"Do you know of any good liquor stores in town? Or, better yet, record stores?" Steve Gunn asks me after playing a mesmerizing set at the NPR Music offices. He's a record collector with insatiable taste and a vinyl-packed apartment. His ears perk up when I tell him that Future Times co-owner Andrew Field-Pickering (a.k.a.
On her latest album, The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You, singer Neko Case lays her heart — and her healthy sense of humor — bare. It's a deeply personal record that, among other things, offers intimate, sometimes wry meditations on the recent loss of both of her parents and a grandmother. NPR Music's Stephen Thompson and I spoke with Neko Case about the music, and shared questions from listeners, in this interview that we originally webcast live on Aug. 29.
Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 11:23 am
With his distinctive baritone voice and his art-rock spin on contemporary country music, Daughn Gibson didn't have a hard time grabbing our attention. Clad in a ripped-up Garth Brooks shirt he'd acquired the night before, this one-time truck driver took us along for the ride with songs like "You Don't Fade" from his new album, Me Moan.
I suppose it would be natural, if you grew up relatively isolated in a Wisconsin forest, to find yourself fascinated by cities. And so it is for the 24-year-old Russian-American singer Nika Roza Danilova, best known as Zola Jesus. In the video for her song "Fall Back," from the new album Versions, we see Nika in two settings: the vast coldness of urban concrete and the nature of the forest. "Shooting in the forest was very important," Nika writes. "The forest is raw and naked, which is in line for my intent for Versions.
Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 11:41 am
Join us at 12:30 p.m. ET this Thursday, August 29, for a live listening party with Neko Case. We'll play her new, epically titled album, The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You, in its entirety. Afterward, Case will join All Songs Considered co-host Robin Hilton and NPR Music writer and editor Stephen Thompson to discuss the record and take questions from listeners. You can post your questions in a chat room we'll open during the webcast. Or you can tweet your questions: #askneko
I grew up in a town of about 6,000 people in rural Kansas back in the '70s and '80s. I've never romanticized it much, though it was certainly a simpler time and, for better or worse, it's where I learned to make some sense of my life. The world you inhabit when you come of age in your teen years has a way of digging its claws in you. As the years pass, no matter how far you try to get away from it, it stays with you. The people, the places, the sounds and even the smells become a part of your DNA.