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.
Laura Davis-Chanin of the Phi Fic podcast drummed in the late ’70s NYC punk band The Student Teachers and has written about it in The Girl in the Back: A Female Drummer’s Life with Bowie, Blondie, and the ’70s Rock Scene (2018).
We discuss the book and listen to songs from Invitation To… The Student Teachers (2013): “Looks,” “Christmas Weather,” plus as an intro, “Channel 13.” Laura also co-wrote lyrics to two Blondie songs: we hear some of “Angels in the Balcony” from Autoamerican (1980) plus “Slow Motion” from Eat to the Beat (1979).
Christopher Millar played as Rat Scabies for about two decades with first-generation British punk band The Damned starting in 1976, and has now released his debut solo album, P.H.D. (Prison, Hospital, Debt).
We discuss “Dazy Bones” and “Rat’s Opus” from that 2018 album, then look back to The Damned’s “History of the World (Part One)” from The Black Album (1980), then end by listening to Rat’s cover of the Kraftwerk classic “Autobahn” with The Germans from Do Not Fuck With the Germans (2003). Intro/outro: “Love Song” by The Damned from Machine Gun Etiquette (1979). For more, visit ratscabies.com.
Byron is an in-demand session/touring bassist whose main band since 2004 has been NYC’s Ollabelle. We talk about “Losing You” and “Gypsy Wind” from his debut solo album, Disappearing Man (2018), plus “Gone Today” by Ollabelle from Riverside Battle Songs (2007), and finish with”Horizontal Man” by Lost Leaders from their 2014 eponymous album. Intro: “Heaven’s Pearls” by Levon Helm from Electric Dirt (2009). For more, visit byronisaacs.com.
Lindsay has released four albums and an EP of depressed alternative rock under the band name Gretchen’s Wheel since 2015, providing a modern model of accessible yet professional DIY recording.
We focus on Black Box Theory, covering “Untethered,” “Tatyana,” and “Plans,” plus “Save the Day” from Sad Scientist (2017). Intro: “Total Loss” from Fragile State (2015). For more, visit gretchenswheel.com.
Nashville singer/songwriter/fiction-writer Rod laid sheet rock for years before releasing his first album in 2001; he has now released ten albums of vivid Americana.
We focus on his new double album Out Past the Wires, discussing “Take Home Pay” and “Date of Grace” (with intro/outro from “Be My Bonnie”), then look back to “Rust Belt Fields” from Welding Burns (2011) and finally listen to “You’re Not Missing Anything” from Hang Your Hopes on a Crooked Nail (2014). More at rodpicott.com.
Prateek was named artist of the year for 2016 by MTV India, and has been releasing tasteful, lyrics-focused songs about relationships in English and Hindi since 2011.
We focus on his 2015 album Tokens and Charms: “Go,” “Oh Love,” and “Flames,” plus the 2017 single “Tum Jab Pas,” and the title track from his brand new EP cold/mess. Intro/outro: “Raat Raazi” (2013). For more, visit prateekkuhad.com.
Tara has long been building her heavy metal guitar skills, but has only recently gone public, building a huge social media following and now releasing Evil Enough, an album featuring musicians who’ve played with Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Yngwie Malmsteen, etc.
Shawn started as a ’60s folk singer, went to England to cavort with the greats of classic rock, and emerged in the ’70s with ten albums of eclectic, progressive music with shamanic lyrics delivered with a twang.
We discuss “Woman” from Second Contribution (1971), “A Christmas Song” from Faces (1972) and “Mr. President” from Furthermore (1974), then play two songs from his new album, Continuance: “C’mon Round” and “Bach to the Fusion.” Opening music: “I’m a Loner (I’m a Drifter)” from I’m a Loner (1964). For more, see shawnphillips.com.
Phil was a core member of Roxy Music through the ’70s and early ’80s, has released 10+ solo albums since 1975 and many collaborations—appearing on around 80 albums in total—with an experimental yet tasteful guitar that’s sometimes mistaken for a keyboard or something else.
We discuss “No Church in the Wild” from The Sound of Blue (2015), which is a cover of the song by Jay Z and Kanye West based around a sample from Phil’s song “K-Scope” from the album of that name (1970). We then talk about “Wish You Well” from 6:00pm (2004) and the title track from Diamond Head (1975). Finally we listen to “Magdalena” from Live in Japan (2017). Intro music: “Over You” by Roxy Music from Flesh & Blood (1980).
For more, visit manzanera.com.
Nick has released 22 albums as The Bevis Frond since 1986, alternating jangle-pop with psychedelia and power-guitar rock… pretty much anything ’60s-flavored.
We discuss “Longships” from Example 22 (2015), “Opthalmic Microdots” from White Numbers (2013), and “Coming Round” from London Stone (1992). We conclude by listening to “Portobello Man” from Valedictory Songs (2000). Intro: “He’d Be a Diamond” from New River Head (1991). Hear more at bevisfrond.bandcamp.com.
As bassist/co-frontman for XTC, he released around 14 albums between 1978–2000, and for the first time since, he has a new release, the Great Aspirations EP now under the name TC&I.
We discuss “Scatter Me” and “Kenny” from this 2017 release, plus “Say It” an 2002 XTC song, and conclude by listening to “Where Did the Ordinary People Go?” the final 2005 XTC single. Intro music: “Making Plans for Nigel” from Drums and Wires (1979). For more, see facebook.com/tcandimusic.
