Saturday, June 17, 2017

Concert Review: Phoenix @ The Fillmore Philadelphia - Philadelphia, PA 06/02/17

Phoenix was a gift.  Literally.  It was 2006 when the package arrived in the mail.  The contents were simply a CD and a sticky note.  The sticky note read, "You deserve some great music."  The CD was the brand new album by Phoenix, It's Never Been Like That.  I didn't know Phoenix from The Dodos, so I popped it in the CD player.  From the opening notes of "Napoleon Says," I was hooked.  I was suddenly transported to the sexy pop that, I imagine, is played in clubs of the French Riviera.  I listened, while acting aloof, sipping drinks with Daft Punk.  They asked me where I got my awesome mask.  I didn't tell them.  That's how I roll.





Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Dark as Roses, Fine as Sand: The Legacy of Chris Cornell

My Thursday morning commute to work is usually a quiet one.  It's the one day a week that I am not driving my kids to school. Typically, my mornings are filled with teenage chatter and comedians on Apple Music.  This Thursday morning drive was being sound-tracked with today's current adult alternative music.  Basically, it is background noise I can tune out while I think.  I'm a thinker.  OK, I'm an over thinker.  I repeat the day before in my head and then plan the day ahead of me.  It's an indulgence that I don't always give into, otherwise it will control me.  I'm not one to give stock in the news.  Actually, I avoid it at all costs. Years of my dad watching the nightly news and reading the paper cured me of that.  While my friends were watching whatever they wanted to watch on their TV's, we watched the news.  On the rare occasion that I did read the paper, my father would feed me the sports scores before I had the opportunity to read the details.  No, on this day it was music.  On this day, Thursday, May 18th, I was mindlessly lost in melody following the highway on autopilot. And then the text came in.

"Did Chris Cornell die?"




Sunday, May 7, 2017

Concert Review: The New Pornographers @ Union Transfer - Philadelphia, PA 04/27/17

The biggest challenge for any band is to stay relevant to their existing fan base while continuing to grow. The New Pornographers passed this test with flying colors with their new album, Whiteout Conditions. They focused on their power pop roots and writing of Carl Newman to give us their most consistent record to date. How well does this new focus translate to their live show? Brilliantly!




Wednesday, May 3, 2017

As Good As It Gets: A Conversation with TJ from The Nearly Deads

I have interviewed Ally Dickaty, lead singer of The Virginmarys, Gustav Wood, lead singer of Young Guns, and Rich Meyer, bass and vocals of the Grammy nominated band Highly Suspect, for this blog. Notice a trend there?  All dudes.  All super talented, incredibly smart, wickedly funny, and hellaciously hot but all dudes.

As much as I enjoyed those interviews, it was absolutely wonderful to finally get to interview a kick ass lead singer of a band which has a new EP coming out on May 26th.  I had the pleasure of talking with TJ of The Nearly Deads and this is what transpired. 




Saturday, April 1, 2017

Album Review: Whiteout Conditions by The New Pornographers

The New Pornographers front man, A.C. Newman, once said in an interview with Big Takeover magazine that he would like to be able to write different kinds of music but he only knows how to write one kind.  When you have the market cornered of catchy power pop riffs and inter-playing, male and female harmonies I say, "If it ain't broke don't fix it".




Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Concert Review: Civilian @ The Foundry - Philadelphia, PA 03/06/17

Civilian, as a band, is a message.  A call for change, not revolution. Their message is not preachy by any means. They want you to be aware of the role you play in change for any issue you are passionate about.  Their lyrics ask you to think.  Any journey starts with a small step.  That step is not tweeting about it.  That step is not posting about your displeasure.  That step is our interaction with the problem.  Become active.  Lend a helping hand.  Give your time.  Give your compassion.  Think. That is when you realize the brilliance of Civilian.




Monday, February 13, 2017

14 Anti-Valentine's Day Songs For The Trenches

Little known fact about me:  I'm addicted to makeup.  It's my crack but at least it helps me look and feel prettier, doesn't rot my teeth, destroy relationships with everyone who loves me, and make me look 87 years old prematurely.  When you're Sephora VIB Rouge and the girls (and fabulous guys) who work there ask you where you've been when they haven't seen you in a few weeks, you start to realize you may have a problem.  Emphasis on the word "may."




Sunday, February 5, 2017

Concert Review: The Dollyrots - Live, Acoustic, and Awesome! @ Randy Now's Man Cave Bordentown, NJ 08/25/16

Imagine you got to see one of your favorite bands perform live in your living room. Only 25 other people on the guest list, and afterward the band hung out to mingle and eat cupcakes. Yeah, that’s right. It happened. Not in my living room, but at a record & consignment store. This past summer, The Dollyrots performed an intimate acoustic concert at Randy Now’s Man Cave in Bordentown, New Jersey, and it was AWESOME!







Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sitting at the Kitchen Table: A Conversation with Joe Robinson of Pacific Radio

New bands are like craft beers.  You drink them and you enjoy them, but you are always on the lookout for the next new one. Then the day comes when you discover "the one" and you are ready to buy it by the case.  I want to buy Pacific Radio by the keg.  Hot off their new EP Kitchen Table and their upcoming gig at BottleRock, front-man Joe Robinson had time to field a couple questions from me over the phone.





Wednesday, January 25, 2017

These Words: A Conversation with The Lemon Twigs

Only once or twice in our lifetime will we be introduced to new music that is innovative and unique. Not to say that it won't draw from influences, but it does not imitate them. It shapes them into a whole new beast.  It is clay in the hands of a sculptor. Artists have to be fearless. They need to be self-assured and exude a cool confidence. To know what it is they want and to have the guts to create the path to get there. That point in our lifetime has arrived, and the guides to take us on our journey are Brian and Michael D'Addario. These two teenage brothers from Long Island, NY have created an album well beyond their years with Do Hollywood. Their recorded work is is filled with intricate instrumentation, shifting melodies and beautiful harmonies, but when The Lemon Twigs hit the stage their music melds with their raw energy to create a power pop atmosphere with a sense of garage punk. We see trendsetting prodigies. They just want to play music. I had the opportunity to speak with them as they kicked off their tour at Underground Arts in Philadelphia. I couldn't have been more thrilled to have the chance.




Sunday, January 22, 2017

Steph's Top 10 Albums of 2016 - The Never Too Late Edition

I was supposed to put this countdown together for Fran a few weeks ago but then I kind of forgot I was going on a last minute trip to Orlando and didn't submit it.  Then school slammed me hard and I've written 15 pages of papers for my Survey of World History class in the last 7 days and have another 5 pages due tomorrow.  Think that doesn't sound too bad?  Go on.  Go type 15 pages of shit about shit no one cares about anymore and see how long it takes.  With references in APA style.  I'll wait.

Yeah.  I thought so.  Lesson learned?  Moving on.




Thursday, January 5, 2017

25 Years and Still Going Strong: An Interview with Joie Calio of dada

25 years ago dada burst onto the scene with their debut album Puzzle.  Songs like "Dizz Knee Land" and "Dim" peppered the airwaves and gave the trio of Joie Calio, Michael Gurley, and Phil Leavitt their first taste of rock stardom.  Although the band stopped releasing studio music in 1998 they are still together.  They have weathered the storm of label turmoil, musical changes, and time.  In 2017 they will embark on a 25th Anniversary "dada Forever Tour". Joie Calio was nice enough to sit down and answer a few of our questions.




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