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Songwriters

December 2016
Slaughter Beach, Dog
"Welcome
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mp3
Jake Ewald, well-known as one-fourth of Modern Baseball, steps into the spotlight on his first full-length album as Slaughter Beach, Dog. Suitably titled Welcome, Ewald’s ten-track confessional holds nothing back. Each melody and each emotion is unfettered and nostalgic without apology. Like the grownup and more articulate version of your favorite band from undergrad, Slaughter Beach, Dog’s dream-pop adjacent anthems will melt your heart with ease.
 
Opening with the self-aware ‘90s throwback “Mall-rat Semiannual,” Welcome’s strength lies in Ewald’s ability to build an entire universe within a matter of seconds. Like a lyrical rendering of an intricate diorama, the album’s first track unfolds with earnest inflection, sway-worthy riffs, and a romanticism reminiscent of Pavement’s “Gold Soundz” meshed with Modest Mouse’s “Dramamine”. The directness of “Toronto Mug” is perfectly mirrored by the its brevity, while “Monsters” feels like the song you wish you wrote about yourself, depicting with precise rhythm what it means to be haunted by the shortcomings of others as well as your own.
 
“Bed Fest” plays out like the soundtrack to a mumblecore flick at its climax - bittersweet and subtle - awash in acoustic chords and swelling snare, ending in trippy reverb as Ewald croons, “You can’t stay here.” “Forever” and “Jobs” are pragmatic snapshots of the millennial plight framed by poppy backbeats and relatable proclamations like “I think that we’re better off just believing in ourselves, but that’s just me.” A sweet but solemn love song, “Politics of Grooming,” effortlessly bleeds into “Drinks,” a wistful theme for lovers not quite over their past, but unafraid of diving headfirst into the future, hand in hand despite misgivings. Like a premature epilogue, “Toronto Mug II” is lo-fi in all the right ways, serving as a welcomed primer to the album’s instrumental exit, “Essex Street.”
 
Staying true to its namesake, Slaughter Beach, Dog’s latest slew of songs will remind you of where you came from and who you really are. - Dianca London
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New Music Video: "Chandelier Thief" - Petal

Petal, a.k.a. Kiley Lotz, captivates from every angle in her latest video for "Chandelier Thief". Found on the LP Shame (Run For Cover), the footage was directed and edited by Sarah Trad. Petal will be performing next in Philly on Sunday, December 11 at Union Transfer, opening for Pinegrove and Kevin Devine & The Goddamn Band. (Photo by Emily Dubin)

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Buzz Alert: Satellite Mode releases single “Warm Fire Lightning,” plays Mercury on 12/2

After years spent writing songs for other acts (the technical term is "ghost-writing"), about a year ago, New Yorkers Jess Carvo and Alex Marko decided it was time to "come out:" a tragedy in Jess’s family paved new paths in the band’s direction and sound, in a way that made their songs too personal to be signed off to others. That's how electro-pop duo Satellite Mode was born. Just a month ago they gathered all the singles released in the past year in the approproiately named 'Singles' EP.  Their brand new track “Warn Fire Lightning” (streaming) features undulating electronic textures set behind haunting, pop-tinged melodies. Check out the song below and come see Satellite Mode live at Mercury Lounge with Slow Sugar on December 2nd. Let’s hope there’s more to come in the near future! - Ashley Muniz

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New Joshua Bright Album Available for Streaming & Purchase

A supernatural, psychedelic hue radiates from the raspy, tortured folk of Joshua Bright. With his new album And All Along A Wolf, which was produced by fellow Man Like Machine compatriot Giuseppe DiCristino, as well as Keith Blackmore, Bright delivers a futuristic take on isolation. A hauntingly desolate, Americana feel is illuminated by the shimmer of spacey synth.

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A.M. Mills Grapples With Heartache at Ortlieb's Nov. 30

After originally learning about a full-length album being in the works with the help of Terry Yerves and Quentin Stoltzfus (Light Heat, ex-Mazarin) about a year ago, A.M. Mills, led by Drew Mills of Blood Feathers, has finally shared not an LP, as expected, but a six-song EP, simply titled First Recordings. Its introspective narrative finds Mills wandering over Dylan-esque musical terrain as he grapples with heartache and the ghost of a lost love. It's a cathartic release, and A.M. Mills will be sorting through this collection of songs/feelings and more this evening at Ortlieb's. They'll also be be joined by August Wells, the collaborative project from Ken Griffin (Rollerskate Skinny, Kid Silver, Favourite Sons) and John Rauchenberger, and local Philebrity singer-songwriter Joey Sweeney. Ortlieb's, 847 N. 3rd St., 8pm, $10, 21+ - H.M. Kauffman

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