September 2011

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Artist SpotlightsMusic

Hanging Out with The Drums

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Have you heard of The Drums? The Brooklyn indie guitar-pop group hit it big last year with their ear-worm “Let’s Go Surfing,” which showcased their light-hearted side — their first LP garnered the kind of critical acclaim most bands can only hope for.

Their second album, Portamento, is out now, and is already convincing listeners that the band is here to stay: they're developing a signature sound that sees them seamlessly blending their New Wave and reverb-drenched influences. The Drums' lead singer, Jonathan Pierce, took a moment to curate a playlist of some of his favorite songs and answer our five questions.

Five Questions with The Drums

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    Jonathan Pierce: Clara Rockmore. Jacob and I have a real soft spot for her. She mastered the Theremin and would often perform with a full orchestra with her in the center playing the instrument perfectly. She has some albums out that I would recommend trying to find.
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    JP: I feel like we all have access to every record really, with the internet and all. But we can pretend there is no internet for a minute. I'd like to listen to a bootleg compilation of all the Big In Japan stuff.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    JP: Joy Electric - Melody. This album is brilliant. Most people hate the sounds, but if you can get past the sounds and listen to the songs, you will find something great.
  4. We hope people are ______________ when they listen to our music.
    JP: Blissful and comforted.
  5. We were thinking about ______________ when we wrote music for the new album.
    JP: Ourselves.

Artist Spotlights

Five Questions with Spank Rock

Spank Rock Press photo

Two days ago we announced an Rdio-only stream of Baltimore MC Spank Rock’s new album, Everything is Boring and Everyone is a F***ing Liar. Today we’re taking an even closer look into Spank Rock's musical mind with our interview below.

Five Questions with Spank Rock

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    Spank Rock: Connan Mockasin.
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    SR: James Brown - Everybody’s Doing the Hustle and Dead on the Double Bump.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    SR: Prince.
  4. I hope people are ______________ when they listen to our music.
    SR: Engaged.
  5. I was thinking about ______________ when we wrote music for the new album.
    SR: Redefining what success means to me.

GiveawaysMusic

Matthew Sweet Pottery Giveaway

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To celebrate the release of Matthew Sweet’s new album Modern Art, Rdio is giving away a piece of his handmade pottery, pictured above. (you can see more of his pieces on Etsy, and read about his background as a potter on Spinner.)

To win, tweet @Rdio with the name of your favorite Matthew Sweet album + #SweetPottery. The contest's official rules are here.

And while you're at it, listen to the exclusive commentary version of his new album, only available on Rdio:

Label Spotlights

Wind-Up Records on Rdio

Wind-Up Records is the largest independently-owned record label in the world, with an impressive roster of successful releases from artists like EvanescenceCreed, and Seether. More recently they’ve launched the careers of the stirring alt-rock trio Civil Twilight and the emotive, piano-based rock quartet Thriving Ivory.

The label is a definite tastemaker in the alternative rock universe, and has put together a playlist for us of their latest “Must Listen Collection”.

Keep up with Wind-Up's artists by following them on Rdio and Twitter, and for all their latest news check out their official site.

EventsMusic

Pink Floyd’s Remastered Catalog comes to Rdio

PF Promo Photo 1 - credit Storm Thorgerson

Pink Floyd is arguably one of the most unique and iconic bands of all time, so it’s no wonder that diehards and casual fans alike were excited to hear that the band’s catalog was getting a major revamp. Together with their long-time label, EMI, Pink Floyd are today launching a massive reissue of their studio catalog, and they’re calling it “Why Pink Floyd...?” As if it needed to be asked.

For Rdio users this means access to remastered, deluxe versions of all 14 of the band’s studio albums, from 1967’s The Piper at the Gates of Dawn all the way to 1994’s The Division Bell. Every album will be included in the Discovery Boxset, or individually. For a taste, listen to the remastered version of the band’s classic Dark Side of the Moon in the playlist below.

MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday, September 27, 2011

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As can be expected in September, there are almost too many quality albums coming out to mention, but we’re doing our best to get through them. Much of what’s on this week's playlist seems to have been long in the works: it’s been over two years since Atlanta metalheads Mastodon released their last LP, while indie-pop gang Twin Sister are finally releasing their debut album. Also new this week are albums from Dum Dum Girls, Machine Head, Dan Mangan, and comedian Lewis Black. Don’t miss new singles from Rihanna, Nickelback, and T-Pain featuring Wiz Khalifa and Lily Allen.

