New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More : All Songs Considered Hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton share this week's essential music, including songs that confront both the epidemic of sexual harassment in the media industry and the collision of guns and religion.
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New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

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New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Clockwise from upper left: Partner, Mary Gauthier, Siobhan Wilson, Pinegrove Courtesy of the artists hide caption

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Courtesy of the artists

This past week hasn't been easy. A relentless barrage of stories about sexual assault and harassment in the media industry, including the disclosure of unsettling harassment complaints within NPR's own newsroom, was capped by yet another horrific and senseless mass shooting at a church in rural Texas this past Sunday.

We can't begin to offer answers, explanations or solutions to everything that's happened. But we hope the time you spend with this week's show will give you a chance to pause, take a deep breath and find some solace.

We've got two songs that directly address both the seeming epidemic of harassment and the violence in Texas. The first comes from singer Mary Gauthier, who wrote her upcoming album, Rifles And Rosary Beads, as part of the SongwritingWith:Soldiers project, a non-profit group that pairs combat veterans with musicians to help tell the soldiers' stories. We play the title track to Rifles And Rosary Beads, a song about the collision of weapons, war and religion.

The second song is from Stella Donnelly, an Australian songwriter who confronts victim-blaming with the plaintive and deeply upsetting, "Boys Will Be Boys."

Also on this week's show: Cathartic rock from both the New Jersey-based band Pinegrove and the Canadian duo known as Partner; Glasgow singer-songwriter Siobhan Wilson's dark and brooding "There Are No Saints"; and NPR Music's Anastasia Tsioulcas joins us to talk about some of her favorite artists from this year's WOMEX, the annual global music conference and showcase, held this year in Katowice, Poland.

Songs Featured On This Episode

Cover for Intrepid - Single

Pinegrove

  • Song: Intrepid
  • from Intrepid - Single

On "Intrepid," the first single from Pinegrove's still-untitled forthcoming album, frontman Evan Stephens Hall contemplates space in relation to human connection. "'Intrepid' considers distance and the outer rim of the magnet's pull," he wrote in a press release, "how the size of the world can bring our personal relationships into focus."

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Cover for In Search Of Lost Time

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Partner

  • Song: Creature In The Sun
  • from In Search Of Lost Time

Partner is the guitar-driven duo of Josée Caron and Lucy Niles, two friends with a knack for playful rock. On "Creature In The Sun," they ponder the "secrets that lie within stillness."

Cover for There Are No Saints

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Siobhan Wilson

  • Song: Whatever Helps
  • from There Are No Saints

Scottish artist Siobhan Wilson, who floored NPR Music's Otis Hart upon first listen, offers a solution for coping with depression on her fuzzy single "Whatever Helps."

Cover for Yo Quiero Trabajar

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

La Dame Blanche

  • Song: Yo Quiero Trabajar
  • from Yo Quiero Trabajar

NPR Music's Anastasia Tsioulcas came back inspired from this year's WOMEX (World Music Expo) in Katowice, Poland. Among her favorite acts was Yaite Ramos Rodriguez, who performs as La Dame Blanche. She's got a talent for fusing her training as a classical flutist with elements of hip-hop and cumbia, as artfully demonstrated in "Yo Quiero Trabajar."

Cover for Rûwâhîne

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Ifriqiyya Electrique

  • Song: Stombali - Baba 'Alaia
  • from Rûwâhîne

Another memorable performance from WOMEX came via Ifriqiyya Electrique, a group of Tunisian and French musicians that turns the ritual ceremonies of descendants of sub-Saharan slaves who were brought to Tunisia centuries ago into all-encompassing moments. "Stombali - Baba'Alaia" is dark, growling, and cinematic.

Cover for Sun a shine (single)

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Elkin Robinson

  • Song: Sun a shine
  • from Sun a shine (single)

Colombian artist Elkin Robinson's breezy songs have a Creole, Caribbean twist — Anastasia sees him as an obvious choice for the summer festival circuit.

Cover for Rifles & Rosary Beads

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Mary Gauthier

  • Song: Rifles & Rosary Beads
  • from Rifles & Rosary Beads

New Orleans-based artist Mary Gauthier's message of love and acceptance feels especially pertinent on "Rifles and Rosary Beads," the title track from her forthcoming album. Gauthier co-wrote the song with an Iraq war veteran as part of the SongwritingWith:Soldiers initiative.

Cover for Thrush Metal

New Mix: Pinegrove, Mary Gauthier, Partner, Selections From WOMEX And More

Stella Donnelly

  • Song: Boys Will Be Boys
  • from Thrush Metal

Australian singer-songwriter Stella Donnelly does not mince words on the powerful "Boys Will Be Boys," addressing toxic masculinity and blame culture with steadfast strength.