Franz Ferdinand, Wolf Parade, Nada Surf : All Songs Considered Better dance music from Franz Ferdinand; Unreleased bonus tracks by Talking Heads; Canada's indie pop quartet Wolf Parade; Ancient China and Appalachia with Wu Man and more.

Franz Ferdinand, Wolf Parade, Nada Surf

Franz Ferdinand, Wolf Parade, Nada Surf

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Better dance music from Franz Ferdinand; Unreleased bonus tracks by Talking Heads; Canada's indie pop quartet Wolf Parade; Ancient China and Appalachia with Wu Man; Home recordings from Charlie Sexton; Pop jazz crooner Jamie Cullum; New York art rock trio Nada Surf; Sonic adventures with The Fiery Furnaces; Brash, bold rock from The Constantines.

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Franz Ferdinand, Wolf Parade, Nada Surf

You Could Have It So Much Better

You Could Have It So Much Better

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You Could Have It So Much Better

  • from You Could Have It So Much Better
  • by Franz Ferdinand

This is a follow-up to Franz Ferdinand's critically acclaimed, self-titled debut. Fortunately for fans, the Glasgow band hasn't suffered a sophomore slump. The new CD is a smart, artful and consistently rewarding collection of rock tunes, crafted with the same urgency and drive as their first album.

Apologies to the Queen Mary

Modern World

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Modern World

  • from Apologies to the Queen Mary
  • by Wolf Parade

Wolf Parade is a four-piece group from Canada. The band made its stage debut opening for Arcade Fire. Not long after, Wolf Parade released a self-produced EP that got them the attention of Modest Mouse singer/guitarist Issac Brock. Brock produced this CD, the band's first full-length album.

Wu Man and Friends

Night Rider

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Night Rider

  • from Wu Man and Friends
  • by Wu Man

Wu Man is a master of the pipa, a Chinese lute. She's collaborated with the Kronos Quartet, the New York Music Consort and Yo-Yo Ma. On this CD, she marries the ancient instrument's elegant sound with banjo, dulcimer and the bandura, a harp-like instrument from the Ukraine.

Cruel and Gentle Things

I Do the Same for You

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I'd Do the Same for You

  • Song: I Do the Same for You
  • from Cruel and Gentle Things
  • by Charlie Sexton

Guitarist, singer and songwriter Charlie Sexton is an Austin, TX native who released his first album in 1985 when he was just 16 years old. He quickly earned a reputation as a gifted guitarist and has played with artists like Bob Dylan, Ron Wood and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones. Though Sexton appears on CDs by a number of other artists and has produced work for Lucinda Williams and others, this is only his fourth solo CD in 20 years. It's a collection of intimate songs written and recorded at his home. Sexton also played all the instruments on most of the tracks.

Catching Tales

Get Your Way

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Get Your Way

  • from Catching Tales
  • by Jamie Cullum

British crooner Jamie Cullum had a huge hit in 2003 with the CD Twentysomething -- a mix of contempoary jazz and pop. For his follow-up, Cullum offers a mix of original songs and re-worked jazz standards like "I Only Have Eyes For You."

The Weight Is a Gift

Always Love

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Always Love

  • from The Weight Is a Gift
  • by Nada Surf

Nada Surf got its start in 1988 and was originally called "Because Because Because." A demo from the band wound up in the hands of Ric Ocasek of The Cars who liked it so much he agreed to produce the band's 1996 debut, High/Low. The album included the song "Popular," which was a hit on MTV. The band says its new CD "answers questions of lust and deception, greed and love, joy and regret and the rites of passage you weren't quite ready to pass through."

Rehearsing My Choir

Though Let's Be Fair

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Though Let's Be Fair

  • from Rehearsing My Choir
  • by The Fiery Furnaces

The Fiery Furnaces are a brother/sister duo originaly from Illinois. Matthew and Eleanor Friedberger's music is strange, unpredictable and entirely original. They were first featured on All Songs Considered episode 69.

Tournament of Hearts

Draw Us Lines

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Draw Us Lines

  • from Tournament of Hearts
  • by The Constantines

Every now and then an album from a completely unknown band comes our way and makes our jaws drop. The opening track to this CD left us agape. The Constantines make passionate, audacious rock with soul. The band from Canada includes Bryan Webb and Steve Lambke on vocals and guitar; bassist Dallas Wehrle; keyboardist Will Kidman; and drummer Doug McGregor.