Stephen Kallao

There are a billion and a half bands from Brooklyn, but the group joining us today are poised to be breakout stars. This band has already been crowned by many as the hardest working band in New York. They're Sunflower Bean.

On their sophomore album Twentytwo in Blue, out today, the band incorporates its love of 70's British glam rock like T. Rex and Slade to the sound.

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club has that quintessential rock and roll swagger. The band is celebrating its 20th anniversary, but to say that the members celebrate things seems inaccurate. They're fighters. They're defiant, even a bit skeptical. All the pomp and circumstance of a 20th anniversary would be overly indulgent.

William Faulkner once said of the writing process, "You must kill your darlings." It's a quote about ridding yourself of your favorite (and somewhat self indulgent) work for the goal of becoming a better writer.

What if your goal was to just write some good songs? What if you and your longtime friend did that and then went back to your day jobs at a law firm and in the music industry? Then what if everything changed? Your song gets 10 millions plays on Spotify, you are spotlighted by NPR Music, you perform live on Conan and you sign a major label deal — and all before your debut album's release!

In addition to being widely recognized as one of the great American guitarists, Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo is also a published writer, poet and visual artist. His latest solo album, Electric Trim, features Sharon Van Etten, Nels Cline of Wilco, Kid Millions and more.