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December 2014
The Spirit of the Beehive
"The Spirit of the Beehive
"
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There is something rather dark and mysterious about a band that takes its name from a classic Spanish film that focuses on its protagonist, a young girl, who becomes fascinated by the 1931 horror movie, Frankenstein. And with an album cover that portrays a child in a bee costume positioned in front of a tombstone saying, “Here Lies Mom-n-Dad Now Their Gone Isn’t That Sad,” you can’t help but be intrigued, if not a bit disturbed. The Spirit of the Beehive is a local fledgling outfit who has popped up on my radar this past year, appearing on numerous bills, oftentimes at DIY spaces. The band has further grabbed my attention with its debut self-titled full-length album, which was recorded by The Weaks/ex-Dangerous Ponies, Evan Bernard and Chris Baglivo, and released via rising Philly indie label Ranch Records.  
 
The record’s opening track, “Roll Over,” begins with an eerie instrumentation before a languid female voice comes in with barely intelligible lines. “Cycles in and out of morphine hazes. Finding spaces between your floorboards. And I watch the dust move.” Thankfully the group provides us with lyrics on its Bandcamp page; otherwise, the beautifully poetic verses filled with drug-fueled imagery would be lost in the wash of power chords and feedback. “All lost in the black market. To wait in the fix aisle, I roll over.” You also get a sense of the band’s lo-fi, DIY aesthetic when you are abruptly taken out of the world, created by the album’s first, with studio chatter before moving on to the next track. With “Short Walk,” you can’t help but feel the influences of greats like Nirvana and more recently Creepoid with the hushed vocals and sonic bursts. These two tracks set the tone for the first half of the LP, where you travel in and out of the territories of dream pop and shoegaze when the female lead vocals grab a hold of you and then the grungier, harder-edged side takes over with the male lead. This juxtaposition provides quite an enjoyable balance that I actually wished went on longer throughout the record.
 
It’s not until “Ether,” where the two combine forces, changing the dynamic of their relationship. The title of the song suggests that you might be finding something more ethereal; however, the driving bass line provides a sense of urgency throughout the track. It also marks the point where the male lead begins to dominate the rest of the album, while taking on some of the characteristics of its counterpart. What remains a constant is a psychedelic, drug-filled angst full of guitar licks and distortion, giving off the vibe of a band that is here to rock, and they don’t care if you are ready for it or not.
 
The Spirit of the Beehive closes out their ambitious LP with the longest and cleanest sounding recording on the album, “Fever Dream,” demonstrating that they don’t need to hide behind studio effects, while making you wonder where their follow-up release will go next. It’s an eclectic and modern sounding record that also pulls from past genres I hold close to my chest. I highly recommend that you go download it ASAP. - Q.D. Tran

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Weekend Warrior, January 25 - 27

Weekend Warrior, January 25 - 27

Yeah, it’s effin’ cold out! That’s why this Saturday you can find a whole evening’s worth of entertainment all under one roof at Kung Fu Necktie. The night will kickoff with a solo set of panty-dropping vocals from Sun Airway’s Jon Barthmus. Then prepare to be engulfed in sonic waves when Nightlands, a.k.a. The War on Drugs’ Dave Hartley, hits the stage to share some new tunes from his latest album Oak Island. (You can check out our recent interview with Hartley HERE.) And you don’t have to leave after his performance because you can either stay downstairs for Sugar Town’s 12th Anniversary and benefit show for Ladyfest Philly with Radiator Hospital, Bike Crash and Batty, or head upstairs and pretend like you are at a house show with Catnaps, Roof Doctor, Tutlie and Incorporated Village of the Ghost. See - there is no need to go anywhere else. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., 7:30pm, $10, 21+ - H.M. Kauffman

 
Other places to hideout from the cold this weekend…
 
Johnny Brenda’s (1201 N. Frankford Ave.) FRI It's a King Thing, Windsor Park Walkers, Clamfight, SAT It’s the Year 2007 w/Reef The Lost Cauze
 
