Discumentary

Date

Discumentary: Linda Ronstadt "Heart Like a Wheel"

Ronstadt's fifth album was released in 1974, and made her a star. She perfects her folk-rock sound through covers of songs by Paul Anka, Hank Williams and Anna McGarrigle. This album had number one hits on the Country and Pop charts, went platinum, and even earned Ronstadt a Grammy award.

Discumentary: Sigur Rós "Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust"

Translated to "With A Buzz in Our Ears We Play Endlessly", Sigur Rós' 5th album was one of many changes.  They developed it with a different process and recorded it outside of Iceland with a different producer (Flood).  It also features their trademark style led by Jonsi's unique vocals and bowed guitar.  The result is one of their more happy sounding albums.

Discumentary: The Black Keys "Brothers"

The Black Keys' sixth release is also the first album recorded at the legendary Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in 25 years.  "Brothers" is considered the band's breakout release, it went to #3 on the Billboard Album Chart and won the group 3 Grammy Awards, including one for the song "Tighten Up", the only track on the album produced by Danger Mouse.  

Discumentary: Adele "21"

Featuring hits like "Rolling in the Deep", "Someone Like You" and "Rumour Has It", Adele's smash sophomore release chronicles the aftermath of a break up. The emotions she expresses in her lyrics and performance are universally relatable, which could be why it is one of the best-selling albums of the 21st century.  

Discumentary: The Beatles "Rubber Soul"

Released in December 1965, "Rubber Soul" signified a change in approach for The Beatles.  The group wasn't making teen pop songs anymore, along with George Martin as producer, this album began to show the group's experimentation with folk-rock and other instrumentations.  It would pave the way for The Beatles to become even more experimental on albums like "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" and "The White Album. 

Discumentary: Grant Lee Buffalo "Mighty Joe Moon"

Grant Lee Buffalo's 1994 album is probably their successful in the United States.  Anchored on the songwriting and singing of Grant Lee Phillips, the album was recorded after a year's worth of touring for their debut album.  It includes their most well-known song "Mockingbirds".  This Discumentary includes excerpts of a 2013 WYEP interview with Grant Lee Phillips.

Discumentary: Calexico "Carried to Dust"

Calexico's 6th album loosely tells the story of an out of work writer travelling through the desert.  For the effort Joey Burns and John Convertino brought back most of the band from their 2003 album, plus guest stars Sam Beam of Iron and Wine, Douglas McCombs from Tortoise and singer-songwriter Pieta Brown.

Discumentary: The Breeders "Last Splash"

The Breeders second full-length album is considered to be among the best of the 90's. The band originally was formed by Kim Deal as a side project from her work in The Pixies. Released in 1993, after the break-up of the Pixies and during the height of the "Alternative Rock" phenomenon. It sold one million copies in less than a year and includes the hit, "Cannonball".  

Discumentary: Nina Simone "Nina Simone in Concert"

Of the many live albums Nina Simone released, this one stands out as her greatest. Recorded over three nights at Carnegie Hall in 1964, it was the first time she put her feelings on the struggle for civil rights in her music.  These feelings are conveyed on tracks like "Mississippi Goddamn, "Old Jim Crow" and "Go Limp", but the album also feature's Simone's take on George Gershwin's "I Loves You, Porgy" from "Porgy & Bess" and Willard Robinson's "Don't Smoke In Bed".

Discumentary: Muddy Waters "Hard Again"

The Blues legend's 1977 "comeback" album teamed him up with many Blues greats like James Cotton, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith and Pinetop Perkins.  Produced by Johnny Winter, and winner of a Grammy Award, "Hard Again" captures 63 year-old Muddy Waters and his band in a raw, firey performance.

Discumentary: The Shins "Wincing the Night Away"

The Shins 3rd album was released in 2007, just a few years after Natalie Portman declared that The Shins "...will change your life" in the film "Garden State". Following up on the new-found recognition the band had received, James Mercer experimented with the band's sound adding some electronica elements. Even though it was leaked on the internet a few months before it was released, the album debuted at #2 on the Billboard charts.

