Open City | photo courtesy of the artist
Meet Open City: Philly punk scene vets raging with abandon
Long running members of the Philadelphia hardcore punk scene got together this year to make new music under the Open City banner; the album, self-released today, is a fierce kick of energized outrage, deftly delivered by a crew with decades of experience under their belt.
Rachel Rubino of Bridge & Tunnel and Worriers fronts the band with gut-wrenching vocals and incisive lyrics; Andy Nelson and Dan Yemin from Paint it Black (and various others) play bass and guitar respectively, with Yemin on guitar for the first time since his Kid Dynamite days; pounding out the rhythms is Chris Wilson of Ted Leo & The Pharmacists and HOUND.
Yemin and Nelson drew instrumental inspiration from underground punk and hardcore from the early 90s and its ability to straddle melody and aggression — this was the era that they first got involved in the scene in Jersey and suburban Philly, respectively, and its shown in the various projects they’ve pursued over the years. The sound of Open City is one they’ve been workshopping for a few years.
Lyrically, Rubino speaks out on a range of topics and ideas and emotions over the course of the album — sexsim, abuse of power, and most urgently, the need to not remain silent. As we hear in the opening “Hell Hath No Fury” –“So here’s how we feel, here’s what we want, here’s what we need: to be heard!”
Listen to Open City’s self-titled debut below, and get a glimpse of their initial run of tour dates; they include Philadelphia gigs at Everybody Hits on February 16th to benefit Electrifest (more info at Facebook) and at the First Unitarian Church on April 29th for Get Better Fest 4, a benefit for Trans Assistance Project, Youth Emergency Services and Women Against Abuse (more info at R5 Productions’ website).