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New Sylvan Esso, Sharon Van Etten, R.E.M. Acoustic Demo, More

Clockwise from upper left: R.E.M. in 1991, Sharon Van Etten, Sylvan Esso, Kate Tempest
Courtesy of the artists
Clockwise from upper left: R.E.M. in 1991, Sharon Van Etten, Sylvan Esso, Kate Tempest

With host Bob Boilen away, co-host Robin Hilton and NPR Music's Stephen Thompson settled into the studio for this week's All Songs Considered, and a clear theme quickly emerged: They had a whole lot of music by artists they already adore! This includes a rare acoustic demo by R.E.M., a glorious new electro-pop cut from Sylvan Esso, a heartbreaking tribute song from Sharon Van Etten and more.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of R.E.M.'s 1991 classic album Out Of Time. To mark the occasion, the band is releasing a deluxe version of the album that includes early acoustic demos of every song, including the one Robin kicks this week's show off with, "Radio Song." Stephen follows in the same spirit with Sylvan Esso's brand new "Radio," a somewhat retro synth thumper that mixes the band's signature dance pop with singer Amelia Meath's searching, often melancholy vocals.

Also on the show: Sharon Van Etten's stirring tribute to the victims of the Pulse nightclub shootings in Orlando, Fla.; English poet, playwright and rapper Kate Tempest and a fabulous kiss-off from the Phoenix, Ariz. band AJJ. Plus, John K. Samson, lead singer for The Weakerthans, returns with a sentimental new song that has Stephen thinking of happier days.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Robin Hilton is a producer and co-host of the popular NPR Music show All Songs Considered.
Stephen Thompson is a writer, editor and reviewer for NPR Music, where he speaks into any microphone that will have him and appears as a frequent panelist on All Songs Considered. Since 2010, Thompson has been a fixture on the NPR roundtable podcast Pop Culture Happy Hour, which he created and developed with NPR correspondent Linda Holmes. In 2008, he and Bob Boilen created the NPR Music video series Tiny Desk Concerts, in which musicians perform at Boilen's desk. (To be more specific, Thompson had the idea, which took seconds, while Boilen created the series, which took years. Thompson will insist upon equal billing until the day he dies.)
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