RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And time now for our music series, Heavy Rotation. Each month, NPR Music asks public radio personalities at member stations around the country to tell us about a new song they cannot stop playing. One of them shares their pick on MORNING EDITION. This month's selection brings us music from Bill Callahan's new album, "Dream River." The song, "Small Plane," was chosen by David Dye, host of the music show World Cafe, produced by WXPN.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG)

BILL CALLAHAN: (Singing) You used to take me up. I watched and learned how to fly.

DAVID DYE, BYLINE: Bill Callahan is a very hard-to-describe artist. He - and he would probably say that himself. He's been making albums - first as Smog - since 1990, and then under his own name since 2007. They are very low-key, and are centered around his amazing baritone voice, and lyrics that seem very internal, very almost matter-of-fact, but are loaded with meaning.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG)

CALLAHAN: (Singing) I like it when I take the controls from you, and when you take the control from me.

DYE: You know, the whole idea of you notice all the plants in the desert because they're so few of them? You notice all the words in a Bill Callahan song. Is this a song about an airplane? Probably not. This is a song about a love affair and the scope of a love affair, maybe, but then he breaks the narrative with that lyric about the river splitting. And he asks the question: Is this us?

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG)

CALLAHAN: (Singing) I always went wrong in the same place, where the river splits towards the sea. That couldn't possibly be you and me.

DYE: This new album just is an emotional bullet for me. And Bill has said about this album, that he made it to be the last album you listen to in a day, the one, after the end of a great day, you put this on. And he wanted nothing jarring on the record. And he certainly has succeeded.

MONTAGNE: That's David Dye from World Cafe, produced by WXPN, with Bill Callahan's "Small Plane." You can download tracks on Heavy Rotation at NPRMusic.org.

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