New Mix: Sufjan Stevens, Gorillaz, Perfume Genius, More : All Songs Considered This week's essential mix includes a profoundly moving elegy to a lost sister from Hippo Campus, an electro-pop dance track from Sufjan Stevens' latest project, new music from Gorillaz and more.
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New Mix: Sufjan Stevens, Gorillaz, Perfume Genius, More

New Mix: Sufjan Stevens, Gorillaz, Perfume Genius, More

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Clockwise from upper left: Sufjan Stevens with James McCalister, Perfume Genius, Gorillaz, The Family Crest Courtesy of the artists hide caption

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It's late March, which can only mean one thing: Time for my beloved Kansas Jayhawks to take a premature nosedive in the NCAA men's basketball tournament! Accordingly, we begin this week's show with an annual tradition: me whining to Bob Boilen about my deep, dark, post-tournament depression. Bob says it's madness to keep putting myself through this, but I can't stop.

Even with the cloud of defeat hanging over us (me), I managed to heave myself off of the floor long enough to hit the play button on some phenomenal new music from Perfume Genius, who has followed 2014's Too Bright with his biggest, boldest sound yet (which is really saying something). I also found comfort in the drifting, ambient sounds of Teen Daze and a profoundly moving elegy to a lost sister from the band Hippo Campus.

World Cafe host Talia Schlanger joined us from the studios at WXPN in Philadelphia to try to cheer me up with an uplifting dance-pop anthem from Gorillaz, while Bob does his best to begin the healing with a cut from Sufjan Stevens, who is collaborating with composer Nico Muhly, The National's Bryce Dessner and drummer James McAlister for a galactic project they're calling Planetarium.

Also on the show: Kevin Morby's love letter to cities and the diverse people who live there; a big, joyful sing-along from The Family Crest; and a dark and gritty guitar rock cut from Brooklyn band Alexander F. -- Robin Hilton

Songs Featured On This Episode

Cover for No Shape

02Slip Away

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    Song
    Slip Away
    Album
    No Shape
    Artist
    Perfume Genius
    Label
    Matador
    Released
    2017

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Perfume Genius

  • Song: Slip Away
  • from No Shape

Mike Hadreas of Perfume Genius says "Slip Away" is both a love song and an anthem of protest. Written for his longtime boyfriend, Hadreas celebrates their love while remaining defiant of other people's prejudices. Perfume Genius' new record, No Shape, comes out May 5 on Matador.

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Song
No Shape
Album
No Shape
Artist
Perfume Genius
Label
Matador
Released
2017

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Cover for Planetarium

Sufjan Stevens, Nico Muhly, Bryce Dessner & James McAlister

  • Song: Saturn
  • from Planetarium

The Planetarium project is a collaboration between four brilliant musicians, with lyrics from Sufjan Stevens revolving around mythology, astrology, science, astronomy and the intricacies of human consciousness." The album Planetarium comes out June 9 on 4AD

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Cover for Humanz

20We Got The Power (feat. Jehnny Beth)

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    Song
    We Got The Power (feat. Jehnny Beth)
    Album
    Humanz
    Artist
    Gorillaz
    Label
    Parlophone
    Released
    2017

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Gorillaz

  • Song: We Got The Power (feat. Jehnny Beth)
  • from Humanz

Talia Schlanger of World Cafe brings us a new track from one of our favorite virtual bands. The high energy dance tune "We Got the Power," featuring Noel Gallagher of Oasis and Jehnny Beth of Savages, was one in a string a string of singles Gorillaz dropped on March 23. Damon Albarn's project will drop the 26-track Humanz — the band's first in seven years — April 28 on Warner Bros.

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Song
Humanz
Album
Humanz
Artist
Gorillaz
Label
Parlophone
Released
2017

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Cover for Prelude To War

The Family Crest

  • Song: Mirror Love
  • from Prelude To War

We just premiered the kaleidoscopic video for Tiny Desk alum The Family Crest's "Mirror Love," an '80s-flavored orchestral pop tune. The song deals with the notion of community engagement as a way of overcoming apathy. Near the finale, a saxophone breakdown takes hold, and soon the other instruments pile on, guiding us into the anthemic final chorus.

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Cover for Landmark

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Hippo Campus

  • Song: Monsoon
  • from Landmark

On its full-length debut Landmark, St. Paul-based Hippo Campus addresses the space between childhood and adulthood. For "Monsoon," songwriter and guitarist Nathan Stocker celebrates the life of his older sister, who died in a car crash years ago, while wrestling with the guilt of not feeling guilty.

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Song
Landmark
Album
Landmark
Artist
Hippo Campus
Label
Grand Jury
Released
2017

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Cover for City Songs

01Come to Me Now

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    Song
    Come to Me Now
    Album
    City Songs
    Artist
    Kevin Morby
    Label
    Dead Oceans
    Released
    2017

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Kevin Morby

  • Song: Come to Me Now
  • from City Songs

Kevin Morby's "Come to Me Now" captures the ethos of New York in the 1970s in a Lou Reed-y fashion. Beneath its talk-sung vocals lie rock drums, but also a 19th century pump organ which he spotted in the studio and spontaneously added. Morby considers his forthcoming album City Songs "a mixtape, a fever dream, a love letter dedicated to those cities I can't get rid of." It comes out June 16 on Dead Oceans.

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Song
City Songs
Album
City Songs
Artist
Kevin Morby
Label
Dead Oceans
Released
2017

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Cover for Themes For Dying Earth

02Dream City

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    Song
    Dream City
    Album
    Themes For Dying Earth
    Artist
    Teen Daze
    Label
    Flora
    Released
    2017

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Teen Daze

  • Song: Dream City
  • from Themes For Dying Earth

Teen Daze is the musical project of electronic artist Jamison Isaak. His latest album, Themes For Dying Earth, probes his anxieties over the fate of earth in an age of global warming and other environmental catastrophes.

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Song
Themes For Dying Earth
Album
Themes For Dying Earth
Artist
Teen Daze
Label
Flora
Released
2017

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Cover for Alexander F (S/T)

09You're Such a Kill

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    Song
    You're Such a Kill
    Album
    Alexander F (S/T)
    Artist
    Alexander F
    Label
    So Sensation Records
    Released
    2017

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Alexander F

  • Song: You're Such a Kill
  • from Alexander F (S/T)

While at a silent meditation retreat, Rubblebucket leader Alex Toth dreamed up a series of "Buddhist-themed experimental punk songs." To Toth, the raucous and crunchy "You're Such a Kill" feels "like pure id ... and subtly pokes fun at the despair of codependency." The self-titled album, co-produced by Steve Marion, came out earlier this year.

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Song
Alexander F (S/T)
Album
Alexander F (S/T)
Artist
Alexander F
Label
So Sensation Records
Released
2017

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