Kung Fu Necktie (1250 N. Front St.) FRI Leather, Heathen Reign, SAT (Downstairs - Early) Nightlands Record Release Show w/Jon Barthmus (Sun Airway), (Upstairs) Roof Doctor, Catnaps, Traffic Nightmare, Tutlie, (Downstairs - Late) Sugar Town Ladyfest Benefit w/Radiator Hospital, Bike Crash, Batty
 
Underground Arts (1200 Callowhill St.) SAT The A’s
 
North Star Bar (2639 Poplar St.) FRI Mater Mathu, Study Electricity, Problem Solving, SAT Hopscotch Injury, Makeshift Uprising, Easy Three & The Funky T, Ridden Fifths
 
The Fire (412 W. Girard Ave.) FRI Uptown Tone, Mazon, ANDtheNAMELESS, Feevaleo, SAT Electric Grioland, Socin Lberation Front, Leana Song, Prophecy Music Project, DJ Femstar, SUN Mean Streets, Horse Theives and Other Villians
 
MilkBoy Philly (1100 Chestnut St.) FRI Among Criminals, Kid Felix, Post Sun Times, SAT Steppin Razor
 
Ortlieb’s Lounge (847 N. 3rd St.) FRI Taggart, SUN Leana Song
 
Electric Factory (421 N. 7th St.) SAT The Menzingers
 
The Trocadero (1003 Arch St.) FRI Modern Colour, Jacob Kulick, Delco Pacers, SAT Stone, Alexander Lawrence and Sets, Outlander, In Nomine Patris, Aponic Blue, Dizzy Doctrine, Mirror Men
 
TLA (334 South St.) SAT Deep C, Speaker for the Dead
 
The Blockley (3801 Chestnut St.) FRI Tommy Conwell, Jeffrey Gaines
 
Fergie’s (1214 Sansom St.) FRI (Early) John Train, (Late) Sunshine Superman, SAT Keystone Mountain Boys, SUN Rusty Cadillac
 
World Café Live (3025 Walnut St.) FRI Tripod Trio, SAT KillerWhale
 
Tin Angel (20 S. 2nd St.) FRI Dom, Zach and Friends, SAT Aiden James
 
The Legendary Dobbs (304 South St.) FRI The Good Excuses, Stolen Rhodes, SAT Rowboat Casino
 
Triumph Brewery (117 Chestnut St.) FRI The Top Catz, SAT Natural Selection
 
JR's Bar (2327 S. Croskey St.) SAT Inkstains
 
Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St.) FRI Token Prospects, Midwestern Exposure, Anjuli Josephine, SAT Token Prospects, Midwestern Exposure, Anjuli Josephine
 
Rebel Rock Bar (100 Spring Garden St.) FRI Supreme and The New Experience, Grandlux (Kuf Knotz), Bong Hits for Jesus, Trayvon Dahmer, The Loose Lipz
 
The Barbary (951 N. Frankford St.) FRI Josh Wink’s Annual Birthday Bash, SUN Daylight
 
The Grape Room (105 Grape St.) FRI Left of Logic, The Formless Form, Barncat, SAT Montoj, Ghost of Jupiter
 
The Radom Tea Room (713 N. 4th St.) FRI Daniel Bachman, Paul Sukeena, SAT Daniel Ryan Belski
 
Beaumont Warehouse (5027 Beaumont St.) FRI Get Railed, Blindfold, The Adults, Casket
 
Sprinkle Kingdom (Please contact one of the acts or the venue for more details.) FRI Cold Fronts, Slutever
 
Michael Jordan (Please contact one of the acts or the venue for more details.) FRI Ted Nguyent
 
The Great Indoors (Please contact one of the acts or the venue for more details.) FRI Radiator Hospital, Adult Braces
 
The Crystal Palace (Please contact one of the acts or the venue for more details.) SAT Kite Party, Bleeding Fractals, Marietta
 
The Brown House (Please contact OMGDIY@gmail.com for more details.) FRI Coffin Dust
 
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