KUER Music

Cardio for the Brain

Nov 21, 2014

Ted-Ed makes the case to dust off that accordion!

NPR Music

The office of KUER's General Manager, John Greene, is adjacent to KUER's admin space. Often times we'll be in the middle of a meeting and we'll hear what sounds like a pod of sickly whales or an orchestra of rusted space ships emanating from his office. "WFMU?" A grin and a nod.

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If you love James Mercer and The Shins like I do, you'll want to stream Flake Music's When You Land Here, It's Time To Return (thanks, NPR Music!) - this newly remastered, remixed and reissued album is essential listening for those who love The Shins' early sound. Monday's looking up!

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Filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles talks with NPR's Arun Rath about the new album by the London-based band The Heliocentrics. The Last Transmission features poetry by Van Peebles - a trippy intergalactic story about an astronaut sending out messages while exploring deep, deep space.

What happens when classic punk meets traditional West African music? Check out JuJu’s “Nightwalk," the latest track in The World's Global Hit series of hand-selected songs from Real World Records' 25th anniversary box set.

NPR Music

The perfect soundtrack for a cold, grey day - stream Bryan Ferry's new album, Avonmore, before it comes out next week on November 17.

NPR Music

I'm loving Oil Boom's song, "The Sneak Tip" - it's been stuck in my head ever since I heard it on Morning Edition earlier this week. Check out some other songs on heavy rotation at public radio stations across the country, including new music by Damien Rice, Lost Midas and Snake Rattle Rattle Snake.

Never heard of a Yaybahar? I hadn't either until I stumbled across this video on Studio 360's Facebook page. Yaybahar is an electric-free, totally acoustic instrument designed by Gorkem Sen. The vibrations from the strings are transmitted via the coiled springs to the frame drums. These vibrations are turned into sound by the membranes which echo back and forth on the coiled springs. This results in an unique listening experience with an hypnotic surround sound.

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Michel Martin speaks with Carlos Santana about his new memoir, The Universal Tone: Bringing My Story to Light. The book is dedicated to his mother, Josefina. "I think she probably prayed for me more than anyone to keep me from getting lost," he says. "I dedicated it to her because she deserves to know that her prayers worked. I am a good man."

NPR Music

NPR Music is featuring a stream of Damien Rice's new album, My Favourite Faded Fantasy - check it out before it's officially released on November 11.

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Happy Halloween! In the spirit of all things creepy and crawly, Robin Hilton with NPR's All Songs Considered brings us a playlist of some of the most disturbing songs suggested by listeners. "Turn off the lights, turn up the tunes and grab your binky, 'cause it's about to get super creepy."

The Campbell Apartment is a bar tucked away in New York's Grand Central Station. NPR's Field Recordings filmed London's Wild Beasts as they played "A Simple Beautiful Truth" in this former storage closet and jail.

NPR Music brings us downloads of songs that are currently being featured on the left side of the dial across the country, including music from Norwegian singer-songwriter Sondre Lerche, Dutch electronic duo Weval and Atlanta rapper Rome Fortune.

During a recent Facebook video Q-&-A, Bono responded to a question from Harriet Madeline Jobson, "Can you please never release an album on iTunes that automatically downloads to people's playlists ever again? It's really rude."

"Oops. I'm sorry about that. I had this beautiful idea and we got carried away with ourselves...Artists are prone to that kind of thing. Drop of megalomania, touch of generosity, dash of self-promotion and deep fear that these songs that we poured our life into the last few years might not be heard."

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Mundane Monday? Turn it around by streaming the new album by The Flaming Lips - a cover of The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band in its entirety. All proceeds from the album will help provide veterinary resources to needy pet owners. With A Little Help From My Fwends will be released on October 28, 2014.

Another lovely live performance at Bob Boilen's tiny desk - this time featuring Ryan Keberle on trombone, who's toured with Sufjan Stevens and recorded music for a Woody Allen film.

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Struggling to find a soundtrack that's conducive to concentration? Stephen Thompson from NPR's All Songs Considered brings us some suggestions, including music from: The Calm Blue Sea, Flying Lotus, Nathan Salsburg, Riceboy Sleeps and Angelo Badalamenti's Twin Peaks soundtrack.

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Did you hear Ari Shapiro's interview with Neil Young yesterday? I had no idea that "Long May You Run" was an ode to Young's first car, a hearse - Mort Hearseberg. "But I started - my first car was a hearse, and, you know, I used it to carry my band equipment around. And I had rollers in the back, and the amplifiers would slide in and out very easily just like the coffins used to.

NPR Music

Unless you're a particularly knowledgeable consumer of music, John Congleton isn't a name that's likely to ring any bells.  The thing is, you've probably been exposed to his work, just under a different name. Earl Sweatshirt?  Check.  St. Vincent? Check.  Erykah Badu, The Mountain Goats and Swans? Check, check and check.  Congleton is a producer, musician and engineer, and one of many unsung heroes who work behind the scenes to help create the music we love.

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Did you catch Fictionist during RadioWest today? They sounded awesome! Catch the full show here.

You might have noticed that it's fund drive season here at your favorite public radio station. We've narrowed down two music selections to offer throughout the drive - we'd love to say thanks for your pledge of $120 or $10/month with Kishi Bashi's "Lighght" or the new album by Jenny Lewis, "The Voyager." Thanks for supporting KUER, and enjoy the tunes!

First Listen: Foxygen, '...And Star Power'

Sep 29, 2014
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There's a lot of throwback music to be had these days, but few bands are approaching retro with the applomb of California's Foxygen.  Their latest record, ...And Star Power, ​is replete with fuzzy, lo-fi indie pop, and anchored with solid songwriting and a loose, unhurried feel.  You can give the full album a listen now at NPR's First Listen.

Has Pop Music Ever Hit Rock Bottom?

Sep 28, 2014
the artist

All Songs Considered's Stephen Thompson takes on an interesting question this week, from listener Josh in Chicago: 

"Paula Abdul had four No. 1 hits, spanning 1989-90.  One of them featured a rapping cartoon cat. Was that period the nadir of pop, pre-Nirvana?"  

Thompson doesn't quite agree with that sentiment; you can head over to the All Songs Considered blog to read his full response to the question.

NPR Music

NPR Classical hosts give you a classical music suggestion for your end-of-week listening pleasure. Classical newbie? Seasoned fan? Wherever you land along the classical music spectrum, you'll find some great Twitter-curated suggestions here.


Juxtapoz brings us some mostly unpublished photographs by Chris Stein of Debbie Harry and other "cool creatures" from the '70s and '80s New York music scene. Stein met Harry in the early 1970s - he later co-founded Blondie.

Jeff Tweedy's back - this time with his son Spencer on drums. They stopped by Bob Boilen's tiny desk recently for a live set. Simple and sweet, father and son. Tweedy's new album is called Sukierae.

NPR Music

I've loved Lucinda Williams for years - can't wait to stream her new album! Check it out in its entirety before it's released to the public next Tuesday.

Last week, The New Pornographers gathered at New York City's legendary Brill Building to rock out. Enjoy the show, courtesy of NPR Music.

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Did you catch the interview with Nick Cave during Morning Edition? Cave talked with NPR's Audie Cornish about his new documentary, why therapists ask better questions than journalists and finding "something where there's still a spark of discovery within the song."