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Artist of the Month
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February 2016
Jo Kusy
"You Break Me
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Jo Kusy (Far-Out Fangtooth, The Whips) cultivates an eclectic, lo-fi daydream on his new full-length album, You Break Me. The record is currently available for purchase/download, and will be found on limited cassette on February 12 via Kusy’s own imprint Kooze Kontrol.
 
The album’s opener “Long Gone Angel” establishes the LP’s loose-moving atmosphere, as guitar trickles into a percussive/bass-oriented roll. The instrumentation briefly drops out, giving way to an a cappella moment and then a sax solo, before falling back into form. The bass-forward nature of “Only a Night,” coupled with its synth, thrusts one into a danceable framework. Background vocals soften the lead. In the insta-funky “All Go To Heaven,” Kusy proclaims, “Get down, hear the sound, boogie-woogie shake your claim…”
 
“Before You Opened Your Mouth” shifts into a light youthful disposition, reflected in its humorous lyrics - “Old people acting young, it’s ok cause its only fun/young people acting old, they sound stupid…” “Ghost Funk Lesson” drops into a sly island vibration - reminiscent of The Police, while “1st Place (But They Told Me 5th) develops a eerie tone with its heavy-footed thump and the mysterious whisper of the vocals. “All the creeps come out from the woodwork, as the sun begins to rise.”
 
With its sinister stir, “New Devil Beat” perpetuates a throbbing pulse, and “Cherry Pickin’ Baby” rides a thick bass-line to accentuate its heavier playful spin on rockabilly. Shedding some weight, “Silk Paradise” gently glides, paced by the clean snap of drums and unobtrusive guitar runs. Closing with its title-track “You Break Me,” the tail end of the LP rides a steady, floating wave; a heady trip punctuated by a stealthy stretch of guitar work, throwing some fire into the meditative calm.
 
You Break Me is a fun, unpretentious album that easily gets the head bobbing and toes tapping with its minimalist approach. It’s a sleeper that you definitely shouldn’t sleep on. - Michael Colavita

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Faux Slang Headline at JB’s July 6

Faux Slang Headline at JB’s July 6

Ever since putting out their self-titled EP, Faux Slang have proven themselves to be a standout band with their sound that blends post punk with 60s pop amid a cacophony of heavy synth, dynamic guitar work, and infectious drum beats. Tonight they’ll be taking the well-deserved spotlight when they headline Johnny Brenda’s. Faux Slang will also be joined by the local three-piece Royal Shoals. The band features former members of Roper, Public Record, and Dr. Dog precursor Beard. Royal Shoal’s debut EP was put together with the help of Uniform Recording’s Jeff Zeigler (Kurt Vile, The War on Drugs, etc.). Their opening performance is sure to set the tone for the rest of the evening. Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 9pm, $10, 21+ (Photo by John Vettese) - Bill McThrill

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