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There's no Peggy Sue — or even a Margaret or a Susan, for that matter — in the British folk-rock band Peggy Sue. There is, however, a hard-driving group that has just released its second album, Acrobats. Peggy Sue is the trio of singers and guitarists Rosa Slade and Katy Young, and drummer Olly Joyce.
Compared to the band's first record, Acrobats leans less toward folk and heavier toward rock. It plays with darker textures, like discordant vocal harmonies, and relies more on electric guitar. As Young says, "[The word] 'foreboding' is in every review, I think."
"I don't think we necessarily set about to make moody music, but I personally definitely use songwriting as quite a cathartic process," Young says. "So often I'll be writing because I'm having a bit of a dark day. And we're not miserable people all the time, but I think that's — I don't know, it's a way of exploring those ideas and those emotions without having to walk around being miserable all the time."
Slade and Young recently spoke with Weekend Edition Saturday guest host Linda Wertheimer while on tour in Copenhagen, Denmark. The singers talked about creating macabre moods, and the influences behind Acrobats.
"Any time that anyone mentions a PJ Harvey influence, we're massively happy about it," Young says. "It's a nice comment to get from anyone."
By visiting Africa this month, President Obama is drawing attention to one of the diplomatic tools that most directly shapes America's relationships with other countries: foreign aid and assistance. But now all policy makers at home feel the United States is pursuing the soundest strategy when it comes to providing aid abroad. We explore the issue with the official in charge of the Africa portfolio for the United States Agency for International Development.