David J. Haskins gained fame with Bauhaus in the late ’70s/early ’80s, gained more fame with Love and Rockets, and has since 1983 released around ten albums plus several EPs and other collaborations.
We discuss “The Auteur (Redux / Reprise)” a 2018 single (featuring Rose McGowan and Emily Jane White), “Vaudeville Ghost Light” from Carpe Noctem (2016), credited to M.C. Nightshade and the Theatre Bizarre Orchestra, and “Eulogy for Jeff Buckley” from Not Long for This World (2011). End song: “The Day the David Bowie Died” from Vagabond Songs (2017). Opening song: “No New Tale to Tell” by Love and Rockets from Earth, Sun, Moon (1987). For more, see davidjonline.com.
Sarah has recorded five solo albums since 1997, starting with traditional folk songs, sometimes guitar instrumentals, and now focusing on originals that mix British and American folk in a style influenced by Joni Mitchell, among others. She has lately pared back her songwriting to ensure that every note counts.
We discuss the title track and “The Silence above Us” from If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous (2018) and “Hardwick’s Lofty Towers” from The Plum Tree and the Rose (2012). Closing song: “Yellowstone” from Walking into White (2015). Opening instrumental: “The Day of Wrath, That Day,” also from the new album. For more, see sarahmcquaid.com.
Aaron was born into show business, staring young in L.A. in the early ’00s with All Hours, then went solo, moved to New York, became an actor, and has now released his first album in seven years, Wry Observer.
We discuss the title track from that album plus “Brooklyn at Dawn” (the intro music is from that too: “The Last to Die in Battle”). Then we look back to “Box Office Stud” by All Hours (2004) and finish by listening to “Bright Lights” from the album Aaron David Gleason (2010). Learn more at aarondavidgleason.com.
Amy has recorded nine albums of emotionally stark but often artistically decorated original folk music, punctuated by cover tunes like the opening music here, Townes Van Zandt’s “Buckskin Stallion Blues,” which appeared in the film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
We discuss “Mouth to Mouth” from The Autopilot Knows You Best (2000), “The Nightjar’s Blues” from The Cimarron Banks (2010), and “Natural Arc” from Songs for Creeps (2006), which also contains our closer, “I’m A-Gone Down to the Greenfields.” Visit amyannelle.bandcamp.com.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/traffic.libsyn.com/partiallyexaminedlife/NEM_ep_069_2-1-18.mp3Podcast (nakedly-examined-music-podcast): Play in new window | Download (Duration: 36:51 — 33.9MB)On NEM#15, Craig introduced us to his songwriting style: How a hardcore aesthetic informs even his most syntho creations, and how whimsicality and beauty can coexist harmoniously. Craig has since then released the Adult Desire album, and returns to talk to us about the song “Safe Home/Fadeland” and about Continue Reading …
Billy now does press for many of his idols, but began as a drummer in music school and started Ant-Bee in the late ’80s, as a Zappa-esque improv live act and as a Beach Boys–psychedelic solo recording effort. He’s released four albums, increasingly featuring his clients.
We discuss two tracks from Electronic Church Muzik (2011): “Flutter-Bye, Butter-Flye” (feat. Michael Bruce) and “The Language of the Body” (feat. poetry by Gong’s Daevid Allen and layering on parts by Zappa alums). We then look back to two tracks from With My Favorite “Vegetables” & Other Bizarre Muzik (1994): “The Girl with the Stars in Her Hair” and a Beach Boys cover, “Do You Like Worms?” Opening/closing music: “Eating Chocolate Cake (In the Bath)” from Pure Electric Honey (1990). For more info, see ant-bee.com and glassonyonpr.com.
RHEMA as a six-piece band produced an album called Voyage of the Rock Aliens that accompanied their appearance in the film of that name. The band then broke up, but songwriters Marc and Jeffrey continued to work together on various projects, and have finally now produced a proper album as RHEMA called Shine, drawing on their ’80s roots but incorporating modern electronic music textures.
We discuss “Rebel Flame” and “The World Is So Small” and listen to “Life in Front of You” from that new album, and discuss one old song, “Combine Man,” specifically a 2009 Marc Jackson remix. Intro: “21st Century.” For more information, see rhemaband.com.
Arrica has released five albums and three EPs of floaty, poetic, California rock since 2006.
We discuss “Whole Lotta Lows” and “X-Ray Eyes” from Low as the Moon (2017) and “When the Clouds Hang This Low” from Let Alone Sea (2011). We conclude by listening to “On and On” by Dear County from Low Country (2016). Intro music: “Sail Away” from Antebellum (2010). For more, visit arricarose.com.
Jherek started off as bassist in the late ’90s for the Seattle art rock bands The Dead Science and Parenthetical Girls, and has released about five solo albums (and other things) since 2006, the last two being full-on orchestral works.
We discuss the title track from Cistern (2016), “The Nest” featuring Mirah from Composed (2012), and “Blackstar,” featuring Anna Calvi, from a David Bowie tribute with Amanda Palmer called Strung Out in Heaven (2016). We conclude by listening to “Eyes” feat. David Byrne, also from Composed. Opening/closing music: “Automatism” from Cistern. For more info, see jherekbischoff.com.