Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Pop concerts: Jam on the River, Reigning Sound, and Lower

Copenhagen´s Lower plays the Golden Tea House, Baring and North 40th, on Thursday.
Copenhagen's Lower plays the Golden Tea House, Baring and North 40th, on Thursday.

Jam on the River

In 1986, a Louisiana-focused festival called the Jambalaya Jam first took place on Penn's Landing. Ten years later, that fest merged with another called RiverBlues, and the Jam on the River was born. Over time, it evolved into a jam-band rather than roots-music fest, until petering out and disappearing from the concert calendar. Now, after a six-year hiatus, the JOTR is rebranded and reborn as - what else? - an electronic dance music party. It's now a one-day all-day affair on the Great Plaza, headlined by partly Philadelphia hip-hop-flavored EDM band Lotus, and featuring local DJ-folkie Chris "Griz" Grunwald, as well as Papadosio and Grimace Federation.

- Dan DeLuca

Jam on the River, with Lotus, Griz, Papadosio, Conspirator, and Grimace Federation, begins at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the River Stage at Penn's Landing, Columbus Blvd and Chestnut St. Tickets: $53.50. Information: 1-800-745-3000,

Reigning Sound

Greg Cartwright is an unsung hero of indie garage-rock. The Memphis guitarist and songwriter, who now lives in Asheville, N.C., has played with a host of cult bands, including the Oblivians and Detroit Cobras, and he wrote the songs on Dangerous Game, the 2007 album by Mary Weiss of the Shangri-Las. In July, Cartwright's quintet, Reigning Sound, will release Shattered, the mighty fine follow-up to 2009's Love and Curses. The former album was recorded at Daptone Records studios in Brooklyn and is Reigning Sounds' first album for Merge Records. Residuels open.

- Dan DeLuca

Reigning Sound, with Residuels, play at 8 p.m. Friday at Underground Arts, 1200 Callowhill St. Tickets: $14. Information:


Copenhagen's Lower can trace their lineage to the post-punk sound of Joy Division, Mission of Burma, and the Cure (not the pop Cure, but the dark, heavy one of 1982's Pornography). Their intense, noisy songs seethe with dissonance. Guitars crackle with electricity and edgy grandeur, and vocals are urgent and emphatic. But the quartet also conveys an artful sense of structure and dynamics. Their debut full-length, Seek Warmer Climes, comes out next month on the venerable American independent label Matador, also home to Lower's Copenhagen compatriots Iceage. It's powerful and ominous, whether marching heavily on "Expanding Horizons (Dar es Salaam)" or hurtling forcefully on "Lost Weight, Perfect Skin." This is music that is loud at any volume, and it's sure to be all the more forceful live, when the band comes to the Golden Tea House on Thursday.

- Steve Klinge

Lower, with the Bad Doctors, Haldol, and Blank Spell, play at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Golden Tea House, Baring and N. 40th Sts. Tickets: $8. Information:
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