Originally published on Sat March 14, 2015 12:59 pm
A casual listener would be forgiven for not knowing one kind of accordion music from another. But where two cultures in particular are concerned, the similarity comes with a century-old backstory involving immigration and imitation.
Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 5:04 pm
Hear The Discussion And Songs
On this week's All Songs Considered, we look at one of life's immutable truths: Nothing's ever easy! Or, at least some things are way harder than they need to be. That's part of the message in the new kiss-off song that opens our show, "Hot Scary Summer," from the upcoming Villagers album Darling Arithmetic.
Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 12:55 pm
Leila Steinberg With Ali Shaheed Muhammad And Frannie Kelley
When Leila Steinberg was 25 years old, she met a 17-year-old named Tupac. She became involved in his career in a managerial role, which she had stepped away from by about 1993. The next time Steinberg agreed to a management relationship with a musician was almost 20 years later. At the request of Earl Sweatshirt's mother, she began working with him while he was still in Samoa. And then she went and got him, brought him home. We spoke to Leila about her relationships with both rappers, and the work she's done apart from them.
With just an electric guitar and bass, Girlpool inhabits an entire ecosystem in the space of a bedroom. The single-note melodies are simple and quiet; their instruments are cheap, yet full of character. "Ideal World" comes from the duo's debut album, Before The World Was Big.
Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 2:23 pm
About 15 years ago, Lightning Bolt's members set up on the floor in the living-room area of a fourth-floor residential loft in Brooklyn. Sweating in full-body knitwear and ski masks, they rolled out stacks of amplifiers and a massive drum kit, then proceeded to blast the 50- or 60-person audience through the sheet rock.
Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 10:40 am
In songs that go big and hit home, Twin Shadow sets his musical register to "epic" and only looks upward from there. As a default mode, it's intense and unrelenting, occasionally disorienting for its outsize sense of scale. But then little details — a delicate synth sound here, an incisive lyric there — bring Eclipse back to matters reliably close to the heart.
Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 10:41 am
There are four official members of Houndmouth: guitarist Matt Myers, keyboardist Katie Toupin, drummer Shane Cody and bassist Zak Appleby, all of whom also pitch in with the singing and songwriting. But far more people than that contribute to their second album, Little Neon Limelight. Only artful alt-roots producer Dave Cobb, recording engineer Vance Powell and mastering engineer Pete Lyman pop up in the credits, though.
Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 10:42 am
Working as a music journalist means that some days you get to tell people, in breathless prose, about an incredible new record you've discovered. On other days, you have to tell people that an artist you've followed and respected for years is no longer living. That part is never any fun. Listening to the hushed, elegantly spare Seth Avett & Jessica Lea Mayfield Sing Elliott Smith, I found myself transported back to the period right after Smith died, of apparently self-inflicted stab wounds, in 2003.