The English artist Alexander James O’Connor, who writes and records as Rex Orange County, is back this week with an album he wrote and recorded in 12 days with Dutch producer Benny Sings. The curiously titled WHO CARES? looks beyond the pandemic of the past couple of years and imagines a world where life is a bit looser and more carefree. On this week’s show, we give a listen to WHO CARES? and talk about Rex Orange County’s gift for lyricism, his songcraft and why “keep it up” became his mantra while making the album.
We’ve also got rare recordings from New Orleans soul singer Irma Thomas, the immediately transfixing Getaway EP from Orion Sun, rapper Fly Anakin and more. WBEZ and Vocalo Radio’s Ayana Contreras joins WXPN’s John Morrison, NPR Music’s Stephen Thompson and host Robin Hilton as they share their picks for the best new albums out on March 11.
- Orion Sun — Getaway
Featured Tracks: “intro” and “without you”
- Rex Orange County — WHO CARES?
Featured Tracks: “SHOOT ME DOWN” and “KEEP IT UP”
- Fly Anakin — Frank
Featured Tracks: “Love Song (Come Back)” and “Bread”
- Jenny Hval — Classic Objects
Featured Track: “Cemetery of Splendor”
- Irma Thomas — Full Time Woman, The Lost Cotillion Album (on vinyl)
Featured Track: “Adam and Eve”
Other notable releases for March 11:
- Alex Cameron — Oxy Music
- Benny the Butcher — Tana Talk 4
- The Boo Radleys — Keep On With Falling
- BOYO — Echoes Like Memories
- Drug Church — Hygiene
- Fatboi Sharif & LoneSword — Cyber City Society
- Loop — Sonancy
- Lucky Daye — CANDYDRIP