Wednesday Music News

Amber Coffman

photo by Chris Sottile

  • There’s been a lot of speculation about Amber Coffman‘s departure from Dirty Projectors. The lead single from her solo debut City Of No Reply is defiantly titled “All To Myself,” yet the album was produced by her former bandmate David Longstreth. On the latest and seventh Dirty Projectors album, Longstreth sings candid, intensely personal lyrics about her. Today, Coffman has released a statement to clear it all up.

    Dave and I indeed broke up in the summer of 2012, after a 6 year relationship. After a long tumultuous period, we managed to patch things up enough to leave the future open, and in 2014 we gave working together on my music a test run. Eventually I brought him on in a greater capacity as a producer, he moved to LA and we recorded my album at his newly built studio in 2015. All went considerably well, but things took an unfortunate downturn around the completion of my record, at which time we stopped speaking.

    It was never my intention or wish to leave the band or end my friendship with Dave. It was a surprise to me to learn last September about his album plans, the content, timing, use of the band name, etc… I consider it a loss to no longer be involved with Dirty Projectors, but ultimately walking away was the only healthy choice for me.

    I’m really proud of the album I made and my hope is that people will listen to it on its own terms. I’ve waited a long time to share it and I’m looking forward to it.

    Revisit the track “All to Myself” below. [ Stereogum ]

  • Mark Mulcahy has been a busy, busy man. Following a reunion and tour of his “fictional” band Polaris, from The Adventures of Pete & Pete, and another reunion and tour of his “actual” band, Miracle Legion, Mulcahy is rolling out his first solo album in four years, The Possum in the Driveway. Stream the first single “The Fiddler” below. As for Miracle Legion, they’ll be concluding their reunion with a final lap across the country. If your city isn’t on the schedule (cough, cough — SEATTLE), you can console yourself with the live album Annulment, which captures earlier shows at Cod Fish Hollow in Maquoketa, Iowa, and The Bell House in Brooklyn, New York. Watch a performance of “Storyteller” below. The Possum in the Driveway hits stores on Record Store Day, April 22nd, on limited edition gold vinyl, and Annulment is out April 7th. Both albums are courtesy of Mulcahy’s own Mezzotint imprint. [ Consequence of Sound ]

  • Just last week, we shared news that UK dance-pop trio Saint Etienne had a new album on its way, and today we’ve got a Seattle date to announce: Monday, October 2nd at The Neptune Theatre. It’ll be the band’s first U.S. tour in five years. Revisit the single “Heather” below, off the forthcoming full-length Home Counties, out June 2nd via Heavenly. [ Under the Radar ]

  • Atmospheric Austin, TX-based band Explosions in the Sky share a stop-motion video for the track “The Ecstatics” off last year’s LP The Wilderness. Director Hayley Morris depicts a dizzying illustration of the human form, expanding and transforming throughout the clip. The band have also expanded their North American tour. If you missed it, watch video from their KEXP in-studio session here. [ Pitchfork ]

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Mastering the Hustle + Career Day This Saturday

Have you always dreamed about having a career in music? It may not be as far off as you think. This Saturday, you’ll have two different free opportunities to learn from local artists and industry professionals on how to succeed in an arts career. Whether you’re looking for ways to become a better performer or just curious on what it means to have a job in the arts, these events will give you the foundation you need to pursue your passions.

Mastering the Hustle: Your Sound and Performance
April 1, 2-4 p.m. at the JBL Theatre in MoPOP

MoPOP, KEXP, and Upstream Music Fest + Summit are convening for the second installment of their Mastering the Hustle workshop series. The theme for this session is “Your Sound and Performance”, exploring the dynamics necessary for builder your best live show. You’ll hear from local rapper/producer Grieves, tour manager Colin Papworth, Crocodile Production Manager Shaina Foley, and KEXP Audio Engineer Julian Martlew; all moderated by Upstream Music Fest Head Curator Meli Darby.
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The Piano Has Been Drinking… ‘Cause It’s International Piano Day

John Grant, at the KEXP Baby Grand piano // photo by Morgen Schuler (view set)

Why does the world need a Piano Day? For many reasons. But mostly, because it doesn’t hurt to celebrate the piano and everything around it: performers, composers, piano builders, tuners, movers and most important, the listener. — Nils Frahm

On the 88th day of every year, the world tickles the ivories in honor of International Piano Day. (The “88th” day because that’s how many keys are on a piano!) From Portland to Poland, Budapest to Berlin, there are dozens of concerts planned across the globe to celebrate this centuries-old instrument. Here at KEXP, we’ve been lucky to be gifted with a beautiful Baldwin M1 Artist Grand Piano, on permanent loan from the Gibson Showroom in Seattle. (It never would’ve fit in our old in-studio room!) In honor of Piano Day, we’ve gathered up a round-up of KEXP sessions where our guests have taken advantage of this wonderful loan. Here’s to many more live performances with this beautiful instrument!

