Front Row

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: NPR Front Row

"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 to the trio, which began as a solo project for frontman Ruban Nielsen.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra has been touring all over the world, as it makes its way through Nielsen's home country of New Zealand, his adopted hometown of Portland, Ore., and many points in between. If the band comes your way, grab some earplugs and have a ball.

Credits

Producers: Bob Boilen, Denise DeBelius; Editor: Gabriella Garcia-Pardo; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Denise DeBelius, Gabriella Garcia-Pardo; Special Thanks: Rock and Roll Hotel; Executive Producers: Anya Grundmann, Keith Jenkins

[+] read more[-] less

More From Rock

Tiny Desk Concert with Mitski Lydia Thompson/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lydia Thompson/NPR

Tiny Desk

Mitski

Mitski's music is dark and even scary, but glimmers of beauty peek through.

The Internet performs live on KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic. Larry Hirshowitz/KCRW hide caption

itoggle caption Larry Hirshowitz/KCRW

Favorite Sessions

The Internet, 'Girl'

KCRW

Odd Future affiliates Syd Tha Kyd and Matt Martians perform the sleekest neo-soul this side of Sade.

Brandi Carlile performs at the 2015 Newport Folk Festival. Adam Kissick for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Adam Kissick for NPR

Newport Folk Festival

Brandi Carlile, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2015

Hear the folk-rock powerhouse perform candid, emotional songs from The Firewatcher's Daughter.

Listen Loading… 1:08:23
  • Playlist
  • Embed
    Embed <iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/429333796/434691259" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">

Briana Marela performs live in the KEXP studio. Morgen Schuler/KEXP hide caption

itoggle caption Morgen Schuler/KEXP

Favorite Sessions

Briana Marela, 'Surrender'

KEXP

The Seattle native folds a sense of childlike wonder into every note of her breezy performance.

Back To Top