All Songs Considered

All Songs Considered
10:32 am
Tue April 8, 2014

New Mix: Mirah, Fennesz, Brody Dalle, Chet Faker, More

Clockwise from upper left: Mirah, Brody Dalle, Fennesz, Chet Faker
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue April 8, 2014 11:20 am

This week, hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton come bearing a bunch of song premieres, including a cut from singer-songwriter Mirah's first solo album in five years, Australian electronic artist Chet Faker and power punk rock singer Brody Dalle.

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All Songs Considered
6:03 am
Tue April 8, 2014

Viking's Choice: Swear To The Oath, Faithful Servant

The Oath.
Joe Dilworth Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue April 8, 2014 7:01 am

When you name your band after a Mercyful Fate song, you'd better damn well live up to it, especially when that song swears "henceforth to be a faithful servant of his most puissant arch-angel, The Prince Lucifer." Thankfully, The Oath sounds something like the two bad-ass women in Heart raised on a healthy dose of King Diamond. So embrace the darkness and listen to "Silk Road."

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All Songs Considered
11:44 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Question Of The Week: The Last Song You'll Ever Hear?

Originally published on Fri April 11, 2014 11:37 am

This week, we asked you to think about the end of your life. If you could pick it, what would you like the last song you ever hear to be? For me, it was easy. Pink Floyd's "Great Gig in the Sky," from Dark Side of the Moon would send me off into the unknown with its perfect mix of sorrow, anguish, majestic awe and celestial wonder.

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All Songs Considered
8:20 am
Sun April 6, 2014

Revisionist History: 5 Crucial Frankie Knuckles Remixes

YouTube

Originally published on Sun April 6, 2014 9:24 am

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All Songs Considered
5:03 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Drum Fill Friday: Revenge Of Drum Fill

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 10:52 am

This week's batch of drum fills comes from a mix of classic rock and pop, and more recent cuts. As always, I was drawn to them simply because I love the songs themselves and was captivated at some point by the percussion. Pro tip: If you don't recognize a fill, try matching the timbre of it — the power behind it, the sound of the recording, etc. — to one of the album covers pictured (or to the period the album was recorded in).

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All Songs Considered
1:19 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

The Good Listener: What Makes An Anthem?

The Boss: Maker of anthems for the young, for the old, forever.
Courtesy of the artist

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All Songs Considered
12:14 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

Viking's Choice: Behold, Noneuclid's Confounding Thrash Alchemy

Noneuclid.
Courtesy of the artist

When you can count the director of the Wagner Festival and Tom G. Warrior (the mastermind behind metal behemoths Celtic Frost and Triptykon) among your supporters, you must be doing something right. After all, classical music and metal aren't all that different — both can be bombastic, complex pieces of music high on drama, to put it lightly.

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All Songs Considered
5:03 am
Thu April 3, 2014

The Sole Of A Band, April 3

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 10:36 am

Baggy pants make different music than skinny jeans. Cowboy hats sound different than fedoras. T-shirt-and-jeans bands make a different noise than suit-and-tie bands. You can often look at a band's clothing and have a pretty good idea what it'll sound like.

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All Songs Considered
11:41 am
Wed April 2, 2014

Recommended Dose: The Best Dance Tracks Of March

Greek producer Giganta released an excellent EP, Force, on Actress' Werkdiscs label in March.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 12:18 pm

In the world of dance music, March will be remembered first and foremost for the passing of house progenitor Frankie Knuckles on the final day of the month. If you haven't read our remembrance by Barry Walters, please stop what you're doing and check it out. It's hard to put into words what Knuckles meant to dance music, which makes Walters' piece all the more impressive.

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All Songs Considered
10:54 am
Tue April 1, 2014

New Mix: Jack White, Ray LaMontagne, Lyla Foy, More!

Clockwise from upper left: Jack White, Teebs, Lyla Foy, Ray LaMontagne
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 12:05 pm

This week on All Songs Considered, hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton offer up a brand new song by Jack White. The screaming instrumental track "High Ball Stepper" is the first taste of White's second solo album, Lazaretto, which will be out on June 10.

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All Songs Considered
1:12 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Question Of The Week: Which Recent Album Will Hold Up The Best?

James Blake has a sound that draws on the past, but also points to the future. His most recent album is called Overgrown.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:04 pm

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All Songs Considered
9:49 pm
Sun March 30, 2014

Which Member Of Wilco Is A Wildcat & More: A Final Four Music Quiz

Kentucky's James Young pulls up for a shot against the Michigan Wolverines on Sunday.
Andy Lyons Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 10:36 am

The Final Four is set. The No. 1 overall seed Florida Gators take on the upstart Connecticut Huskies this Saturday, followed by a matchup between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Kentucky Wildcats.

