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November 2014
Sheer Mag
"7"
"
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Relatively new outfit, South Philly’s Sheer Mag, fronted by The Shakes’ Christina Halladay, wastes no time with filler on their debut 7”. The four-track release is equal parts garage and punk bravado.
 
“What You Want” kick-starts the record with jangly percussion and pristinely fuzzed-out riffs. As the song’s melody unfolds, Halladay’s screamed-out, heartfelt vocals recount and flawlessly capture the dissonance of romantic antics and their aftermath. Guitar-drenched interludes and buzzing drums reminiscent of Colleen Green, circa Cujo, and early demos by Bleached render the piece memorable, while noisy shreds near the three-minute mark bring to mind the lo-fi glory of the Useless Eaters’ Daily Commute.
 
Sheer Mag’s “Sit and Cry” is bittersweet and abrasive. Opening with crisply executed riffage, the second track off the band’s EP audibly embodies the malaise of its namesake. Halladay’s vocals, coupled with trippy distortion, amplify the emotional nuance of the release as a whole. As “Sit and Cry” nears its end, chords morph into reverb as she croons “cry, cry.” Soon after, the satisfyingly moody “Point Breeze” begins. Starting off with a rhythmic drive evocative of Cousin Brian or Throwing Up, the undertone of “Point Breeze” captivates listeners nostalgic for Slutever’s Pretend to Be Nice. Crisp with caustic yet earnest diction by Halladay, the song is energetically catching from start to end.
 
The album’s closer, “Hard Lovin,” is gritty, like a mellowed-out Bobbyteens’ B-side. Shaking tambourine and whining guitar lines perfectly compliment her rowdy vocals as the song progresses. Thematically, “Hard Lovin” is a kindred spirit to acts like No Bunny or Hunx and His Punx. It’s a song for romantics with a penchant for rock ‘n’ roll. It’s an anthem.
 
Overall, Sheer Mag's debut release is brief. Despite this, the four-song EP is more than enough to wet the appetites of their soon-to-be adoring fans. - Dianca Potts

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Connie’s Ric Rac Official Grand Re-opening and Maxx’s 40th B-day!

Connie’s Ric Rac Official Grand Re-opening and Maxx’s 40th B-day!

Connie’s Ric Rac is back in biz, and they’ll be celebrating their official grand re-opening and good buddy Maxx Stoyanoff-Williams’ 40th birthday tonight so expect things to get rowdy in the heart of the Italian Market! Maxx and the funky fresh crew of Black Landlord will be headlining the event. The Tartaglio Brothers (Frank and Angelo), your hosts, will be taking the stage with their band The Discount Heroes (great name) and their groovy radio-friendly folk rock along with psychedelic garage rockers St. James & The Apostles. Spinning throughout the evening will be DJ Sean Smoove. BTW: Whispering in the door man’s ear the secret-but-not-so-secret password “tits” for guys and “swallows” for girls will get you $5 off the admission and hopefully not a stiffie on your leg. Free Fried Chicken!!! Door prizes (and it won’t be the stiffie)! Don’t forget that they have a liquor license now so NO BYOB! The comedy portion of the festivities will be tomorrow evening. Connie’s Ric Rac, 1132 S. 9th St., 8pm, $15, 21+ - H.M. Kauffman
 
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