With a career that spans rock, pop, country and everything in between, Linda Ronstadt knows no genre, only what her voice can accomplish. Her most famous recordings include "Heart Like a Wheel," "Desperado," "Faithless Love," and many more. But last month, Ronstadt revealed that she has Parkinson's disease and can no longer sing.
On this edition of All Songs Considered, hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton share a brand new song from Beck. The new cut, called "Gimme," is the third single he's released since June and by far the strangest (i.e., best) of the bunch. None of the songs will be on the new full-length record Beck hopes to release before the end of the year.
"Everyone's jumping on the hipster hippie train," one commenter said of KEXP's recent session with The Bats. The irony, of course, is that the New Zealand band has been on that train, if not leading it, for more than 30 years. It's no surprise that Brooklyn's Captured Tracks label is reissuing LPs from The Bats' label, Flying Nun, as many of today's acts have borrowed heavily from its jangly pop sound.
The punchy L.A. indie-pop band Wildcat! Wildcat! is made up of three members who've been friends since middle school. They've released a couple of singles — including the latest, "Mr. Quiche" — and recently compiled them on a new EP. Hear a couple of the band's songs on this installment of World Cafe: Next.
Mike Doughty spent the 1990s as the gravel-voiced frontman for Soul Coughing. Fusing elements of pop, jazz, hip-hop and house music, the band had a sound all its own — but Doughty says he was never satisfied with it.
Devon Welsh has an unmistakable presence as the singer for the Montreal duo Majical Cloudz, but producer Matthew Otto is just as vital to their live sound. When the two performed a set for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic, they played off one another seamlessly, and often without eye contact. This gives their unique synth-pop sound an intense quality evident in songs like "Childhood's End," which they perform here.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 12:28 pm
We welcome British band Treetop Flyers to the World Cafe. They are a folk-rock five-piece that initially turned heads on the main stage of the 2011 Glastonbury Festival. They won the spot through an "emerging artist" competition. From there, they were signed to Loose Music in the U.K. and to Partisan Records in the U.S. and put out their debut full-length record, The Mountain Moves, in June of this year. Their music is very much inspired by California in the '70s, so it was not much of a stretch to decamp to Malibu to record their debut.
Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 11:21 am
When we first approached Bill Callahan to do a Field Recording in New York City, we asked him if he had any special place in mind. His reply surprised me: "A community garden." I guess I'd stereotyped him in my head, because after all those years of dark, thoughtful songwriting — first as Smog and then on the pensive records he's made under his own name — I'd imagined a library, someplace quiet and dark.