These programs obviously have great basketball pedigree, but did you know that each of these schools have ties to some of our favorite musicians? Take this quiz to find out how the college scenes in Gainesville, Storrs, Madison and Lexington have shaped your iTunes collection.

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All Songs Considered
9:23 am
Sat March 29, 2014

Bob Boilen's Weekly Rainbows

Colin Stetson at Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage.
Bob Boilen NPR

Originally published on Sat March 29, 2014 12:10 pm

Every week I hear something amazing, see something inspiring and want to pass it on. These events are sometimes fleeting, sometimes iconic, but they stop me in my tracks. Bob's Rainbows is the place where I'll highlight the very best of my weekly music intake. [Editor's note: Why rainbows? They're the only naturally occurring phenomenon that can make Bob take his headphones off.]

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All Songs Considered
5:03 am
Fri March 28, 2014

Drum Fill Friday: March 28

Originally published on Tue October 14, 2014 10:53 am

You know what's awesome? Drum fills. A killer bass line is pretty great, too. And guitar solos. And melodies and chord progressions. But a really great drum fill is often the one thing that makes a song truly take off. Think of Phil Collins' "In The Air Tonight" and try not to get that song's classic fill stuck in your head immediately.

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All Songs Considered
12:16 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

The Good Listener: Am I Too Old For Music Festivals?

At some point, you'll probably feel like you're too old to attend a music festival.
20th Century Fox

Originally published on Thu March 27, 2014 3:04 pm

We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and amid the hundreds of water bottles we were supposed to give away at SXSW is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on when a person can rightly be considered too old to attend music festivals.

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All Songs Considered
11:03 am
Tue March 25, 2014

Mr Little Jeans, 'Good Mistake'

Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 9:51 am

Don't let the precious name fool you. Mr Little Jeans, a.k.a. Norwegian singer Monica Birkenes, makes propulsive, sometimes epic pop music with gnarled synth lines and alluring textures. In this brand new Mr Little Jeans video, for the moody song "Good Mistake," a trucker hopped up on meds finds himself traversing the haunted backroads of his past.

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All Songs Considered
10:11 am
Tue March 25, 2014

New Mix: The Black Keys, Swans, Metronomy, More

Clockwise from upper left: The Black Keys, Tiny Ruins, Winged Victory For The Sullen, Dylan Shearer
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 8:02 am

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All Songs Considered
2:15 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

Question Of The Week: Does The Death Of An Instrument Break Your Heart?

All Songs Considered Soundcloud Dropbox

Originally published on Wed March 26, 2014 11:01 am

Few things make us cringe quite like hearing about the untimely death of a musical instrument. A table or an appliance may be swept away by a hurricane, or a set of golf clubs may be mangled by baggage handlers, but they don't hold quite the emotional pull of seeing a crushed guitar or piano. It feels like something living has died.

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All Songs Considered
10:03 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Neil Young Wants You To Truly Hear Music

Neil Young in conversation with NPR's Bob Boilen.
A.J. Wilhelm for NPR

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 9:47 am

Neil Young wants you to truly hear the music you listen to. Over the years, the trend in audio has prioritized convenience over quality. Last week at SXSW, I had a conversation with Neil Young about an idea he has to change that trend. In this interview, he talks about Pono, the new audio player he's been helping develop. Just before the interview, I spent time listening to Pono. It's impressive.

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All Songs Considered
8:20 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Song Premiere: Merchandise, 'Figured Out'

Merchandise's new song "Figured Out" will appear on a special Record Store Day LP, along with music from Destruction Unit and Milk Music.
Timothy Saccenti Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 8:26 am

DIY punk bands from around the country are getting a bit more attention these days, largely due to Twitter and Bandcamp, and one of the turning points was Merchandise's 2012 album, Children of Desire. The Tampa-based band was a revelation to a lot of different music lovers; instead of the DIY garage-band stereotype, Children of Desire sounded like The Smiths. (Granted, a rough-hewn version without Morrissey's way with words, but The Smiths nonetheless).

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All Songs Considered
7:58 am
Wed March 19, 2014

SXSW 2014 Wrap-Up: Our Favorite Discoveries And Memorable Moments

Clockwise from upper left: Vancouver Sleep Clinic, Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger, Sylvan Esso, High As A Kite, Perfume Genius
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 12:55 pm

On this week's show, our hosts are joined by Stephen Thompson to discuss their favorite discoveries at SXSW. Everyone had such a swell time at the musical blitzkrieg that they came down with colds. Their respective illnesses cannot dampen the colorful and illuminating memories that they made at SXSW 2014.

