Sound Opinions

Sound Opinions

United States

Take two nationally respected rock critics, the latest music news, personal commentary, and exclusive interviews and performances, add a huge pile of records old and new, and the result is Sound Opinions - the world's only rock and roll talk show.

Episodes

#575 Hero Worship  

Artists are also music fans like the rest of us, often paying tribute to the musicians who inspired them. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share their favorite examples of Hero Worship in music – songs that name-check great artists from the history of rock and roll. Plus, the Rolling Stones pay tribute to their own blues heroes on a new album.

#574 Jon Brion & Opinions on Emeli Sandé  

Studio wizard Jon Brion has composed scores for films by P.T. Anderson and Michel Gondry and produced for artists from Fiona Apple to Kanye West. The multi-instrumentalist also has grown a following for his virtuosic live performances. Jon Brion speaks with hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot about the art of songcraft. Plus, a review of the latest from Scottish R&B singer Emeli Sandé.

#573 Turkey Pardons & Remembering Leonard Cohen  

Every year, a turkey is saved from its Thanksgiving dinner fate by a presidential pardon. In that gracious spirit, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot give their own Turkey Pardons. They share their picks of lousy artists who still had one redeemable musical moment. Plus, they pay tribute to the great singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen.

#572 World Tour – Canada & Opinions on Alejandro Escovedo.  

Many Americans are thinking a lot about Canada these days. So hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot take the Sound Opinions World Tour to Canada explore the music of our neighbor to the north. And we play our favorite performances by Canadian artists from the Sound Opinions archives. Plus, a review of the latest from Texan singer-songwriter Alejandro Escovedo.

#571 Marvin Gaye's *What's Going On*  

In 1971, Marvin Gaye made a career left turn with the album What's Going On, adopting a socially conscious sound that addressed war, racism, and drugs. 45 years later, What's Going On remains as relevant as ever. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot present a Classic Album Dissection of the iconic record. Then, they review a contemporary protest album from Common.

#570 The Handsome Family & Opinions on Lady Gaga  

The Handsome Family gained wider notoriety for providing the theme to HBO's True Detective. But the duo's dark, literate songwriting has been acclaimed by critics for decades. Rennie and Brett Sparks of The Handsome Family join hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for a conversation and performance. Plus, a review of the new album from pop superstar Lady Gaga.

#569 Songs That Give You the Creeps & Opinions on Leonard Cohen  

The spookiest time of the year is upon us. To celebrate Halloween, hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot turn the show over to listeners who share the songs that tingle their spines the most. Plus, they share their thoughts on Bob Dylan's Nobel Prize and review the latest from singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen.

#568 Beach Slang & Opinions on Drive-By Truckers  

Beach Slang has wowed critics and audiences alike with its loud, energy filled live performances and unabashedly earnest lyrics. But in front of a live audience at the Goose Island Tap Room, Beach Slang songwriter James Alex strips away the volume, but not the heart, for an intimate acoustic performance and conversation with hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot. Plus, the new record by Southern rockers Drive-By Truckers, and the story behind a forgotten garage classic.

#567 Bob Mehr on The Replacements & Opinions on Solange  

The Replacements never had a hit song, but few bands have inspired such a deep personal connection with their fans. Bob Mehr, author of the new biography Trouble Boys, speaks with hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot about the heartbreaking story and enduring legacy of the Minneapolis band. Plus, a review of the new album from Solange and a look at the sample driving Drake's "Hotline Bling."

#566 Fall Review Roundup & Buckwheat Zydeco  

September is bursting with major new album releases. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot give their take on several of the biggest new records, from Bon Iver to M.I.A. to Against Me!, in this Review Roundup. Plus, they report on Chance the Rapper's music festival and pay tribute to Buckwheat Zydeco.

