City Of Echoes
Avec - Dysplasia
Junius - At the Age of Decay
Silversun Pickups - Lazy Eye
Unkle - Hold My Hand
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Down Boy
Hum - Counting Stars
!!! - Myth Takes
Soft - You Make Me Wanna Die
Minus The Bear - Dr. L'Ling

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Pela News

If you have followed my music tastes over the months I have been writing for this blog, you may have noticed that I have acquired a minor infatuation for the band Pela. They are currently in LA recording their next album and have been keeping a studio blog. They have posted videos, descriptions of new songs and the meanings behind the album. If you have ever wondered what all goes through the making of a record, head on over there and check it out. They will soon have a video up of an interview they did a few days ago and they usually update the blog a few times a week.

Song Writes Itself
Waiting On The Stairs


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

My Brightest Diamond

Now on tour and coming through the area is My Brightest Diamond, fronted by Shara Worden, who creates georgeous vocals over a mix of indie-rock and goth-pop, a la The Cocteau Twins. They are joined by fellow Brooklynite, Tim Fite.

11/15: Northstar Bar, Philly w/ East Hundred
11/16: IOTA, Arlington

My Brightest Diamond - Something of an End
Tim Fite - No Good Here
East Hundred - Meantime

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

indie at the abby: San Francisco Rolls In

Tonight is another round of indie at the abbey at The Abbey Bar in Harrisburg. This evening features San Francisco's noise-experimentalists Tartufi and alt-country faves Low Red Land.

Tartufi - Boat of Armor

Low Red Land

Dreams That Heroes Dream
West Texas

Upcoming Shows:

Canadian Invasion (Philadelphia, PA)
Monogold (Brooklyn, NY)

The Jaguar Club (Brooklyn, NY)
The Shackeltons (Chambersburg, PA)

This series is brought to you by IA, Jersey Mike Presents, WiAB Records and Appalachian Brewing Company. It is sponsored by our friends at 717 Tattoo.

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The Polyphonic Spree

Get your black shirt army uniforms! The Polyphonic Spree is coming through the area supporting The Fragile Army. They are joined by The Redwalls.

11/14: The Troc, Philly
11/17: Ram's Head Live!, Baltimore

Polyphonic Spree - The Fragile Army
The Redwalls - Universal Blues

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Monday, November 12, 2007

The Black descends upon the Northeast

Austin's The Black is touring and coming through the IA area this week. Formed of former members of Trail of Dead and Knife In The Water, they have shared the stage with other Austin staples like Voxtrot and Peter and the Wolf. I covered these guys way back in my Texas days and they are worth checking out.

11/12: Queen Sheba II, Philly (University City, 45th & Baltimore)
11/13: The Red and the Black, DC
11/14: Metro Gallery, Baltimore

Eshu Blues


This Week's Mix

No mix last week, because I got caught up with school. So, there are going to be two this week! Enjoy.

Tegan and Sara - Dark Come Soon
Bishop Allen - Click Click Click Click
Iron & Wine - Boy With A Coin
Dappled Cities - Holy Chord
Band of Horses - detlef schrempf
Beirut - Nantes
Stars of Track and Field - Movies of Antarctica
The Long Winters - Pushover
Modest Mouse - Missed The Boat
Neko Case - Hold On, Hold On

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Friday, November 09, 2007

Big Friday In Philly

Lots of good shows to kick off the weekend. So get out there and check them out!

The big ticket item Friday is violinist Final Fantasy, fresh off the Arcade Fire tour and supporting his new album. With him is Alberta native rapper-producer (a Canadian rapper?) Cadence Weapon. Don't let the north of the border thing fool you. He has quite the musical heritage. You can find them at the First Unitarian Church.

Final Fantasy - This Lamb Sells Condos
Cadence Weapon - Sharks
Bonus: Final Fantasy w/ Cadence Weapon - Paris 1919

Up at Johnny Brendas, the always entertaining Hoots and Hellmouth take the stage. Keeping the local flavor together, they are joined by Frog Holler, a folk-roots-country-rock fusion group from Virginville (yes, that is a real place), and all-star Philadelphia band Bitter Bitter Weeks.

Hoots and Hellmouth - It's Close, I'm Undone
Frog Holler - Berks County Boy
Bitter Bitter Weeks - Danger In The Halls

Over in Old City at The Khyber, Philly band Jotto is having their CD release party. Celebrating with them is locals RunRunner and Papertrigger.

