Via Audio, Live @ Kung Fu Necktie

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Via Audio made a semi-rare performance, as of late, at Kung Fu Necktie on May 15th, 2012.  The Brooklyn-based band has been on somewhat of a hiatus recently but put forth an energetic and fun performance on this night.  This break is to be short lived as a new album is due out this year and will add to their existing catalog of two LP’s and one EP.  Comprised of Tom Deis on Vocals and Guitar, David Lizmi on Bass and Synthesizer, Jessica Martins on Vocals, Guitar and Synthesizer, and Adam Sturtevant on Drums, Via Audio constructs a lauded (see Pitchfork, Tiny Mixtapes, Spin, Alternative Press) amalgam of indie pop sounds.

We like these guys because the enjoyment they receive from playing is clearly evident in their stage presence.  Guitar work and synths drip with catchy cords.  Vocals compliment these nicely and bass and drum work round out the sound perfectly.

++ Via Audio on Spotify ++

Supporting Via Audio is easy – give a listen and maybe you will be hooked.  Pick up their merch and catch one of their shows.  Via Audio does not disappoint and they are as friendly as can be to boot.  Check out a few of our vids from the evening below:

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Mariachi El Bronx, Live @ Johnny Brenda’s

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Mariachi El Bronx is the Mariachi incarnation of the punk band The Bronx hailing from LA, CA.  After an acoustic set was requested in 2008, the band decided to take it a completely different direction and infused their sound with a very Latin influence – one of the Son Jaliscience typification.  2009 would see Mariachi El Bronx releasing its first of, now, two albums in this style all of which was written and arranged while on tour.

++ Mariachi El Bronx on Spotify ++ 

The current Mariachi El Bronx live setup includes full Mariachi charro regalia and true-to-genre instruments.  There is no faking it and their sound is authentic enough for us.   Mariachi is a genre of music that originated in the State of Jalisco, in Mexico. It is an integration of stringed instruments highly influenced by the cultural impacts of the historical development of Western Mexico.  The band utilized traditional instruments such as the violin, guitarrón, guitarra de golpe, vihuela, guitar, trumpet, and incorporated a tailored set of drums with their logo emblazoned.

The band stays true to its punk attitude though with Matt pandering to the crowd before and after each track as can be seen in some of our videos.  Pretty hilarious. Matt Caughthran, Joby J. Ford, Jorma Vik, Ken Mochikoshi-Horne, Brad Magers, Vince Hidalgo, and Ray Suen put on quite the show and deviate fantastically from your standard show fare.  Truly a sight to behold, get out and support them and check out our videos below:

White Fence, Live @ Johnny Brenda’s 0518

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White Fence is one of Tim Presley’s stunning projects hailing from the sunny left coast.  In addition to The Strange Boys, Hair,  and Darker My Love, Presley delivers a garage sound that culls upon tones from an era gone by, namely the late 60’s, while concurrently sounding grounded in 2010’s garage folk punk revival (now we are making genres up). This was the second time we have caught his act at Johnny Brenda’s and we dare say it was even better than the last.  His current effort Family Perfume volumes 1 & 2 is chocked full of sturdy tracks and is an amazing listen.  It would seem there is no stopping the waterfall of music being produced.

++ White Fence on Spotify ++

White Fence played a sick set of tracks that laid out the red carpet for two tracks he would play with Ty Segall in their Hair project.  Since it is impossible to really overshadow ones-self, we simply point out that which was better was irrelevant.  White Fence alone made the show worth every penny and more.  We had been following the project since its eponymously titled debut in 2010 and our liking has only grown with each release – now on number three.  As such, we are proud to present several videos from that May 18th performance performance at JB’s in Philly.  Do yourself a solid and go see him shred:

The Spinto Band, Live @ Kung Fu Necktie

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The Spinto Band is one of those amazing local bands we have caught on numerous occasions but had never filmed.  We finally got our act together and did so the second night of their May 2012 Kung Fu Necktie residency.  What a show it was.  What a band they are.  A shining star rising from the first state, The Spinto Band are definitely one of our favorite bands to come out of Delaware in awhile – and they have been doing so for well over a decade.

++ The Spinto Band on Spotify ++

The six piece consisting of Jon Eaton on Guitar, Nick Krill on Vocals & Guitar, Thomas Hughes on Vocals & Bass, Jeff Hobson on Drums, Sam Hughes on Keyboards & Vocals, and Joe Hobson Guitar & Vocals is not new to laying down catchy tracks.  Now with 14 plus years behind them, The Spinto Band can look back upon a catalog of 10 LPs and multiple EP’s.  The band has hit an energetic stride over the last 6 years and picks up steam with age.  Their new album Shy Pursuit was just released this year.

This residency will see The Spinto Band playing 4 shows at KFN this may and the videos below are from the second.  You still have 2 Tuesdays left to check them out and we strong suggest you do.  Beat the crowd though, they pack the place and a few notes in it is clear why.  Check out some videos because these are worth more than a thousand pictures.

 

Dirty Beaches, Live @ FUC

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Dirty Beaches is Alex Zhang Hungtai and Alex is Dirty Beaches.  The boutique label holy-grail maker engineers tracks of dirty croon-filled depths.  His stage presence has an amalgam of personifications peering through it; although, their intention is rightfully mysterious. We saw glimpses of Chuck Berry and Elvis through the dimly lit stage and sludgy tracks.  Based out of Canada, Dirty Beaches comes through Philadelphia several times a year and we are damn lucky for it.

