Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part 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 featured selection, chosen by Afternoon Show host Kevin Cole, is “Radio Retaliation” by Thievery Corporation and is the title track from their 2008 album on Eighteenth Street Lounge Music.
Rob Garza and Eric Hilton are Thievery Corporation, a Washington, D.C. based DJ duo who perform with an international cast of supporting artists. From the heart of the nation’s capital, or “Babylon” as they often refer to it, Garza and Hilton write music and lyrics strongly influenced by their stances on politics and current events. In fact, when the band released their new album, Garza proclaimed: “Radio Retaliation is definitely a more overt political statement. There’s no excuse for not speaking out at this point, with the suspension of habeas corpus, outsourced torture, illegal wars of aggression, fuel, food, and economic crises. It’s hard to close your eyes and sleep while the world is burning around you. If you are an artist, this is the most essential time to speak up.”
Also continuing their “outernational sound” on the new album, Thievery Corporation enlist a line of multinational guest musicians, including Anoushka Shankar (daughter of Ravi Shankar), Femi Kuti, and Seu Jorge, as they mix genres of Latin, dub, Indian, lounge, rock, Reggae, and many others. On the title track, it is Sleepy Wonder, the rapid-fire Reggae DJ listeners will know from the duo’s previous albums, who delivers the message, which Hilton describes as “an exodus of conscious people who are willing to acknowledge something is wrong with the ‘official version’ in news and culture.”
Thievery Corporation are playing a couple of festivals in early November and then taking a break until they perform a New Year’s Eve party in San Francisco. Get more details on their MySpace page. For now, here’s a brand new video for “Radio Retaliation”: