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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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Mohican

New Mohican Album Available for Streaming & Purchase

When it comes to beautifully orchestrated/improvised post-rock, Philly power trio Mohican is a hidden gem proudly keeping the genre alive and well. Chris Markley (guitar), Aaron Agresta (bass), and Ray Beck (drum) powerfully yet gracefully intertwine their weapons of choice on the group's new self-titled album, which you can now stream and purchase below. It was recorded on two-inch tape by Matt Weber.

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Mohican Paint a Post-apocalyptic Aftermath at Ortlieb's Sept. 19

The cinematic score one pictures in a post-apocalyptic scenario instrumentally aches with the feelings of destruction and loss. As one traverses the new terrain, those sullen moments are transformed as a desire to take action emerges; the tempo increases, and urgency rules over despair. The instrumental trio of Mohican orchestrates sonic scenes that paint the aftermath in a poignant hard-hitting manner - a noisy precision that hits like an adrenaline shot and is quelled by somber moments of solace. With The Abuse Is Character EP now being released via Bob Records on limited cassette, the band occupies the middle slot this evening at Ortlieb’s. Ream, a new project that includes members of Abilities, opens offering a relaxed yet instrumentally rich journey. Post-hardcore four-piece Let It Out Matt headline, acknowledging a sense of despair while exhibiting an instrumental precision that provides a stabilizing fortitude. Ortlieb’s, 847 N. Third St., 7pm, $8, 21+ - Michael Colavita

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Follow Mohican at Boot & Saddle April 14

Instrumental soundscapes will be in full bloom this evening at Boot & Saddle. The trio of Mohican pushes their sonic tools; stretching over the long haul, that journey results in a crisp and at times heavy sound. The band works in and out of defined areas often changing tempo, slowing down, and allowing a pensive tone to ruminate or progressively build, gaining traction so that it can rain down upon reaching the summit. There is definitely an expansive vibe, but it’s delivered by precise hands. So, although it may be appear easy to get lost in the musical scenery, the group knows exactly where it’s going. The duo of Jeff Lucci & Josh Aptner, a.k.a. Air is Human, continues to explore the stratosphere with their latest EP EQ1, whose wandering ambient songs will be performed tonight - a captivating series of twists and turns that gravitationally draw one in allowing them to ever so briefly shed that earthly weight. Endor Endor allows your thoughts to marinate in the sonic ventures of Matt Weber (Young Statues/Bacio) and Tom Ryan (Young Statues/Atomic Square) to start things off. Boot & Saddle, 1131 S. Broad St., 8pm, $10, 21+ - Michael Colavita


New Mohican EP Available for Streaming & Purchase

Below is the latest EP from instrumental rock outfit Mohican entitled The Abuse Is Character, the follow-up to the band's debut Honest Red. Captured live on a snowy winter day and during a sweltering summer heat wave in a Philly warehouse space, the album was recorded and mixed by Brad Wallace. The Abuse Is Character was released via Parts Philly/Swamp Youth Collective, and is available for purchase. Enjoy!

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Weekend Warrior, January 17 - 19

The Boot & Saddle will be going out there this Saturday night as it welcomes three unique bands, who are known for the elaborate and transcendental soundscapes that their instrumentals create. Notorious for their “metal for astronauts,” Rosetta creates a programmatic soundtrack of pulse pounding drums, thrashing yet vibrant guitar riffs, ambient electronics, and sludge vocals that transport the listener on an otherworldly flight through time and space. From their epic debut The Galilean Satellites to their first totally independent release The Anaesthete, they have delivered riveting performances all across the globe, and their first Philly show of the year should be no exception. They are no strangers to sharing the stage with electronic virtuosos Grimace Federation, and heavy, apocalyptic instrumentalists Mohican will be in their element as they play in support of their newly released EP The Abuse Is Character. The Boot & Saddle, 1131 S. Broad St, 9PM, $10 21+ - Bill McThrill
 
More places to be this weekend…
 
Johnny Brenda’s (1201 N. Frankford Ave.) FRI Haggard, SAT Geology, Oldermost
 
Kung Fu Necktie (1250 N. Front St.) FRI (Early) Strength For A Reason, Rock Bottom, Heathen Reign, (Late) Rockers Galore, SAT Killer Bangs, SUN The Rivals, Younger Me
 
Underground Arts (1200 Callowhill St.) FRI Sunburster, Serpent Throne, SAT West Philadelphia Orchestra
 
The Trocadero (1003 Arch St.) SUN Our Waking Deception
 
The Fire (412 W. Girard Ave.) SAT Tungsten Album Release Party w/Power Theory, Mistress
 
MilkBoy Philly (1100 Chestnut St.) FRI Vertical Current, SAT Our Griffins
 
Ortlieb’s Lounge (847 N. 3rd St.) FRI Big Plastic Finger, Curandoros, NoiseMan
 
North Star Bar (2639 Poplar St.) FRI You Do You Release Show w/Tin Horses, The Great Vibration, Song Dogs, SAT Johnny Flynn, The Melodic
 
Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St.) SAT HOSER, Snoozer, Village, APE!, the Cloth
 
JR’s (2327 S. Croskey St.) Benefit for Project MEOW FRI Nightfall, Spent Flesh, Retreevers (Tape Release), Janelle (Tape Release), SGNLS, Population Zero, SAT Plague Dogs, Casket, (Record Release), Alement, Occult 45 (Record Release)
 
M Room (15 W. Girard Ave.) SAT True Will, Plantation, 20til8, Pravda, Starskream
 
Tin Angel (20 S. 2nd St.) SAT Bees In A Bottle
 
Fergie’s (1214 Sansom St.) SUN Rusty Cadillac
 
The Legendary Dobbs (304 South St.) FRI Ill Doots, Ashley Leone, Supreem and The New Experience, Platinum Mustache, SAT John The Conqueror
 
Voltage Lounge (421 N. 7th St.) FRI Lamplighters, SAT Reality Childs, SUN All Shepherds We Shall Be, Panic Sets In, Lower The Standard, Hansford, Winderemere
 
The Grape Room (105 Grape St.) FRI Sacred Cube, The Madeleine Haze, Fate 88, SAT Leo Minor, Funky T, Moonshine Heather, Hardwork Movement
 
Ardmore Music Hall (23 E. Lancaster Ave.) SAT Rolling Stones Tribute Night w/The Jesse Lundy Band: Mach 4, Brown Sugar, North Lawrence Midnight Singers and Friends
 
Little Berlin (2430 Coral St.) SAT Jesse Spearhawk, Mitch Esparza
 
Golden Tea House (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) FRI Crybaby, Endless Mike and the Beagle Club, Pocket, Marge, SUN Kids, Sore Saints
 
Great Indoors (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SUN The Ambulars, Heavy Bangs
 
Freedom 75 (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SUN Cut The Motor, Eyeshock Swelter
 

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