Song Premiere: Sam Prekop, 'Weather Vane' : All Songs Considered The Sea And Cake frontman delves into shimmering synths and dance beats for his latest solo album.
NPR logo

10Weather Vane

  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Song Premiere: Sam Prekop, 'Weather Vane'

Song Premiere: Sam Prekop, 'Weather Vane'

Sam Prekop, longtime vocalist for The Sea & Cake, has gone and made a synth album. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of the artist

Sam Prekop, longtime vocalist for The Sea & Cake, has gone and made a synth album.

Courtesy of the artist

When I was a college radio music director in the early 2000s, there were few more important bands in my life than The Sea And Cake. I repped them hard back in the day, and that's because these Chicago renaissance men fit my (admittedly reductive) two criteria for greatness: a) sound like no one else, and b) keep it catchy. They nailed it on both accounts over the course of four albums for Thrill Jockey during the '90s, and are still doing their indie-jazz-kraut-pop thing to this day.

Sam Prekop, the lead singer for The Sea And Cake, is also doing his own very different thing these days, while still full of that experimental, yet entertaining spirit that his band embodied. For the past five years, he's been toying around with modular synthesizers, and his new album, The Republic, is full of arpeggiated melodies that remind me of another great Midwest band, Emeralds.

"Weather Vane" is the catchiest of the bunch, full of granulated rays of sunshine. When the shimmering synths peak midway through, Prekop throws the forward momentum into overdrive with a very un-Prekop-like beat. (I even checked my SoundCloud stream, thinking I might have accidentally pressed play on a different track.) More than 20 years into his career, the man is still keeping it interesting.

Prekop's The Republic is due out Feb. 24.

Purchase Featured Music

Buy Featured Music

The Republic
Sam Prekop
Thrill Jockey

Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?