First Listen

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First Listen

Enjoy previews of select, upcoming albums, in their entirety on FIRST LISTEN.

  1. First Listen: She & Him, 'Classics'
    Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward cover pop standards with the timeless impeccability for which they're known. Once again, Ward hovers mostly in the background, leaving Deschanel to steal the playful show. More....
  2. First Listen: Your Old Droog, 'Your Old Droog'
    If this is the first time you're hearing of somebody called Your Old Droog, don't even trip. More....
  3. First Listen: Two Inch Astronaut, 'Foulbrood'
    On its second album, the D.C.-area duo borrows heavily from the legacy of Dischord Records — at times recalling Fugazi, Smart Went Crazy and Shudder To Think — while still sounding fresh and vital. More....
  4. First Listen: Flake Music, 'When You Land Here, It's Time To Return'
    Before James Mercer became famous in The Shins, he sang in a like-minded band called Flake Music. Its newly remixed, remastered and reissued 1997 debut contains many ideas he would later revisit. More....
  5. First Listen: Thompson, 'Family'
    Thompson gathers many branches of a formidable family tree that includes Richard, Linda, Teddy, Kami and several musicians not named Thompson. More....
  6. First Listen: Bryan Ferry, 'Avonmore'
    The Roxy Music singer channels his classic work while still sounding fresh. Ferry's sound remains full, clear and direct, with intricate layers of instruments shifting in and out of focus. More....
  7. First Listen: Robert Wyatt, 'Different Every Time'
    A double-length set provides an ambitious introduction to the prog-rock legend. Selections include songs from Wyatt's bands Soft Machine and Matching Mole, solo work and unlikely collaborations. More....
  8. First Listen: Andy Stott, 'Faith In Strangers'
    The Manchester electronic producer alternates between ethereal beauty and viscous sludge, and with vocal assistance from Alison Skidmore, glints of light keep poking through the darkness. More....
  9. First Listen: Mr. Gnome, 'The Heart Of A Dark Star'
    Whether its songs are bleak and primal, grandiose or seductively dreamy, the Cleveland duo delights in searching for the unexpected. More....
  10. First Listen: Big K.R.I.T., 'Cadillactica'
    K.R.I.T. raps about what many rappers probably want to discuss (spirituality, discrimination, insecurity) but are afraid to. This strain of authenticity has cemented his place in the hearts of fans. More....
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