What We're Listening To

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What We're Listening To

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Death of a bachelor

Panic! at the Disco (Musical group), composer, performer.


MTV 2016 Music Video Award Nominated Artist - As attention grabbing as a flashing neon sign on the Las Vegas strip, Panic! At the Disco's fifth studio album, 2016's Death of a Bachelor, is a volcano-sized martini glass of emotive, theatrical, genre-bending pop. The first album recorded by the band since the departure of drummer Spencer Smith, who officially left in 2015, Death of a Bachelor is largely the vision of lead vocalist and founding member Brendon Urie. Inspired by Urie's 2013 marriage, as well as legendary vocalist Frank Sinatra's 100th birthday in 2015, Death of a Bachelor works as a loose concept album celebrating the end of Urie's party-hearty single life, and his creative maturation from emo-pop poster boy to self-styled rock sophisticate. Matt Collar


Cara, Alessia, 1996- composer, performer.


MTV 2016 Music Video Awards Nominated Artist - Following the success of her Four Pink Walls EP, Alessia Cara releases her highly anticipated debut album. It follows her journey from a girl writing songs in her room to her emergence as a blossoming star.


Drake, 1986- composer, performer.


MTV 2016 Music Video Awards Nominated Artist - One year after releasing two hit albums, including a collaboration with Future, Drake returns with one of the most talked-about albums of 2016.


Tiller, Bryson.


MTV 2016 Music Video Award Nominee - With his debut album Bryson Tiller has emerged from the streets of Louisville with his own brand of street soul that musically blends the urgency of trap music with the smoother sound of alternative R&B




With Telegram, edgy Icelandic woman-child Björk continues to push the post-rock envelope. Her new album consists mostly of remixed versions of songs from her second solo LP, Post. But unlike many remix albums, Telegram is no slapdash effort: Björk recorded new vocals for many of the songs and collaborated with a well-chosen array of artists from the avant-garde and electronic worlds.

Suggested by Lindsey

The OMD singles

Orchestral Manœuvres in the Dark (Musical group)


18 of OMD's choicest singles, from 1979's Electricity and their 1980 Top 10 UK hit Enola Gay through mid-'80s U.S. hits like So in Love; If You Leave; (Forever) Live and Die, and Dreaming all the way up to 1996's Walking on the Milky Way. That's 17 years of electrifying electro-pop from one of the architects of the genre.

Suggested by Lindsey

Some great reward

Depeche Mode (Musical group)


Some Great Reward is the fourth studio album by English electronic music band Depeche Mode, released in 1984. The album peaked at number five in the United Kingdom and at number fifty-four in the United States.

Suggested by Lindsey

Shostakovich, Glazunov.

Benedetti, Nicola, 1987- instrumentalist.


Sensational violinist Nicola Benedetti returns with a riveting recording of Shostakovich's monumental Violin Concerto (No. 1). This new recording follows Benedetti's chart-topping success with Bruch's Scottish Fantasy (Homecoming, 2014) and Korngold's Violin Concerto (Silver Violin, 2012). Programmed alongside Shostakovich's assertive, uncompromising masterpiece, is Glazunov's bold, colorful Violin Concerto. A late-Romantic work, the Glazunov is notable for its lyricism; Benedetti's generous, radiant performance is uplifting and finely crafted.

Suggested by Lindsey

Complete nocturnes

Field, John, 1782-1837.


American pianist Elizabeth Joy Roe follows-up her breath-taking Decca debut with an album showcasing the Father of the Nocturne. These half-formed sighs floating through the air, softly lamenting and dissolved in delicious melancholy Franz Liszt on John Fields Nocturnes. Following her critically acclaimed coupling of the Britten & Barber Piano Concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra, Elizabeth Joy Roe enlightens the extraordinary world of John Field.

Suggested by Lindsey

Newsies the musical : original Broadway cast recording

Menken, Alan.


Hot on the heels of the Broadway debut of Disney's Newsies, the Original Broadway Cast Recording is set for release, allowing the show's rabid fans across the country to experience what The New York Times calls 'terrific songs, buoyant melodies, rousing lyrics and a sweet, funny, emotionally satisfying book. A musical worth singing about!' The cast recording features the musical's score by eight-time Academy Award® winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Sister Act) and lyricist Jack Feldman, with book by four-time Tony Award® winner Harvey Fierstein (La Cage aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy). The stage version introduces brand-new songs while keeping many of the beloved songs from the film, including 'Carrying the Banner,' 'Seize the Day,' 'King of New York' and 'Santa Fe.' The iconic music is performed by the musical's original cast, headed by Jeremy Jordan.

