It's that time of year again! All Songs Considered is headed on another musical trek to Austin for this year's South By Southwest festival. Before hitting the road we listened to songs from more than a thousand bands scheduled to play the festival, in search of some great new discoveries. On this edition of the show hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton, NPR Music editor Stephen Thompson and NPR Music critic Ann Powers come together to share some of what they found, and talk about the bands they're most excited to see.
"This next one is very sad," Lavender Diamond singer Becky Stark warned. As the band opened the delicate ballad "Everybody's Heart's Breaking Now," listeners of The Afternoon Show on KEXP realized how true that was.
From Bill Haley & His Comets to Elvis Costello, English is the mother tongue of rock. But Germany has a huge rock star at home who has been famous for 30 years. His name is Herbert Gronemeyer, and he's the best-selling German recording artist of all time, known to some as the "German Bruce Springsteen."
Jake Shimabukuro has carried the sound of the ukulele from his home in Hawaii to the world's concert stages. He's shared the spotlight with both Bette Milder and Jimmy Buffett, and even played in front of the Queen of England.
There's a statement of intent in the sequence of an album's opening one-two punch. There's Harvey Milk's The Pleaser, a title reversal of set 'em up ("Down") and knock 'em down ("Get It Up & Get It On").
Our panel of public-radio music obsessives has five more favorites to share. KCRW music director Jason Bentley can't get enough of the new Frightened Rabbit album. Alisa Ali, a DJ for New York's The Alternate Side indie-rock channel, picked a great new track by the promising Glasgow act CHVRCHES. Baltimore's Friday-night hip-hop show Strictly Hip Hop highlighted the new jam by Joey Bada$$.