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Song of the Day: Brenda Xu – Lovely Storm

photo by Elle Hanley

photo by Elle Hanley

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 DJ’s think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is “Lovely Storm,” by Seattle-based singer-songwriter Brenda Xu, from her 2017 self-released record, Overflow.

Brenda Xu – Lovely Storm (MP3) Read More »

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Midnight In A Perfect World: k2k


k2k is the alias of Wellington, New Zealand, DJ, electronic producer, and vocalist Katherine Anderson. An alumnus of Red Bull Music Academy Paris 2015 and currently part of the Inky Waves collective that’s taking over dancefloors around her home country, her love for highly-melodic, pop-tinged, house grooves comes through proudly both in her silky smooth DJ sets and her own fuzzy and infectious productions. Her exclusive guest DJ mix for Midnight in a Perfect World is a stellar showcase of her unique sound, taking the listener on a warm, welcoming and seamless journey through underground lo-fi house and funky disco gems, spotlighting both brand new releases as well as a few obscure cuts from years past.

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Tuesday Music News

photo by Ingrid Pop

photo by Ingrid Pop

  • Not to be outdone by fellow shoegazers Ride, Slowdive have announced their first new album in 22 years! The self-titled LP will be out May 5th via Dead Oceans. We’ve already heard the single “Star Roving.” Stream a new track below, titled “Sugar for the Pill.” On Wednesday, the band will perform live from The Garage in London, which will stream worldwide via their Facebook page. That’s 1:10 PM Pacific / 4:10 PM Eastern. [ Spin ]

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Song of the Day: Fufanu – Sports

photo by Magnus Andersen

photo by Magnus Andersen

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 DJ’s think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on the Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is the title track by Iceland band Fufanu from their 2017 album, Sports, on One Little Indian.

Fufanu – Sports (MP3) Read More »

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In Stores Now 3/27

It’s been 19 years, but we finally have a new album from The Jesus and Mary Chain! KEXP Music Director Don Yates says the Scottish siblings Jim and William Reid deliver “an impressive return-to-form that ranges from fuzzy, feedback-drenched rockers to swooning downer ballads.” Coming right behind them at 17 years is a new one from NYC’s Boss Hog. The fourth album from “this New York band led by Cristina Martinez (and featuring her husband Jon Spencer on guitar and backing vocals) is a solid set of brooding blues-punk.”

Mount Eerie (aka Anacortes-based artist Phil Elverum) shares his eighth LP, “a often-heartbreaking set combining a stark, mostly acoustic sound with painfully honest lyrics about the death of his wife Geneviève Castrée (who passed away from cancer in July 2016) and the accompanying grief and emptiness that’s followed.” Another local artist Sera Cahoone shares “an excellent set of beautifully crafted country-folk combining a warm, often acoustic-oriented sound with her honeyed vocals, wistful melodies and heartfelt lyrics of love and loss.”

Former Pavement guitarist (and Preston School of Industry leader) Scott Kannberg revives his Spiral Stairs moniker for “a diverse, well-crafted set ranging from Bowiesque New Wave dance-rock to jangly post-punk, with Kannberg’s increasingly mature songwriting reflecting on life, family, friends and mortality.” And Brooklyn trio Hiccup debut with “a promising set of hook-filled garage-pop with buzzsaw guitars, energetic rhythms, beach-pop melodies and the dual lead vocals of Hallie Bulleit and Alex Clute.”
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TV Eye: Week of 3/27

Strand of Oaks // photo by Beth Eisgrau-Heller (view set)

KEXP has our TV eye set for this week in late night television. Set your DVR, TiVo, or just drink some coffee to stay awake for these musical guest performances on your favorite talk shows. Here are the highlights:

Monday, March 27th:
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Aimee Mann
Conan: Gary Clark Jr.

Tuesday, March 28th:
Jimmy Kimmel Live!: Tuxedo (R)
Last Call with Carson Daly: Froth

Wednesday, March 29th:
Jimmy Kimmel Live!: Weezer (R)
Last Call with Carson Daly: The Night Beats
Conan: Strand of Oaks

Thursday, March 30th:
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Richard Ashcroft
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Broken Social Scene
Late Night with Seth Meyers: Big Thief

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Monday Music News

Craig Finn

photo by Morgen Schuler (view set)

  • Just last week, we had Craig Finn (of The Hold Steady) in the KEXP studios in support of his forthcoming solo LP, We All Want The Same Things. Even earlier this year, Finn did a small Living Room Tour, which you can see in the video to “Tracking Shots.” Director Julian Muller captures scenes of him traveling, setting up, meeting fans, and more. Watch below. We All Want The Same Things is out now via Partisan. [ Stereogum ]

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