Jason Bentley

Montreal singer-songwriter Patrick Watson has been thrilling audiences with his lush arrangements and gorgeous vocals for more than a decade. He combines his love of music composition and science fiction on his new album, Love Songs For Robots. "Hearts" is one of the highlights of his layered and atmospheric live set for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic.

SET LIST

  • "Hearts"

KCRW Presents: Dawes

Jun 11, 2015

Dawes visited KCRW's studio not long after a sold-out hometown show in Los Angeles and the release of the group's fourth studio album, All Your Favorite Bands. The high-flying performance — both thrilling and emotional — reflected Dawes' palpable excitement about what's to come.

SET LIST

  • "Things Happen"

Watch Dawes' full performance at KCRW.com.

Nashville singer-songwriter Jessie Baylin leaned toward Brill Building pop on her 2012 album Little Spark. But for her latest, Dark Place, she teams up with super-producer Richard Swift to craft a more seductive set of songs. "Black Blood" exemplifies how Baylin's songwriting mines a deep well of emotion and life experience, from relationships to motherhood to life on the road.

SET LIST

  • "Black Blood"

Self-described "future pop" duo Purity Ring wrote its new album, Another Eternity, in its hometown of Edmonton, Alberta, finding inspiration in the industrial landscape and wide-open spaces there. In the band's live set, Corin Roddick plays a delightful diamond-light-sculpture percussion mechanism — created by the pair — while Megan James' powerful vocals accompany him. Hear the result in "Bodyache."

SET LIST

  • "Bodyache"

José González has kept himself busy over the past few years; between his work with Junip and his Secret Life Of Walter Mitty soundtrack, he's cranked out quite a bit of new material. But González took quite a while to release a new solo album, and the Swedish-Argentine singer doesn't disappoint with Vestiges And Claws. The stunning beauty of "Let It Carry You" really comes through in this live performance for KCRW.

SET LIST

  • "Let It Carry You"

KCRW Presents: ODESZA

May 14, 2015

Seattle producers Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight met during their senior year of college in the Pacific Northwest. Each had his own unique style — Mills with more of a dance mash-up approach and Knight with a hip-hop background — which they combined to form the intricate sounds of ODESZA. Together, they've developed a stunning live show that has made them mainstays on the festival circuit. For a small audience at Sonos Studio in Los Angeles, Knight and Mills show the crowd why they're built for the long haul.

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Sylvan Esso combines heady electro beats from Nick Sanborn and Amelia Meath's warm and graceful voice. They've hit a sweet spot with their self-titled debut. On their recent visit to KCRW between Coachella dates, the two delivered an excellent interpretation of their danceable single, "H.S.K.T."

SET LIST

  • "H.S.K.T."

Watch Sylvan Esso's full performance at KCRW.com.

After relocating to Portland, Oregon, from their native Stillwater, Oklahoma, Other Lives used the new surroundings for a different perspective on their new album. The result is their third studio release, Rituals, which marries an orchestral rock sound with a classic singer-songwriter sensibility. New songs like "Easy Way" were standouts in their latest visit to KCRW.

SET LIST

  • "Easy Way"

KCRW Presents: Ride

Apr 16, 2015

The pioneering Oxford shoegaze band Ride had been on a 20-year break before reuniting for a world tour, which kicked off in earnest at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival this month. Before heading to the desert, the group chose KCRW for its first U.S. appearance since getting back together. During its set, Ride soared through classic songs like 1992's "Leave Them All Behind," which would come to help define the shoegaze sound.

SET LIST

  • "Leave Them All Behind"

Before Toro Y Moi released its new album What For?, frontman Chaz Bundick and his band played it front to back for a small audience at Apogee Studio in Santa Monica. Bundick is a musical chameleon, and after a dance/electronic release under the name Les Sins, he's confidently planted his flag in the field of guitar-driven psych-pop. Here, Toro Y Moi performs a perfect springtime jam called "Empty Nesters."

SET LIST

  • "Empty Nesters"

Kevin Barnes has just released his 13th album as Of Montreal, and the prolific artist sounds as inspired as ever. For its return to Morning Becomes Eclectic, Of Montreal performed new songs from Aureate Gloom, an album layered with the sounds of late-'70s New York and disco-inflected electronic music. Here, Barnes and his band perform "Empyrean Abattoir."

SET LIST

  • "Empyrean Abattoir"

Twin Shadow recently returned to KCRW's studio to preview new songs from Eclipse before kicking off a tour that included a handful of shows at SXSW. The band's latest album features a grander sound — still highly influenced by '80s synth-pop, but clearly aiming for the stadiums. Dark and yearning, George Lewis Jr. gives a passionate, emotional performance of "Eclipse."

SET LIST

  • "Eclipse"

Dom La Nena's sophomore album Soyo takes a cosmopolitan approach with songs written in Portuguese, Spanish, French and English. On her return to Morning Becomes Eclectic, the Brazilian born cellist performed new songs like "Llegare" with the assistance of loop pedals and some percussion. The results were beautiful.

SET LIST

  • "Llegaré"

Listen to Dom La Nena's full performance at KCRW.com.

