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The Retroaction - Explore their record collection with "These Things For You" video!

Indie retro-rockers from Hamilton, The Retroaction are back with a brand new music video. “These Things For You” is a tune about loving a stranger and imagining life with that stranger. It’s a groovy tune that combines rock n’ roll classics of the 60’s and 70’s with indie rock of the 2000’s. They could play on Ed Sullivan or Carson Daly…take your pick. This lyric video is a fun exploration of the band’s record collection. Very cool sounds from these guys. Make sure you see them live on December 21st at the Gladstone Hotel. – Kris Gies

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pronoun performs at Sleep Well Records’ Silent Night Fest 12.10

“Now I’m snowed in while you’re out there in California. Stuck here thinking about how you said I did nothing for you,” Alyse Vellturo sings on pronoun’s “Snowed In // There’s No One New Around You.” Though it may be a little early to expect snow, the sentiment in pronoun’s music is always relevant. The Brooklyn artist captures the emotional sincerity of earlier work by acts like Death Cab For Cutie and Tegan and Sara, mixing it with the propulsive, dance-inspired back beats that have characterized both group’s more recent output. On December 10th, pronoun will perform at Zone One at Elsewhere for Silent Night Fest, hosted by Vellturo’s own Sleep Well Records. While the odds of getting snowed in at that point are slim, pronoun can be counted on for an emotionally stirring performance. – Cameron Carr, photo by Sofie Vasquez

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Stream Marmoset's 'Transference' compilation LP, out today

 Local record label and boutique music agency Marmoset specializes in seeking out some of the most talented acts and songs ranging from the timeless and rare to the emerging and engaging. Their latest endeavor, the Transference compilation LP, focuses particularly on songs lesser unknown and possibly forgotten.

In making Transference, Marmoset's producers combined through the public domain for songs 100 years old and up. As they developed their extensive collection, they invited a series of artists join in on reimagining and rerecording some of these tracks. Marmoset's team worked closely with the participating artists in evolving each track from its original beauty to a newly fashioned merit.

Some of the artists featured on Transference include Ural Thomas and the Pain doing a soulfully rhythmic rendition of "Hot Time in the Old Town," originally recorded in 1896, The Helio Sequence's vision of the Bing Crosby-recorded standard "Down Among the Sheltering Palms" as "Out Among the Sheltering Pines," and an electronic interpretation of Eugene Lockhart and Ernest Seitz 1919 classic "The World is Waiting for the Sunrise" done by Distance and Frankie Simone.

What Marmoset has managed to create is an anthology of imaginative appreciation, showcasing a history of imaginative talent and musicianship. Dive into the 10 tracks on Transference below.

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The Deli Philly’s December Record of the Month: Messy - Curtis Cooper

Equal parts confessional and self-veneration, Curtis Cooper’s latest offering begins without a shred of hesitation or apology. Starting off with the full throttle swell of “Freak Out,” Messy unfolds with a satisfying in-your-face bravado. As Cooper croons, “I dare to say that I’m not scared,” screeching riffs, hissing cymbals, and deliberately executed diction amplify the satisfying defiance of survival on your own terms and the intoxicating thrill of reveling in what other’s might consider flaws. A dance-worthy homage to vulnerability, “Freak Out” reminds listeners that it’s okay not to be okay and that sometimes the best way to save yourself is by embracing your inner chaos.

Throughout Messy’s second track, “Philly Jelly,” Cooper channels their inner Billy Corgan circa Machina of God, reviving the best of the grunge era’s zeitgeist. Passion laced with angst and yearning, the song captures the contradiction of being defined by external factors like lovers or hometowns. Through dissonance and sincerity, “Philly Jelly” proves itself to be a perfectly tempered exploration of how proximity can inform desire and a sense of belonging. Prefaced by a whispered countdown, “Crazy” shines a spotlight on Cooper’s softer side. With melodic licks of guitar and proclamations like “I heard your words and I fell for your lines,” the track is as much as it is a love song as it’s an anthem about hero worship. Disillusioned, yet nostalgic, it captures a far too often omitted perspective on romance and remembrance.

“Percs of Life,” prefaced by a calm yet evocative interlude, examines the highs and lows of life with initially sparse instrumentation that gradually blooms into gut-wrenching chords. When Cooper sings, “Time to feel alive again/time to be confined again,” the song, like an ouroboros, turns in on itself, resembling the cyclical nature of mortality implied by its lyricism. “Yeah, No,” a psych-infused melody, feels like a vivid fever dream, enveloping its listener in a brief yet lush soundscape reminiscent of a Devendra Banhart b-side or Brian Jonestown Massacre at their tamest.

With the similarly subtle yet instantaneously catchy “Jkayla,” they pick up the tempo. As the track progresses, it carves out an unpredictable topography of its own. By the time Cooper confesses, “I could have been you/I should have been you,” Messy’s listeners will believe them as if it each word was gospel truth. “Everyone Loves You” is a dark and brooding ballad about the thin line between love and objectification and the ever present promise of escape. Ending with “everyone loves/everyone loves you/everyone stays,” the tune sets the proverbial stage for the equally grim “Everybody’s Dying.” Whether the death in this song is literal or metaphorical, Cooper’s macabre lyrics and heavy riffs continue to echo in the minds of listeners as it eases into the LP’s second interlude.

The album’s closer, “Is It Real,” is a hushed yet existential meditation on love and the meaning of life. Here, Cooper’s fondness for the late great Elliott Smith shows, leaving their audience with a sense of melancholic nostalgia mixed with undertones of hope. Similar to 2016’s Laughing in a Line, Messy is required listening for any Philly native who considers themselves a music lover. Cooper’s anthems aren’t just timely; they’re necessary. (Photo by Abigail Townsend) – Dianca London

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Aliens and cavemen meet in When We Met's new video

With love and an adoring energy, When We Met have been known to make tuneful indie pop songs over the course of their three years as a songwriting duo. While the wonderment of their tracks is already established, what has yet to become obvious is how the two go about rendering their songs visually. Luckily they've changed that, with a new animated video that's attention grabbing. 

The animation for "Ride the Tide" is somewhat stylistically reminiscent of early Adult Swim cartoons like Home Movies, vibrant in color and effectively minimal and funny in its execution. With surfing cavemen, jet setting aliens and beach performance beach scenes, the video keeps you watching all the way through.

On the "Ride the Tide," the band say: 

"Underneath the new wave surf vibe is a sexy love song. The back and forth movement of lust, the up’s and downs of life and abstract thoughts formed ‘Ride the Tide’. Because we are fans of his crude imagery, playful takes on serious subject matter and taboos, we were thrilled to work with the cartoonist Magnificent Kaaboom for this song. With just a little direction from us, we wanted him to have the freedom to create something magnificent… and he did." 

Watch the video for "Ride the Tide" below and catch When We Met's last set of the season on 12.23 at The Lombard Pub where Sorta Ultra will be playing their last show ever and the New Not Normals will be debuting a new drummer.

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