  • Wilco - The Whole Love
    Alt-folk critical darlings Wilco release their eighth studio album this week, and it’s a slight return to their experimental side following two albums of more straightforward folk. Everyone wins!
  • Justice - Audio, Video, Disco EP
    It’s been five years since French electronic duo blew up with their massive single ”D.A.N.C.E.”. Later this year they’ll release their second full-length album, Audio, Video, Disco, but for now they’re keeping fans happy with an EP featuring the album's title track.
  • Blink 182 - Neighborhoods
    California trio Blink 182 return this week with their first full-length studio album in over eight years. Want to hear what pop-punk sounds like, all grown up? Check out Neighborhoods.
  • Spank Rock - Everything is Boring and Everyone is a F***ing Liar
    Baltimore MC Spank Rock mentioned that his second album will take more inspiration from pop and rock melodies, as well as the electronic and hip-hop he featured on his acclaimed debut. Find out just how much his sound has evolved on Everything is Boring and Everyone is a F***ing Liar, and listen to Spank Rock’s explanations on our exclusive Commentary Version of the album.
EventsGiveaways

Win a Pair of Tickets To See Ladytron at Seattle's Decibel Festival

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For nine years now, Seattle has played host to the Decibel Festival, one of the season's most anticipated international electronic music events. This year Rdio is sponsoring the festival, and we’re giving away tickets to see Ladytron, the British electronic outfit whose perfect blend of club beats and airy, IDM-inspired synths made them one of the premiere electronic acts of the last decade.

Ladytron will be headlining the special, Rdio-sponsored Sinthetic Showcase taking place on Thursday, September 29 at Seattle’s Showbox at 9PM, where they’ll be joined by artists including Geographer and DJ Depressed Buttons. Listen to the playlist below and follow Decibel Festival on Rdio to get acquainted with all the artists playing during this weekend-long celebration of electronic music.

Win Tickets to See Ladytron at Decibel Festival

Rdio and Decibel Festival are giving away four pairs of tickets to this Thursday's Ladytron show in Seattle. How to win? Put your name, email address and your favorite Ladytron song into the form below between now and September 28 at 12 p.m. and we'll randomly pick four winners. For more information, read the Official Rules.

 

Update: Thanks for playing! The entry form is now closed.

Exclusives

Exclusive: Listen to Spank Rock's New Album Now

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Naeem Juwan is Spank Rock, the Baltimore MC who lit the rap world aflame in 2006 when he dropped the decadent YoYoYoYoYoYo. After five years of relative silence, Juwan returns this week with his sophomore effort, Everything is Boring and Everyone is a F***ing Liar .

The album’s title alone is enough to spark curiosity, but so is the fact that he’s taken a new musical direction. In contrast to the club-based sound of Yo, Everything is Boring is more melodic, informed by his newfound interest in pop and rock music. The bulk of the album was produced by Boys Noize, who also manned the boards for first single, "Energy."

Listen to the Rdio exclusive commentary version of the album Everything is Boring and Everyone is a F***ing Liar (Commentary Version) now.

Artist Spotlights

Five Questions with Dominant Legs

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When San Francisco’s Ryan Lynch got laid off from his day job, he decided to spend his free time writing songs. Today, he and compatriot Hannah Hunt perform those songs under the name Dominant Legs. The two work together to turn Lynch’s unpolished pop songs into nuggets of 80s-indebted retro pop—which they’ve been recording since 2010—when they released a four-song EP titled Young at Love and Life.

This week, the band is releasing their debut full-length album, Invitation. The aptly-named LP is as danceable and catchy as their first release, and should hook any music fan upon first listen. Check it out now, and get to know the band by tuning into their “Favorite Songs Right Now” playlist and reading our interview with Lynch himself.

Five Questions with Dominant Legs

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    Ryan Lynch: My friends in the band Terry Malts have been heard, but definitely not enough.
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    RL: Bob Dylan - Blonde on Blonde.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    RL: The Jackson 5’s Greatest Hits and Stevie Wonder’s Talking Book
  4. We hope people are ______________ when they listen to our music.
    RL: Uplifted.
  5. We were thinking about ______________ when we wrote music for the new album.
    RL: how we would like to introduce ourselves in a way that was fun and exciting yet honest...
Artist SpotlightsMusic

Five Questions with The Civil Wars

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Joy Williams and John Paul White are The Civil Wars, a gorgeously haunting folk duo hailing from Nashville, Tennessee. The two met in 2008, at a music studio where they were both attending a songwriting session. Just three years later, following the success of an online-only EP of their live performances in a Georgia music club, The Civil Wars recently released Barton Hollow, their debut full-length of tenderly plucked ditties. We got in touch with them to ask our Five Questions, and to share a playlist of the songs that inspire them.

Five Questions with The Civil Wars

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    Joy Williams: Karen Dalton.
    John Paul White: Jeff Mangum.
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    Joy: St. Vincent - Strange Mercy.
    John Paul: The Band - The Band.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    Joy: The Carpenters.
    John Paul: Merle Haggard - 20 Greatest Hits.
  4. We hope people are ______________ when they listen to our music.
    Joy: Drinking whiskey.
    John Paul: Having relations.
  5. We were thinking about ______________ when we wrote music for the new album.
    Joy: Too many things to fit into one sentence.
    John Paul: World dominance.