The holiday season is upon us, which means that millions of people are looking for the best gift for the music fans in their lives. For the vinyl-inclined, you can find a quick guide to Record Store Day’s Black Friday selections here. For less exclusive picks for fans, new music is always a great gift. These ten new indie albums make great Christmas gifts in 2018. There is something for everyone, including R&B, psychedelic rock, and French pop.
Christine and the Queens are an emerging act who are flirting with international superstardom. When I saw that the French group was coming to WXPN’s Free At Noon, I jumped at the chance to catch them at the University of Pennsylvania’s intimate World Café.
Record Store Day celebrated its Tenth Anniversary in April. The initiative, which offers exclusive releases to independent music shops, offers a Black Friday shopping spree to music nerds just in time for Christmas. The 2018 Record Store Day Black Friday list was recently released, offering another fun collection of albums.
Cover albums are often anti-climatic. Ten-ish artists are randomly thrown onto a record honoring a classic achievement or artist. Usually only one or two songs are worth the cost or time. One cover album that defies this norm is AHK-toong BAY-bi.
The 2018 remake of A Star Is Born is defined by incredible talent. The artistry goes beyond the big screen, however, as A Star Is Born’s soundtrack boasts one of the best original music compilations for a film in recent memory.
It is easy to take the little things for granted. Even ones we enjoy daily. Great songs or the right cup of coffee become ordinary when they are always around. Music is important to me. Elton John is one of those musicians. Tom Petty was another. When Petty died a year ago, I learned to treasure artistry. That lesson came full circle on Elton John’s Farewell Yellowbrick Road Tour.
I love traveling. I hate flying. It can be a terrible experience. Cramped quarters, the usual full day that it takes for my ears to pop, and lack of sleep will hamper any enjoyment of being on a plane. Before I set foot in an airport, I stock my phone with a special flying playlist to cope with airplane anxiety. A few songs always make their way onto the list.
Two-and-a-half hours of hits. An icon on his final tour. A crowd that almost drowned out the performer on every big chorus. Elton John's concert in Philadelphia last Wednesday night was an unforgettable evening. The pop star played an epic show as he closed a chapter on a city he has played to for decades.
Petal has recorded a cover of Tom Petty’s “You Got Lucky.” The band cut the single in a collaboration with Brooklyn artist Kevin Devine. In their version, Petal cut the signature synthesizer sound and decreased the tempo of the Long After Dark classic. The change altered the song's tone completely, creating a somber contrast to the original.