Nakedly Examined Music is a podcast about making music: Why do we do it? Why do we do it the way we do it? Mark Linsenmayer interviews songwriters and composers famous and otherwise about specific recordings, which are presented in full on the podcast.
Guy has been a highly sought-after British producer/keyboardist since the early ’90s and is just now releasing his debut album, STET. We discuss “Mono No Aware” and “Dorian” from that album and “Unravel” from Björk’s Homogenic (1997). End song: “Let’s Go” by Frou Frou from Details (2002). Intro: “Crazy,” co-written with Seal from his debut album (1991).
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Ace bassist Mike started with punk legends MINUTEMEN in the early ’80s, broke into the majors with fireHOSE going into the ’90s, and was so beloved by the alternative music scene that his first solo album in ’94 was star-studded, with Eddie Vedder and Dave Grohl in the supporting tour. Mike has released three concept albums over the years and has collaborated on dozes of projects as well as backing Iggy Pop in the reformed Stooges.
We discuss “Bob Dylan Wrote Propaganda Songs” by Minutemen from What Makes a Man Start Fires (1983), “The Boilerman” from Contemplating the Engine Room (1997), the first, second, and last sections from Hyphenated-Man (2011), and “I Got Marty Feldman Eyes” from the Big Walnuts Yonder self-titled album (2017). We conclude by listening to “Yeah, We’re Gonna Learn to Fall” by Jumpstarted Plowhards from Round One (2019) featuring Todd Congelliere. Intro: “Walking the Cow” by fireHOSE from Flyin’ the Flannel (1991). For more, visit mikewatt.com.
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Barry started in ’77 playing keys with XTC and after two albums started his own band Shriekback in ’81, with whom he’s had 14 releases plus some solo albums. He’s known for inventive soundscapes placed over solid grooves and philosophical lyrics delivered in a low chant.
We discuss three Shriekback tunes: “Such, Such Are the Joys” from Why Anything? Why This? (2018), “Amaryllis in the Sprawl” from Glory Bumps (2007), and “Stimulate the Beaded Hamster”/”Pond Life” from Naked Apes and Pond Life (2000). We conclude by listening to a solo tune, “Virgin of the Ladder” by Barry Andrews from Contaminated Pop (2019). Intro: “Nemesis” from Oil & Gold (1985). For more, see shriekback.com.
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John founded the Brooklyn space-rock cooperative Oneida in the mid 90s and has put out 13 albums with them plus four as his solo project Man Forever and several others as collaborations or as Kid Millions.
We discuss two tracks by Man Forever from Play What They Want (2017): “You Were Never Here” and “Twin Torches” (feat. Laurie Anderson), then Oneida’s “All in Due Time” from Romance (2018), and listen to “Nine Years of Facing a Wall” by Fox Millions Duo from Biting Through (2019). Intro: “Sheets of Easter” by Oneida from Each One Teach One (2002). For more, see johnwilliamcolpitts.com.
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Wayne started in the late 70s, was on the first Dead or Alive Album, made his name as guitarist for The Sisters of Mercy’s first full album, then led The Mission UK from 1986 through 11 albums plus two solo albums and some collaborations.
We discuss “Wither on the Vine” from Songs of Candlelight & Razorblades (2014), then two Mission songs: “Phantom Pain” from Another Fall from Grace (2016) and “Tower of Strength” from Children (1987). We conclude by listening to a 2016 solo single “My Love Will Protect You.” Intro/outro: “Marian” by Sisters of Mercy from First and Last and Always (1985). For more, visit themissionuk.com.
Dave was the original guitarist for Yo La Tengo in the mid ’80s and left to lead The Schramms for six albums plus two solo albums while being an in-demand guitarist supporting artists like Freedy Johnston, Richard Buckner, Kate Jacobs, and Chris Stamey.
We discuss three Schramms songs, “Faith is a Dusty Word” from Omnidirectional (2019), “I’ll Believe” from 100 Questions (2000), and “Wild Innocence” from Dizzy Spell (1996), and conclude by listening to another Omnidirectional tune, “The Day When.” Intro: “The Way Some People Die” from Walk to Delphi (1989). For more info, see theschramms.com.
The Residents were formed in 1969 and have released around 50 albums of theatrical, experimental music with humor and humanity. They’re great to freak people out with. The band is anonymous; Homer is the head of their management arm, The Cryptic Corporation.
We discuss “Good Vibes” from Intruders (2019), “Blue Rosebuds,” from Duck Stab (1978) and the live Shadowland (2014), “Kiss of Flesh” from God in Three Persons (1988), and we listen to “If Only” from the Hardy Fox tribute album The Godfather of Odd (2019). Intro: “Fire (Santa Dog)” (1972) and outro: “The Simple Song” from Commercial Album (1980). For more, visit residents.com.
Alison was studying classical music when she joined Jason Narducy in 1994 in a duet that grew into two Verbow albums. She’s since recorded four solo cello albums and been a guest musician on over 100 albums, playing with Bob Mould, Superchunk, Anthrax, Broken Social Scene, etc.
We discuss “Become Zero” and “Vanished Star” from Become Zero (2016), then “Beautiful Friends” from Arriving Angels (2013), and listen to “For My Father” by Jarboe/Helen Money (2015). Intro: “New History” by Verbow from White Out (2000); closing music from “Political Song for Michael Jackson to Sing” from In Tune (2009). For more, see helenmoney.com.
Dan fronted Arizona cow-punk band Green on Red from 1979 to 1992, releasing seven albums and three EPs, and has since released four solo albums and some collaborations, growing increasingly literary, with two of his recent albums accompanied by novels.