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All Songs Considered
10:27 am
Tue March 18, 2014

5 Dance Moves We Learned At SXSW 2014 In GIFs

Kristina Hanses (of Swedish performance art duo Kristal and Jonny Boy) getting ready to bust a move.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Remember when you were little and you relied on friends or music videos to learn the latest dance moves? You couldn't rewind MTV to break down the steps, and you might look a fool for sashaying left instead of right, or whatnot. This is the beauty of the GIF, a motion suspended in looped animation that allows you all the time in the world to get that shimmy down. SXSW was full of crazy dance moves and we had Adam Kissick capture five worth emulating.

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All Songs Considered
12:44 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

SXSW 2014 In Pictures

Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace breaks into a smile during her band's set at the Spin day party at Stubb's.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 8:26 am

South by Southwest 2014 is a wrap, and it's hard to quite comprehend how much was packed into its five days. Which is why we've put together a handy guide to a small sampling of the massive quantity of music we consumed in Austin last week.

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All Songs Considered
9:41 am
Sun March 16, 2014

NPR Music At SXSW 2014: Saturday

Kishi Bashi performs at The Dirty Dog in Austin, Texas during the 2014 South by Southwest Music festival.
Bob Boilen NPR

Saturday at SXSW, things go over the edge. Language fails. The mind shimmies free from its moorings. Maybe it's the fatigue. Maybe it's the crowds. You could argue that the constant waves of sound that rattle eardrums over five days in Austin jars something loose inside a person's brain.

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All Songs Considered
2:15 pm
Sat March 15, 2014

SXSW 2014: Everything Is Better In Slow Motion

Future Islands, frozen in time (or at least slowed wayyy down).
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Sat March 15, 2014 4:03 pm

With hundreds upon hundreds of bands and tens of thousands of music lovers descending upon Austin for just five days, South by Southwest moves pretty fast. So we slowed it down for you. Because they're awfully considerate, NPR Music's video team — led by Mito Habe-Evans — picked out some of the fastest moments at SXSW 2014 and made them go real slow.

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All Songs Considered
8:59 am
Sat March 15, 2014

NPR Music At SXSW 2014: Friday

With a Bjork-like voice and a heart-breaking vibe out of The Sundays, Kristal and Jonny Boy's set at Cedar Street Courtyard was enthralling performance art.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 11:50 am

Friday was a return to full throttle music consumption for NPR Music's team at SXSW, with few obligations other than seeing as many bands as possible. We saw old favorites and new obsessions, tried to squeeze through the crowds on Austin's streets, watched Lady Gaga navigate questions about her career — and reasons behind the corporate sponsorship of her SXSW show — in this year's keynote address and dragged a bunch of bands into the back yard of a local boutique to perform short sets (keep your eye out for these).

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All Songs Considered
8:33 am
Fri March 14, 2014

NPR Music At SXSW 2014: Thursday

Skrillex skipped the main room at Empire and went straight to the DJ booth, with fans watching from building tops.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 9:12 am

NPR Music's team in Austin woke up on Thursday, like many around the country did, looking for news about the accident that killed two people and injured 23 more at SXSW on Wednesday night. "It was hard to sort of walk out the door today and know that today was going to be another day at SXSW," Bob Boilen said at the end of what he called a long, very emotional day.

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All Songs Considered
7:26 am
Thu March 13, 2014

NPR Music At SXSW 2014: Wednesday

Damon Albarn performs at NPR Music's SXSW showcase at Stubb's BBQ in Austin, Texas.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Mon March 17, 2014 7:33 am

For most of Wednesday, our team in Austin, Texas, had their eyes on the stage at Stubb's BBQ, where we presented our SXSW showcase featuring sets by Damon Albarn, St. Vincent, Kelis, Eagulls and Perfect Pussy. But near the end of the night, we started hearing news of a terrible accident involving dozens of people outside another venue.

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All Songs Considered
10:44 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Hear Neil Young Explain His Pono Music Player At SXSW

Neil Young speaks about Pono, his new high-quality digital audio system, at SXSW.
Bob Boilen NPR

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 6:46 am

Neil Young wants to start a revolution against the MP3, against the CD, poorly made vinyl and poor audio quality in general. He wants people to hear the music the way it was made.

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All Songs Considered
8:13 am
Wed March 12, 2014

NPR Music At SXSW 2014: Tuesday

Who brings a confetti cannon to a fun fight? Calliope Musicals does.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Mon March 17, 2014 7:33 am

The first day at SXSW is about getting your bearings. Shaking off the jet lag, figuring out what you forgot to pack, remembering how long the lines can be and how the overwhelming crowds can sometimes part for a moment to give you a perfect look at a band you fall in love with on the spot.

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