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Stella Donnelly is not afraid to ruffle feathers or disrupt the status quo. At 26, the Australian singer-songwriter has already made that clear with songs like her breakout singles, "Boys Will Be Boys," and "Mechanical Bull" off of her 2017 debut EP, Trush Metal. Both songs attack the folkways of misogyny and rape culture.

To celebrate the release of his third studio album, Gary Clark Jr. performed music from This Land live on KCRW. A lot has changed in Gary's personal life and political outlook since his last album in 2015 — including marriage, two kids and two presidents — all of which has clearly informed this latest release and makes it his most intimate to date.

Amanda Palmer has made a living out of delivering emotionally sobering strikes. From her early street performing days dressed as an 8-foot bride handing flowers and intense eye contact to passers-by through her current album cover, where she stands completely full frontal naked wielding a sword overhead, Palmer has always demanded we see her and feel something. You don't get to call yourself "Amanda F****** Palmer" for nothing.

Juice WRLD, the reigning prince of emo rap, is back with a follow up to last year's Goodbye & Good Riddance. Deathrace for Love is bleak, brutal and the rare sequel that lives up to the original. The Oxford rock band Foals takes a big swing in one of the group's most ambitious albums to date; and singer Patty Griffin has a beautiful and profoundly moving, new self-titled album on growing old, the frailty of life and perseverance.

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After five years — and a countless string of solo endeavors, a record label launch and some work on the animated Netflix show BoJack Horseman

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

If you've been on social media in the few months, you've come across the 10-Year Challenge. It first began on Twitter in January with one user posting two photos side by side, one from 10 years ago and their most recent upload. Within a week, the trend had moved to Facebook, to Instagram, to local news segments. Unless you're Paul Rudd, it was fun to look back on the passing of time and 2009's fashion on display.

Meg Myers put out one of 2018's most intense and cathartic albums. Take Me to the Disco raged and threw sonic punches at anyone who'd ever attempted to use or abuse her, from former record executives to past lovers. Dressed in a sparkling blue leotard, Myers re-creates that fire and ferocity behind the Tiny Desk, replacing her album's roaring electric guitars and electronics with a pulsing string quartet, piano and brushed drums.

Just when it seems the shadow of The Beatles can't get any longer and everything in rock has been done before, along come Sean Lennon and Les Claypool, asking the musical question: What if, instead of ducking The Beatles, you embraced the band's tricks — the galumphing marches, the sun-dazed harmonies — and then made them a little weird?

Panic attacks are no joke. Rick Maguire, lead songwriter for Pile, learned this recently. While preparing to move and getting ready to write Pile's new record, Green and Gray, Maguire tried to go to bed one night and instead found himself "in the pitch black, in a way looking at myself and my position to the rest of the world, physically, psychologically and spiritually, and feeling this overwhelming anxiety," he tells NPR Music. He was, in other words, having a panic attack.

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