Music

Favorite Sessions
8:03 am
Wed November 28, 2012

KCRW Presents: Orbital

Orbital perform on KCRW.
KCRW

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 2:58 pm

Along with Moby, The Prodigy, Underworld and The Chemical Brothers, Orbital was influential in establishing a blueprint for today's thriving electronic dance-music scene. After an extended hiatus, Phil and Paul Hartnoll recently reunited for select live dates, including a performance in KCRW's studios. It's a treat to hear electronic classics like "Chime" sound as captivating and innovative as they did two decades ago.

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World Cafe
5:27 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Electric Guest on World Cafe

Electric Guest.
Courtesy of the artist

Sometimes it pays to be somebody's little brother. Were it not for his fraternal ties, singer and multi-instrumentalist Asa Taccone probably wouldn't have been able to get acclaimed songwriter and producer Brian Burton (better known as Danger Mouse) to produce his band's debut album. Taccone's older brother, a friend of Burton's, asked the producer to listen to the songs his little brother had been working on and give some constructive criticism.

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All Songs Considered
5:24 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

The Albums We Missed This Year

Clockwise from upper left: Acid Pauli, Kendrick Lamar, Samuel Yirga, Kelan Philip Cohran, Waxahatchee, Pallbearer, Matthew Dear
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 4:07 pm

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Music
5:13 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Modern Offices No Longer Mechanical Orchestras

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 5:55 pm

Robert Siegel and Audie Cornish have more on the music of the office environment.

The Record
4:23 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

R. Kelly's Queer, Campy 'Closet' Reopens

R. Kelly (left) as Sylvester, and Eric Lane as Twan, in Trapped in the Closet, which relaunched with new chapters last week on IFC.
Parrish Lewis IFC

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 5:55 pm

There's really been nothing like Trapped in the Closet ever before.

R&B star R. Kelly has been making (and remaking) a series of short music videos that tell a flamboyant narrative in less-than-five-minute installments. The first batch of several dozen appeared online in 2005. Now, there's a total of 40 "chapters" that aired last Friday on IFC, with the latest ones being released online one at a time for the next week.

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Around the Nation
2:34 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Kennedy Center's New Organ No Longer A Pipe Dream

After years of waiting, the Kennedy Center has a new symphonic organ replacing its old Filene organ. The $2 million project will culminate in the organ's debut on Nov. 27. William Neil (left), the National Symphony Orchestra organist, speaks with NSO Assistant Conductor Ankush Kumar Bahl (center) during the organ's test with the orchestra on Oct. 18.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed November 28, 2012 9:16 am

It was almost spooky. Each night after 11 p.m., when nothing was stirring in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall, two men would enter. One would sit at the organ, playing a key or series of keys, and the other would crawl around inside the organ pipes, 40 feet off the floor. The process went on for months.

It was the all but final phase of installing a new organ for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. And on Nov. 27, the organ makes its formal debut.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:30 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Do Orchestras Really Need Conductors?

Does This Guy Matter? Conductor Leonard Bernstein during rehearsal with the Cincinnati Symphony at Carnegie Hall in 1977.
James Garrett New York Daily News via Getty Images

Originally published on Wed December 5, 2012 10:12 am

Have you ever wondered whether music conductors actually influence their orchestras?

They seem important. After all, they're standing in the middle of the stage and waving their hands. But the musicians all have scores before them that tell them what to play. If you took the conductor away, could the orchestra manage on its own?

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A Blog Supreme
2:14 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

'Treme' Ep. 31: To Call It Quits

The Lambreaux family meets with New Orleans city planners concerning a national jazz center.
Paul Schiraldi HBO

At the end of Treme's season three, with only an abbreviated season four to come, we find many characters walking away from opportunities. Spoiler alert for what follows.

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Music Reviews
1:52 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Cecilia Bartoli's New 'Mission' Unearths Baroque Gems

On her new album, opera star Cecilia Bartoli tackles the work of Baroque composer Agostino Steffani.
Uli Weber Decca

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 3:17 pm

I never heard of the Baroque composer Agostino Steffani until last year, when the Boston Early Music Festival presented the North American premiere of Steffani's Niobe, an opera about the mythical queen who bragged so much about her many children, the gods killed them all in revenge. One of the leading roles, Niobe's husband King Amphion, was played by the early-music superstar countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, who sang the opera's most sublime aria — a hymn to the harmony of the spheres. I couldn't wait to hear Jaroussky again, and was eager to hear more Steffani.

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The Record
9:42 am
Tue November 27, 2012

A Critic Atones

Lana Del Rey performs in France in July. Her album, Born To Die, came out in January, to mixed reviews.
Sebastien Bozon AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 11:07 am

It's beginning to look a lot like craziness — end-of-the-year craziness, to be precise. Now that Gray Thursday has officially reduced Thanksgiving to carbo-loading for the holiday shopping marathon, many people's winter holidays have become little more than a massive spinout.

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