Composer Michael Andrews started writing music for movies back in 2001, when he scored the now-cult-classic film Donnie Darko (which included Andrews' haunting arrangement of the Tears For Fears song "Mad World"). His simple, brilliantly rendered songs perfectly reflected the movie's surreal narrative with moments that were both comical and creepy. Now he's back with a new score — and completely different sound — for the romantic comedy The Big Sick. We kick off this week's show with the sweetly melodic "Two Day Rule," a song that host Bob Boilen says sounds, appropriately enough, like a romantic relationship unfolding.
We follow with new music from a duo known as The Blow. Bob first became obsessed with their music when they released what became his favorite album of 2013. Now they're back with a followup called Brand New Abyss, a record of pulsing electronics and reflections on political and cultural upheaval.
Also on the show: The band Rhye is also back after a four-year break with the sensuous new song "Please;" existential rock from Protomartyr – along with a short conversation with singer and lyricist Joe Casey about the universal search for hope and truth in the darkness; Waxahatchee's latest album, Out In The Storm, finds singer Katie Crutchfield recovering from a toxic relationship; and NPR Music's Andrew Flanagan stops by to share the instrumental work of saxophonist Joseph Shabason, who has a new album that Andrew likens to "swimming with ankle weights."