RunRunner - Bad Timing
Papertrigger - We Are Nations Now!

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Upstairs at the World Cafe Thursday

Canadian Invasion

Thursday night, check out two of Philly's own at The World Cafe on Penn's Campus. Get some great grub and listen to some great music. The show features the beautiful vocals and soaring harmonies overtop layered guitars, keys, and percussion of The Trolleyvox and soon to be Indie at The Abbey artist Canadian Invasion.

The Trolleyvox - Jean Jacket

Canadian Invasion - Ephedrine

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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Jaguar Club Resides

Our friends The Jaguar Club start a residency at Piano's in NYC tonight. They have some great bands joining them, like Scissors For Lefty tonight and Bridges and Powerlines next week. You can check them out on 11/7, 11/14 and 11/28. When they are done with that, they are celebrating by heading south. If you won't be in New York this month, you can see them as follows:

12/5: The Abbey @ ABC, Harrisburg, PA
12/7: DC9, Washington, DC

Also, they are up for band of the month at The Deli Magazine. If you like what you hear, they'd appreciate it if you took a second and voted for them. I'll leave you with some videos and mp3s. "Perfect Timing" is a new song and might be their best yet.

Perfect Timing (Live)

The Sirens (Video)

World Gone By
The Sirens


Contest: The Dance Party & The Vita Ruins

Since The Decemberists cancelled their tour, 9:30 Club had some weekend slots to fill. On Saturday night, they decided to throw a big ass party. The Dance Party and The Vita Ruins will kick your weekend into gear with style. We wouldn't be IA, if we didn't hook you up with a contest. We are giving away several prize packs. There will be tickets, CDs, t-shirts, stickers and who knows what else. All you have to do is send us an e-mail with your first name, general location and why we should hook you up. Can't make the show, but still want to win some of the other stuff? That's cool too. Winners will be notified by the end of the day on Friday. Good luck!

The Dance Party - Lipstick
The Vita Ruins - My Last Days On Earth

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Thrushes: New Videos

Baltimore's Thrushes have a couple of new videos. I especially enjoy the one for the unreleased track "Trees." Enjoy!

Trees (demo) (mp3)

Heartbeats (mp3)


indie at the abbey: NYC's Indie Pop Invasion

Tonight is another round of indie at the abbey at The Abbey Bar in Harrisburg. It also happens to be my birthday show and one of my favorite bills to date. NYC indie pop is all the rage tonight, as the evening features Wakey!Wakey! and Brooklyn’s The Epochs. The show starts at 9, admission is just $2 and there are $2 off Belgians all evening long. You can even register to win a free tattoo.

A friend turned me on to The Epochs a little over a year ago. They are basically mellow indie mixed with synth and falsetto vocals. I once told somebody that they were the indie rock Bee Gees, but cooler. I think I'll stick to that. They just completed 6 shows at CMJ and will be touring most of December. Their CD drops in January and the buzz has begun to grow. As word of their killer live show starts to spread, it's only going to get bigger. See them now, so you can be one of the first.

For those of you elsewhere in IA's region of coverage, you can check them out next month with Middle Distance Runner and Mobius Band:

12/13: Lo-Fi Social Club, Baltimore
12/14: Rock and Roll Hotel, DC
12/15: North Star Bar, Philly

Mouths To Feed
Opposite Sides

Wakey!Wakey! is one of New York's best kept secrets. A mutual friend introduced me to Mike and his intelligent piano pop. Fortunately, I was able to convince him to make a trip south. I've been told that he puts on a great show, so come check him out on one of his rare escapes from the island. You won't be disappointed.

Falling Apart (Live)
Apology Song (Decemberists cover)

Upcoming Shows:

Tartufi (San Francisco, CA)
Low Red Land (San Francisco, CA)

Canadian Invasion (Philadelphia, PA)
Monogold (Brooklyn, NY)

The Jaguar Club (Brooklyn, NY)
The Shackeltons (Chambersburg, PA)

This series is brought to you by IA, Jersey Mike Presents, WiAB Records and Appalachian Brewing Company. It is sponsored by our friends at 717 Tattoo.

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Josh Ritter

With critics calling him the second-coming of Leonard Cohen, supporting a new album, Josh Ritter comes to The World Cafe in Philly for a sold out show Wednesday night, before heading for a tour of the British Isles.

Girl In The War


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Menomena/Illinois/His Mischief

Menomena - credit

Menomena and Philly's Illinois are out on tour. They will be hitting the region this week, with Minnesota's His Mischief.

