Our New Year’s resolution? Go see more shows!
Friday, January 3: Psychic Teens
This new year, get to know Philly rockers Psychic Teens, whose thundering percussion, fuzzed-out guitars, and dark, talky vocals might be exactly what you need to weather the similarly harsh winter weather. A trio formed four years back by “regular adults” Joe Decarolis, Dave Cherasaro, and Larry Ragone, who boast equal penchants for slim, ‘80s style suits, and horror punk classics (an early EP contained all Misfits covers), Psychic Teens’ unique blend of goth, punk, and new wave has made them a local fave, and the perfect aperitif for acts as diverse as The Dead Milkmen, Zola Jesus, and Titus Andronicus (all of whom they’ve opened for). They’ll kick off the 2014 concert season at Boot & Saddle this Friday, with enough force to slap you right out of your winter slump. Before you go: check out this sweet cover of New Order’s “Dreams Never End” and get ready to get heady.
9:00 at Boot & Saddle, 1131 S. Broad St., $8. Tickets available here.
Friday, January 3: Franz Nicolay
You might recognize Franz Nicolay as the mustachioed keyboard player banging out bar band classics with Boston rockers The Hold Steady; you might also recognize him as the spirited accordion guru from Brooklyn cabaret punks The World/Inferno Friendship Society. Over the past 15 years, the eccentric Brooklyn musician has lent his creativity and zest to a slew of popular projects, in addition to his own (gypsy-inspired) solo work. A graduate of NYU’s music program, and founder of New York’s Anti-Social Music collective, Nicolay takes a vaudevillian approach to live performance, incorporating story-telling, banjo, and occasional tap-dancing, into what can only be described as a completely unique, multi-faceted experience. He’ll stop by West Philly’s Eris Temple Arts this Friday, alongside former This Bike Is a Pipe Bomb singer David Dondero, and Toy Soldiers’ Ron Gallo, for a spirit house show that will jump-start your weekend.
7:00 at Eris Temple Arts, 602 S. 52nd St., tickets at the door.
Saturday, January 4: Speedy Ortiz + Bleeding Rainbow
Saturday night double-header! Northampton, MA band Speedy Ortiz burst onto the radar last year, with their P’fork-acclaimed breakthrough Major Arcana, which matched singer-songwriter Sadie Dupuis’s intimate bedroom pop with quirky, post-punk instrumentation, for a result that feels a little like if Fiona Apple had joined Pavement, or if Kim Deal added a whole bunch of lyrics to Breeders songs. They’re joined by fuzzed-out Fishtown shoegazers Bleeding Rainbow, whose blend of hazy guitars and sunny, psychedelic flourishes helped make 2013’s Yeah Right an early highlight—and who have promised some new material live on Saturday. Before you go: check out this vid of Speedy Ortiz playing live at Space 1026 (from our friends at Out of Town Films) and prepare to let loose.
8:00 at Golden Tea House, $5–$7, tickets at the door. More info available here.
Sunday, January 5: Colleen Green
Oakland, CA rocker Colleen Green makes short, deceptively simple pop songs about boyfriends and smoking weed, but does so with an honesty that’s refreshing. Equally inspired by ‘60s girl groups, ‘70s punkers (see: this Ramones tribute), and novelty summer pop, her debut full-length, Sock It to Me, was recorded with only guitar and drum machine, but comes alive thanks to catchy melodies and Green’s carefully orchestrated vocal loops. Live, the stoner pop princess performs solo, with just a drum machine and a pair of sunglasses—but still manages to rile crowds. We <3 Green because she’s not embarrassed by her pop-punk upbringing (check out her cover of Blink 182’s “M&Ms”), because she’s perfectly content without a back-up band (“the true nature of CG is a solo act,” she insists), and because—most importantly—she seems like she’d be really fun to party with. Find out for sure this Sunday when she stops by KFN. Hazy vibes expected.
8:00 at Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., $8–10. Tickets available here.