TSI spent the end of last week at WXPN’s NON COMMvention at World Cafe Live, Philly, and since it was such an intense 3 days with so much great music, we decided bring you a ‘best of’ Non Comm on top of the daily photo recaps. Below you’ll find my personal highlights and shinny moments along with additional photos and galleries. .
For those who don’t know, the name “Non Comm” derives from “non commercial’ which alines with WXPN’s format as a pubic station; and being the number one ‘adult album alternative’ radio format who supports new, upcoming artist like no other station in the country. The conference began last Wednesday with a industry press party, upstairs at World Cafe Live, presented by Columbia Records. This mix and mingle included a surprise visit from all girl pop band Haim. The girls didn’t perform since they were playing a show at the Tower Theater in Philly later that evening, but 2 of the 3 girls did take photos and talk with industry folk at the party.
Wednesday’s showcases began with Iceland’s Asgeir who kicked things off with an acoustic performance in the downstairs venue where he performed a couple songs from his new album including “Going Home” and “King and Cross”, as well as a haunting harmonized cover of Nirvana’s “Heart Shaped Box”.
To get the roof shackin’ in the upstairs venue, Matt Andersen knocked everyone’s socks off with one of my most favorite performances on Wednesday. Anyone who’s into The Allman Brothers, classic blues styles, Matt is for you. Matt’s vocals are effortlessly superb and he’s also an excellent guitar player & songwriter to boot. I think Matt was a pleasant surprise for those who didn’t already know him.
THE AFGHAN WHIGS
The very much anticipated performance by the newly reunited Afghan Whigs, who played to a very crowed downstairs audience, was a loud, rock filled set that killed. Very dimensional, and let’s just say if you’re a fan, it’s great they are back touring again with new material. Definelty one of the highlights for many.
I know it might seem biased since they are the current rock n roll darlings from Philly (who recently signed to Fat Possum Records) but the upstairs venue was packed for Philly’s own The Districts. Rob Grote and the gang just came off of a UK tour and then drove up from Georgia where they played Atlanta’s Shaky Knees Festival to perform at Non Comm. As always, The Districts delivered an amazing show and any industry folks who didn’t know them before hand certinaly do now. Attendees were super into the set and I kept hearing ‘how great’ The Districts were throughout the rest of the conference.
Closing out Wednesday night was No Sinner, and holy shit this girl can sing. I have to say, probably the most impressive voice I’ve heard in a long time. This 60’s/ 70’s rock infused 4 piece could hold a rock n roll candle to the likes of Janis, with a mix of Zepplin and Hendrix. Hopefully this band makes moves in 2014 by cathcing the attention of the right entities to move forward in their career, because they definitely deserve it from what I saw Wednesday night.