Critics' Pick: Xfest at Stage AE | Critics' Picks | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Critics' Pick: Xfest at Stage AE 

J. Roddy Walston & The Business

Photo courtesy of Eric Ryan Anderson

J. Roddy Walston & The Business


Local alt-rock radio station 105.9 The X hosts its annual Xfest at Stage AE tonight, headlined by movie-trailer pop group Bastille, accompanied by FRENSHIP, Highly Suspect and K.Flay. All those bands seem like a fun time, but I’m here specifically to recommend the rambunctious rock of J. Roddy Walston & the Business, which is like a train car that’s in danger of careening off the rails but somehow stays steady. With vocals that frequently crack, visceral lyrics and maniacal piano-playing, the band sounds sometimes like a deranged Randy Newman, other times like Dr. Dog with sharpened teeth. Plus, the live shows feature some serious hair-whipping.

3 p.m. 400 North Shore Drive, North Side. $44. All ages. 412-229-5483 or


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