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Review: The New Pornographers, 'Whiteout Conditions'

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page. It's hard to imagine a band that abhors a long, throat-clearing windup more than The New Pornographers . Listen to any of the group's seven albums, and each bursts out from the jump with a blast of pure, blissfully irresistible power pop. Take the title track from 2015's Brill Bruisers , which opens the record by racing from...

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Beloit College's annual "mindset list" is out. It's a series of historical and cultural references that will supposedly bewilder incoming college freshmen.

This year's list, for the Class of 2019, was curated by three professors at the small liberal arts college in Wisconsin. The school says it aims to show professors and counselors which references no longer resonate with younger generations.

A few entries on this year's list of 50 factoids about the Class of 2019 include:

Across the U.S., small farmers have been struggling for years with low commodity prices and rising production costs. Even for organic farmers, who can justify higher prices, making a profit is tough.

But throughout the Midwest, a new farm-to-table strategy is giving a boost to some farmers.

The Chipotle Cultivate Festival in Kansas City, Mo., on July 18 had it all: an indie pop band onstage, long lines at the beer booths. It was like a Grateful Dead concert, only with free burritos.

But this and the three other Chipotle Cultivate events held across the country this summer were more than just a classic summertime music festival. Billed as offering "food, ideas and music," the festival offers a chance to "learn a free burrito," by going through four exhibits.

The White House has hired its first openly transgender staff member. Raffi Freedman-Gurspan has been appointed as an outreach and recruitment director for presidential personnel in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel.

The 28-year-old previously worked as a policy adviser for the National Center for Transgender Equality's Racial and Economic Justice Initiative, and before that as a legislative director with Rep. Carl Sciortino's office.

Yvonne Craig, best known for her role as Batgirl in the iconic 1960s television series Batman, died Monday. She was 78.

Ah, back-to-school season in America: That means it's time for the annoyingly aggressive marketing of clothes, and for the annual warnings of a national teacher shortage.

But this year the cyclical problem is more real and less of a media creation. There are serious shortages of teachers in California, Oklahoma, Kentucky and places in between.

A group of hackers, who calls itself the Impact Team, purportedly released a huge trove of data that appears to contain the account details of more than 30 million users of a website that helps married people cheat on their spouses.

Jared Fogle, the former Subway pitchman, is expected to admit that he paid for sex with two minors and participated in a scheme that secretly recorded 12 other children engaging in sexual acts.

As part of a deal cut with prosecutors, Fogle is expected to plead guilty to two federal counts stemming from the actions: the first that he distributed and received child pornography, and the second that he traveled across state lines and then paid for sex with two children.

The people of Bayou la Batre, Ala., say you know their town by the four seasons.

"Shrimp, fish, crab and oyster," says Stephanie Nelson Bosarge. "That's your four seasons."

Bosarge grew up here in a house less than a thousand feet from the water — one of nine kids, the fourth generation to work in the seafood industry.

Today all that's left of the house is a concrete slab. Grass and weeds are creeping up over what's left of the oyster run, where a conveyor belt once carried shells between the shuckers.

Chelsea Manning, the Army private convicted in the biggest leak of classified information in American history, has been found guilty of violating the rules at the Army's Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas.

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John Nau of Spectra joins Scott Regan on Friday's Open Tunings to talk about a special CD release party for Carol and the Impalas and a tribute to their lead singer, the late Carol Heveron. The event takes place at Abilene at 9PM on Friday April 21. Be sure to tune in to Open Tunings, 9 to noon, on Different Radio.

David Gans, Musician, radio producer, author/journalist, and Grateful Dead archivist joins Scott Regan Thursday morning, prior to his concert with Pearly Baker's Best at Flour City Station later that evening. 

Wednesday April 19, 2017  

Garage blues group Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears play funky tracks from their record Backlash and talk about how their hometown Austin has changed in the past few years
 
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Here's a fun fact about Noname's Tiny Desk Concert: It almost didn't happen. Around the time of their D.C. stop, she (born Fatimah Warner) and her bandmates got their first dose of tour sickness. Thanks to rest, medicine and our mutual excitement, she made her way into the NPR offices the following day. If there ever was a 'Noname' way of doing things, this is definitely her signature method. It's in the way she's able to muster a smile while performing a heartbreaking tale of abortion. It's those sometimes bleak, melancholy lyrics over brilliant, colorful production.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page.