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 song, featured on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “I Found A New Way” by Twin Peaks from the 2014 album Wild Onion on Grand Jury Music.
Borrowing the name of David Lynch’s seminal television series on the sole basis of “it sounded cool”, the garage rock quartet known as Twin Peaks broke out in the Chicago’s increasingly-active DIY scene with the same nonchalant but enthusiastic attitude towards melding together forty years of garage rock tradition. Singer/guitarist Clay Frankel, bassist Jack Dolan, guitarist Cadien James, and drummer Connor Brodner formed Twin Peaks as they started high school, and along with bands like White Mystery and The Orwells, the foursome’s presence in the Windy City soon grew too large for house shows. Selling out small Chicago clubs by the time they graduated, they began bringing their explosive, delightfully raucous debut Sunken on tour around the country. Where that album was unabashedly indebted to more modern takes on DIY garage rock (Jay Reatard, fellow Chicagoans Smith Westerns), their second album, this year’s Wild Onion takes a cue from the late ’60s-early ’70s grime of Exile on Main Street and Marc Bolan. Filtered through a magnetically fuzzy style of production, “I Found A New Way” finds James nonchalantly rattling off a series of bold claims (“I can see the future... I know that everywhere’s the same”) over a melodic-yet-scuzzy arrangement. Not long after the second verse, James punctuates them all with a shout so unexpectedly striking it retroactively sells all of his announcements on life with ease as his bandmates guitar solo, drum fill, and generally live out the Ziggy Stardust at the Hammersmith Odeon fantasies that caused them to dream bigger than their parents’ basement in the first place. “I Found A New Way” aims for something larger than life, and via a traditional garage band setup and a firm belief in rock and roll, these four kids from the ‘burbs achieve it.
Twin Peaks are returning to Seattle this November for an all-ages show on November 19th at the Vera Project. Get tickets and more info on that show here, keep up with the band on their website and Facebook, and below, watch the band play the Wild Onion track “Telephone” live on KEXP.
From J Dilla to J Mascis, there is something for everyone this week in new releases! While the Dilla self-releases his 40-track The King of Beats’ Ma Dukes Yancey Collector’s Edition Box Set, Mascis shares his latest solo release, which KEXP’s Music Director Don Yates describes as “another strong acoustic-oriented set featuring some gorgeous finger-picked acoustic guitar along with occasional fuzzy electric guitars accompanying his drawling vocals, wistful melodies and bittersweet lyrics.”
Yates has nothing but rave reviews for the latest from Ty Segall, calling it “his cleanest, most polished recording, and it’s also his best, expertly blending elements of glam-rock, psych-rock, power pop, ‘60s garage-rock, ‘70s hard rock, grunge, punk and more into 17 knockout rock songs with fiery guitar work, occasional organ and strings, tight, muscular rhythms, pristine harmonies and stuffed with catchy song hooks.”
Yates is also enthused by the latest from Canadian supergroup The New Pornographers, calling their sixth album (and first in four years) “a strong comeback record of exuberant, hook-filled power-pop. It’s the group at their most cohesive and confident, combining crunchy guitars, bright synths, punchy rhythms, stacked, soaring harmonies and effervescent melodies into sparkling pop gems.” Read More »
Thanks to NPR, Interpol‘s entire album El Pintor is now available for streaming. This is the first release since Calos D. left and frontman Paul Banks took on his bassist duties. El Pintor will officially drop on September 9. Take a listen HERE. [Stereogum]
Don’t expect to take the title of the second solo album by Kevin Morby literally. Still Life was written during a particularly busy time in his life, which included touring with two bands -- Woods (his former band) and The Babies (his project with Vivian Girls’ Cassie Ramone) -- and switching coasts, as he moved from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. Because of that, the songs cover a sweeping range of emotions and experiences. The first single, which we can share with you today in this exclusive premiere, is the moving elegy, “Parade”. Inspired by one of Morby’s heroes, Lou Reed, the song contemplates remembrance after death and a common theme for Morby, the tension of the private individual in a public space: “If I were to die today / slaughtered in that masquerade / The last thing that you’d hear me say / put my body on display in the parade”. How do we take “last thing” to mean? Either way, the song is a thought-provoking tribute (you can’t help but hear Lou when Morby sings “all my friends were there”) and a lovely and mature ballad on its own.