Suggested by Lindsey

Build me up from bones

Jarosz, Sarah, composer, performer.


The third full-length by 22-year-old Sarah Jarosz reflects not only her growth as a songwriter but her willingness to push the boundaries of country, folk, and Americana to discover connections not necessarily considered before. Build Me Up from Bones reflects years of study in contemporary voice improvisation at the New England Conservatory of Music. She wrote nine of the 11 songs here, and chose two covers: Bob Dylan's "Simple Twist of Fate" and Joanna Newsom's "The Book of Right-On." Build Me Up from Bones separates itself from its promising predecessors because it is a songwriter's record. Jarosz lets her considerable instrumental prowess submit itself to serving the needs of her songs instead of merely adorning them with a precocious imagination. She can do this because she possesses not only self confidence in her material, but in her discernment, which is rare for a musician so young. ~ Thom Jurek

Suggested by Brian

Livin' on a high note

Staples, Mavis, performer.


Soul and gospel music legend Mavis Staples has created what may be the most joyful and uplifting record of her career. Twelve original songs were written exclusively for her by such acclaimed artists as M. Ward, Ben Harper, Neko Case, and more.

Suggested by Brian


Grimaud, Hélène, 1969- instrumentalist.


One of the world's most celebrated pianists, Helene Grimaud presents a haunting call to nature. This album is an experimental project combining her two greatest passions, music and nature.

Suggested by Brian

Leslie Odom Jr.

Odom, Leslie, Jr., 1981- performer.


Singer/actor Leslie Odom, Jr.'s eponymous debut is a set of graceful vocal jazz interpretations of show tunes and popular song. The album was originally self-released in 2014 with nine tracks. He reworked the song list after his success (and Tony Award) as Aaron Burr in the original Broadway cast of the blockbuster musical Hamilton, cutting three songs and replacing them with four new selections for a 2016 re-release with S-Curve. Gone are Simon & Garfunkel's "Song for the Asking," a tune from the musical Civil War, and the title track from the 1957 film Wild Is the Wind, originally recorded by Johnny Mathis. Additions include Willie Nelson's "The Party's Over" and the Kosma-Mercer classic "Autumn Leaves," an album highlight. ~ Marcy Donelson

Suggested by Brian


Rice, Damien.


O is the debut studio album by Irish musician Damien Rice, originally released on 1 February 2002, in Ireland and in the United Kingdom. The album is dedicated to Rice's friend Mic Christopher, who died of a head injury in 2001.

Suggested by Lindsey

Demon days

Gorillaz (Musical group)


The world's biggest virtual band is back with their highly anticipated second album 'Demon Days.' Danger Mouse and Blur's Damon Albarn create the music behind the scenes. Features the single 'Feel Good Inc.'

Suggested by Lindsey

If you're feeling sinister

Belle and Sebastian (Musical group)


If You're Feeling Sinister is the second album by Scottish indie pop band Belle and Sebastian, released on the independent label Jeepster Records in the United Kingdom and Matador Records in the United States

Suggested by Lindsey

The radio in my head live at 54 below

Tveit, Aaron.


Mixing Broadway with pop, childhood favorites with contemporary sounds, and superstar vocals, Tveit's cabaret debut was a huge success; both for the performer and fans, with tickets for the shows selling out within minutes of going on sale. Broadway embraced Aaron when he memorably created the role of Gabe in Next to Normal and Frank Abagnale, Jr. in Catch Me if You Can, in addition to his performances as Link Larkin in Hairspray and Fiyero in Wicked. Television audiences tune in regularly for the his USA Network series, "Graceland" and moviegoers were star-struck by his portrayal of Enjolras in "Les Misérables".

Suggested by Lindsey

Sun midnight sun

Watkins, Sara.


Sara Watkins throws a bone to her old Nickel Creek fans by opening up Sun Midnight Sun with "The Foothills," one of the album's two instrumental numbers. It's a zippy bluegrass tune, driven forward by Watkins' furious fiddle playing, and it's the closest she ever comes to the rustic sound of her former band. Watkins doesn't completely forsake the farm for the city on this solo release, but she does stretch her arms quite a bit, pulling in everything from quirky indie pop to West Coast folk-rock to harmony-drenched Americana. She nets a few big-name collaborators, too, with people like Jackson Browne, Benmont Tench, and Fiona Apple (who lays down some deep harmonies on a galloping, spaghetti western version of the Everly Brothers' "You're the One I Love") stopping by for a song or two. ~ Andrew Leahey

Suggested by Brian

Beautiful lies

Birdy, 1996- performer, composer.


