On The Good Graces new LP Prose and Consciousness, Kim Ware’s trademark wonder and wit are front and center. Tempered by love, loss, and a love of songwriting, this collection of songs is the strongest of Ware’s career and establishes her as an essential voice in the southern songwriting community and beyond. Tune in as we chat with Kim about storytelling, making it in the music industry, and much more.
Part razor-sharp condemnation of our modern world, and part journey through Jana Hunter’s recent reidentification as “they/he,” Lower Dens’ The Competition utilizes the power of the dance floor to make a case for love and acceptance not just in dangerous times, but as the law of the land. It’s a powerful and ultimately uplifting statement from this revered Baltimore-based band and not just the best album of their careers, but one of the most essential listens of 2019.
2015’s Star Wars and its 2016 follow up Schmilco delivered a shot in the arm to one of indie-rock’s most lauded and revered acts: Wilco. Both were shaggier affairs then what had come before — 2011’s The Whole Love, while it had its moments, was a more near-miss-than-hit power-pop extravaganza. And both showed that, at least for Wilco, smaller albums necessarily meant better albums as the band pushed into its second decade with the current, and most stable lineup in Wilco’s history.
Enter Ode To Joy.
Over 40 years ago, photographer and filmmaker Jay Blakesberg embarked on a long, strange trip that would find his lens in front of some of the most legendary acts in rock ‘n’ roll history. In his new book Jerry Garcia: Secret Space Of Dreams, Jay — a life-long, and self-avowed Deadhead — is taking a journey through his history with the band, and in the process capturing the deep humanity of one of music’s most revered artists. Special guest photographer/musician PJ Sykes joins in the fun as we discuss Jay’s new book, his lifelong love of music photography, and more.
Washington D.C.’s Broke Royals have worked HARD for their success and with their new LP Saint Luxury, they’re taking one step closer to being the superstars they were born to be. We’re sitting down with one of America’s best-dressed bands to talk about the importance of searching for answers, the rising pop scene in the nation’s capital, and much more.
On his 12th studio album under the moniker Hiss Golden Messenger southern soul-poet MC Taylor is singing as if it’s his last song. Terms Of Surrender is an intimate and vulnerable look inward that finds Taylor grappling with the smaller fears that creep into our relationships, parenthood, and day-to-day life in this 21st century. Special guests J.M. Hart (Brokedown Podcast) and Wes Covey (The Ten Thousand Things) join us to discuss the latest from one of today’s most respected songwriters.
From the ashes of legendary Australian punk mainstay The Drones has risen the mighty Tropical Fuck Storm! On their follow up to 2018’s A Laughing Death In Meatspace, Gareth Liddiard and crew are tearing at the walls of sonic reality yet again, this time as they stare straight-faced into the coming apocalypse. Special guest PJ Sykes joins us to dissect one of the most raucous, and maybe most essential, releases of 2019. You’re probably not ready for Braindrops, but that’s OK…we’re here to help.
Musician. Educator. Podcast Host. Cat dad.
Casey Rae is a man of many talents, and with William Burroughs and the Cult of Rock ‘n’ Roll he adds “author” to that list. Equal parts history of and on-ramp to all things Burroughs, Cult tells the tales of the long strange trips that artists throughout rock ‘n’ roll history took to worship before their pope of dope,” how the words of one man influenced our modern world in ways we can hardly imagine, and much more!
Brad Mehldau, simply put, is one of the most respected living jazz players on the planet. He’s also one of the most prolific. Think Stephen King levels of prolific, but for music. Many of you may know him from his work covering some Radiohead tunes, but rest assured he is much MUCH more than that. In fact, on his new album Finding Gabriel, he is doing nothing less than searching for the meaning of life, the universe, and everything. Suffice to say the album is HEAVY, but it’s also one of the most exhilarating listens of the year in any genre.
Pairing one of today’s most gifted jazz guitarists (Anthony Pirog) with one of rock ‘n’ roll’s fiercest rhythm sections (Brendan Canty and Joe Lally) was always going to be a recipe for success, but on their sophomore LP Anthropocosmic Nest, Washington, D.C.’s The Messthetics are blowing past the old goals and delivering one of the most raucous and satisfying releases of the year. Wildly inventive with surprises awaiting the listener at every turn, Nest is an ecstatic proclamation of skronk-and-circumstance that says not only are The Messthetics BACK, but they’re here to stay!
Now that she’s found true love, on her new album Lover pop domineer Taylor Swift is stepping out of the shade and leaving the H8R/revenge life behind. Or is she? Avoid Swifty Eduardo Nunes joins us to talk through the good, the bad, and the awkward of Swift’s latest which ***SPOILERS*** most definitely does not “…hold the key to pop music’s survival” but also might not be that bad in the end.
