I had the opportunity to speak with the extremely humble and extremely talented Julien Baker about her recent album, Sprained Ankle. We covered everything from the album’s recording to spirituality and, naturally, we nerded out over David Bazan. Baker is a young songwriter with a lot to say, and luckily for all of us, it seems her career is only just beginning.
Ever wonder about the first time I heard Good Charlotte? Probably not, but you can get the story in this week’s episode of Encore. This week we look at why pop-punk no longer seems capable of writing a hook and can be painfully un-catchy at times, if we like “deluxe” albums, what albums we play most on vinyl, following up the Victory vs Spotify kerfuffle, Good Charlotte is back, we may get new The Starting Line music next year, ESPN shut down Grantland, and Conde Nast buying Pitchfork. Also a huge thank you to everyone that bought Encore t-shirts! Please send us some photos once you get yours. You’ll find show notes, ways to subscribe, and links to stream and/or downloaded this episode in the replies.
This week on Encore the pop-punk ladder explains to me what it means to be “posi.” I learn something new about all these youngins every day. This week’s topics include: Basketball is back, the Star Wars trailer was released and watched, some bands do “follow backs” on Twitter and that’s kinda weird, music being listening to exclusively on YouTube, advice for someone wanting to be a music producer, Spotify vs Victory Records vs Streetlight Manifesto, Adele, Google Play Podcasts, the new Apple TV, and favorite singles so far in 2015. Please note: This is the last week you can get a t-shirt if you want one! So pick one up. You’ll find show notes, ways to subscribe, and links to stream and/or downloaded this episode in the replies.
I’m not sure I’m used to typing Encore yet when introducing the new podcast episodes. However, here we are with episode 101. Just a quick reminder that there are 12 days left to pick up our limited run of Encore t-shirts on teespring and thank you to everyone that has ordered one so far. I can’t wait to see pictures of people wearing the new logo. This week’s episode has us discussing some football, talking a little about other podcasts we like to listen to, the idea of “self-titled” albums and if they should have a certain “feel” to them or not. Then we discuss Thrice’s Vheissu turning 10 and how much that album in particular meant to me, Fall Out Boy’s re-release of “Irresistible,” some Panic! at the Disco stuff, and other random things spliced in there. Note: This episode features special guest Drew Beringer as Thomas had some family commitments this week. You’ll find show notes, ways to subscribe, and links to stream and/or downloaded this episode in the replies.
We made it to the 100th episode of our podcast — now it’s time to shake things up. Today we’d like to introduce you to the new podcast: Encore. We’ve undergone a name change, a little re-brand, and we’re coming at you with a brand new special episode this week. This week’s topics look at the reasons we decided to make this change, the process we went through in picking our new name and logo, the announcement of a special teespring campaign for limited edition Encore t-shirts, a special segment with guest Drew Beringer (where we talk about new music, what Drew’s been up to, technology, and all kinds of stuff), and then — of course — we end talking about Jesse Lacey’s emotional speech and the thoughts of Brand New calling it a day. We think it’s an episode worthy of this milestone.
I’d just like to take a moment to thank each and every one of our listeners for going on this journey with us. When we started the podcast I had no idea what it would be or become. I had no idea that I would end up looking forward to recording an episode each week. I had no idea we’d be able to grow it to the audience we have. It sounded fun to try and it has ended up being one of the highlights of my entire career here on the website. So, from Thomas, Drew, and I — truly thank you. I hope you enjoy this episode, and maybe the next 100, as much as I know I will recording them. We’re very excited about the new launch, logo, and t-shirts — they’re only available for about three weeks, so act fast. And if you like our show, we’d love it if you could help spread the word. Maybe tell a friend about the podcast, post about it on Twitter or Facebook, share our new logo, recommend it on Overcast or rate it in iTunes. Any of those things really would go a long way in helping us continue to grow the show and reach even more music fans. If everything goes to plan you won’t need to re-subscribe to the podcast (the new version should show up in your podcast player of choice). You’ll find show notes, ways to subscribe, and links to stream and/or downloaded this episode in the replies.
Lead singer Paul Meany details the four-year process behind Mutemath’s upcoming fourth album Vitals, continually chasing the euphoric feeling of finishing a record, why the band has come full circle creatively after 10 years yet still pushes forward, and how writing songs that embody a spirit of life has helped him navigate as he’s grown older.
Today (August 25th, 2015), Bruce Springsteen’s Born to Run has officially been around for 40 years. It’s only had a huge influence on my life, though, for about seven. For a considerable amount of my personal musical growth, I was aware of “the Boss” and his work, but it didn’t really resonate with me on a personal level. Born to Run, along with Born in the USA, Greetings from Asbury Park, and The Rising, were among the first albums I ever put on my first iPod back in 2004, as I looted my parents’ CD collection looking for more tunes to stock my brand new 20 gigabyte device. But while I loved hearing the title track pop up on shuffle during runs, and while later songs like “My City in Ruins” always struck a chord with me, it took another four years for Born to Run to really become that album in my life.
It’s late April 2010, but the weather is so glorious outside that it feels like it’s already June. Rain was threatening earlier, but now, the sun is beating down overhead as I pack the final items into my car for the three-hour journey home. I’ve just finished my freshman year of college and closed out a great semester, and my roommate and I are saying our goodbyes in the parking lot of our dormitory, after having handed over the keys to the room we’d shared since September. It’s a bittersweet moment, but I’m happy to be headed home to the resort town where I grew up for some much needed vacation. I climb into the front seat of my ’98 Honda Civic, plug my iPod into the FM transmitter, and briefly debate which album to choose. I smile as my thumb finds Jack’s Mannequinʼs Everything in Transit — one of my favorite albums of all time, and a record that has been my definitive “summer soundtrack” since I first discovered it four years earlier. I press play and the sounds of “Holiday from Real” come coursing through my speakers. “Fuck yeah, we can live like this,” Andrew McMahon sings. I put on my aviators, shift the car into first gear, and drive. This is going to be the perfect summer, I think to myself as I pull away from my first year of college. I can feel it.
Last week, I got the chance to spend a half hour chatting with Seattle-based folk singer/songwriter, Noah Gundersen. Fresh off the release of his 2014 debut album, Ledges, and already gearing up for the release of the follow-up, Carry the Ghost, Gundersen spoke candidly about the collaborative nature of his new album, about keeping the intimacy of his earlier music alive whilst moving into full-band territory, about exploring difficult subjects like religion and existentialism in his lyrics, and about why we’ll probably be hearing yet another new album from him sooner rather than later.
Is Jason Isbell the best songwriter of his generation?
The former Drive-By Truckers member certainly made a case for the affirmative on Southeastern, his breakthrough solo LP from 2013. Southeastern was the kind of remarkable record that only grows in stature, importance, and personal impact over time. Written in the wake of Isbell getting sober and taking control of his life, Southeastern was at once both mournful and hopeful. Within those songs was a man with a suitcase full of doubts about himself, but also someone with the resilience to push forward and be better—at least with the helping hand of the person he loved most. “Home was a dream, one that I’d never seen, until you came along,” Isbell sang on “Cover Me Up,” Southeastern’s stirring mission statement, and the best song of the decade so far. He wrote it for Amanda Shires, the woman he married just months before Southeastern dropped, and the person he credits with saving him from the darkness.