For those who haven't yet discovered Nora Jane Struthers, the summery song "Bike Ride" is a great introduction to her beguiling, well-considered worldview. The first time Struthers sings the song's most important line — "I can go anywhere" — the phrase rises up out of her throat, free, wide open. The second time, a phrase later, she clamps down on it with some grit. "'Bike Ride' is a song about a re-awakening," the 29-year-old Nashville resident said in a recent email. "When you propel yourself forward through time and space on your own steam, you realize your own agency."
Hanni El Khatib and his band braved sharp desert succulents, chilly temperatures and an aggressive maraca for this performance of the appropriately titled "Save Me." The Los Angeles singer-songwriter, on a break from touring in support of his latest album In the Dirt, gamely stripped down his loud, bluesy garage-rock sound and let the stunning backdrop of Joshua Tree National Park provide the drama.
When Telekinesis' Michael Benjamin Lerner plays live, he sings from behind his drum set, but he plays almost all the instruments on his albums. The power-pop multi-instrumentalist recorded his latest record, Dormarion, at Spoon drummer Jim Eno's house — fittingly located on Dormarion Lane.
WEXT's Ernesto Lechner On "Lluvia Con Sol" By Orquesta El Macabeo
You know the drill by now. Each month, NPR Music polls public-radio personalities and asks them to share their favorite new song with the world. You get to download the track. Here's this month's panel:
Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 9:08 am
The Montreal pop band Stars wears many faces, literally and figuratively: Singers Amy Millan and Torquil Campbell swap lead vocals in songs that range from effervescent pop-rock to grandiose dance music to melancholy, string-enhanced dirges. With so much to choose from in the group's toolbox, a few gems are bound to get left off its records — a wrong Stars will help right with a new single next month.
Originally published on Fri August 16, 2013 4:00 pm
The Glaswegian dance-rock champions in Franz Ferdinand took a brief hiatus, but they never missed a beat; in fact, they sound better than ever. Upon their return to Morning Becomes Eclectic, Franz Ferdinand's members seemed to be having a blast. In songs like "Love Illumination," you can hear the group's signature bass lines and crisp drum fills making it seem as if no time has passed at all.