Friday, September 3, 2010

Summer Season Concert Series - Philly Style: September 3rd

First Unitarian Church: 
  Headliner: The Breeders
  Opening Act: Hot Guts
  Doors: 7pm / Show: 8pm 

  Back in the 1990's, The Breeder's were one of alternative rock's most promising bands. Conceived initially as a way for Pixies bassist Kim Deal and Throwing Muses guitarist Tanya Donelly to let out some suppressed creative energy and take a break from being the second bananas in each of their main bands. Deal and Donelly both played guitar, leaving bass for Josephine Wiggs of Perfect Disaster. Taking their name from the group Deal led with her twin sister, Kelley, in their teens, the Breeders combined the spareness of Throwing Muses with the shifting dynamics and warped pop sensibilities of the Pixies. Soon after recording an album and an EP, Donelly left the Breeders to form her own group, Belly. Kim Deal brought in her sister Kelley as her replacement. 1992 also saw the group play its first high-profile gigs, opening for Nirvana on their European tour. In the summer of 1993, with the sonic collage of "Cannonball," the Breeders had a crossover hit that catapulted the group into stardom; within a year, the band had a prime spot on 1994's Lollapalooza tour which confirmed them as a quirky, artistically willful group that was nevertheless in tune with the commercial pop tastes of the early '90s. Just as quickly as success hit the band, the Breeders went on a sudden hiatus, partly due to exhaustion from the rapid nature of their fame and from their extensive touring. Though the Breeders' break was supposed to be temporary, it ended up lasting far longer than the band or its fans could have expected.It wasn't till 2008 that The Breeders would release another album - "Mountain Battles" on the 4Ad label. 

North Star Bar:
  Headliner: Arrah & The Ferns
  Opening Act: Wissahickon Chicken Shack / Lady / Funkslaw
  Doors: 8pm / Show: 9pm 

  With their catchy sing-along chorus hooks paired with unpretentiously ironic and tongue-in-cheek lyrics, it results in a guilt-free pop listening experience equally suited to chilling out to. They were first conceived by way of an open mic that new-found friends Arrah Fisher and Carl Stovner signed up for in 2005. They didn't have any songs written but thought they'd play covers or something really cool. However, lightning struck fingertips and songs were born from anxious little hearts of 20-year-olds. They knew this rad drummer, Dave Segedy, who also happened to be in high school at the time, and they asked him to practice one day. They played one song together, and the rest was history. The three signed to a label (Standard Recording), released their debut album, "Evan is a Vegan," in 2006, and completed a successful first national tour. In 2007, the trio became a quartet with the addition of bassist, Joey Patrick. The four began writing new material and in December 2007, they started recording their sophomore album, "All the Bad In One Place." In the midst of recording and planning the release, unexpected events led the band to one massive fork in the road. And in the best interest of all parties, separate ways were taken. Arrah and the Ferns played their last show in May of 2008. Arrah and Carl moved to Philly shortly after the disbanding to continue making music. In May of 2010, Arrah and Carl announced that they were to finish and release the sophomore album they started over two and a half years before. Joining them in their new live band and as the new "ferns" are Jay Chuong, Buddy Szczesniak and Ryan Belski.

Johnny Brendas:
  Headliner: Lou Barlow
  Opening Act:Wye Oak
  Doors: 8pm / Show: 9:30pm 

  Indie long-timer Lou Barlow is best known as the bassist for fuzz-rock legends Dinosaur Jr. and the frontman for Sebadoh.  Lately, Barlow has been touring with the Missingmen (Tom Watson on guitar and Raul Morales on drums), who previously backed Mike Watt. Today, Merge released = Sentridoh III (as in "Lou Barlow + the missingmen = Sentridoh III), an EP that Barlow recorded with the Missingmen.
Barlow and the missingmen will spend their summer touring adding Philly to their stops. They play a string of shows with Baltimore slowcore duo Wye Oak.

World Cafe Live:
  Headliner: Marina and the Diamonds
  Opening Act: Young The Giant
  Doors: 7pm / Show: 8pm 
  Tickets:$21 - $28

  Marina is making the pop scene and sound cooler than it has ever been. No revelations there. Somewhat ironic perhaps though that the jewel in this new crown of credibility gut - laughs in the face of any notion of 'cool'. Marina (and The Diamonds) Diamandis is living, breathing, belting, vogue-ing proof of the unfathomable possibilities contained within organic pop in 2010. Her careless attitude towards her genre and the way she expresses it through her lyrics and songs are something to be an inspiration to some of the Pop Princesses out there. She's the complete songwriter/performer: 50% Greek, 50% Welsh and 100% frolicking fairytale creature. A girl with virtually no musical schooling, for whom heart scorching choruses miraculously seem to appear at the tips of her fingers with each preposterous limb fling. A voice that both lures sailors to shores and wards ships from rocks. She's definitely got next!!

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