Sheer Mag plays favorites with an all-local homecoming at The Church - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart

Sometime after 10 last Friday night, following excellent sets from two new Philly bands – raging hardcore from Gen Gap and accessible Guided-By-Voices-informed indie rock by Mopar Stars – the members of Sheer Mag worked their way through a thickening throng, underneath the scaffold-supported stereo speakers and up onto the stage of the First Unitarian Church, as the expansive sonic banner of Molly Hatchet’s “Good Rockin’” set the mood for the rest of the evening.

It’s a mood to which these veteran rockers are well-suited, having leaned increasingly more and me over their ten years together into a healthy collective devotion to the luxuriant layer-cake of late-seventies rock riffs. The band’s latest record Playing Favorites – their third full-length studio album, and their first on Jack White’s Third Man label – is loaded with lush guitar tones and catchy hooks, and feels like an intuitive next step for this crew. Like the record they always wanted to make

They showcased much of it for a warm hometown crowd, lead singer Tina Halladay peering through a pair of Janis-Joplin-inspired rounded rose-tinted lenses, leaning for most of the set over a giant floor fan. Through older favorites like “Nobody’s Baby” and newer ones like “Moonstruck,” she bopped and belted, growled and howled her vocals over dueling guitar solos, perpetrated by Matt Palmer and Kyle Seely.

Check out photos from Sheer Mag’s First Unitarian Church show below and be on the lookout for more from them in the not too distant future.

Sheer Mag | photo by Josh Pelta-Heller for WXPN

Sheer Mag | photo by Josh Pelta-Heller for WXPN

Gen Gap | photo by Josh Pelta-Heller for WXPN

Mopar Stars | photo by Josh Pelta-Heller for WXPN

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