Spoon's first album in four years is called They Want My Soul. It won't be released until Aug. 5, but frontman Britt Daniel and drummer Jim Eno recently joined All Songs Considered hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton to play some of the record and share the stories behind it. You can hear the full interview using the link above, or read edited highlights below.
In 2007, The Black Keys' Dan Auerbach discovered an EP by an artist called Chittlin, who hailed from Kent, Ohio — an area near his hometown of Akron. The voice behind Chittlin was 15-year-old Jessica Lea Mayfield, a singer-songwriter who'd been performing in a bluegrass band with her family since she was 8. Her languid tone had a simple power and reflected a sentiment that seemed wise beyond her years.
Seattle singer-songwriter Noah Gundersen grew up in a strict Christian household with limited access to secular music. Nevertheless, he self-released his first record at 13 and played with his sister in the band The Courage.
Now 25, Gundersen came out with a new album, Ledges, earlier this year. He self-produced the record, which was recorded at Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard's studio. On this episode of World Cafe, he plays a few songs from Ledges.
New York's Greta Kline has been cranking out lo-fi releases over the last few years under a number of different aliases. This spring, she released her debut full-length, Zentropy, as Frankie Cosmos — her first recording with a band.
In certain corners of the record-collecting world, few rock songs are revered as much as The Chills' "Pink Frost." The tune turns 30 this year, and to celebrate, the band has re-recorded it and included it as the B-side to its first single since 1995.
The typography of the band's name — tUnE-yArDs — mirrors the ecstatic rhythms of its new album. For Nikki Nack, Merrill Garbus has traveled far, sonically and literally, to expand upon the conceit of her self-recorded debut and turn tUnE-yArDs into a communal tribe of singers, dancers and performers.