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Artist of the Month
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May 2015
The Weaks
"Bad Year
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mp3
On the heels of last year’s, debut EP The World Is A Terrible Place & I Hate Myself And Want To Die, The Weaks, led by a pair of former Dangerous Ponies Chris Baglivo and Evan Bernard, have released their full-length debut Bad Year via Lame-O Records.
 
The record wastes little time jumpstarting into the aptly titled “Kick It,” with its bass-thudding lines rolling into catchy, emotive power-pop mode, cleansed with a bit of synth before unleashing one of the album’s many blasts of guitar solos. “Nevermind” (an homage to Nirvana) reflectively takes the positive spin on a failed relationship, streamlining percolating instrumentation with stable yet aching vocals. The album’s title-track cracks through melancholy with a lyrical disposition harnessing polished twin guitar licks between trudging percussion-led transitions, destined for fiery flashes of solo prowess. With an aggressive, smashing instrumental storm, “Black Box” takes the ball and runs with its relatable crushing narrative, hooking you in as a silky synth slips in amid the treacherous landscape. 
 
“Dysania” is the cup of coffee that pushes the covers off. With its guitar-led jog, loosening into a bass-charging surge, it quickly reaches maximum speed. Tongue-in-cheek earnest yet humorous lyrical tones – “Too much blood for just two hands/and there’s so much shit we’re gonna need two vans” – set the mood whilst sprinkling in clean flares of guitar, maintaining that downhill thrust. The song contextually blends a pent up instrumental energy and memorable vocals to create a natural anthem feel. Turning a leaf, “I Don’t Wanna Be An Anarchist (Anymore)” melds percussion and synth, delivering a sincere yearning for change with that heart-throbbing, interwoven bass-drum combo, adding a real inside-looking-out perspective. 
 
Strumming acoustic guitar and a spacey synth serve as foils in “Welcome To Earth,” zooming in and then peering out in a battle of loneliness and self-exploration, once again enjoying a creative out there spin on a common searching topic. The closing track is another nod & wink to Nirvana and Hop Along frontwoman, “Francis Quinlan Will Have Her Revenge On Philadelphia,” embracing a snarky attitude with matching (rough around the edges) momentum-gathering guitar meets an avalanche of backend, delivering a mixed emotion-filled message “Who’s going to pull your weight if I leave you behind... Please stay with me. 
 
Bad Year embraces its Weezer power-pop influences, allowing listeners to join in on the emotionally personal ups and downs, while still coming away refreshed. It’s another great find for rising Philly indie label, Lame-O Records. - Michael Colavita

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P.S. 10k free copies of this issue hit the street of Austin during SXSW Music week!


Weekend Warrior, May 22 - 25

Come celebrate Motel Hell’s 5th Anniversary tonight and kick your Memorial Day Weekend into gear! APE! launches into gritty, blistering rock, loaded with searing guitar licks and trouble brooding backend that blasts through all adversaries. The Cloth conjures a gloomy, blood-dripping, sludgy, adrenaline-laced vibe, unforgivingly plowing forward demolishing any roadblocks with musical sledgehammers and never blinking with every swing. With their new LP You’ll Be Dirt scheduled for release on June 3, genre-exploring art-punk quartet Combine opens the festivities, shifting you into its unique, noisy domain. Texas/Conneticut-based Javier & Los Dish Dogs orchestrate bass-pumping rock that speeds along in a flash, while also capable of cruising in a loose funky manner. DIY is certainly alive and well in Philly! Motel Hell (Please contact one of the acts or Venue for more info.), 8pm, $5, All Ages - Michael Colavita
 
Other places to escape the chill this weekend…
 
Motel Hell (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SUN The Charley Few, Pushin' it 2 the Limit, Lip Service
 
Johnny Brenda’s (1201 N. Frankford Ave.) FRI +HIRS+, SAT Philly Loves The Soulquarians: DJ Mike Nyce, MON The Buddy System
 
The Boot & Saddle (1131 S. Broad St.) FRI Johnny Showcase & The Mystic Ticket, Muscle Tough, SAT Cheap Dinosaurs, Chipocrite
 
Kung Fu Necktie (1250 N. Front St.)  FRI Curly Castro, Carl Kavorkian/Assemble, The Fourth Line, Founders, SAT Dysphoria, SUN Mohican, Allora Mis/Shy Boyz, Wildflower, Audio Kings of the Third World
 
PhilaMOCA (531 N. 12th St.)FRI Philadelphia May Mayhem: Camp 4 Dreanged Kids, Corndog, Unit Theory, SAT On The Water(Album Release), Impressionist, Liz & The Lost Boys, SUN Phameless Records Fest: Corporate Hearts, Science Club, The Jantones
 
Underground Arts (1200 Callowhill St.) FRI Splintered Sunlight, SAT Stones Night : Brown Sugar, Dead Flowers
 
World Café Live (3025 Walnut St.) FRI (Upstairs) Jason Reed, (Downstairs) Cliff Hillis, SAT (Upstairs) Denison Witmer/(Downstairs) The Rent-A-Cops,, SUN (Upstairs) The Dukes of Destiny/(Downstairs) the HYPE!'s Show Me Your Soul Festival: Boy Wonder, Brothers & Sisters, Ben Tinsley, The Members Club, Chartel, E-Hos, Suzanne Sheer, Christopher Davis- Shannon, Santalina
 