11/06: Black Cat, DC
11/07: First Unitarian Church, Philly

Menomena - My My
Illinois - Alone Again
His Mischief - Rock Song (Hyperopia)

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Dr. Dog/Delta Spirit

Dr. Dog - credit

Philly's Dr. Dog is out on tour. They are joined by Delta Spirit and Emily Lacy. You can catch them this week as the tour winds down towards a homecoming show on Saturday.

11/06: Fletcher's, Baltimore
11/07: Rock & Roll Hotel, DC
11/10: TLA, Philly

Dr. Dog - Heart It Races (Architecture in Helsinki cover)
Delta Spirit - Gimme Some Motivation
Emily Lacy - Strong Like The Cactus

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The Black Angels in Philly

Austin's 70s psychedelic-fuzz band of choice The Black Angels are coming back through Philly Tuesday at Johnny Brendas. I highly recommend seeing them, always a great show. I always leave the show happy.

Bloodhounds On My Trail
The Sniper at the Gates of Heaven


John Butler Trio Returns

This week is a real treat for all fans of amazing guitar work and some of the best folk rock I have ever come across. John Butler Trio is returning to the region after a fantastic summer tour to support their newest album Grand National. I got to see them when they came around during the summer and it had to have been one of the best shows I have ever been to.

JBT is joined by Ian Ball of Gomez, whose CD came out last week and has received some great reviews. So be sure to get there early.

11/06/07: 9:30 Club, DC
11/08/07: Sonar, Baltimore
11/09/07: Electric Factory, Philly

John Butler Trio - Zebra (Live from the 9:30 Club)
Ian Ball - Failure

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Monday, November 05, 2007

The Cotton Jones Basket Ride

Michael Nau of Page France fame, has ventured out on his own and formed The Cotton Jones Basket Ride. You can check him out tonight at IOTA as a part of the Federal Reserve's monthly showcase.

Had Not A Body


Darker My Love/The Warlocks/Silver Rockets

Darker My Love - credit

California psychedelic bands Darker My Love and The Warlocks are out on tour and you can see them regionally this week. They will be joined by NYC's Silver Rockets, who feature Paul Dillon of Mercury Rev and Longwave fame.

11/05: Rock and Roll Hotel, DC
11/07: Johnny Brenda's, Philly

Darker My Love - Summer Is Here
The Warlocks - Baby Blue
Silver Rockets - Retreat (demo)

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Phosphorescent/Bodies of Water

Phosphorescent - credit

Brooklyn's Phosphorescent and California's Bodies of Water are touring together. Over the next few days, you can see them all over the region.

11/05: Black Cat, DC
11/06: Current Gallery, Baltimore
11/07: First Unitarian Church, Philly

Phosphorescent - Wolves
Bodies of Water - Everybody Hurts (R.E.M. cover)

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Friday, November 02, 2007

This Week's Mix

Seems like everyone is having a birthday this week. In honor of Joe's birthday on Monday, this week's mix will be a party mix. Get out to DC tonight and you may spot us dancing and celebrating. Enjoy!

Simian Mobile Disco - I Believe
The Helio Sequence - Everyone Knows Everyone
Hot Hot Heat - Let Me In
Tokyo Police Club - Your English Is Good
Datarock - I Used To Dance With My Daddy
Justice - D.A.N.C.E.
Fischerspooner - Never Win
The Faint - I Disappear
The Knife - We Share Our Mothers' Health (Ratatat Remix)
Holy Fuck - Lovely Allen

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The Thermals and Reporter on Tour

Coming through the IA area are two Portland-based bands, The Thermals, who have been Pitchfork darlings since their inception and Reporter. Check them out over this weekend.

11/2: First Unitarian Church, Philly w/ The War On Drugs
11/3: Black Cat, DC w/ History

The Thermals - A Pillar of Salt
Reporter - Green Death

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Big Names in Your Town

Big names are coming to your town this weekend. Check them out!

Two big name southern-flavored roots rock groups join forces for on heck of a line-up. Starting Friday, The Black Crowes and Son Volt play back-to-back nights at The Electric Factory.

Black Crowes - She Talks To Angels
Son Volt - Windfall

Elsewhere, indie-faves Rogue Wave, with a new album and a drummer with new kidney crash through the region with Port O'Brien.

11/3: Johnny Brendas, Philly
11/5: Black Cat, DC

Rogue Wave - Lake Michigan
Port O'Brien - I Woke Up Today

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