Blending funk, hip-hop, and jazz sounds, the New Orleans-based band Galactic combines musical genres to create a new sound that they make their own. Critic Ken Tucker says heir newest album Ya-Ka-May is a true rhythmic pleasure.
Dedicated and curious music fans are regularly finding new chapters in rock history from around the globe. Critic Milo Miles reviews one recent collection, a series of anthologies focusing on the lively story of vintage pop in Panama.
Two fine albums by drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson and the Decoding Society, Man Dance and its sequel Barbeque Dog, are now available again as downloads, after being out of print for ages. Fresh Air critic Kevin Whitehead says they're prime examples of the 1980s' so-called "free-funk" movement.
If you've been wondering where Prince has gone, he's re-signed with Warner Brothers Records after spending the last few years of sporadic independent releases. Now Prince has released two new albums simultaneously: Art Official Age appears under his own name, and PlectrumElectrum is the debut record of a Prince back-up band called 3rdEyeGirl, but it includes Prince's vocals, guitar, and production style throughout. Fresh Air critic Ken Tucker has a review of both albums.