A Dirty Beaches show touches on auditory sensibilities difficult to define but easy to appreciate.  Blazing new trails in sonic bliss, the band graced the FUC stage on May 3rd, 2012 and delivered a reverent performance  to his musical influences and the lucky crowd.  Grinding through numerous tracks and ferociously brandishing his guitar Alex, with his Dirty Beaches bandmate, provided us with yet another exhibit behind the crime of missing his live performance.  You can beat the case by catching his July 23rd performance at Johnny Brenda’s after his Spanish tour.  In the meantime, we have some dark and dirty videos:

The Wave Pictures, Live @ Kung Fu Necktie

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The Wave Pictures from Wymeswold, England have been making music since 1998 with their first label release coming in 2006.  Through this time, David Tattersall on vocals and guitar, Franic Rozycki on bass guitar, and Jonny Helm on drums (and solo vocals in one song recorded live that evening) have honed their performance and built up a large catalog of music.  April 25th 2012 brought Kung Fu Necktie this solid act fronted by Tattersall who has mastered the guitar solo – almost, if not every, track contained one of varied style.

The band has a Smiths-esque aesthetic to it but it does not come close to defining them.  Their recipe is more complicated than mimicking anything at all.  The previously mentioned diversity in guitar solos ensure that.  There is also a more upbeat feel to the tracks with muted cowbell included on a track or two.  Track lyrics sku abstract and we love it.  Still on tour in the US for a few more weeks, Philly was lucky to catch them on the second show of their Stateside tour.  If you have a chance, go support these guys.  If you need convincing, check out our vids below:

 

Widowspeak, Live @ Johnny Brenda’s 0412

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This was our second time catching Widowspeak and it was as delightful as the first. What was rendered the evening of April 15th 2012 was certainly a more honed and confident performance indicative of the extensive touring that had taken place in the interim.

There was also one additional member; Pamela Garavano-Coolbaugh.  This afforded a more dynamic sound and the volume of people on stage matched that of the performance’s auditory depth.  All of the original three, Molly Hamilton, Rob Thomas, and Mike Stasiak are still in the group and sounding better than ever.  Molly still has her enchanting voice, Rob is still killing it on guitty, Mike is still holding it down on drums.  Every bit as personable as the first time we caught them on their inaugural Philly performance,  Widowspeak replicated on and off stage impressiveness.  We hesitate at gushing, but shit, we just did it.  And this band truly deserves it.

Check out some videos from the evening below and dig the guitar solo in Nightcrawlers – boss.

Xiu Xiu, Live @ FUC

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The decade old project of Jamie Stewart, Xiu Xiu, played a fresh set at FUC in Philly on the third of May 2012.  This avant-garde experimental indie group has existed as a solar system of artists with one star.  The current orbiter (since 2009) is Angela Seo.  The history around Xiu Xiu is deep and saving a regurgitation of this, we simply point you to wikipedia for many paragraphs on the subject.

We can state unequivocally that the performance was moving and energetic.  Coasting in between soft and hard sounds, Xiu Xiu created an atmosphere that held gravity in a state of influx allowing those in attendance to ebb and flow with the metaphorical currents;  quiet interludes pulled at the feet while  soaring guitar solos and haunting vocals pulled the listener up off the ground.  Percussion sounds added to the visceral feel that was manifested and we were happy to be in attendance for yet another stunning performance at FUC for Xiu Xiu.  We have a few videos for you below and apologize in advance for the partially obscured shots:

Work Drugs, Live @ Kung Fu Necktie

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Playing their first set in hometown Philly since February 2012, Work Drugs blew off steam in the form of solid, upbeat chillwave sounds all wearing stone-cool shades and invigorating the crowd.  Highly danceable tracks showed the deep skill set of the band who earlier in March had a great showing at SXSW.  Work Drugs is fronted by two and supported by many.  Tom Crystal on vocal and guitar noises with Ben Louisiana on vocal, key, and synth noises design a self-described sedative-wave, smooth-fi sound proving once again, genres are simply a means for unnecessary classification.  Word Drugs is a golden local musical blend, universally listenable,  that everyone can get behind.  We simply love their sound.

Work Drugs Show Flier

Tracks played on this April 28th evening at Kung Fu Necktie in Philadelphia were off their 2011 efforts Summer Blood and Aurora Lies plus included at least one brand new 2012 single.  We captured video of one below:  License To Drive.  All songs seemed sowed together with precision – instrumentals and vocals complimented each other well live and some we found better than in studio.  Crowd engagement was well represented and we felt brought into the act.  Everything we had hoped it would be, we present to you a few videos from the set below and encourage you to give Work Drugs your attention:

SET LIST

  1. Ice Wharf
  2. Third Wave
  3. Flying Zambo
  4. Catalina Wine Mixer
  5. Swimmer Girl
  6. Sunset Junction
  7. License to Drive
  8. Blue Steel
  9. Physical Acts
  10. Daddy Bear
  11. Curious Serge
  12. Rad Racer

Dice Raw, Live @ Johnny Brenda’s

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Philly Hip-Hop legend Dice Raw (aka Karl Jenkins) with Roots crew affiliation and Money Making Jam Boys ilk rhymed like a gold-medaler for the Lushlife album release party at Johnny Brenda’s in Fishtown on April 17th.  Spitting verses from his DeNiro-eque career track credits, Dice came across as an authority to the craft in a performance most moving.

++ Dice Raw on Spofity ++

Taking the stage in a vintage-looking grey and black power suit and glasses, vodka in hand, Dice Raw was total class act.  Verses were prepared with quiet effort and care with beats supplied by DJ Sugar Shay (sp?); Dice’s new set DJ.  Diverse, powerful, moving, searching, and clever samples combined with Dice crowd engagement made this a must see set.  One of the greatest Rap performances we have ever seen.   Sufficed to say, there was no mumbling on the mic.  The crisp sound of JB’s lent itself well to Dice’s flow and Sugar Shay’s turntableism.  Check out our video below and witness a Philly star.  Also, Gotye is sampled in the second video.  I know you will like this: