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First Listen archive

Erin McKeown's Manifestra comes out Jan. 15, 2013.

Read First Listen: Erin McKeown, 'Manifestra'

December 30, 2012 – As politically pointed as it gets, Manifestra doesn't lose sight of the singer's springy side.

Ranchera singer Lila Downs appears on the Hecho En Mexico soundtrack.

Read First Listen: Original Soundtrack, 'Hecho En Mexico'

December 30, 2012 – The documentary film features a mix of traditional sounds and modern Mexican alternative artists.

Detail from the Berberian Sound Studio poster. Broadcast was working on the soundtrack music for the film when singer Trish Keenan died in early 2011.

Read First Listen: Broadcast, 'Berberian Sound Studio'

December 30, 2012 – Broadcast's Trish Keenan died two years ago, but she left behind this gorgeous tapestry of sound.

Sufjan Stevens released Silver & Gold Nov. 13.

Read First Listen: Sufjan Stevens, 'Silver & Gold'

November 25, 2012 – In nearly three hours of music, impeccable grace never strays far from playful ridiculousness.

Tracey Thorn's album Tinsel and Lights was released Oct. 30.

Read First Listen: Tracey Thorn, 'Tinsel And Lights'

November 25, 2012 – The Everything but the Girl singer's holiday album is as warmly rendered as it is bittersweet.

KEM's first holiday album, What Christmas Means, was released Oct. 16.

Read First Listen: KEM, 'What Christmas Means'

November 25, 2012 – The R&B singer's album — half standards, half originals, all love songs — goes down smooth.

Tim Hecker and Daniel Lopatin's new album, Instrumental Tourist, comes out Nov. 20.

Read First Listen: Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin, 'Instrumental Tourist'

November 11, 2012 – Few performers manipulate sound quite as aggressively or effectively as these electronic musicians.

The Evens' new album, The Odds, comes out Nov. 20.

Read First Listen: The Evens, 'The Odds'

November 11, 2012 – On their third album, Ian MacKaye and Amy Farina confront what it means to be a grown-up punk.

Jozef Van Wissem and Jim Jarmusch's new album, The Mystery of Heaven, comes out Nov. 13.

Read First Listen: Jozef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch, 'The Mystery Of Heaven'

November 4, 2012 – Van Wissem plays the lute; Jarmusch is a filmmaker. Together, they make a rich, cinematic sound.

Holly Herndon's debut album, Movement, comes out Nov. 12.

Read First Listen: Holly Herndon, 'Movement'

November 4, 2012 – Herndon renders 1s and 0s in ways that feel as personal and internal as heartbeats on her debut.

Andy Stott's new album, Luxury Problems, comes out Nov. 6.

Read First Listen: Andy Stott, 'Luxury Problems'

October 28, 2012 – The British electronic producer mixes high, heavenly voices with deep, throbbing bass vibrations.

Bomba Estéreo's new album, Elegancia Tropical, comes out Nov. 6.

Read First Listen: Bomba Estéreo, 'Elegancia Tropical'

October 28, 2012 – The celebrated Colombian band returns with a surprisingly nuanced and textured collection of songs.

Cody ChesnuTT's new album, Landing on a Hundred, comes out Oct. 23.

Read First Listen: Cody ChesnuTT, 'Landing On A Hundred'

October 21, 2012 – ChesnuTT's new album is a dynamite collection of timeless, celebratory, searching soul music.

Charles Mingus' The Jazz Workshop Concerts, 1964-65 comes out Oct. 30.

Read First Listen: Charles Mingus, 'The Jazz Workshop Concerts, 1964-65'

October 21, 2012 – A box set of live recordings, some previously unreleased, shows a jazz great turning life into art.

Cafe Tacvba's new album, El Objeto Antes Llamado Disco, comes out Oct. 22.

Read First Listen: Café Tacvba, 'El Objeto Antes Llamado Disco'

October 18, 2012 – Two decades into Café Tacvba's career, the band still sounds as humble and refreshing as ever.

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