#565 Herb Alpert & Opinions on Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds  

Trumpeter Herb Alpert has had a remarkable, multifaceted career. In addition to scoring his own hits with the Tijuana Brass in the '60s, he cofounded A&M Records, signing a diverse roster of artists ranging from The Carpenters to Janet Jackson. Herb Alpert joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for a conversation. Plus, a review of the new album from legendary band Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds.

#564 Buried Treasures & Alex Ross  

Many great albums are released each year, but only a handful get the attention they deserve. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share some of their Buried Treasures of 2016: the best albums that flew under the radar. Plus, they speak with critic Alex Ross about the use of music as a weapon.

#563 Mudhoney & Opinions on Wilco  

Mudhoney was at the forefront of Seattle's exploding music scene in the '80s and '90s, paving the way for grunge with its distorted, chaotic sound. Though the group never received the world-wide attention of its peers Nirvana, Mudhoney has achieved a cult-like longevity. Mudhoney talks with hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot and performs in front of a hometown Seattle audience. Plus, the new album from Chicago band Wilco, and the psychedelic sample driving a key Beyoncé track.

#562 End of Summer Songs & Opinions on Angel Olsen  

With lyrics about sun, surf, and young love, there are plenty of songs that welcome in the summer. But how do you musically say goodbye to warm weather and prepare for the fall? Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot swap their swim trunks for their sweaters and share their favorite End of Summer Songs. Plus, a review of the new album from Asheville-based singer-songwriter Angel Olsen.

#561 The Art of Writing Hit Songs with Mann & Weil & Opinions on Frank Ocean  

What goes into writing a hit song? Sound Opinions takes a look at the craft of songwriting, from the Righteous Brothers to Beyoncé. Jim and Greg talk with legendary Brill Building songwriters Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil about their decades long career. Then they talk with Ryan Tedder about penning songs for Adele and Taylor Swift. Plus, a review of the long-awaited new album from Frank Ocean.

#560 World Tour - Brazil & Opinions on Ryley Walker  

With all eyes turned toward the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, the Sound Opinions World Tour makes its next stop in Brazil, a country with an unmatched musical influence on the globe. Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot explore the rich musical history of Brazil, including the bossa nova, MPB, and Tropicália phenomena of the 1950s and '60s. Plus, a review of the new album from Chicago fingerpicking virtuoso Ryley Walker.

#559 Courtney Barnett & Opinions on Lydia Loveless  

Australian singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett’s 2015 album Sometimes I Sit and Think and Sometimes I Just Sit was a critical success and Sound Opinions favorite. Her conversational songwriting manages to be simultaneously clever and poignant, and her guitar technique combining lead and rhythm parts is nothing short of impressive. All of her skills are on display as Courtney Barnett joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for an interview and intimate solo performance in front of an audience. Plus, a review of the new album from country singer-songwriter Lydia Loveless

#558 Ska & Opinions on Jamila Woods  

In the late 1950s, Jamaican musicians blended home-grown rhythms with R&B to create ska. The genre's influence quickly spread across the globe, paving the way for the reggae phenomenon. Jim and Greg explore the history of ska from its island origins to its British revival to its most recent punk incarnation. Plus, a review of the debut album from poet and soul singer Jamila Woods.

#557 Tortoise, Post-Rock & Opinions on Michael Kiwanuka  

With an eclectic all-instrumental blend of rock, jazz, dub, electronics, and the avant-garde, Tortoise emerged as the leading band of Chicago’s so-called “post-rock” scene in the 1990s. On its seventh album The Catastrophist, the group has introduced a radical new element: vocals. Tortoise joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for a conversation and performance. Jim and Greg also explore the history and legacy of the post-rock movement. Plus, a tribute to Alan Vega of Suicide and a review of the new album from British soul musician Michael Kiwanuka.

#556 Moby & Opinions on The Julie Ruin  

Moby became the face of techno with the blockbuster success of his 1999 album Play. In his new memoir Porcelain, he explores his origins in the underground rave scene of ‘80s New York up until his mainstream success. Moby joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for a conversation. Plus, a review of the new album from post-Riot Grrrl band The Julie Ruin.

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