David Bazan, who led Pedro the Lion and dabbled in side projects like The Headphones and Undertow Orchestra, began his solo career in 2009 when he released "Curse Your Branches," which touched on personal themes like faith and family. With his latest album "Strange Negotiations," Bazan has changed his songwriting focus from personal struggles to larger, societal struggles including themes of the current political and social climate.
English electronic, post-dubstep producer and singer/songwriter James Blake has only been making music for a short time - less than two years, but he's already making waves in electronic music. With a goal of trying to create new sounds, he accomplishes that his background in piano and harmonics.
To me, Fleet Foxes are welcome visitors from a musically benevolent dimension, from a time when rock and folk and country and pot and hallucinogens and love and the wonders of the multi-track recording studio were coming together in a spirit of innocent and earnest exploration and expression.
Each Wednesday, Minnesota Monthly Senior Editor Dara Moskowitz-Grumdahl talks to The Current's Steve Seel and Jill Riley about what's new and noteworthy on the Minnesota food scene.
It's been nearly 10 years since Sam Beam donned the Iron and Wine moniker and released his debut "The Creek Drank The Cradle" in 2002. Since then, he's expanded the arrangements from his voice and an acoustic guitar to including a variety of other instruments, and he continues the trend on his newest album "Kiss Each Other Clean."
Duluth-based indie-rock mainstays Low have returned with their ninth full-length album, "C'mon," which features guest turns by Wilco guitarist Nels Cline as well as members of Trampled by Turtles and the Trans Siberian Orchestra (yes, you read that correctly).
Patton Oswalt might have missed his calling. Okay, he didn't really - if we had been denied his unbelievably hilarious, smart, biting comedy, it'd be a shame. But when he does his old-style "laid-back public radio announcer voice," you will bust a gut laughing at how on-the-money he is. Plus, he has a genuinely awesome taste in music - this despite his own "horrible tastes" he had growing up in suburban Virginia, "going to see Genesis play stadium shows."
With the fifth album from Vancouver's The New Pornographers, Together, can we still call a band that's probably now more defined as a primary vehicle for most of its members a "supergroup"?
The Los Angeles-based post-grunge Flogging Molly would best be described as a mix of traditional Irish music and spunky punk rock. Dave King formed the band and they got their start playing at the L.A. bar Molly Malones.
The Constitution: it's the framework for our government, and it formally established our founding laws and beliefs. But is the constitution "sacred document" or "malleable work-in-progress"? We'll dispel some of the myths, and try to turn down the rhetoric about our much misunderstood document.
If Brian Wilson wanted the Beach Boys' "Smile" to be a "teenage symphony to God," it may be that Sam Beam has managed to write such a symphony for grown-ups on the latest offering from Iron and Wine, "Kiss Each Other Clean."
Steve Seel will talk with MPR News' Chris Worthington and Bob Collins about Juan Williams, objectivity, opinion, Keith Olbermann and how different generations get and interpret their news. If Walter Cronkite felt he could venture into commentary, why can't today's anchors and journalists?
The band Superchunk stopped by The Current studios for a live performance and chat with the Morning Show team.
If you haven't heard of Canada's Hollerado yet, you will soon. Having already been hand-picked by Jack White to open for The Dead Weather as well as opening for esteemed acts like Andrew WK and Malajube, they also scored big with a viral internet video for their song "Americanarama" depicting 24 actors stacked in a grid dancing out specific patterns, done in all one take with just $4,000. It goes to show you that this Canadian outfit is a resourceful bunch, ready to expand their creativity to a wider audience.
Back in 2008, when Adele last joined us in our studio, she was a 20-year-old with a strong debut album and a number one hit in England. Two years later, she has accomplished wonders. Her soulful blues vocal style won her a Grammy in 2009 for Best New Artist as well as a number eleven slot on the Billboard 200.