Stephen Thompson http://wuwm.com en First Listen: Pixies, 'Indie Cindy' http://wuwm.com/post/first-listen-pixies-indie-cindy Last year, <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/search/index.php?searchinput=my+bloody+valentine">My Bloody Valentine</a> released its first album since 1991, and the result sounded as if not a minute had passed in the intervening 22 years. Mon, 21 Apr 2014 13:30:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 29622 at http://wuwm.com First Listen: Pixies, 'Indie Cindy' The Good Listener: Does The World Still Need Cassettes? http://wuwm.com/post/good-listener-does-world-still-need-cassettes We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and amid the postage-paid crates we'll use to ship home the spring interns is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on cassette tapes and their utility in 2014.<p><em><strong>Jennifer Spuehler writes via Facebook: "Will there be a place for cassette tapes in the future? Thu, 17 Apr 2014 19:39:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 29389 at http://wuwm.com Merchandise Sprawls Out In The Sunlight http://wuwm.com/post/merchandise-sprawls-out-sunlight Merchandise got its start on the Tampa punk and hardcore scene, then got weirder as artier influences like krautrock took hold. As its sound became harder to pin down, the band inspired an 18-month bidding war between record labels: This year, Merchandise finally signed with 4AD, and adventurous new material has begun to trickle out.<p>A new album arrives later this year, but Merchandise was already previewing it at SXSW last month. Thu, 17 Apr 2014 12:03:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 29356 at http://wuwm.com Merchandise Sprawls Out In The Sunlight The Good Listener: How Do I Appear Knowledgeable Without Acting Like A Jerk? http://wuwm.com/post/good-listener-how-do-i-appear-knowledgeable-without-acting-jerk We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and amid the fliers for yard-cleaning services that know a big job when they see one are a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, thoughts on ways to drop musical knowledge without seeming obnoxious.<p><em><strong>Mvelase Peppetta writes via Facebook: "How do you point out to the children that this 'great' piece of music they're loving right now is actually a cover of something else (most times better) without sounding like an old know-it-all fuddy-duddy? I even failed to do it in that one sentence."</strong></em><p>Ha! Thu, 10 Apr 2014 20:52:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 28910 at http://wuwm.com The Good Listener: How Do I Appear Knowledgeable Without Acting Like A Jerk? The Good Listener: What Makes An Anthem? http://wuwm.com/post/good-listener-what-makes-anthem <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hT_nvWreIhg</p> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 19:19:00 +0000 Stephen Thompson 28376 at http://wuwm.com The Good Listener: What Makes An Anthem?