Tag Archives: Kurt Vile

Philly’s music scene is more than just Kurt Vile (even if he tries hard to make it seem that way)

Kurt Vile has his hands in a lot of Philadelphia pies

That Kurt Vile record? Oh my gawd. The best Philly record in roughly forever. If you’re previously familiar with Vile, you’ll recognize the same juke that Deerhunter pulled with Halcyon Digest: the sound got less aggressively “weird,” but underneath the shinier veneer is an intensified strangeness: a musical force that rips you apart while maintaining eye contact. If you’re just joining the Kurt Vile freak train (of course it’s not because of Pitchfork’s BNM. No, I know. You’re not a cog in Pitchfork’s culture machine. I believe you.): 1) yes, that’s his given name, and 2) welcome to the party.

And one hell of a big-tent party it is. Not only did Vile play in one of my other favorite Philly bands of this millennium (The War on Drugs), in the past year he also contributed to J Mascis’ excellent new album (see his work below on the amazing “Not Enough”), inspired the below homage track from Shai Halpern’s solo project Sweet Lights (also excellent), played with Thurston Mooore, opened for Pavement, signed to Matador, and to top it all off went back in time, hung out with caveman, and invented music.

Cozy Galaxies, Grubby Little Hands, and Bridge Underwater $10, 3/19 8:00 PM @ The M Room, 15 W Girard

But, despite appearances, Kurt Vile doesn’t have his hands in every awesome Philly indie rock band. Need proof? Tomorrow we’re throwing down with three of our absolute favorite Philly bands, and Kurt Vile plays in none of them (yet). Join us for our show with Cozy Galaxies, Grubby Little Hands, and Bridge Underwater at the M Room, tomorrow night (3/19) at 8 PM. The internet can’t be wrong: So far, City Paper‘s Critical Mass, The New Philadelphia, and The Swollen Fox have picked it for their featured show of the night (take that, Godspeed You! Black Emperor).

NoiseNarcs.com presents Cozy Galaxies, Grubby Little Hands, and Bridge Underwater
Sat, March 19th. 8PM. $10
The M Room, 15 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA
Event Page

Kurt Vile, “Baby’s Arms” [Buy]
J Mascis, “Not Enough (ft. Kurt Vile)” [Buy]
Sweet Lights, “Ballad of Kurt Vile #2” [Bandcamp]

Cozy Galaxies, “Clean Yourself Up” [Buy]

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Kurt Vile loves you, yes he does

Earlier this week, we posted on our most anticipated releases of 2011, saying of Kurt Vile’s upcoming Smoke Rings for my Halo “Which Philly album is more hotly desired, Kurt Vile’s or Man Man’s? With Kurt’s new single ‘In My Time’ demonstrating a more approachable sound, it has to be his. Until we hear music from Man Man’s at least.”

And now, Kurt’s released the second single from it. “Jesus Fever” demonstrates Vile’s amazing knack for letting his repetitive guitar line fall all over the place until it reaches a fragile perfection. Clock’s ticking, Man Man.

Kurt Vile, “Jesus Fever”

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Ticket Giveaway: Pavement @ Mann Center, Philly, Friday, 9/17

In the last 36 hours I’ve listened to all the Pavement on my iPod in chronological order, albums, EPs, B-sides. 122 songs, seems both like a lot and not enough. Conclusions? Fewer low points than I had expected: Pavement hits relentlessly off the sweet spot in the bat. (Speaking off sports, did you know that Stephen Malkmus is a huge fantasy sports guy? Who knew? Chuck Klausterman, that’s who; his Pavement piece in GQ is worth a read.)

I have an extra Pavement ticket for tomorrow’s show at the Mann in Philadelphia, with Noise Narc favorite Kurt Vile opening. Section A, Row Q: 21 rows from the stage (and yes, you can use it to go sit on the lawn with your friends). And I’m giving it away.

Join our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter and then tweet/post on our wall/write on a postcard: “Dad, they broke me.” Winner will be chosen tomorrow by noon, and we’ll figure some way to get you the ticket.

Three song picks, a forgotten B-side reworking favorite proving that Pavement could country barnstorm, a song about listening to your grandmother’s advice about Ezra, and a Kurt Vile tent revival.

Pavement, “Slowly Typed” [Buy]
Pavement, “Silence Kit” [Buy]
Kurt Vile, “I Know I Got Religion” [Buy]

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Philadelphia Road Music: The War on Drugs

Philly’s The War on Drugs are headed by Oakland transplant Adam Granduciel and also feature Philly own space forklifter, Kurt Vile. Of course, they also feature Philadelphia’s best space out and drive tunage. Back before some fine Philadelphians un-car-ed me, nothing pleased me more than blasting 2008’s stunning Wagonwheel Blues while I sped over the Girard Point Bridge as it framed Philly’s skyline (pictured, courtesy of PhillySkyline).

On October 26, they have a new 8 song EP coming out, Future Weather, on Secretly Canadian. But now that I’m carless will I still love the tunes as much? If they’re anything like lead track “Comin’ Through,” absolutely. Like most things in Philadelphia, the tunes are better when you walk.

The War on Drugs, “Comin’ Through”

Tracklisting and album art after the jump…

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Vile Dog: Philly Rock from East and West

A great dual headline show just popped up on the Philly radar: Kurt Vile and Dr. Dog, 3/2, Rotunda. Penn students only, but I’m hoping to duck in on the heels of the one I’m shacked up with.

Kurt Vile has been a mainstay of Philly’s freakfolk/noise scene for a Philly minute. Although I’m most in love with his work as guitarist in The War on Drugs (who, despite having one of the worst names outside of Dramatic Oil Company, had one of my favorite albums of 2008 in Wagonwheel Blues), his solo tracks are pretty fantastic. His sound is very much attached to the whole northeastern Port Fishington neighborhoods: lots of distortion and PBR, a new Philadelphia fitfully emerging from one of its historically troubled but proud spots. “Space Forklift” is from his 2008 (pre-Matador signing) Constant Hitmaker. He worked a forklift for Philly Brewing Company, so next time you’re drinking a Kenzinger, think how much better it’d be if it had been brewed in space.

Kurt Vile, “Space Forklift”

Dr. Dog are about to release their sixth album of Beatles-esque pop. And they couldn’t be more West Philly: rough city meets Penn, anarchy meets boho, and everybody hanging out on Victorian porches. “Shadow People” dropped via Stereogum last week, and even though I’m a little iffy on the track, Shame, Shame is still one of my most anticipated albums of 2010. Plus, their guitarist taught me how to open beer bottles with blunt instruments, so Matt and Cyd, we’d’ve been screwed at Miller Park without them. And to please those of you who don’t hate Australians, I’m also including their fantastic cover of Architecture in Helsinki’s “Heart It Races.”

Dr. Dog, “Shadow People”
Dr. Dog, “Heart It Races” (Architecture in Helsinki cover)

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