On August 7, 2019, beloved indie-rock poet laureate David Berman committed suicide, leaving his family, friends, and fans devasted. Purple Mountains, a sophisticated, sad, and often hilarious look at Berman’s interior and the world at large, is the final statement from an artist whose words and songs are stitched into the DNA of an entire generation. Join as we discuss Berman’s legacy, how depression and anxiety can crush us if we're not careful, and how an album that looks unflinchingly at the abyss can still offer hope in the darkest of nights.
If you are struggling, here are few of the many organizations you can reach out to. Please reach out.
After several years working behind the scenes, the legendary Raphael Saadiq returns to the spotlight to deliver his most personal, and compelling album to date. Jerry Lee (named after his brother who was an addict who died of AIDS) takes a profoundly human look at not just the consequences of addiction, but the underlying causes. Oppression comes in many forms in this world, and Saadiq explores that theme with compassion, an understanding of just how deeply all of us are connected, and a belief that it is only love that can save us in the end.
Austin, TX's Mike and The Moonpies have come a long way from playing the dancehalls of their native Texas. On their new LP, Cheap Silver and Solid Country Gold, the quintet is leaving the honky-tonk behind and exploring the sounds of smoothed out 70's Country with the help of their friends the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Recorded at the famed Abbey Road Studios, Cheap Silver is bringing countrypolitan "back" in a big way, and the results are a timeless listen that is also one of the years best.
For their 15th album (and 2nd this year), Australia’s King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard take yet another musical turn, this time into THRASH METAL. Infest The Rat’s Nest has everything: HUGE CRUSHING RIFFS! THUNDERING DRUMS! SCI-FI ECO-DIMENSIONAL HORROR! It even has SATAN!
But it’s that second-to-last point that’s so important. Somehow, impossibly, King Gizzard has made a metal album that not only sounds timeless but speaks to the horrors we’re all going to face as man-made climate change runs its course. Metal enthusiast Casey Rae (William Burroughs and The Cult Of Rock ‘N’ Roll, Dead To Me) joins us as we follow King Gizzard down the highway towards oblivion on an all-new episode of Discologist!
On their seventh album (and first in five years) The Hold Steady isn’t so much “We’re BACK mother****ers!” as they are “Alright. Alright. Alllllright”-ing their way back into our hearts.
Thrashing Thru The Passion finds the band sporting a slightly looser and expanded sound (horns!) and songwriter Craig Finn’s druggy, party-filled universe, a little older, a little beat down, but no less full of life. Join us as we dig into all of the good, bad, and magical highs found on the “return” of one of America’s most celebrated bands.
Sleepwalkers 2014 LP Greenwood Shade was, and remains, one of our favorites of the past few years. Finally five years later their follow up, Ages, is here and it was well worth the wait. While Shade wore its shagginess on its sleeve, Ages sees brothers Michael and Austin York and co-conspirator Alex DeJong polishing up the edges and delivering the power-pop masterpiece we deserve just when we need it the most. Get ready to experience a record that surprises at every turn as Kevin and Eduardo go IN on this instant classic.
PLUS! LA supergroup Grand Canyon has a new EP out, and fans of Tom Petty, Fleetwood Mac, and [checks notes] Guns N’ Roses (?) are going to want to check them out. We’ve got their latest single “Yesterday’s News” to get you acquainted.
Chris Rosenau (Collections of Colonies Of Bees, Volcano Choir) and Nick Sanborn (Sylvan Esso, Made Of Oak) have traveled in the same creative circles for years now, but it was an off-the-cuff improv set at the inaugural Eaux Claires fest that has led to one of the most powerful releases of 2019, Bluebird. The open window and doors of the small North Carolina studio that Bluebird was recorded in gives the EP a sense of place in the world, but it is the magic weaved between Rosenau’s guitar and Sanborn’s electronic wizardry that pulls the listener wholly out of time and space into a moment of creation that is unlike anything you’re likely to experience this year.
On his follow up to 2018’s The Optimist, Ryan Porter and his friends the West Coast Get Down are once again swinging for the fences and bring jazz into the spotlight for a whole new generation. Rehearsed and recorded in five-hour bursts in multiple locations, Force For Good is a fearless step forward into the future of American jazz that celebrates America’s greatest art form even as it challenges what came before it. Join us as we discuss Porter’s seemingly limitless talent, the normalization of jazz in the popular culture, and much more.
On his latest album as Fruit Bats, Eric Johnson is looking back at dark times almost fondness, taking joy in the even the smallest of steps towards a brighter future that awaits.
Gold Past Life — his first LP on Merge Records — signifies the start of a new era for the lauded singer/songwriter. The end of the road he started out on with 2014’s EDJ, it’s songs are overflowing with harmonies, hooks, and, most importantly, heart. A life-affirming slice of pure pop perfection, it is Johnson’s finest work to date and one of the few albums you NEED to hear in 2019.