Wednesday Music News

photo by Matthew B. Thompson (view set)

  • After all the drama that ensued after this year’s Grammy’s on Sunday, you may have missed that Father John Misty won the award for Best Recording Package for 2017’s Pure Comedy. Josh Tillman unsurprisingly skipped attending the ceremony, but last night during a concert in Sydney he belatedly gave his acceptance speech. The incredibly Tillman-esque rambling speech drips with sarcasm and insincerity: “Uh, well, thanks. I don’t have a whole lot of time, but, God, fuck, I just wanna say fuck society. I wanna say that this government is a criminal organization. Um, uh uh uh uh, FlatEarth.com, please go check that out. And, you know, when I was growing up everyone told me, you know—whether it’s like Mommy, Daddy, the church, schoolteachers, whoever—you know, everybody was always saying that, like, it’s what’s on the inside that matters, you know, and I think that this is really evidence of the fact that it’s what’s outside that matters.” A new Father John Misty album has been said to be delivered sometime in 2018. [ Pitchfork ]


  • New York noise rock trio A Place To Bury Strangers announced they’ll be releasing their fifth studio album this spring called Pinned. The record is their first since 2015’s Transfixiation, as well as their first with new drummer Lia Simone Braswell. The band has shared the lead single “Never Coming Back,” which Braswell contributes vocals to. “That song is a big concept,” says vocalist and guitarist Oliver Ackermann. “You make these decisions in your life… you’re contemplating whether or not this will be the end. You think of your mortality, those moments you could die and what that means. You’re thinking about that edge of the end, deciding whether or not it’s over. When you’re close to that edge, you could teeter over.” Pinned is out April 13 via Dead Oceans. APTBS will be playing the Crocodile on Thursday, June 14 with Los Angeles band Sextile. [ Consequence of Sound ]

  • A Nada Surf tribute album featuring covers of every song from their 2003 album Let Go will soon be released. We’ve previously heard Ron Gallo’s take on “Happy Kid” and today the band has revealed Brooklyn four-piece Charly Bliss‘ cover of “The Way You Wear Your Head.” Charly Bliss said of the cover: “We were so excited and honored to be asked by Nada Surf to cover a song from Let Go. We are huge fans of theirs, both as a band and as people. I love that this song is about the crazy manic energy of falling in love and not being able to get enough of someone else, but at the same time teetering on the edge trying to protect yourself. We’re so thrilled to be label-mates with them, and we hope we made em proud with this cover!” Standing At The Gates: The Songs Of Nada Surf’s Let Go is out digitally February 2 and physically March 2 on Mardev Records and features contributions from Manchester Orchestra, Rogue Wave, The Long Winters, Aimee Mann, and more. [ Stereogum ]

  • English five-piece Hookworms have shared the third single off their forthcoming album, Microshift, out this Friday. Called “Each Time We Pass,” the track features guest vocals from Virginia Wing’s Alice Merida Richards. The band said of the song: “This track was the first time we have ever truly collaborated with an artist external to the band, in the most modern sense of the word. It was an extremely rewarding experience and it is one of the only Hookworms songs where I can happily stand back and admire it as it had been written by another band.” The song follows previous singles “Negative Space” and “Static Resistance.” [ Under the Radar ]

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Song of the Day: Sufjan Stevens – Tonya Harding (in Eb Major)

Photo by Andrea Morrison

Photo by Andrea Morrison

By Michael Tedder

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Tonya Harding (in Eb Major)” by Sufjan Stevens, a single which is available via Asthmatic Kitty Records.