Listen to this exclusive premiere of “Parade” now and pick up Still Life when it’s released by Woodsist Records on October 14.
Shabazz Palaces sound like no one else. Whether you call it “sci-fi”, “way-out”, “weirdo” or even “planetarium” rap, the Seattle duo’s music might as well be in outer space considering how far off they sound from their contemporaries. But it’s not like they don’t want anyone else to follow. In its eighteen songs divided into seven “astral suites”, their latest LP, Lese Majesty, calls out the pretenders on the throne, boldly declaring that the king doesn’t just have no clothes but he’s a liar and a thief (“leaning on suckers”, Ishmael Butler says in his interview with Kevin Cole, “like Duckworth in the paint”). More than that, for Bulter and Tendai Maraire (a.k.a. Palaceer Lazaro and Fly Guy ‘Dai), it’s about “working, creating something... being about what you’re doing”. And clearly what they’re doing is forging another mind-blowing set of experimental hip hop, and what you’re doing right now is journeying with them to the far reaches as they perform four songs from Lese Majesty live in the KEXP studio:
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 song, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Cut My Teeth” by Dilated Peoples from the 2014 album Directors of Photography on Rhymesayers Entertainment.
Man alive, the last five years have seen some dramatic shifts in the dance music scene. When last we saw Felix Burton and Simon Ratcliffe on a proper Basement Jaxx record, they were finishing out a full decade of releasing dance music with not one, but two incredible full length records. One, Scars, was a traditional Jaxx record in that every track was so far ahead of its time the world didn’t know what to do with it (see: Dev Hynes on “My Turn”, Yoko on the bizarro “Day of the Sunflowers”, and 2-step integration of “twerk” four years prior to the term’s full gentrification). The other, Zephyr, was a downtempo collection of latin and jazz, because why not? Glance through the other four records that Jaxx dropped in the nine years prior and you’ll find more maximalist dance music gold. I mean, really, would pop music – not just dance music, but mainstream pop – look anything like it does today without records like Rooty and Kish Kash? Always at least three or four years ahead of their competition, Basement Jaxx spent the entirety of the aughts in the future while everyone else attempted to catch up.
So, all of that brings us to Junto. After the group’s longest break from releasing a proper LP (they were busy in the space between scoring the wonderful UK sci-fi film Attack The Block and collaborating on orchestral arrangements of Jaxx classics, not to mention operating their imprint), they return with a conscious integration into the present day scene. Junto, together, in this moment – that’s where the Jaxx meet us in 2014. In turn, Junto may be one of the most immediately arresting records the band has ever released. An eclectic and brilliant mixture as colorful and engaging as ever, Junto adds another check to a near-perfect track record, and there’s no doubt that fans will love every minute. Read More »
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, August 25th:
Conan: Grouplove (R)
Tuesday, August 26th:
Late Show with David Letterman: EMA
Conan: Jack White (R)
Wednesday, August 27th:
The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon: Kacey Musgraves (R)
Last Call with Carson Daly: Warm Soda (R)
Conan: Atmosphere (R)
Friday, August 29th:
The Arsenio Hall Show: Bootsy Collins (R)
Last Call with Carson Daly: Band of Skulls (R)
Saturday, August 30th:
Austin City Limits: Kacey Musgraves / Dale Watson
Despite the miles between songwriters Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp, The Rosebuds continue to bloom on their sixth full-length album, Sand + Silence. Crisp currently resides in New York as Howard continues to live in North Carolina, but the two met up in the woods of Wisconsin to record with their friend and former bandmate Justin Vernon (a.k.a. Bon Iver). In fact, The Rosebuds have always gotten by with a little help from their friends, including Sylvan Esso’s Nick Sanborn, who plays on the album, to Mark Paulson of The Bowerbirds, who played in our studio this day. KEXP likes to consider the band our friends, too, and we were thrilled to have them back in our studios for this charming, buoyant session. Watch below.
If you attended their show at Neumos earlier this year, you may recall Real Estate covering The Nerves during their encore. The Jersey boys will be including a studio-recorded version of that track “Paper Doll” as the b-side to the “Had to Hear” limited edition 7″ single, out tomorrow from Domino Records. Stream the cover below. You can catch the boys playing this weekend at Bumbershoot at Seattle Center. [Pitchfork]