Posts Tagged ‘KEXP’

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KEXP finally unveiled boygenius‘ 2018 performance this spring, and with it came the proper recording their radio- and tour-only rendition of “Cowboy Take Me Away.” Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus’ tribute to fellow trifecta Dixie Chicks is full of a melancholy yearning that makes it feel like a spiritual companion to boygenius closer “Ketchum, ID.” Trading verses about longing to be held under the stars and to stand alone under sublime skyscraper-free skies, the trio share the same conflicting desires that made them want to “dissolve the band” and “move to Idaho”: to find solitude and to find belonging, for stability and for freedom. With twinkly mandolin and violin from frequent Baker collaborator Camille Faulkner, boygenius’ “Cowboy Take Me Away” is rustic and wistful, but with an overarching sweetness, purity and even delight.

From Baker’s first infectious, irrepressible grin to the giggles the moment the song ends, it seems the peace the three are searching for isn’t so far out of reach. Baker, Bridgers and Dacus are each formidable forces as cover artists in their own right, as this list attests. Together, they sound completely free—and completely at home.

M.WARD – ” Live On KEXP “

Posted: January 27, 2017 in MUSIC
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Just about the last thing we’d ever ask for in Seattle is “More Rain” – unless of course that’s the name of the latest album by M. Ward. On his eight studio LP, the Portland based musician doesn’t let the Pacific Northwest’s soggy gloom get him down, and dares the clouds away with his initially doo-wop inspired batch of brightly energetic boot-stompers and swooning lullabies. Dry off with M. Ward and his backing band of PDX all-stars – Adam Selzer and Mike Coykendall swapping spots on guitar and drums, Scott McCaughey on bass, and Alia Farah on keys – for one of our very first recorded sessions in the new live room.

M. Ward performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded January 12, 2016.
I’m Listening (Child’s Theme)
Girl From Conejo Valley
Little Baby

MITSKI – ” Live On KEXP “

Posted: January 10, 2017 in MUSIC
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Image result for mitski

There’s a moment on Mitski’s fourth LP that stands out as her most piercing yet. “You’re all I ever wanted/I think I’ll regret this” she croons on “Your Best American Girl” before a myriad of swirling, distorted guitars are hurled forwards, in equal parts deafening and life-affirming. As is often the case with Puberty 2, it’s utterly elevating. Quite simply, 2016 needed Mitski

Mitski performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded July 14th, 2016.
I really love this more stripped down, minimalist performance.
Carries some of the really heartfelt lyrics better.

Once More To See You
Your Best American Girl
My Body’s Made of Crushed Little Stars
A Burning Hill

Heaters performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded September 9, 2016. Heaters is Andrew Tamlyn, Nolan Krebs and Joshua Korf.

Less than a year after the release of “Holy Water Pool”Heaters’ debut, a crushing, revelatory psycho-surf-rock anointment-as-album there are no apparent signs of distress to the engine that powers this Michigan-made vehicle of sound. To the contrary, Heaters are operating at a higher horsepower than ever before, as evidenced by the 2016 release of “Baptistina.” the bands second album.

“Baptistina” glimmers to a greater degree than anything Heaters have previously unleashed, a full-spectrum sheen that shines across the full panorama of righteous reverb riots. Heaters are in full control of their machine from the opening, and yet the result of this increase in control can be heard as a willingness to crash their ship completely. But have faith in the pilots – Heaters are living for the next ride.

Elephant Turner
Ara Pacis

SXSW; 25 Artist to See

Car Seat Headrest’s driven mastermind Will Toledo makes languid indie rock with whirring, no-bullshit musings; and it’s a critical smash. His debut Teens of Style was one of Rolling Stone’s 50 Best Albums of 2015, and cheekily-entitled follow-up Teens of Denial is slated to release later this year on his new home of Matador Records. Though he told Rolling Stone that his music is bred from nerves and “reflects introversion,” Toledo will be busting the bedroom door open and hitting many SXSW stages  in Austin Texas.

Car Seat Headrest performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded October 29th, 2015.
The Ending Of Dramamine
Times To Die
Something Soon
Maud Gone

OUGHT – ” Live On KEXP “

Posted: November 27, 2015 in MUSIC
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Ought formed just three years ago amid a burgeoning DIY scene in Montreal’s Mile End district. While drawing heavily from sonic inspirations like Talking Heads, Sonic Youth and The Fall, the group fashioned a sound of its own over the course of their two albums and two EPs.

