Music

Heavy Rotation
11:03 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Heavy Rotation: 10 Songs Public Radio Can't Stop Playing

Parker Millsap.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu March 6, 2014 6:21 pm

Heavy Rotation is a monthly sampler of public radio hosts' favorite songs. Check out past editions here.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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World Cafe
2:06 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

The Strypes On World Cafe

The Strypes.
Jill Furmanovsky Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 3:51 pm

Our guests today are The Strypes from the small town of Cavan, Ireland, and they are still in their teens. They formed in 2008, in love with the R&B of Bo Diddley and Chuck Berry as translated by the British blues rock bands of the '60s, like The Animals and The Stones.

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Music Reviews
2:03 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

The Spotlight Shines Bright On A Consummate Sideman's Debut

Benmont Tench has a reputation in rock as the guy you want playing on your album. You Should Be So Lucky is his solo debut.
Sam Jones Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 10:08 am

If you ever form a band, you'll be very lucky to find a collaborator like Benmont Tench. You may know him as the consummate sideman, keyboardist and co-founder of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers. Or as a renowned session musician who has played with Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones and dozens of other artists.

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All Songs Considered
11:39 am
Tue February 25, 2014

New Mix: The Walkmen's Hamilton Leithauser, The Faint, Perfect Pussy

Clockwise from upper left: Hamilton Leithauser, Hundred Waters, Perfect Pussy
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 1:08 pm

On this week's All Songs Considered, we've got two premieres: A beauty called "Alexandra" by The Walkmen's Hamilton Leithauser, and a shred-fest called "Interference Fits" by raucous Syracuse punk band Perfect Pussy.

But host Bob Boilen kicks off the mix with the Omaha-based rock group The Faint. "Help in the Head," from Doom Abuse, the band's first new album in six years, is a heart-pounding thrill ride.

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Music
9:57 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Travis Book, Alice, feature CD, 2/28

KSUT will feature the fine new solo release 'Alice' from Travis Book, bass player with the Infamous Stringdusters, on Friday 2/28 at 12 noon. 

From his blog (http://onespeedblog.blogspot.com/), here's Travis's description of the project:

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World Cafe
9:47 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Damien Jurado On World Cafe

Damien Jurado.
Steve Gullick Courtesy of the artist

Seattle singer-songwriter Damien Jurado has made some changes in what he does, including making more music with a band. His last two albums — Maraquopa from 2012 and the new Brothers and Sisters of The Eternal Son — are his best work yet. Both were inspired by an elaborate dream Jurado explains today. Credit also goes to producer Richard Swift for turning this latest set of songs into a mesmerizing listen.

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Music Interviews
1:36 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Beck's Long Balancing Act

Beck's new album, his first since 2008, is called Morning Phase.
Peter Hapak Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 6:17 am

Beck was recording his latest album when he encountered an unexpected hazard in the studio.

"I got bit by a black widow in the middle of this recording session," he says laughing. "I was in the hospital, and my arm was all swollen up."

That was only one of the indignities Beck suffered on the way to Morning Phase.

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Music Reviews
12:15 pm
Mon February 24, 2014

Vertical Scratchers: Slashed Chords, Fractured Poetry

Vertical Scratchers.
Joseph Amario Courtesy of the artist

The members of Vertical Scratchers don't have to pretend: They are free spirits, making music that is at once tightly composed, whimsical and anarchic.

The vocals on a Vertical Scratchers song tend to be high-pitched and yearning. John Schmersal creates harmonies from his vocal tracks that have a keening romanticism. His guitar lines are a series of slashed chords — vertical scratching, and thus the band's name. At the same time, there's a compressed intensity to the tunes, which uncoil with a snap, again and again.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
12:03 pm
Mon February 24, 2014

Brass Bed: Tiny Desk Concert

Brass Bed performs a Tiny Desk Concert in January 2014.
Jim Tuttle/NPR NPR

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 1:12 pm

It wasn't an easy road to the Tiny Desk for the four guys from Louisiana who make up Brass Bed. Their tour, for the band's debut album The Secret Will Keep You, was plagued from the start: Singer Christiaan Mader had the flu, there was a death in the family and multiple dates had to be canceled. Their van was broken into and their instruments stolen. So when they heard that a big snowstorm was headed for D.C. at the same time they were to play the Tiny Desk, it felt like yet another bad omen.

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World Cafe
10:22 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Beck On World Cafe

Beck.
Peter Hapak Courtesy of the artist

Our Vintage Cafe this week is with Beck, whose new album, Morning Phase, will be released nationally on Feb. 25.

This interview from 2007 was conducted in the wake of the deluxe edition of his album The Information. The studio session contains some fine performances, including "I Think I'm In Love," and a wide-ranging discussion touching on the hip-hop and indie music scenes. Also, Beck looks back on dropping out of high school and traveling the world before ultimately settling in Southern California.

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