Get dropped in the middle of a long form conversation with musicians, cartoonists, writers and other creative types.
Episode 442: Adele Bertei
Peter and the Wolves is a lot of things. It’s both memoir and biography, as Adele Bertei recounts her early days in music, while showing an oft-ignored side of friend and mentor, Peter Laughner. The Pere Ubu/Rocket from the Tombs guitarist gave the musician her earliest break in Cleveland, only to die at age 24, following longtime substance abuse. Back in print, Bertei’s book is an effort to show a side of the musician beyond the easy live fast, die young headlines. After Laughner’s passing, Bertei moved to New York, becoming a fixture in the city’s burgeoning no wave scene. The subsequent decades have given way to a fascinating and diverse career, working as a backup musician for some of the era’s biggest names and recording dance hits of her own.
Episode 441: Matthew Sweet
There’s a darkness to Catspaw — something that lurks beyond the innocuous and even adorable title. Culled from an episode of the original Star Trek, Matthew Sweet’s usage is evocative of a certain doom. For an album finished before Covid-19 really took hold, the mood is certainly in keeping with the present moment. Not that things were particularly great prior to the pandemic, of course. Equally fitting is the truly solitary method in which the album was written and recorded — perhaps the most purely solo recording of a decades-long solo artist. In a remote interview, the power-pop star opens up about struggles with bipolar disorder and a unique and lasting career.
Episode 440: Chris Gethard
A lot has changed in the nearly five years since the the launch of Beautiful/Anonymous — some for the better and many for the worst. Certainly, the need to listen and be heard has only grown stronger during a pandemic that has left many alienated and alone. Earlier this month, host Chris Gethard announced that the Earwolf series will become a TV show, adding a visual element to the long conversations between strangers. Prior to launching the series, the New Jersey-born comedian was best known for his self-titled variety show, which started life on public access and managed to maintain a celebratory underdog quality, even after moving to Fusion and, ultimately, truTV. In a conversation that’s ever bit as honest and open as his listeners have come to expect, Gethard discusses his struggles with mental health and the role his work plays in fostering his own empathy.
Apologies for some technical difficulties this time out.
Episode 439: Zac Maloy (of the Nixons)
The timing of Sonic Boom could have been better, as far as these things go. The first collection of original Nixons music in 20 years arrived about two months into a country-wide shutdown. In 2018, the band toured for the first time in nearly as long. The group’s breakup wasn’t the most amicable, but it’s amazing how bad feelings can dissolve with a couple of decades between them. For singer Zac Maloy, the breakup was an opportunity to explore new avenues in the industry, including the fruitful beginnings of a songwriting career that’s found him collaborating with musicians ranging from Carrie Underwood to Adam Lambert. Ahead of a livestream online event, Maloy joined us to reflect on the band’s career, life as a songwriter and how much to foster his own kids’ musical ambitions.
Episode 438: Emily Flake
In September, “Free Fall” seemed to be everywhere. In her latest long form work for The New Yorker, Emily Flake captured a sense of existential ennui that permeated much of the population six months into a pandemic-driven shut down. It was, one of the cartoonist’s most widely-shared works for the magazine since “Young and Dumb Inside,” which explored her decades’ long love for the punk band, Jawbreaker. Flake is probably best know as the long-time publisher of New Yorker gag strips, but her deeply personal comics essays strike an entirely different chord among its readership. Flake joined us to the discuss the process of putting heartfelt and personal work on paper and how the pandemic has impacted her comics.
Episode 437: Jimmy Chamberlin (of The Smashing Pumpkins)
In September, The Jimmy Chamberlin Complex returned for Honor. The group’s third album found it returning to its core to deliver the manner of improvisational jazz that it sets it apart from most of the drummer’s work. A lifelong musician, Chamberlin is undoubtedly best known as the drummer of alternative rock mainstays The Smashing Pumpkins and fellow Billy Corgan-fronted group, Zwan. But while he’s frequently regarded as among the best rock drummers, he’s had a fairly fascinating career one the other side of the career, serving as the CEO of music tech company, LiveOne Inc.
Customer ReviewsSee All
A wide array of guests well interviewed
I like fiction, graphic and otherwise. I like music. I like thoughtful conversations about a wide array of topics. But I LOVE long guitar and keyboard intros. FIVE STARS FOR RIYL! HO HO HO!
This is a fantastic show! Just discovered it.
This is a fantastic show! Just discovered it.
This is my favorite podcast.