Pod Picks for Sept. 19, 2013

September 16, 2013 

This week we recommend some all-star collaborations along with new genre-bending stuff that you can download (legally, of course) or stream to your iPod, iPad, iPhone or other personal media device.

“From Here to the Moon and Back” by Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton

This song was originally written by Parton for her 2012 dismal film, “Joyful Noise.” Thankfully, she reworked the song into a beautiful ode to earnestness with Nelson. On Nelson’s upcoming duets album, “To All the Girls…” he has teamed-up with 18 great female singers – some legends including Loretta Lynn and Emmylou Harris, some current hit-makers such as Carrie Underwood and Norah Jones and everything in between. He even does a duet with his daughter Paula Nelson. The 80-year-old Nelson continues to weave magic in his collaborations.

“Ragga Dub” by Bad Brains and Fishbone

Released last month, “Dub Rockers: Volume 1” is an album that collects a list of 10 reggae-relatable acts to showcase the history and evolution of reggae music. The bands included on the collection are genre-benders such as Slightly Stoopid, Inner Circle, Soja and John Brown's Body. This is a remix of an earlier Bad Brains’ song. They let go of their usual hardcore sound infused with metal and dub. They just go for a dub-step on downers. The swinging vocals of Fishbone’s Angelo Moore are echoed into oblivion. The whole thing makes you want to stomp and dance in slow-motion.

“Mercy” by TV on the Radio

Speaking of Bad Brains, TV on the Radio has become the adventurous descendants of that brand of try-anything music. This band fits in no pigeonhole, no genre. And instead of spinning into some nonconformist bubble where nothing created makes sense, these guys instead put out catchy songs that you can dance (or think) to. This track was released as a single and video for the new MySpace campaign (yes, MySpace). It’s kind of a new wave/in-your-face groove where distorted guitars and snap-clap drums fight for space as singer Tunde Adebimpe powerhouses through it all.

Derrick Bracey, for Weekly Surge

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