The Decemberists @ The Anthem - 4/21/2018

The Decemberists @ The Anthem - 4/21/2018

The Decemberists released their eighth album, I’ll Be Your Girl, last month, and it saw the band moving in a notably different direction than their previous releases.  With much more dominant synth parts featured in a number of the songs, it frequently sounds more inspired by New Order than by the prog rock and folk music influences of their earlier work.  Perhaps the change is a direct reaction to coming off of last year’s Offa Rex, a collaboration with Olivia Chaney that saw them delving deep into the English folk rock stylings of bands like Steeleye Span and Fairport Convention.  Regardless of the reasons for the shift in direction, the album has met with generally favorable reviews, and on Saturday night the group brought their tour for it to their Washington, DC fans at The Anthem.


Marie/Lepanto @ DC9 - 4/20/2018

Marie/Lepanto @ DC9 - 4/20/2018

Will Johnson and Justin Peter Kinkel-Schuster are both prolific musicians steeped in the alt-country and singer-songwriter traditions. After the two met when Kinkel-Schuster’s band Water Liars toured as the openers for Johnson’s band Centro-matic on their farewell tour in 2014, it was only natural that a kinship would develop. From that Marie/Lepanto, the name taken from a road sign in Arkansas between the two towns of the same names, was born. It took a few years to come to fruition, but in January the duo released their first album of the new project, titled Tenkiller. Combining the strengths of both musicians both as songwriters and performers, it’s easily one of the best alt-country releases of the year. While their tour for the album has largely consisted of house shows, in DC the pair came to DC9 on Friday night.


Rick Astley @ Lincoln Theatre - 4/18/2018

Rick Astley @ Lincoln Theatre - 4/18/2018

In 1987, it was virtually impossible to go anywhere without hearing Rick Astley. The then 21-year-old released his debut single “Never Gonna Give You Up” that summer, and it went on to top the charts in 25 countries and become the best-selling single of the year in his native UK. His debut album Whenever You Need Somebody spawned several more singles, including a second number one hit in “Together Forever.” But peaking so early meant that there was nowhere to go but down, and though his next two follow-up albums, 1988’s Hold Me In Your Arms and 1991’s Free, were far from failures, they didn’t manage to match the heights of his debut. After his fourth album, 1993’s Body & Soul, failed to even make a dent in the charts, Astley retired from the music business.


Episode 359: The Sciences - Sleep

Episode 359: The Sciences - Sleep

Stoner metal legends Sleep are back with a surprise new album - their first in almost twenty years - that dropped on that highest of holidaze, 4/20. Are the heady trio's new jams worth the wait, or are they skunked like so many lost bags of dirtweed? Kevin and Paul have got the hookup and aim to find out.

PLUS! Joachim Cooder's new album Fuchsia Machu Picchu confirms that genius runs in the family and we're spinning it's tasty new single for you to get lost in!


Episode 358: Port Saint Joe - Brothers Osborne

Episode 358: Port Saint Joe - Brothers Osborne

On their sophomore LP Port Saint Joe, Brothers Osborne has pulled off the rare feat of being EXACTLY as good as the hype makes them out to be. Good times, sick jams, with copious amounts of whiskey, weed, and Willie all make this "country" album one of the years best releases whether you believe in Nashville or not. 

PLUS! We've got some thoughts on the current state of Country Music journalism, Kendrick's Pulitzer, and Washington state's The Moondoggies are back from the cosmos with a new album and a new single to go along with it!


"Turn It Up" — Penguin Prison

"Turn It Up" — Penguin Prison

Sounds Like:

#mondaymotivation doused in catchy guitar riffs

Why You Should Care:

Chris Glover has been one of the most reliably fun musicians to grace the synth-pop landscape in the last few years. In the time since his 2015 sophomore album Lost in New York, he’s been DJing venues worldwide and putting out remixes for artists like Freedom Fry, A R I Z O N A, and DC-area band Broke Royals. But he’s also recently put out the four-song EP Turn It Up. The title track is quintessential Penguin Prison - there are four-on-the-floor drums, and poppy guitar riffs abound - but it’s also one of positive reinforcement, encouraging you to push through regardless of the obstacles.


