NPR Special Report: Mustard Gas Testing In World War II

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NPR Special Report: Mustard Gas Testing In World War II

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Drought Drives California Fires To Unprecedented Speeds

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NPR's Melissa Block speaks with Mark Ghilarducci with the state emergency services office about the wildfires tearing across California.

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'All You Can Do Is Pray': Wildfire Rages In Northern California

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The Rocky Fire continues to grow as crews struggle to protect homes and businesses.

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Swimmer Katie Ledecky Breaks Her Own Record, Again

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The 18-year-old blasted past the world record in the 1,500 freestyle — the one she set Monday, while hardly trying. Host Melissa Block talks to New York Times reporter Karen Crouse about the swimmer.

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The Bonds Of Friendship Stay Strong In 'Stranger'

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Newbery Medal-winning author Rebecca Stead says her latest, Goodbye Stranger, is about love and how it helps a trio of seventh-grade girls stay friends through the challenges of middle school.

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In A Florida County, Overdose Epidemic Is 'More Like A War'

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Manatee County, on Florida's west coast, has seen a huge jump in heroin overdoses this year. NPR's Melissa Block talks to Michael Dunn, a fireman in Bradenton who responds to overdose calls daily.

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NPR Music's 25 Favorite Albums Of 2015 (So Far)

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We'll call it in the air: 2015 is going to end up being a great year for music. Here are 25 albums we fell in love with over the year's first six months.

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First Listen: Pavement, 'The Secret History, Vol. 1'

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In the early 1990s, Pavement was especially rough around the edges. A new collection of unreleased recordings from the era captures the band's absurd charm.

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First Listen: Night Beds, 'Ivywild'

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Winston Yellen's folk project dims the lights on a new collection inspired by electronic pop and R&B;.

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First Listen: Chelsea Wolfe, 'Abyss'

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Darkness is never far behind Chelsea Wolfe; if anything, the metallic Abyss chases it with a tenderness that understands the beauty therein.

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First Listen: HEALTH, 'Death Magic'

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Grandiose, industrial pop scaled to match the band's all-caps name: What Mad Max: Fury Road is to the road movie, Death Magic is to synth-pop.

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First Listen: Worriers, 'Imaginary Life'

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On a razor-edged LP produced by Laura Jane Grace of Against Me!, Brooklyn punks stare down the judgment of peers, the corruption of institutions and the clumsiness of gendered language.

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First Listen: La Luz, 'Weirdo Shrine'

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A surf-rock album that rewards close attention: there's deep intensity and knowing behind the mellow.

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Review: Lianne La Havas, 'Blood'

Updated by Tom Moon at

With this album, a London singer — a Prince favorite — and her versatile voice inch closer to mainstream pop.

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Review: Red River Dialect, 'Tender Gold And Gentle Blue'

Updated by Lars Gotrich at

Drawing on late '60s British folk-rock and psychedelic music, this is a quiet and desperate record that is always but a squall away from breaking apart.

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