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New Music: Pixies, Volcano Choir, John Grant, More

Clockwise from upper left: Volcano Choir, Black Francis of Pixies, John Grant, Dessa
Courtesy of the artists
Clockwise from upper left: Volcano Choir, Black Francis of Pixies, John Grant, Dessa

This week on All Songs Considered, Bob Boilen teams up with NPR Music's Stephen Thompson to deliver a healthy dose of new music. The episode starts off strong when Stephen brings a bombshell from indie-rock legends Pixies to the table, in the form of the bratty new single "Bagboy." Even though the Pixies made "Bagboy" after bassist Kim Deal left the band, it's exactly the type of comeback single you'd want after a nine year hiatus.

Two of Bob's three picks are inspired by recent concert adventures. After seeing former Czars front-man John Grant live, Grant's album, Pale Green Ghosts, finally made sense, and he found a personal favorite in the song "GMF." He also recently witnessed a captivating performance by Deafheaven (lead singer George Clarke was an instant contender for the most intense performer Bob has ever seen), and picks the beauty-meets-chaos of monolithic opening cut "Dreamhouse," from the band's most recent album, Sunbather.

The husband and wife duo of Lowland Hum are the epitome of 21st century DIY: they recorded the new album Native Air, featuring the beautifully sparse "War Is Over," entirely at Daniel Levi Goans' parents' house in Greensboro and funded the project with a Kickstarter campaign.

Stephen offers the lushly beautiful "Byegone," from Volcano Choir, a project from Bon Iver's Justin Vernon. And "Fighting Fish" is a smart, powerful track from the album Parts of Speech, by Dessa, a female member of the hip-hop collective Doomtree.

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