Episode 276: Jason Schwartzman, Weezer, Barbara Kruger, Tenacious D

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Actor Jason Schwartzman – star of the new film “Listen Up Philip” – pits his ego against Brendan’s… A soundtrack from Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo inspires hand-holding… Iconoclastic artist Barbara Kruger points and doesn’t shoot… And Jack Black and Kyle Gass of Tenacious D shred etiquette to pieces. Also, humorist Simon Rich ponders barbarism and hamsters, a new Kit Kat craze hits the US, we tune into static small talk, and more!

Rivers Cuomo - "Dropped Key"


Rivers Cuomo of Weezer gets down with this joke about a piano... falling down.

Taylor Swift Moves Static

Small Talk

Taylor Swift has the pop star wattage to sell anything, it seems. Even eight seconds of static, released by glitch, which hit Number One on Canada's iTunes charts.

Cooking's New Wave: Microwaves Arrive

A History Lesson With Booze ®

In the autumn of 1939, a device was invented that changed the world's kitchens. Maybe not for the better, but certainly for the faster.

Rivers Cuomo's Dramatic Pop Party


The band Weezer produced some of the hookiest rock hits of the Nineties and Aughties, and continue to inspire the devotion of legions of fans. Hot on the heels of their latest album "Everything Will Be Alright In the End," band-leader Rivers Cuomo spins us a dramatic party playlist that's all in the now.

Jason Schwartzman Is More Likable Than He Thinks

Guest of Honor

Jason Schwartzman, known for his more lovable roles in projects like "Rushmore" and "Bored to Death," tackles the Philip Roth-inspired 'angry literary man' archetype in his newest film, "Listen Up Philip."

Simon Rich on Spoiled Brats and Anxious Hamsters


Humorist Simon Rich has written stories, novels, and some of the funniest stuff in The New Yorker and on Saturday Night Live. He reads an excerpt from his new collection, "Spoiled Brats."

Forget Green Tea, There's a New Weird Kit Kat Trend

Main Course

Food fans have long known Japan gets the kookiest Kit Kats, but that country's latest Kit-Kraze goes beyond matcha, soy sauce or cherry variations. It's kind of a candy bar crossed with a Shrinky Dink. Just in time for Halloween, Rico and food writer Clarissa Wei cook some up.

Tenacious D Tell You How To Behave


As comedy-rock duo Tenacious D, Kyle Gass and Jack Black parody -- yet also masterfully perform and glorify -- the majestic stadium rock of the '70s and '80s. And now, thanks to us, they are public radio's moral compass.

Barbara Kruger Talks Past, Present, and Futura

Chattering Class

Barbara Kruger is one of the most influential contemporary artists of the last forty years, and her bold, text-laden work is among the world's most recognizable. She tells Rico about her own influences, and cops to preferring laughs to smiles.

Leon Bridges Comes Home

One For The Road

Leon Bridges is a Sam Cooke-channeling soul singer from Fort Worth, Texas. This week he took online tastemakers by storm with the release of two new songs.