Every time you listen to Philly five-piece Humilitarian, a new piece of their heady musical DNA will jump out at you. Notes of In Rainbows and Make Yourself; Paramore-esque power screams and dips in the Smashing Pumpkins tone zone; some points trace all the way back to Pink Floyd. But reducing this band to the sum of their parts is a huge disservice; they’re a formidable voice on the Philly scene in their own right, and this week The Key Studio Sessions plays host to their captivating live energy.
Humilitarian caught our ear in early 2020, with the release of their self-titled EP and a West Philly basement gig at the storied Haus of Yarga for the impeccably-curated Reflective Surface concert series. As that spectrum of reference points suggest, there’s no easy box to wedge them in; particularly with their next release, 2021’s Head In A Jar EP, they proved to be a little bit mathy, a little bit jammy, a lot modern rock, and heavy on the psychedelic atmospheres. And they’ve got chemistry; just look at how the band’s dynamic frontperson Kira Cappello locks in with her bandmates — Brendan Clarke and Charlie D’Ardenne on guitar, Tucker Pendelton on bass and Elijah Glovas-Kurtz on drums — in this performance at WXPN studios.