Music and song have carried the story of the Battle of Harlaw through the centuries. Fiddler Bonnie Rideout and a gathering of musicians have recorded ancient music commemorating the 600th anniversary of the battle. Travel back in time with them and music historian John Purser who tells us of this legendary conflict in the age-old struggle between war and peace.
Devon Welsh has an unmistakable presence as the singer for the Montreal duo Majical Cloudz, but producer Matthew Otto is just as vital to their live sound. When the two performed a set for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic, they played off one another seamlessly, and often without eye contact. This gives their unique synth-pop sound an intense quality evident in songs like "Childhood's End," which they perform here.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 2:28 pm
We welcome British band Treetop Flyers to the World Cafe. They are a folk-rock five-piece that initially turned heads on the main stage of the 2011 Glastonbury Festival. They won the spot through an "emerging artist" competition. From there, they were signed to Loose Music in the U.K. and to Partisan Records in the U.S. and put out their debut full-length record, The Mountain Moves, in June of this year. Their music is very much inspired by California in the '70s, so it was not much of a stretch to decamp to Malibu to record their debut.
In his first semester playing football at San Diego State University, Gregory Porter severely injured his shoulder. Doctors told him his days on the field were over, but there was some good news: The school would let him keep his athletic scholarship. Suddenly without football, but with a lot of time on his hands, Porter searched for a new calling — and found it in his voice.
Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 1:21 pm
When we first approached Bill Callahan to do a Field Recording in New York City, we asked him if he had any special place in mind. His reply surprised me: "A community garden." I guess I'd stereotyped him in my head, because after all those years of dark, thoughtful songwriting — first as Smog and then on the pensive records he's made under his own name — I'd imagined a library, someplace quiet and dark.
Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 12:54 pm
Perhaps you know Dave King as the drummer in The Bad Plus, or any number of avant-improv/indie-rock/Americana/electronic experimental bands rooted in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. But somewhere in that mix is a deep fondness for the jazz tradition, and recently, he made it a point to say so with a full-length album. I've Been Ringing You investigates standards, mostly slow and medium-tempo ballads, in rough-hewn textures.
Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 8:56 am
The inventor and engineer Rube Goldberg was known for designing elaborate machines that performed simple tasks, usually in a string of successive events, each one triggering the next. His work has been the inspiration for a lot of fantastic art and music videos (think of OK Go's "This Too Shall Pass," or A-Trak's "Tuna Melt").