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Shelf Life
"Everyone Make Happy
Everyone Make Happy, the debut LP from Shelf Life, via Lefse Records, finds an absorbing lyrical yet comforting instrumental balance. Scott Leitch (ex-Pirouette/recent drummer for Alex G) cultivates songs that gently sway with internal warmth, while placing listeners in a deeply personal, somber state.
Space-warping synths smoothly land on the surface in “The Curse,” the initial introduction to Everyone Make Happy. Those glowing synths fade to the background as the airy, easily-assimilated acoustic guitar provides shimmers of daylight onto the song’s anguished lyrical tone - “bathe in sister’s blood/talk to the ghost of my dad’s mom/about nothing but heaven and the cancer in her gut.”
Pushed by its percussion, “Mark II” delivers what appears as subtle instrumentation, penetrating beyond the surface as a tight bedroom-pop sound. What starts drearily - “wake me up, when my lungs, start to pump normally” - lifts the shades to the point of optimism. “There’s always something in the sunlight,” riding a casual, almost accidental groove along the way. The album continuously stares directly into sadness, observing a very real place of grief. In “Creature” with its road-worn, country-folk twang , Leitch addresses the questioning nature of a sickness as a somber cloud hangs overhead. “I ask myself what my Father would do/he’d fold his hands lean to belief/but the creature inside him is not inside of me.”
“Low Key Lumber Theft” forebodingly spirals forward as the last dashes of daylight fall below the horizon. The guitar crisply cuts through dusk, venturing further out of sight as it gains momentum and then coolly concludes. With a daydreaming-psych vibe, “Time Traveler” moves into a nostalgic familiar space, which although consoling - “I am meeting the past/it is just how I thought/I have found what I lost” - still cuts - “You had gone away.” An anecdotal throwback, “Double Dare” soaks into your mind with its direct lyricism and catchy melodies, a la Alex G, while “Sinking Just Right” lulls you into a submissive calm of internal self-doubt - “does everybody hate me, just a little, little, little bit” - drifting until your “sinking just right.”
This album delicately balances the weight of emotional darkness with a glimpse of the light, from outside pushing in through the cracks. - Michael Colavita

Welcome to the new Deli Charts, organized by genre and scene.

To rank the artists with the star system go to the Top 50.


scene blog

We're excited that The Deli Philly's 7th Annual Anniversary Bash will be taking place on Saturday, October 10 at PhilaMOCA so mark your calendars or do whatever you need to do on your phones to remember! Of course, we'll be supplying plenty of dope music with performances by hallucinogenic psych rockers The Orange Drop, darkwave, prom-pop trio Blood Sound, the cerebral indie pop of Hello Shark, and Suburban Living will be spinning rad tunes for us to get down to all night. It's on, people; LET'S GET WEIRD!

September 21, 2015

Albert Ryan has an earnest desire to connect with his listeners as he drowsily leads them into the afterhours. Raised in a musical family, his melodies and beats feel like they come very naturally to him, as does the solemnness of his sound. We think that you’ll be hearing a lot more from Albert Ryan in the near future, but until then, you can learn more about his past HERE.

October 08, 2015

Aaron Livingston, a.k.a. Son Little, has his highly-anticipated self-titled album coming out on October 16 via ANTI-. His brand of nu-soul branches out from traditional R&B, acknowledging influences while simultaneously creating a new, modern, inventive sound, often with an electronic spin. The album, which is streaming below (via NPR’s First Listen), is the sound of things coming together for a seasoned, talented artist. Son Little will be headlining Johnny Brenda’s on Friday, November 13.

October 08, 2015

The roots of Philly soul run deep, and artists like Cookie Rabinowitz demonstrate that a rich tradition still thrives. Polished, charismatic vocals often riding a crisp funky groove that pounces on your hips, pulling you into the get-down vortex, seductively pressing the pedal to the floor, while maintaining a smooth ride. Tonight, that steady cruising bounce and bop ship rolls into Bourbon & Branch. Female trio Queen of Jeans, whose debut single “Dance (Get Off Your Ass),” combines serenading vocal melodies, tight-roping surf guitar, and casual yet deep-in-the-cut percussion get things started with the help of drummer Michael Cammarata (Sububan Living, Residuels, ex-Drink Up Buttercup, etc.). Bucks County's Illinois deliver their laid-back, stick-to-your-bones style of folk-infused rock as headliners. Bourbon & Branch, 705 N. 2nd St., 8pm, $10, 21+ (Photo by Craig Kupper) - Michael Colavita

October 08, 2015

Light Heat, the project from Mazarin's Quenton Stotzfus, recently dropped a surprise five-song EP entitled The Silver Light of the Late Night. It's been offered as a consolation prize for those who didn't get tickets to this Saturday's sold-out show with Lilys. You can stream the album in its entirety below.

October 08, 2015

At part of the 4th Annual David Lynch-themed Eraserhood Forever event at PhilaMOCA, Laurel "The Lady in the Radiator" Near, performed the much-covered “In Heaven” with the help of the maestros known as The Divine Hand Ensemble. The video, captured by Bob Sweeney, is a surreal blend of beauty and creepy darkness. It’s a truly memorable and timeless moment.

Eraserhood Forever: The Divine Hand Ensemble with Laurel "The Lady in the Radiator" Near "In Heaven" from Bob Sweeney

October 07, 2015


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