The Baltimore duo Matmos crafts a unique brand of experimental pop music. Drew Daniel and Martin Schmidt use abstract instrumentation like elk whistles, balloons and bowls of water to create their rich sound, which makes for a performance unlike any other we've seen on Morning Becomes Eclectic. Matmos recently joined us to perform songs from its latest album, The Marriage of True Minds.
Tuareg bands are natural rockers. These desert nomads have a history of harsh physical challenges, long separations, nostalgia and rebellion — elements that give their music gritty authenticity. There's something about their ambling, tuneful songs that fits perfectly with the bite and snarl of electric guitars.
When Kail Baxley was a kid growing up in Williston, S.C., James Brown used to challenge him to dance-offs. Baxley didn't win so much. He did better as an amateur boxer — his key to getting out of the small town and traveling to Europe and Africa.
Kacey Musgraves is something of an anomaly. A Texas native in her mid-20s, she fits most easily into the contemporary "country" category, but the work she co-writes with a variety of collaborators is really a throwback to an earlier era of singer-songwriters — as much influenced by rock and folk as by country.
The Keaton Henson who appears on the new album Birthdays is an avowed hermit with a profoundly broken heart. He also has one of the most beautiful voices I've heard. The 24 year-old singer from London, who says he rarely leaves his bedroom, bares his wrecked emotional remains in an arresting new video for the song "You."
This week on All Songs Considered, hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton go on a haphazard musical journey across the globe to share their favorite new discoveries. Manchester's The 1975 start things off with the band's punchy song called "Sex." Then we head to Brooklyn for soul singer Charles Bradley, who keeps things heated with "You Put The Flame On It," a track from his upcoming album Victim Of Love.
Black Prairie makes its first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown. An energetic string band of unexpected depth, Black Prairie features three members of The Decemberists.
The Scottish indie-rock band Frightened Rabbit has evolved considerably. First, it morphed from a solo project for singer-guitarist Scott Hutchison into a full-fledged band. Then, it made a transition from the skeletal sound of 2007's Singing the Greys toward the fuller, cleaner rock of Frightened Rabbit's ensuing albums, 2008's The Midnight Organ Fight and 2010's The Winter of Mixed Drinks.
Every year, an all-star assemblage of today's jazz musicians called the SFJAZZ Collective picks a different all-time-great jazz composer to feature. The band then applies its own arrangements to that composer's tunes.