Staff Pick: The Feelies in Philly 4/29

One of New York City’s best underground post-punk bands The Feelies are the type of band whose style and influence you can hear in so many bands that came after them. Their debut album Crazy Rhythms was a commercial flop, however so many alternative rock bands who emerged after them cite it as a major influence, with R.E.M. being the most significant. The album is now critically acclaimed because of the impact it had on future genres that emerged through the influence of their sound. After a couple more albums and a long hiatus, The Feelies are back with their second new album since reuniting in 2008. In Between has all the punk vibes that made them classic, yet presents them within a newer, looser frame of reference. Singer/guitarist Glenn Mercer describes the album as “…all done very low key. We refer to it as ‘off the clock’ when you’re not paying an hourly rate, so in that sense it was a lot more relaxed. I don’t think anyone would notice a drastic change in the sound or the vibe of the record. I think it sounds a lot more relaxed and laid back.” The Feelies are coming to WCL Philly on April 29th and you don’t want to miss it! In the meantime check out this old-school cool video of them playing one of their most classic songs “Crazy Rhythms” at the legendary CBGB Club in New York City circa 1978.

-Nick DiGiacomo, Marketing Intern

Staff Pick: Bill Laurance in Philly 1/31

Bill Laurance is a modern day musical renaissance man. In addition to being the long time pianist of the internationally-acclaimed and Grammy-award winning jazz ensemble Snarky Puppy, Bill Laurance has released multiple acclaimed solo albums, works extensively with dance companies, owns his own music production company specializing in scoring for film, TV and commercials, and is a specialist lecturer at the Institute of Contemporary Music in London. His music, much like that of Snarky Puppy’s, seamlessly blends several genres into a transcendental journey that takes you to a new other-worldly state of mind with every song. A fantastic example of this is the live studio recording of his song “December in New York” off of his 2015 solo album Swift. His articulate piano playing perfectly captures the ebb and flow of the city that never sleeps as he gracefully and effortlessly maneuvers through intricate melodies and graceful harmonic textures behind a dynamic jazz ensemble. His playing is so precise and impeccable it’s hard to believe someone can play that well in a studio, let alone live! The journey his music takes you on just listening to it is extraordinary, so one can only imagine what it would be like to experience that live, which is why you should catch him downstairs at WCL Philly on January 31st!

-Nick DiGiacomo, Marketing Intern

Staff Pick: Langhorne Slim in Wilmington 10/23

Langhorne Slim and his band, The Law, have been storytelling to audiences since 1999.  A Pennsylvania native, the band’s leader and primary songwriter uses his acoustic guitar and country-tinged voice to take the audience on a journey through life’s rough moments and the happier ones.  The band first gained recognition after the release of their first full-length, self-titled LP in 2008.  Following the album’s popularity, the group made appearances on national late night shows such as David Letterman and Conan O’Brien, and also gaining a spot on notable music festivals including Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, and the Philadelphia Folk Festival.  Although, their most critically acclaimed record, The Way We Move, is the album most of their fans and critics call “damn near perfect” in the world of folk music.  Langhorne Slim’s raspy, southern honesty comes out especially in track five, “On The Attack,” off this record.  While tracks like “Salvation” and “Wild Soul” show the softer side of the artist.  All in all, Langhorne Slim gives his audience honest folk songs while adding a touch of country, creating his own brand of alternative folk music.  For fans of The Avett Brothers and Bob Dylan.  Catch Langhorne Slim & The Law on October 23rd at the World Cafe Live at The Queen in Wilmington!

-Evan Cook, Marketing Intern

Staff Pick: SALES in Philly 10/11

Catchy, minimalistic, heartfelt, and honest are all words to describe the two-piece pop band SALES.  From their hometown of Orlando, Florida, SALES is currently on tour promoting their self-released, self-titled first full length LP.  Vocalist Lauren Morgan’s subdued voice over a steady electronic drum machine, filled out by reverbed guitars give a sense of familiarity while still presenting the listener with a fresh sound.  Songs like “Ivy” and “Crash” will leave you wanting to relax in your bedroom for hours while submitting to guitarist Jordan Shih’s twinkly, melodic riffs.  As the album progresses, the duo begins to adventure more into trip-hop territory with songs like “Big Sis” and “Mondays”.  Although clearly influenced by a lot of contemporary indie artists, at certain points throughout the record (such as the short interlude “Be My Baby”) the duo gives a nod to more classic pop/rock artists of the past.  For fans of bands such as Beach House, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Youth Lagoon, this lo-fi two-piece will not disappoint.  Do not sleep on this up-and-coming group, for they will be sure to gain more popularity in the near future.  Make sure to grab your tickets for their performance at World Cafe Live downstairs in Philadelphia on October 11.

-Evan Cook, Marketing Intern

Staff Pick: Astronautalis

With a dirt-and-grit voice and lyrics focused around the honest difficulties of living, Astronautalis shows another side to his home Sunshine State. Many of his fans identify his genre as grunge hip hop but Astronautalis self titles his music as “historical fiction hip hop”. When you listen to songs such as “Forest Fire“, off of his new album Cut The Body Loose, you quickly realize how deep his lyrics can go. Astronautalis doesn’t shy away from talking about the struggles of life. It is hard to tell which stories are real and which are not but some people believe that is part of his charm and reason. These stories are dark and sad and though they may be imaginary they still mimic others true stories and daily compromises. From the story of his house burning down in a matter of minutes to a dialogue between him and another man about police brutality in “Running Away From God” – everything is a strong commentary on our time and world. After 5 albums and a career stretching 13 years, Astronautalis is unapologetic and relaxed on stage as he drags you into his world. He comes to World Cafe Live Wilmington on September 30th – grab your tickets!

-Kara DeLucia, Marketing Intern