Live Review: Franz Ferdinand @ 9:30 Club - 4/11/2018

Live Review: Franz Ferdinand @ 9:30 Club - 4/11/2018

Scottish indie rockers Franz Ferdinand released their fifth album, Always Ascending, in February, fourteen years to the day after the release of their self-titled debut album and nearly five years after their previous record, 2013’s Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action. The album represents the band’s first recordings after two significant changes to their long-time lineup – the departure of founding guitarist Nick McCarthy, and the addition of keyboardist Julian Corrie (another new member, guitarist Dino Bardot, was added to the band after the recording was completed). Despite these significant changes, the album doesn’t seem like a jarring shift in direction so much as an evolution – the synths are a bit more prominent than in the past, but it still sounds unmistakably like a Franz Ferdinand record.


Episode 357: Loma - Loma

Episode 357: Loma - Loma

The best art happens when like-minded creatives get together with the simple goal of sharing and exploring a moment or feeling. For their debut album, Loma - the band made up of Shearwater's Jonathan Meiburg and Cross Record's Emily Cross and Dan Duszynski - headed to the Texas countryside to craft their shared vision and returned with one of the best albums of 2018 to date. Intimate, but sonically sprawling, Loma depends as much on the sounds of the locale where it was created as it does the grandiose soundscapes of Peter Gabriel and exacting folk of Fairport Convention.

We're here for it, and you should be too, so let's hang out for a few and talk about this remarkable first step for a band we hope will be around for years to come. 

PLUS! Motorcade loves that 80's sound ERGO we love Motorcade and have got a track to turn you on to them too!


Episode 356: Stain - Living Colour [Discologist]

Episode 356: Stain - Living Colour [Discologist]

Living Colour is one of the most important bands in music history. On their third release Stain, the black rock innovators dug deep into the history of their culture, the dysfunction of America, and the sounds of underground rock and roll and came back with violent, high-volume exploration of love, hate, identity, and deep humanity that resonates maybe even stronger in 2018 then it did twenty-five years ago.

Join Kevin and Marcus along with special guest Timothy Anne Burnside as they work through this intense, complicated masterpiece, it's legacy, the questions AND answers it poses,  much, much more. 


Episode 355: The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs - Wye Oak

Episode 355: The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs - Wye Oak

Over twelve years and six albums, Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack have proven time and again that their talents know no boundaries. Their new LP The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs, finds the experimentation that the duo has been pursuing over the past few years - both within the constraints of Wye Oak and through various solo projects (Flock of Dimes, El Vey, Dungeonesse)  - coalescing into a real evolution of the band that isn't just their strongest release to date, but one of the best albums of 2018. Join us as we try to suppress our fanaticism and explore what makes this record so singular, and such a milestone for one of indie rocks greatest bands.

PLUS! Phil Cook is BACK and here to help you through this life with the first track off of his upcoming LP,  People Are My Drug.


Episode 354: Ryan Walsh, author of 'Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968'

Episode 354: Ryan Walsh, author of 'Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968'

Creation doesn't happen in a vacuum, and in Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968, author (and Hallelujah The Hills frontman) Ryan Walsh explores every weird, fantastical nook and cranny of Boston that surrounded and seeped into Van Morrison's soul-bending masterpiece. We're sitting down with Walsh to discuss how he brought this story to life, the eternal value of having your mind blown, and a history of his hometown that has remained largely untold until now.

Tune in, drop out, and slip into the slipstream for a fascinating conversation about one of the all-time-great books about rock and roll and the forces that shape it.


Rogue Wave @ Black Cat - 3/31/2018

Rogue Wave @ Black Cat - 3/31/2018

Oakland, California-based Rogue Wave have been making their melodic indie rock for a decade and a half now, having released six albums of original songs and, most recently, an album of covers last year. But if only one record of their extensive output were destined to be considered a classic, it would almost certainly be their third release, 2007’s Asleep at Heaven’s Gate. It, and in particular the song “Lake Michigan,” was the record which brought the band to a wider audience and cemented their position as an important band in the indie rock scene of the last decade. But it was almost destined to become a lost classic, as the album went out of print and has been unavailable for several years. A new, remastered and expanded vinyl edition released by Slow Down Sounds in March corrects that. The band’s tour in support of that release brought them to the Black Cat on Saturday night.