During his debut performance on Morning Becomes Eclectic, Dan Deacon saved something special for the KCRW audience. The mad genius from Baltimore premiered "When I Was Done Dying," a standout from his new album Gliss Riffer. Deacon's new album features some of his most accessible and appealing material yet, and his live performances remain one of a kind.

SET LIST

  • "When I Was Done Dying"

North London four-piece Wolf Alice has been searching for the right spark to ignite a flame — and we think they found it with their latest EP, Creature Songs, released in May. While their early releases showcased more folk-pop-inspired tracks, their song "Moaning Lisa Smile" has a tougher, grittier rock sound the band is ready to explore on an album due in June. They put their new style on display with their debut performance on Morning Becomes Eclectic.

SET LIST

  • "Moaning Lisa Smile"

Father John Misty is irreverent, cynical, witty and in love. Shortly before the release of his second album under the FJM name, I Love You, Honeybear, Josh Tillman and his six-piece touring band showcased the softer side of the L.A. star with tracks from his new album.

SET LIST

  • "I Love You, Honeybear"

On the day the charismatic Glaswegian pop band Belle And Sebastian released its new album Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance last month, the group performed as part of KCRW's Apogee Sessions. With 13 musicians onstage, Belle And Sebastian weaved through new tracks like this one, "The Party Line," and dug into its catalog for old favorites. It's a captivating performance in front of an intimate Santa Monica crowd.

SET LIST

  • "The Party Line"

After a four-year hiatus between albums, which singer Colin Meloy largely spent writing and parenting, The Decemberists recently returned with a new album called What A Terrible World, What A Beautiful World. Last week, the folk-rock band made its way to Los Angeles to perform new songs on KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic, including the single "Make You Better."

SET LIST

  • "Make You Better"

Since 2005, Brooklyn's Budos Band has helped define and develop the modern Afro-soul sound for which Daptone Records is known. The group's previous albums have been heavily influenced by Ethiopian jazz. But on the new Burnt Offering, the 10-piece band has taken cues from '60s- and '70s-era psychedelia and hard rock. Songs like "The Sticks," performed live for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic, showcase this new side.

Australian singer Lisa Mitchell recently made her U.S. live radio debut on Morning Becomes Eclectic, which coincided with her first visit to Los Angeles. The 24-year-old has been writing music since her teens, and is about to release her third album. Here, the Australian Idol alum performs a soft, airy song called "Wah Ha."

SET LIST

  • "Wah Ha"

Watch Lisa Mitchell's full performance on KCRW.com.

Taking an electronic record on tour with a live band is always a tricky proposition. But when Anders Trentemøller took a break from his tour with Depeche Mode and brought his band to Morning Becomes Eclectic, each musician complemented and supported the others in a way that sounded organic and purposeful. Here, they perform "Come Undone."

SET LIST

  • "Come Undone"

TV On The Radio waited a few years between album releases, and with their last record, Seeds, it's clear that the group has returned energized and inspired. At an intimate show in Santa Monica, Calif. for KCRW's Apogee Sessions, the Brooklyn-based band rolled through new songs with influences from punk to dance, all with precise harmonies and intricately layered production. Check out the album's first single, "Happy Idiot," live from KCRW.

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It's been a big month for M. Ward. He just released a new album with Zooey Deschanel (as She & Him), and he's reissuing his much-loved 2005 solo breakthrough Transistor Radio on vinyl with a few bonus tracks.

Ward's fourth studio album, Transistor Radio, solidified his reputation as a major talent, so it was a thrill to host a live performance of its songs. From his recent visit to KCRW, M. Ward performs "Hi-Fi" here.

Real Estate's music conjures a specific feeling of warm nostalgia for sunny days gone by. And, while the aesthetic may seem like simple, laid-back guitar-rock, there's a method to this style. On its third studio album, Atlas, Real Estate puts extra effort into its subtly layered sound, and the result can be heard in this studio performance of the album highlight "Talking Backwards."

SET LIST

  • "Talking Backwards"

Dan Snaith, a.k.a. Caribou, has moved freely between musical aesthetics on each of his previous records, but on his fifth studio release, Our Love, he's fine-tuned and settled into a warmer, more personal approach.

On his third visit to KCRW, Snaith performed songs off his newest and perhaps best album to date, including the captivating title track.

SET LIST

  • "Our Love"

It had been been nearly six years since Jenny Lewis released a solo album. For The Voyager, the former Rilo Kiley singer turned to Ryan Adams as her "spirit guide" in the studio. The two combined their specialties to create a sophisticated, Americana-driven pop sound with touches of folk and, as always, Lewis' smart and personal lyrics. Here, she performs "She's Not Me" at Los Angeles' Apogee Studios.

SET LIST

  • "She's Not Me"

Damien Rice wears his heart on his sleeve. His new album, My Favourite Faded Fantasy, is rife with vulnerability and reflections on universal themes — never more effectively than in "It Takes A Lot To Know A Man."

Nashville singer-songwriter Mikky Ekko was catapulted to fame when pop superstar Rihanna recorded his song "Stay" and then performed it with him at the Grammys. Now, with the release of his debut album Time, Ekko is showcasing the talent that has had so many big-name acts clamoring to work with him.

During Ekko's recent visit to a Sonos Studio pop-up set in New York City, KCRW captured this live version of "Stay."

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