Bob Boilen

Bob Boilen appears in the following:

Maps And Music: Explore Okkervil River's New Album

Monday, July 15, 2013

The next album from the Austin, Texas, band Okkervil River will tell the childhood tale of its lead singer and songwriter Will Sheff, a self-described awkward, nearsighted, asthmatic kid growing up the small town of Meriden, N.H. The music on The Silver Gymnasium, out on Sept. 3, is some of ...

Comment

First Watch: John Vanderslice, 'How The West Was Won'

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

"This is just an awesome, inspiring place to make music." Those are the words of Jake Wachtel, who directed this music video for John Vanderslice. And the place he's talking about, well, it's John's heart and soul really: It's a recording studio called Tiny Telephone located in San ...

Comment

The Best Concert-Finding Mobile Apps

Monday, July 08, 2013

A few months ago, I reviewed a handful of new apps that show you which bands or artists are playing in your area. Some of those apps were hit-or-miss, and some have made some improvements since my initial review. This week All Songs Considered co-host Robin Hilton and I ...

Comment

Skinny Lister: Tiny Desk Concert

Monday, July 08, 2013

I wish I could say I first found Skinny Lister in a pub some late evening while folks were dancing on the tables. I trust that that happens, but my unforgettable experience with this kick-ass English folk-punk band was at a hotel lobby in midday, in the midst of a ...

Comment

Watch The Music Video For Franz Ferdinand's 'Right Action'

Monday, July 08, 2013

The Scottish band Franz Ferdinand has teamed up again with director Jonas Odell for a music video for the song "Right Action." This new song, their best in years, is a jangly, odd-ball single that perfectly sums up all the reasons the quartet made it into our hearts in the ...

Comment

First Watch: Whispertown Shows Stunning 'Parallel' Worlds

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Merriam-Webster defines parallel as, "extending in the same direction, everywhere equidistant, and not meeting." The luscious and expansive song, "Parallel," from Morgan Nagler's indie project Whispertown and the accompanying music video both explore the term in magnificent ways. The video, made from creative commons videos on YouTube edited together by ...

Comment

Question Of The Week: Who Is The Most Intense Performer You've Ever Seen?

Monday, July 01, 2013

Last night I witnessed an intense and commanding performance. The band was Deafheaven and lead singer George Clarke kept me riveted. Here's what it looked like captured by my phone:

Now this is not a vocal style I gravitate toward, but something happened last night that I don't ...

Comment

First Listen: Anna Von Hausswolff, 'Ceremony'

Sunday, June 30, 2013

When you put on Anna Von Hausswolf's second album, Ceremony, everything around you changes — that's its first surprise. That ability to be instantly distinct is the mark of any great record; it's a vibe, and here that vibe is dramatic and stark and, as Ceremony progresses, surprising.

Last summer ...

Comment

Maya Beiser: Tiny Desk Concert

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Maya Beiser's Twitter handle — @CelloGoddess — says it all. She's a brilliant cellist with a stunning command of her instrument, and she's tightly tied to technology. Beiser takes the sound of her cello and runs it through loop pedals, effects and other electronics to make her instrument shimmer, ...

Comment

Hear The Pixies' First Original Song In Nine Years

Friday, June 28, 2013

A rousing comeback single is hard to pull off, especially when it's been nine years since you've released an original song. But from the first few seconds of Pixies singer Black Francis' half-spoken, half-shouted line in "Bagboy" — "I had a bad reaction to your public hobby writings / I ...

Comment

Watch The David Lynch-Directed Nine Inch Nails Video

Friday, June 28, 2013

Sixteen years after collaborating on the Lost Highway soundtrack, David Lynch and Trent Reznor are back together. The always eerie Lynch oversaw the video for Nine Inch Nails' first single in five years, "Came Back Haunted," which was posted early Friday morning.

The new Nine Inch Nails album, Hesitation Marks, ...

Comment

First Watch: Lowland Hum, 'War Is Over'

Friday, June 21, 2013

The power of music paired with imagery never ceases to amaze me. For this video by Lowland Hum, three unrelated sets of found footage connect in powerful ways to the song "War Is Over."

Daniel Levi Goans and Lauren Plank Goans are the husband and wife who make up Lowland ...

Comment

Billy Bragg: Tiny Desk Concert

Monday, June 17, 2013

OK Go helped us move the Tiny Desk from our old building to NPR's new headquarters, and The National performed the first full new-building Tiny Desk Concert we posted to the site, but Billy Bragg gave us the first full Tiny Desk Concert we actually ...

Comment

First Watch: Sonny And The Sunsets, 'Green Blood'

Thursday, June 13, 2013

I adore this song, and the video makes me love it all the more. "Green Blood" is from Sonny and the Sunsets' new album, Antenna to the Afterworld. It's a record filled with cinematic tales, told simply with guitars, bass and drums. And none of those tales are told ...

Comment

Rhye, Live In Concert

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

This is some of the sexiest music I've heard in years, with seductive sounds that are subtle and fragrant. Rhye is the music of Danish songwriter-producer Robin Hannibal and Toronto-born Mike Milosh, a man with an androgynous and mysterious voice. In fact, when the band's music first surfaced — ...

Comment

What's Your Favorite Concert Of The Year (So Far)?

Monday, June 03, 2013

Live music is better than ever. I've see a lot of it, so I can attest. So far this year I've seen 263 bands (at this point last year I'd seen 228, a 15-percent increase!), and I've got a ton of favorites. But none of the shows I've seen in ...

Comment

OK Go: A Tiny Desk Concert In 223 Takes

Monday, June 03, 2013

The Tiny Desk has moved, and OK Go has helped make it so.

Earlier this year, we needed to figure out the best possible way to move my Tiny Desk from NPR's old headquarters to our new facility just north of the U.S. Capitol. We wanted to go out ...

Comment

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: NPR Front Row

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

"No Need for a Leader," from Unknown Mortal Orchestra's recent album II, is the song that really drew me into the band's recent concert at Washington, D.C.'s Rock and Roll Hotel, recorded live on Feb. 27. A cocktail of riff-rock and Black Sabbath-style psychedelia, it's a tremendous introduction ...

Comment

James Blake, Live In Concert

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Each time I see James Blake and his band perform, I feel the extreme rush of hearing something for the very first time. The sound is sharp and visceral; it oddly vibrates the hair on my arms and, at moments of extreme bass, gets me feeling claustrophobic before the ...

Comment

Do You Have A Favorite Record Label?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Do you have a favorite record label? These days, it can be hard to tell. Truthfully, I barely know what artists record for which label in the digital age. I love the new William Tyler guitar record, the new Baths album and Sonny and the Sunsets, but ask ...

Comment