Live Review: Lucius @ Lincoln Theatre - 3/31/2018

Live Review: Lucius @ Lincoln Theatre - 3/31/2018

The acoustic tour is almost an inevitability. Serving as a retrospective (see: Alanis Morrissette’s Jagged Little Pill Acoustic tour and Peter Frampton’s Acoustic Classics tour), artists will take it on after a one-off performance garners rave reviews (see: crowd demand to see an old favorite, or T-Pain post-Tiny Desk Concert). But still, the question begs, “Why go on an acoustic tour after only two albums?” Lucius’s live show has always featured an acoustic element, but only for one song before going back to their usual setup. Their debut album Wildewoman also toyed with Americana-tinged singer-songwriter music, like “Two of Us on the Run.” But after two albums, vocalists Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig have decided to take that fan favorite moment of their show and expand on it. Their third album Nudes features acoustic versions of select Lucius tracks from previous albums as well as a few covers, including a collaboration with Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters. It’s Lucius as fans have only received a sample of up to now, but at their sold-out Lincoln Theatre stop, they performed a fully-acoustic set that was nothing short of captivating from start to finish.


Episode 353: Golden Hour - Kacey Musgraves

Episode 353: Golden Hour - Kacey Musgraves

On Golden Hour, Kacey Musgraves is dialing back the humor and turning up the heart to deliver what many are saying is her best work to date. Is this latest collection of genre-defying, lane-shifting "country" songs the future of Musgraves, or just a stepping stone on the way to something better? We've assembled a panel of Musgraves superfans to find out.

PLUS! Jazz Bassist songwriter Nicole Saphos is classing up the #DCMusic joint and we've got a taste of her groovin' new EP Buzz and Bloom to get you hip.


Live Review: Son Lux @ Black Cat - 3/21/2018

Live Review: Son Lux @ Black Cat - 3/21/2018

Ryan Lott and company weren't going to let a bit of snow ruin the kick-off to their North American tour. Son Lux, comprised of Lott on keys/vocals, Rafiq Bhattia on guitars, and Ian Chang on drums, released their fourth album (and second as an official trio) Brighter Wounds in 2018. The album is an amalgamation of emotions and genres - fear, joy, and anguish all shine through their complicated, contemplative, and anthemic tracks. The snow caused other cancellations around town that night, but Son Lux insisted that the show would go on. Though opener Hanna Benn had to cancel, Son Lux alongside openers Sinkane provided a compelling night of music for those that stuck it out.


Episode 352: Everything's Fine - Jean Grae and Quelle Chris

Episode 352: Everything's Fine - Jean Grae and Quelle Chris

Jean Grae and Qeulle Chris are both musical forces to be reckoned with in their own rights. Put em together, and you get what is sure to be one of the best albums of 2018. A heady shot of high-concept outrage, hip-hop, and heart, Everything's Fine is an unmitigated masterpiece that will serve as a lightning rod for anyone who rages against the insanity of modern existence for years to come.

Marcus J. Moore, Senior Editor at Bandcamp and author of the upcoming book The Butterfly Effect: How Kendrick Lamar Ignited the Soul of Black America, joins us as we dive into this pièce de résist to find out if everything is, in fact, fine, and if it isn't, how are we gonna make it better?


Yamantaka // Sonic Titan @ Union Stage - 3/20/1018

Yamantaka // Sonic Titan @ Union Stage - 3/20/1018

It’s been a few years since we’ve heard from Canadian art rock collective Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, but that doesn’t mean that they haven’t been busy. After touring ended for their 2013 Polaris Music Prize-shortlisted album Uzu, the band holed up for a different kind of project, writing the score for the video game Severed in collaboration with another Canadian band, Pantayo. Only after that was it time to work on the next album. Dirt was finally released last Friday, and the band stopped in DC at Union Stage a few nights before to present it to a small crowd of people who braved the threat of bad weather to see the band play.


Episode 351: The Sounds of Washington, DC, Part 3

Episode 351: The Sounds of Washington, DC, Part 3

Known to most of the world as a political playground, Washington, D.C. is a city where decisions that shape the course of, not just American, but HUMAN history, are made every day. More than that though, D.C. is a city where cultures collide resulting in a creative class that produces some of the most compelling and diverse art in the world. Built on the legacy of jazz and go-go, D.C. is on the cusp of a creative explosion and bringing everything from hip-hop to indie rock into the fold.

In part three of our Sounds of Washington, DC series, we're joined by Blight Records label-head Benjamin Schurr and Mystery Friends guitarist Dave Mohl for a synth-heavy hang with some serious discussion about the DC scene thrown in for good measure.