The Fire (412 W. Girard Ave.) FRI Sundrop Music Fest: Atley Moon & The Say Something Sound Machine, Christopher Davis-Shannon, Mr. Unloved, SAT  Sundrop Music Fest: (2pm) I Yahn I Arkestra, The Binary Sea, Jacqueline Constance, Little Strike, Hunter’s Cannon, Sweet Briar Rose, Dirty Soap Blues Band, Slowey & Boats, Annachristie/Phameless Records Fest (5pm) Goddamnit, No Summer, Seeing Snakes, The Headies, The Mad Splatter, Mid Rats, Twin 55, Victory Boy, SUN Sundrop Music Fest (2pm) QQQ, Mumblr, Ganou, Bryant Vazquez & the Songs,  Elegant Animals, PHLGood, The Bull Bey, Fisthown Beats, A Day Without Love, Cicada Jade/( 7pm) Andrea Valle/(11pm) Fishtown Beats
 
MilkBoy Philly (1100 Chestnut St.)FRI Moonstriker, Something Like a Monument, The Stonewall Vessels, Howlish, SAT City Rain, QQQ
 
Bourbon and Branch (705 N. 2nd St.) FRI Alec Stewart, Man Illuminated, SAT Ron Gallo & Friends, SUN Sabriya, Jahwula, MON A Locomotive, Davey and the Chains
 
Ortlieb’s Lounge (847 N. 3rd St.) FRI The Sixties, Piranha, Collect Yourself, SAT YDI, GASH
 
North Star Bar (2639 Poplar St.) SAT The Iron Tree
 
Silk City (435 Spring Garden St.) SAT DJ Deejay, SUN (4pm) Brian Barker/(9pm) DJ Junior, DJ Lil’ Dave, Blaak The 9th Man, Fatnice
 
Tin Angel (20 S. 2nd St) FRI Matt Santry
 
Fergie’s (1214 Sansom St.) FRI Sparklepony, SUN Rusty Cadillac
 
The Legendary Dobbs (304 South St.) FRI Rivers, Mark Baker and The Barbreakers, Sara Spicer, Jim Mitchell & The Repeat Offenders, SAT The Stone Eye, Unit Theory, The Rowdies, Suburban Murder, The Way, Plague At A Funeral/Nadjah Nicole, Shari DuBois, T Kane, PHLGood, MON Edge of Divinity
 
Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St) FRI Cold Roses, Blakeslee, The Mellowells, SAT Bunny Savage & The Handymen, MON Moonlight Jazz with The Mystic Ticket
 
Morgan’s Pier (221 N. Columbus Boulevard) FRI DJ Beatstreet, SAT Mr. Sonny James, SUN (2pm) percussionist Josh Robinson /(9:30pm) DJ Royale
 
Frankie Bradley’s (1320 Chancellor St.)  FRI Franky’s Foxes
 
The Pharmacy (1300/02 S. 18th St.) MON Banned Books, Heavy Medical
Half Moon Lounge (4228 Lancaster Ave.) SAT Haldol, Latex, Teenage Chainsaw
 
Bamboo Bar (927 N. Delaware Ave.) Making Time RAD-B-Q
 
The Grape Room (105 Grape St) FRI The Funky T, Time Relapse, SAT Teresa Gero, JAHWULA
 
Ardmore Music Hall FRI The 9‘s, SAT Splintered Sunlight
 
LAVA Space (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SAT No Other, Girl Dog, Crime Hands, Westboro Baptist Choir
 
Skate Jawn Warehouse (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SAT Friendship, Abi Reimold, Roof Doctor
 
A House Named Virtue (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) SUN Bad Canoes, The Whips
 
The Petting Zoo (Please contact one of the acts or venue for more info.) FRI Dreambook, Jackie Paper
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+HIRS+ Opening for Melt-Banana at JB's May 22

Philly trans queer grindcore outfit +HIRS+ unleashes a fury of tenacity at an epic level. It’s hard, fast, uncompromising thrash that consumes one's senses with the all out barrage of punches thrown so quickly that the opponent doesn’t stand a chance with what analysts define as “heavy hands,” shaking the earth with quaking percussion and primal vocal cries. Tonight, they’re the opening act for a sold-out show that also includes San Diego trio Hot Nerds, who create delightful, dance-generating, hyperactive yet slightly strange, noisy art rock that magnetizes. The turbo-charged experimental noise-rock of Japan’s Melt-Banana serves as the exclamation to an intense evening of music. Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 9pm, $15 (Sold Out), 21+ - Michael Colavita

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Curly Castro & Carl Kavorkian Opening for Billy Woods & PremRock at KFN May 22

Not headed down the shore this weekend? Philly is hosting plenty of shows that will make you want to stay in the city over the long Memorial Day Weekend. Start the holiday off right on Friday with Curly Castro and Carl Kavorkian, who are opening for progressive/alt hip-hop artists Bill Woods and PremRock at Kung Fu Necktie. Emcee/producer/DJ Carl Kavorkian will be kicking things off, so make sure to get there early! Since 2002, Kavorkian has shared numerous releases, including the cult favorite, Uglyass Music series ("ugly" because the tracks are rough mixes that were recorded on old formatting). Brooklyn native turned Philly rapper Curly Castro has been on the scene for the last decade, working with a group of talented local artists, dubbed the Wrecking Crew, as well as some NYC big hitters, like PremRock. On his debut label release, FIDEL (ManBitesDog), he seamlessly drops references to icons like W.E.B. Du Bois and hits on racism and segregation on tracks like, “Colored Water Fountain.” He also just self-released his latest LP Restroy & Debuild. These artists will all be touching on the big issues, so keep your ears open for some words of wisdom. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., $10, 7pm, 21+ - Emily DiCicco


New Small Professor LP Available for Streaming & Purchase

What happened to all the beautiful weather? Today has us feeling some kind of way. So we're just going to sit here and stare out the window while taking in the smooth beats from Small Professor's latest LP Mixed Jawns III. You should join us.

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