Beautiful Lies brings a depth that pulls Birdy from Ingrid Michaelson territory and into a scene occupied by Lorde, Florence, and Lana. On the lush opener "Growing Pains," she incorporates East Asian-influenced melody into a swelling, powerful chorus that echoes the aforementioned Del Rey with a little Kate Bush sprinkled on top. That refreshing quirkiness is also present on the wistful "Silhouette," which includes a surprising flourish that wouldn't be out of place on a Joanna Newsom or Regina Spektor track. Beautiful Lies' most uplifting moments, such as the full-throttle "Keeping Your Head Up" and the urgent "Wild Horses," provide touches of elevation and empowerment, similar to much of Foxes' 2016 release, All I Need. There is also a nice balance to Beautiful Lies that creates a fuller, more satisfying listening experience. Midtempo breathers like "Shadow" and "Words" comfort, while the atmospherics on "Take My Heart" and "Save Yourself" haunt like ballads by Vaults or Bat for Lashes. While Birdy is indeed growing up (she was 19 at the time of release), nods to her origins are present on the piano ballads "Lost It All," the soothing "Unbroken," and the closing title track, a sparse beauty that ends Beautiful Lies with a kiss goodbye. "Turn out the light, there are no more surprises to come," she sings, as the album takes its last breath. With more life, richer texture, and an inspiring attitude, Beautiful Lies is Birdy's declaration that she is more than able to make her mark in the big leagues and join the ranks of the alternative pop pantheon. ~ Neil Z. Yeung

Suggested by Brian


Lang, K. D..

A true collaboration between three phenomenal, self-driven artists: avant-rock icon Neko Case, legendary musical nomad K.D. Lang, and indie folk star Laura Veirs. The women wrote all fourteen songs and shared lead vocals equally, sometimes even within the same track.

Suggested by Brian

All people

Franti, Michael, 1968-


Michael Franti's evolution from pissed-off punk to flip-flop-wearing jam band man is fascinating because he's come off as sincere on either end, and with his 2013 release, he continues to confuse and sooth in equal measure. Good news is, the confused feeling fades once the sun-drenched, feel-good vibes of the latter sink in, with "I'm Alive (Life Sounds Like)" offering the most immediate relief from the drudgery of the day, coming off as a sing-along, clap-along, or whistle-along triple threat for the nighttime campfire hippie set. The opening title track is the same vibe with pop and slickness carrying its message of unity to the people, while "11:59" uses jam band melodies and hip-hop beats to persuade listeners to join Franti's chant for peace. One more round of "Hallelujah" and All People would come off as a commune soundtrack never meant to be experienced alone, but with the smooth, miniature techno of "Long Ride Home" the album takes a winning turn for the personal and small. The punchy "Earth from Outer Space" with fellow peacemaker K'NAAN puts some big-bottomed reggae into the album's flow, then "Closer to You" builds from intimate to uplifting before the psychedelic relic "Wherever You Are" reminds listeners that the Beatles were dazzling during their acid days. Approaching the album in any cynical matter will ruin the whole show, and even if it seems some songs share the same sentiment to the point of redundancy, All People is about feeling good and hopeful. Split this collection of peace and sunshine down the middle for greatest effect. AllMusic - David Jeffries

What's inside : songs from Waitress

Bareilles, Sara, composer, performer.


Music from a 2016 Tony Award Nominee. With her fourth full-length album, Sara Bareilles offers up a taste of the music that she has created for an upcoming Broadway musical, which is based on the 2007 film. Included is the single She Used to Be Mine.

Suggested by Brian

School of rock: the musical : original cast recording

Lloyd Webber, Andrew, 1948- composer, producer.

eMusic hoopla

A 2016 Tony Award Nominee. Available from Sno-Isle Libraries hoopla.

Based on director Richard Linklater's 2003 hit comedy film of the same name, School of Rock: The Musical follows the misadventures of washed-up rock singer/guitarist and reluctant substitute teacher Dewey Finn (originally played by Jack Black) as he attempts to transform his uptight fifth-grade class into a lean, mean rock & roll machine. Directed by Laurence Connor (Les Misérables), produced by Grammy Award winner Rob Cavallo (Green Day, Phil Collins, Paramore), and featuring a book by Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey, Mary Poppins). AllMusic Review

Suggested by Brian

Hamilton : original Broadway cast recording

Miranda, Lin-Manuel, 1980- composer, librettist, lyricist, performer.


A 2016 Tony Award Nominee. Available to listen to today from Sno-Isle Libraries hoopla.

Suggested by Brian

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