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Artist of the Month
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July 2016
Spring Onion
"Please Relax
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Catherine Dwyer, also known as the guitarist for the alt-rock outfit Sports, offers fans the perfect soundtrack for summer feelings with the release of her solo EP Please Relax. Recorded under the moniker Spring Onion, her new album is DIY at its best. Mostly written and recorded within the walls of her Philadelphia home, Please Relax is an intimate portrait of yearning, infused with dream-pop nostalgia, heartfelt riffs, and candid poetics.

 

“Egg (Driving Song),” the EP’s opener, unfolds with an Aimee Mann-meets-Girlpool earnestness. Telling the story of a commute clouded by desire, the song is a catchy confessional, with lines like “I'm sorry for what I said and didn't say” and “I'll write songs about my flaws/cause that's a way to self absolve.” The lo-fi grit of Dwyer’s anthem instantly tugs at the heartstrings, transforming even the most jaded listener into a hopeful romantic with each iteration of its fuzzed-out beats.

 

That sentiment is extended on "Chili". Twangy chords are quickly followed by Dwyer’s straightforward but evocative vocals, bringing to mind Built To Spill’s “Carry the Zero” and B-sides by indie darlings like The Babies. The track, although laidback, is unflinchingly sincere, the steady build of its instrumentation, urging its audience to actively listen and exist in the moment. The hissing snare and piano of “Poem 3 (Piano)” cast a similar spell, making each reprise of “but I don’t live alone” a testament to the millennial plight of finding solace in a shared space, while the EP’s title track and atmospheric closer serves as a suitably melodic mantra to calm the anxieties and emotional side effects of living.

 

Despite its brevity, the openness of Please Relax is astonishingly raw and brave. Listening to her songs will remind you that you’re not alone. - Dianca London

 

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Fear Tinnitus w/Heavy Medical, Xanax & Drums Like Machine Guns at KFN March 6

Fear Tinnitus w/Heavy Medical, Xanax & Drums Like Machine Guns at KFN March 6

Sludge purveyors Heavy Medical are planning another ambush with their battalion of all things noise and mayhem. Ready for the promised destruction that could only be brought on by a bass guitar swallowing two drum kits? Yeah, most people aren’t. Along with them will be my new favorites, the ever so explosive Xanax. This project boasts a lineup featuring members of +HIRS+, Saetia, Des Ark, and Amateur Party, but despite the orgy of sound suggested through previous text, this band wants one thing: to burn down the building with its chunky, punching bass, violent guitars, and piercing howls. Also in tandem will be the brothers of noise Drums Like Machine Guns. Check out this blast beat brigade upstairs at Kung Fu Necktie tonight. Please, don’t forget your earplugs. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., 9pm, $3, 21+ - Ed Newton

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