Pod Picks for Nov. 15, 2012

November 14, 2012 

This week we recommend some new nerd rock from regrouped power-piano trio, a British songstress’ remix and another potential anthem from indie rock heroes which you can download (legally of course) or stream to your personal media device.

"Draw a Crowd" by Ben Folds Five

What’s been missing from the new millennia? The nerd/piano rock of Ben Folds Five, of course. Folds has been putting out a steady stream of solo music since his band went on hiatus in 1999, but there’s a geeky magic about this trio operating under the quintet moniker. Kicking off this track with lavish harmonies before Folds interrupts with a sly, “Damn.” There’s a fuzzy-funk to his piano and a tight energetic snap to the band’s sound that only comes from musicians reuniting to make a noise they all love. These guys are partying like it’s 1999.

"Anything Could Happen" (White Sea Remix) by Ellie Goulding

With the new production by White Sea, this lovely little pop song is transformed into a windstorm of sound and emotion. The British songstress’ sweet voice wraps around itself. Her coos and calls and lyrics wisp past, blast under and soar above fat electronic beats and an unpredictable cascade of percussion. It’s a strong movement into a dark place for this 25-year-old multi-instrumentalist – a place she should return to soon.

"Catatonic" by …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead

You have to love bands with multiple singers who also each switch between playing drums and guitars. You also have to love the name of this band from Austin, Texas. The band recorded its new album in Hanover, Germany and the hard German edges show – it’s a punk outburst about the desensitization of Americans. You may be thinking – not another song about the complacency of consumerism. But it’s not the message, it’s the delivery – the vocals are buried in the track and the track is carrying a pummeling train filled with hard rock. So get on board or get out of the way.

Derrick Bracey, for Weekly Surge

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