Originally published on Thu October 11, 2012 1:08 pm
Polish pianist RafaÅ Blechacz was just 20 years old when he swept all five top prizes at the 2005 Chopin Competition in Warsaw. His domination was so thorough the judges declined to award a runner-up.
The streaming music service Spotify has garnered some 2 million users in the U.S. since its introduction a little over a year ago. The service includes many big acts like Katy Perry, but many musicians have mixed feelings about it. Some, like Adele and Coldplay, resisted putting new albums on Spotify, citing the service's low royalty payments to musicians. Others, like the Black Keys, won't allow full albums on the service at all.
The Australian folk-rock band Husky takes its name from frontman and chief songwriter Husky Gawenda, whose croon soars over the group's artfully crafted instrumentals. Husky is the first Aussie band signed to Sub Pop Records ā and, with its lush harmonies and thoughtfully crafted lyrics, it fits right in with its labelmates and indie-folk contemporaries in Fleet Foxes.
Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 6:42 pm
If you've been watching the HBO series Treme with us, welcome back.
If you're new here, welcome in the first place. WBGO's Josh Jackson, a New Orleans native, and I have been watching the music-saturated program set in post-Katrina New Orleans for two years now. After every episode, we try to establish some context for the many musical references and live performances the show features.
Originally published on Wed October 17, 2012 10:54 am
Last night, two of today's most recognizable voices lifted the rafters of a glorious synagogue on New York's Lower East Side. The surprise show was announced with just about 12 hours notice, and lucky fans who answered an RSVP quickly filled the venue's few hundred spots.
Texas troubadour Ray Wylie Hubbard makes his 11th appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown. Hubbard first found success after writing "Up Against the Wall, Redneck Mothers," which became a beer-joint jukebox anthem some 40 years before anyone thought about singing the praises of a Solo cup. A high-school classmate of Mountain Stage host Larry Groce, Hubbard even played with him in a band for a while.
Originally published on Tue September 25, 2012 5:35 pm
Following a series of tapes and 7-inch singles, Love Is Love // Return to Dust is the first full-length by Code Orange Kids, and it's an untamed, unpredictable beast of a hardcore record. With its members just out of high school, perhaps the hardcore/doom/noise/post-rock shuffle-play chaos of the young Pittsburgh band is a sign of where we're at in heavy music ā fewer boundaries, more ways to crush eardrums. But it's one thing to acknowledge your influences and another to destroy them altogether.
Early fans of Mumford & Sons' debut album, Sigh No More, had to wait a while for the London band's second release. Marcus Mumford, Country Winston Marshall, Ben Lovett and Ted Dwane spent the last three years traveling the world and playing to increasingly huge crowds as their popularity bloomed.