Recently, Ought stopped by KEXP to reveal songs from its refreshing new album, “Sun Coming Down” — which, despite its sometimes anxious post-punk gloom, feels like a sun coming up on a new day.  Ought performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded October 15, 2015.


Men For Miles
Beautiful Blue Sky
The Weather Song
Passionate Turn

Hop Along performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded May 29, 2015.

Texas Funeral
The Knock
Tibetan Pop Stars
Powerful Man
Sister Cities

Hop Along has often been dubbed Philadelphia’s best kept secret. But for much longer? I really Don’t think so, with a superb collection of songs the new album should see them as rising stars.

Get Disowned, Hop Along’s first full-band album which they self-released in 2012, came out of seemingly nowhere to be one of the most staggeringly perfect records of the year. Ten songs that were as catchy as they were strange. The Philly four-piece can pull off this amazing trick where they make a lyric instantly stick in your head without needing to tether it to a traditional verse-chorus-verse structure.

Part of what makes Hop Along’s sound so unique is the brother-sister anti-chemistry of drummer Mark Quinlan and guitarist/singer Frances Quinlan. Mark, who grew up pounding away for heavier hardcore bands, and Frances, a student of the Jeff Magnum style of make-it-weird-until-it-works songwriting, meet somewhere in the middle. Sometimes they’ll bring things down to a hushed whisper, before pushing levels beyond breaking points, and weave the two extremes together at break-neck paces. And it’s all glued together with Frances’ inimitable voice—raggedy and raw, with a wild, untameable streak. Never duplicating, always unpredictable.

As a result of their musically mutated DNA, Hop Along could hold their own alongside just about anyone. And they have. They’ve been jammed onto bills with everyone from The Thermals to Fucked Up to Paint It Black.

Naturally, the “secret” of Hop Along has gradually gotten out over the last few years and by the time they were ready to work on their follow-up sophomore album, Painted Shut, they had a long line of industry suitors, out of which, Omaha indie staple Saddle Creek Records emerged victorious. If the album’s first single, “Waitress” is any indicator, Saddle Creek got a steal.

“Waitress” is everything that makes Hop Along great, distilled down into three and a half minutes. Frances’ idiosyncratic lyricism is on full display and as each minute of the track passes, the band seems intent on upping their own intensity, crescendoing until the song hits a tipping point. And then it just ends. A perfect way to tease an album.

This is all a long-winded way of saying this: There is no one out there like Hop Along. Not even close. And Painted Shut might just end up being the best album of the year.

Springtime Carnivore performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded March 11th, 2015.

The debut album from Springtime Carnivore (aka the nom de tune of Greta Morgan) is a dreamy work of ebullient pop and looming psychedelia, evoking a mellow high on a Sunday afternoon, where everything is magnified and glows in Technicolor. Produced by Morgan and sonic wizard Richard Swift (The Black Keys, The Shins, Foxygen), the album crackles with warmth and employs faded strings, blown-out drums, fuzzy guitars, and pawnshop keyboards to adorn widescreen vocals. It builds on a foundation of classic folk and pop songwriting, synthesizing those roots with capricious production that turns and careens unexpectedly, casting her melodic songs in varied light and from surprising angles. The songs sound familiar and utilize classic approaches, but are skewed and distinctly modern. There’s an index card tacked to the wall of Morgan’s rehearsal space. It reads “no cheap tricks,” and its command is heeded on Springtime Carnivore’s 14 heavenly songs.

The Church performing live at the Triple Door as part of KEXP’s VIP Club concert series. Recorded February 8th, 2015.

Toy Head
Laurel Canyon
Lightning White

KEXP radio presents The Districts performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded March 5th, 2015. The Districts will be your new favourite band especially if you like raggedy US rock, country-tinged Americana with elements of blues and folk. made by young men who appear to have just stumbled out of bed. For whom languor is an energy. There are tracks on their debut EP that tap into traditional American musics and amp it up, give it some contemporary welly, like a latterday Little Feat, which suggests they are going to remain a cult concern. And there are other tracks which point towards a Stateside Mumfords, others where they evince a penchant for rocking out that hints they could be Kings Of Leon big style.

4th and Roebling