We discuss two tracks from The Unfortunate Demise of Marlowe Billings (2018): “A Killer Now” and “Sky Harbor,” plus “La Passionaria” from Can o’ Worms (1995). We conclude by listening to “Who Knows” by The Slummers from Love of the Amateur (2010). Intro/outro: “Sixteen Ways” by Green on Red from Gas, Food, Lodging (1985). More at marlowebillings.com.
Elizabeth got her start in the psych-punk band Meowtain in Olympia, WA, emerged as Globelamp in 2011 with an EP, was briefly a touring member of Foxygen, and has put out three albums since 2014.
We discuss “Everything’s a Spiral” and listen to “Black Tar” from Romantic Cancer (2018), “Controversial/Confrontational” from The Orange Glow (2015), and “Warrior” from Star Dust (2014). Intro: “Hex” from Meowtain (2012). For more, see facebook.com/globelamp.
Phil founded New Zealand’s Split Enz with Tim Finn in 1972, recorded a seminal punk single with Suburban Reptiles, had an Australian #1 hit with The Swingers, then moved to solo and soundtrack work until 2006, since which he’s recorded five thickly textured solo albums including extensive one-man-band work.
We discuss the title track from Flightless Bird (2019), “Kite Flying Day” from Play It Strange (2014), and “Lamplight” by Schnell Fenster from The Sound of Trees (1988). We conclude by listening to “No One’s Best Man” from Novelty Act (2016). Intro/outro: “Sweet Dreams” by Split Enz from Second Thoughts (1976).
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Danny drummed with Chicago from its founding in 1967 through 1990 and wrote several songs for the band during the mid-late ’70s, often with David “Hawk” Wolinski.
We discuss “Little One” (and our intro music, “Take Me Back to Chicago”) from Chicago XI (1977), “Street Player” from Chicago 13 (1979), and “Devil’s Sweet” from Chicago VII (1974). End song: “The Real World” by California Transit Authority from Sacred Ground (2013). For more, see dannyseraphine.com.
Andrew has put out nine albums and a few EPs of piano-and-vocal-based pop using various band names since he was in high school in the late ’90s.
We discuss two of his Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness tracks: “Blue Vacation” from Upside Down Flowers (2018) and “Synesthesia” from The Pop Underground EP, then “Me and the Moon” by Something Corporate from North (2003), and conclude by listening to “Swim” by Jack’s Passenger from The Glass Passenger (2008). Opening music: “I Woke Up in a Car” by Something Corporate from Leaving through the Window (2002). For more, see andrewmcmahon.com.
Stevie has been recording pop tunes and/or wild experiments nearly continually since the late ’60s, with hundreds of albums, many of them compilations of home recordings.
We discuss “Pop Music” and “Take Back” from Afterlife (2019) and “The House Is Not in Order” by R. Stevie Moore and Alan Jenkins and the Kettering Vampires from The Embodiment of Progressive Ideals (2018) and conclude by listening to “I H8 Ppl” by R. Stevie Moore and Jason Falkner from Make It Be (2017). Bonus songs: “Pervert” from World War 4 (2016) and (at the end) “Goodbye, Piano” from Phonography (1976). Intro: “I Like to Stay Home” from Glad Music (1986). For more, see rsteviemoore.com.
Ian has released 10 studio albums and 3 EPs since 1993, starting as an Austin guitar hero and evolving into an eclectic, subtle Seattle songwriter who teaches songwriting courses.
We discuss “1000 Blackbirds” from Toronto (2018), the title track from Strange Days (2017), and “Abilene” from Luminaria (2004). End song: “Sad Affair” from El Sonido Nuevo (2011). Intro: “Satisfied” from Ian Moore (1993). For more, see ianmoore.com.
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Peter started in hardcore punk and used the blues to add depth for his band the Chrome Cranks, which released four studio albums and a live album in the mid-1990s, then another in 2012. Since then he’s been a music journalist and author, writing about the Ramones, the Band, and others, with occasional musical projects. We discuss his new single “Bomb Train Blues” (2018) with the band Young Skulls, Chrome Cranks tracks “Dark Room” from Chrome Cranks (1994), and “Rubber Rat” from Ain’t No Lies in Blood (2012). We conclude by listening to “Purge 4” from Purges by Peter Aaron and Brian Chase (2016). Intro/outro: “Hot Blonde Cocktail” by the Chrome Cranks from Love in Exile (1997). For more, see peteraaron.org.
Steve started producing tracks for dance clubs in 2007, changing his style in 2013 to slow down, carve out space for spontaneous performance, and develop “audio alchemy” over a few EPs and two recent albums.
We discuss “Equinosis” from the Mercurial EP (2018), “Superluminal Sound” from his Soul Science album (2016), and the title track from his Wanderlust EP (2013). We conclude by listening to “Origins” by Hedflux and Alex Delfont from Kin (2018). Opening/closing: “Music Is My Weapon” (2007). For more, see hedflux.com.
Portland-based singer-songwriter Rachel has released 10 albums of off-kilter, usually piano-based, lyric-heavy indie rock since the mid ’00s.
We discuss “Maker” and “God” (plus the intro “Gyre”) from Run Tiny Human (2018), “Taxidermy” from World so Sweet (2011), and “Ormolu” from Ormolu (2006), and also listen to “We’ll Have A” from Falimy (2014). For more, see racheltaylorbrown.com.
Sam has released sixteen albums of catchy, textured pop music since 1983.
We discuss “I Want to Be You” and “Tears in the Ground” from World on Sticks (2018), “How to Dream” from Fan Dance (2001), and conclude by listening to “When I’m Alone” from Push Any Button (2013). Intro: “Baby I Can’t Please You” from Martinis and Bikinis (1994). For more, visit samphillips.com.