Discumentary: David Bowie "Heroes"

"Heroes" was David Bowie's second release of 1977, it was also the second installment of his collaborations with Brian Eno known as the "Berlin Trilogy". Recorded in a studio in West Berlin that overlooked the wall, the album is influenced by German bands of the time like Kraftwerk and Neu!. Its title track remains among Bowie's best-known songs.

Discumentary: Josh Ritter "Hello Starling"

When Josh Ritter's third album was released in 2003 he was still fairly unknown in the United States, yet the album debuted at #2 in Ireland. "Hello Starling" showcased Ritter's gift for songwriting and paved the way for his later success.

Discumentary: The Pogues "If I Should Fall From Grace With God"

The third album from The Pogues came out in 1988, it was produced by Steve Lillywhite and was the band's first album after some major line-up changes. It is their best-selling album, partially due to the Christmas (and UK #2) song "Fairytale of New York" featuring Kirsty MacColl.

Discumentary: Depeche Mode "Violator"

Depeche Mode's seventh album was also their first in the 90's. For this one, the band changed their approach to how they an album. That change paid off and it ushered them into the 90's as leaders in the alternative rock movement.

Discumentary: Elton John "Tumbleweed Connection"

Elton John calls his third release his "country album". Inspired by the old American West, the album has many references to soldiers, drinking and death. It's considered among his finest albums, and helped make him a star in the United States.

Discumentary: XTC "Skylarking"

The British band's eighth album is considered a "pop masterpiece" and one of the best albums made in the 80's. Produced by Todd Rundgren, there was much conflict during the recording sessions, but the album broke the band on to the U.S. charts with the song "Dear God".

Discumentary: The Avett Brothers "Emotionalism"

The Avett Brothers' 5th studio album was their breakout success. Demonstrating their growth as a band and featuring spirited harmonies and thoughtful lyrics. This is their last release before being signed to a major label.

Discumentary: "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" Soundtrack

In order to properly set their revision of Homer's "Odyssey" in the American South in the 1930's, The Coen Brothers needed the right man for the job. They found it in T Bone Burnett who recruited John Hartford, Ralph Stanley, Alison Krauss, Gillian Welch and many more to recreate songs from the era. The result was an unexpected smash success and winner of the Album of the Year Grammy Award.

Discumentary: Blur "Parklife"

Blur's 3rd album placed them at the forefront of the mid-90's Britpop explosion, but also demonstrated the band's musical depth. It also gave them their first bit of success in the United States, especially with the dancefloor-ready single "Girls & Boys".

Discumentary: Iron & Wine "Our Endless Numbered Days"

Released in 2004, their second album brings Sam Beam and company out of the lo-fi bedroom studio and into a professional one. Featuring subtle arrangements and intimate lyrics, this album is a new step along the way of Iron & Wine's evolution.

Discumentary: Amy Winehouse "Back to Black"

A worldwide smash hit and winner of multiple Grammy Awards, the "neo-soul" of Amy Winehouse's "Back to Black" made her a household name. A great combination of her lyrics and voice, plus music from The Dap-Kings and the production skills of Salaam Remi and Mark Ronson. Released in 2006, it is considered among the greatest albums of the decade.

Discumentary: Patsy Cline "Sentimentally Yours"

Patsy Cline's 1962 album was her third and final full-length release. Produced by Owen Bradley, it was crafted to poise her as more of a torch singer so she could cross over to the pop charts. He added strings and back up singers (Elvis' backing band, The Jordanaires) to fill out the sound.

Discumentary: Ray LaMontagne "Trouble"

Ray LaMontagne woke up one morning, heard a Stephen Stills song on the radio, and decided to become a musician. About five years later, he released "Trouble," his debut album. Produced by Ethan Johns, who also plays percussion, piano, and bass on the album. It also features a string quintet to fill out the production. This Discumentary features excerpts from a 2005 WYEP interview with LaMontagne.

Discumentary: Miriam Makeba "Homeland"

Miriam Mekaba's life has been an interesting one. From her beginnings as a South African jazz singer to her thirty year exile from her homeland. Mekaba chronicles these experiences on this disc, and also updates her worldwide hit "Pata Pata".

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