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May 14, 2011

Shorties (Stream the New Kate Bush Album, John Sayles, and more)

NPR is streaming Kate Bush's new album, Director's Cut (out May 23rd).

The San Francisco Chronicle reviews John Sayles' new novel, A Moment in the Sun.

First and foremost, Sayles is a terrific writer. His breathtaking precision and attention to detail can make E.L. Doctorow's historical novels look puny and slapdash by comparison. His ability to map the intersections of scores of plots and hundreds of fictional and real-life characters is truly stunning.

Bonnaroo has set the schedule for its 2011 music festival.

The New York Times displays 20 turned down book cover designs.

The Guardian shares an insider's guide to musical pilgrimages.

The Atlantic explains why GarageBand alone can't make you a rock star.

The Detroit News profiles Sleigh Bells.

The elements that make up the band's sound — riotous guitars, cheerleader hand-claps, trunk-rattling beats and soothing female vocals — will return on album No. 2, according to Krauss. "It's going to sound like a Sleigh Bells record," she says. "It's going to be a bit more tender in some ways than the first record, but also much more ferocious."

The Awl pointed out Steve Albini's food blog, Mariobatalisvoice.

Stark Raving Sober and The Fix list the top songs for clean and sober listening.

The London Evening Standard profiles the band Yuck.

Musically and stylistically, Yuck nail the grunge aesthetic: faded stonewash denim, flannel shirts and hair dishevelled at the mixing point between rock god and hobo. I meet the band in the middle of their first major US tour. Like the original grunge gods, they all find it too gauche and dull to talk about success, their Left-leaning politics or their place in the current trend for all things 1991. "All I know about grunge is that it's tied to Nirvana," says Daniel Blumberg, one of the band's founders and songwriters.

At the Guardian, author China Mieville discusses his writing career.

Mieville's passions crystallised early on: "Ever since I was two, I've loved octopuses, monsters, abandoned buildings . . . One gets asked, if you're into the sort of thing I'm into, how did you get into it, and my response is always: how did you get out of it? You look at a class of six-year-olds, they're all reading about witches and aliens and spaceships and magic spells." He wrote stories and poems as a child, and remembers "self-consciously thinking 'ooh, maybe this is what I could do' when I was about 13". Later, "I realised how lucky you would have to be. I never had an unthinking faith that this was what would happen."

At Stereogum, Wild Beasts share a mixtape of songs that inspired their new album, Smother.

All Things Considered reviews Dieter Schlesak's novel, The Druggist of Auschwitz.

Cover Me shares a collection of live Ryan Adams covers.

The Guardian asks leading science fiction writers to name their favorite book or author in the genre.

All Things Considered interviews singer-songwriter Jonathan Coulton about the role the internet has played in his music career.

Follow me on Twitter and Stumbleupon for links (updated throughout the day) that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (daily links from the worlds of music, literature, and pop culture)

Atomic Books Comics Preview (highlights of the week's new comics & graphic novels)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (highlights of the week's new books)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

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