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Tuesday Music News

photo by Chad Syme (view set)

  • Sleigh Bells frontwoman Alexis Krauss has released a new benefit single called “Our Land” to raise awareness about President Trump’s efforts to attack America’s parks and monuments. Proceeds from the song go to the nonprofit organization Utah Diné Bikéyah’s fight to protect the Bears Ears National Monument, which was lost recently due to the current administration. Krauss said this of the song: “Inspired by my love of wild spaces and in response to President Trump’s assault on our national monuments, I wrote ‘Our Land’ as a protest song. The song led to a collaborative recording session and quickly developed into a film project, in partnership with professional photographer/producer Chris Vultaggio.” The video, filmed in Utah, features appearances from a number of musicians, including Karen O, Animal Collective’s Geologist, Maggie Rogers, Miya Folick, Sunflower Bean, Edward Sharpe, Tunde Olaniran, and A Place To Bury Strangers. [ Stereogum ]


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Local Artist Spotlight: Caspar Babypants

Caspar Babypants // Photo by Sunny Martini

Every week, KEXP features a new local artist with an interview and suggested tracks for where to start. This week we’re highlighting Seattle children’s music project Caspar Babypants, who play KEXP’s Music Heals: Beyond Cancer this Thursday from 6 to 8 PM in the KEXP Gathering Space.

Savvy Seattlites will quickly recognize Chris Ballew, aka Caspar Babypants, as the former lead vocalist to The Presidents of the United States of America. But long before the band broke up in 2016, Ballew began releasing children’s music under the Babypants moniker in 2009. Over nearly a decade of the project, Ballew has had the chance to help kids find joy in music, jump for joy, celebrate life through dance, and just have fun. We caught up with Ballew to learn more about his latest album, SLEEP TIGHT!, and what families can expect from his performance this Thursday as a part of our Music Heals programming.

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Song of the Day: Gord Downie – A Natural

photo by: Gordon Hawkins

photo by: Gordon Hawkins

By Jason Anderson

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “A Natural” by Gord Downie, a song from the album Introduce Yerself, which is available via Arts & Crafts.

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In Stores Now 1/29

In Stores Now Jan 29 KEXP

The ever-prolific Ty Segall returns with his 10th solo release, Freedom’s Golbin, which KEXP Music Director Don Yates says “brings together the many sides of Segall’s music, from blistering garage-punk, driving psych-rock and chugging glam to wistful folk-rock, Beatlesque psych-pop and even a woozy barroom sing-along.”

London’s Dream Wife comes through with a promising self-titled debut that’s a “promising set of hook-filled garage-pop, combining buzzing guitars and energetic rhythms with the confident, dynamic vocals of Iceland-bred lead vocalist Rakel Mjöll and direct, uncompromising lyrics of empowerment.”

No Age‘s Snares Like a Haircut marks a “strong return to form of shoegazerish noise-pop with effects-laden guitars, driving rhythms, resilient lyrics and triumphant song hooks.” Plus new albums from Migos, Calexico, Hollie Cook and more.
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Monday Music News

photo by Matthew B. Thompson (view set)

  • Los Angeles indie band Local Natives are celebrating the 5-year anniversary of the release of their sophomore album Hummingbird today. They’ve done a few different things in its honor including launching a Tumblr dedicated to the album and sharing a series of video behind the making of the album. The band has also unveiled a sprawling, 8-minute demo of album track “Colombia.” Local Natives’ last release was 2016’s Sunlit Youth. [ Under the Radar ]


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Song of the Day: Martha – The Winter Fuel Allowance Ineligibility Blues

photo by Meg Lavender

photo by Meg Lavender

By Annie Zaleski

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “The Winter Fuel Allowance Ineligibility Blues” by Martha, a single which is available via Fortuna POP.

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Announcing the 2018 Pickathon Lineup

pt18-lineup_WEB

Pickathon won’t just return to Happy Valley, Ore. this August 3-5, but it will also mark 20 years of this staple Northwestern festival. More than just gathering your favorite artists in the same place, Pickathon provides a whimsical forest setting with intricately designed stages, yoga sessions, craft beer, and more. In celebration of this momentous landmark, Pickathon has released the lineup for this year’s fest with plenty to gawk at.

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Friday Music News

photo by Christopher Nelson (view set)

  • James Blake has shared his first new original song since his 2016 LP The Colour In Anything. “If the Car Beside You Moves Ahead” is a chopped and pitch-shifted odyssey that comes with a perfectly paired video by Alexander Brown of a spacey night drive. Blake previously shared a cover of Don McLean’s “Vincent” in December, which he has often previously played live. He also was featured on the Black Panther soundtrack with the song “King’s Dead.” No word yet on a forthcoming album. [ Rolling Stone ]


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