Welcome to a week of World Cafe "Side Tracks," where we look back on past guests that came in for a session — not with their best-known band, but with a side project. In each session, we speak to the artists about juggling both acts and the origin story of their "other band." Stream the complete sessions below.
Eliza Hardy Jones has been a fixture on the Philadelphia music scene for years. She was part of the duo Buried Beds in the early 2000s, and has lent assistance on tour with other bands, including Strand Of Oaks. Jones' solo debut, BecauseBecome,is a mature pop album she made with longtime producer Nick Krill, as well as Dave Hartley (who worked with The War On Drugs) and Brian McTear.
Yannis Philippakis, lead singer of the U.K. indie-rock band Foals, is known for leaping off balconies at live shows. Though he didn't have the chance to stage-dive in the World Cafe studio, that didn't stop Foals from recording an amazing session of songs from the group's fourth and latest album, What Went Down.
All Songs Considered, the NPR podcast and radio show hosted by Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton, has been fostering public-radio listeners' musical discovery for 16 years. To celebrate, the two picked their favorite song from each of those 16 years to spotlight in a recent episode of the show.
Darlingside is a folk-pop group formed at Williams College in western Massachusetts. The band's lovely music is full of layered harmonies and arrangements — a sound you can hear for yourself in this session as the band performs songs from Birds Say, its first nationally released full-length album.
Don't forget to grab a free download of Darlingside's World Cafe performance of "Go Back" below.
After meeting at Western Washington University in 2012, ODESZA (the duo of DJs Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight) has seen rapid success in the past few years. Twenty-one of the duo's songs have hit No. 1 on Hype Machine, and ODESZA has performed at huge American music festivals like Coachella, Bonnaroo, Firefly and Lollapalooza, where Mills and Knight have been joined by a live guitarist and horn section.
Sometime after his first World Cafe session in 1997, recorded live at Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia, David Bowie came by to chat with David Dye for back-to-back years. Both appearances happened while Bowie was on tour with new records, 2002's Heathen and 2003's Reality.
Now, in the wake of David Bowie's death Sunday, here are both of the sessions, dusted off and fresh out of the archives.
The New York band Sunflower Bean rocks harder than its name might suggest. Together as a trio since 2013, the band buzzes and chimes psychedelically on its first full-length album, Human Ceremony. As lead singer and bassist Julia Cumming puts it, in describing the stylistic pull within Sunflower Bean's music, "You're allowed to obsess over Black Sabbath as well as The Cure.
This past August, Jeff Lynne released Alone In The Universe, the first new ELO album in 14 years. In this session, Lynne explains how ELO's performance at a 2014 benefit concert in Hyde Park inspired him to make a new album. ELO is known for its 30- to 40-person orchestras, which allowed Lynne to produce such a full sound, but in today's session he confesses to the fatigue that comes with doing it all the time.