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The Transfiguration Of Todd

Friday, April 1

It’s a new month and that means new music. We’ll run down new releases from Cheap Trick, Bob Mould, Robert Pollard and others with special attention shed on City Sun Eater in the River of Light, the latest from New York’s Woods. The band has released nine LPs to date but this new release spotlights a new sense of melodicism that calls to mind psychedelic sounds, Ethiopian jazz and classic rock from the 1970s.

Plus selections from The Wilderness, the new release by Explosions in the Sky, a band perhaps best known for its soundtrack work on Friday Night Lights.

  Saturday, April 2

Are You Serious is the latest release by Andrew Bird. For this recording, the veteran singer-songwriter set out to make an album that differed from his previous releases and spoke to personal matters in a more direct fashion. Bird considers the record his most meticulously-crafted to date and is perhaps most vocal in his enthusiasm for a duet between he and Fiona Apple. We’ll hear selections from this release on this episode of the show as well music from the latest effort by Parker Milsap, The Very Last Day.

Monday, April 4

Released in 1976, Todd Rundgren’s Faithful consists of six covers of songs from the psychedelic era, including pieces originally recorded by The Beatles, Yardbirds and Beach Boys as well as six original compositions from Rundgren. Joined on the release by members of the band Utopia, Rundgren created one of his best-regarded albums of the 1970s with Faithful. We’ll hear selections from it as well as from Utopia’s Deface The Music, an attempt to recreate the sound of The Beatles.

Tuesday, April 5

Glenn Jones is a guitarist who performs in a style known as American primitive. Inspired by the late guitarist John Fahey, musicians in this style use unusual guitar tunings and focus on delivering unhurried performances that celebrate images of rural American. We’ll hear from Jones’ latest release, Fleeting as well as music from Fahey’s seminal 1965 album The Transfiguration of Blind Joe Death.

Wednesday, April 6

 Todd Rundgren has served as producer on numerous albums since the 1970s, including Forever Now, the 1982 release from The Psychedelic Furs and War Babies, the experimental 1974 release from Hall & Oates. We’ll hear selections from both releases on this episode of the show.

Thursday, April 7

Although it would become one the biggest selling records of all-time Meatloaf’s Bat Out of Hell was initially a record that no one wanted to release. One person who believed in the record early on was producer Todd Rundgren. Rundgren recognized the record as a mixture of high camp and parody and accentuated those elements. Listen for selections from that album on this episode of the show as well as selections from another Rundgren production, Grand Funk Railroad’s 1974 release Shinin’ On.

Friday, April 8

Listen for selections from Looney Bird, the latest release from singer-songwriter Ashleigh Caudill as well as music from Todd Rundgren’s classic LP Something/Anything?.

Saturday, April 9

Patch The Sky is the latest release by punk rock legend Bob Mould. The guitarist and vocalist says that many of the songs on this new release were inspired by death and loss, both of which were in ample supply while he wrote the record in 2015. The record recalls his work with both Husker Du and Sugar. We’ll hear selections from that release as well as music from the latest by Cheap Trick, Bang Zoom Crazy Hello.

Monday, April 11

We'll remember country music legend Merle Haggard, who died on April 6 at the age of 79. We'll hear some of his best-known songs and collaborations with a wide range of artists including J.Geils Band frontman Peter Wolf as well as Willie Nelson. 

Tuesday, April 12

Something Real is the new release from Lukas Nelson and The Promise of the Real. Fronted by the son of legendary country musician Willie Nelson, the band is in line with the music of Crazy Horse and Pearl Jam, in fact recently taking up a role previously fulfilled by both of those bands, back Neil Young. We’ll hear selections from Something Real as well as Mirror Ball, the 1995 Neil Young record recorded with members of Pearl Jam.

Wednesday, April 13

We Can Do Anything is the first album in well over a decade from Violent Femmes. Comprised of previously unrecorded older songs and new material, contains many of the band’s hallmarks: Dry wit, dark, biblically-influenced storytelling and hard-driving acoustic material. Listen for selections from this release as well as music from the 1978 self-titled debut from The Cars.

Jedd Beaudoin is host/producer of the nationally syndicated program Strange Currency. He has also served as an arts reporter, a producer of A Musical Life and a founding member of the KMUW Movie Club. As a music journalist, his work has appeared in Pop Matters, Vox, No Depression and Keyboard Magazine.