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Music

Every month, NPR Music asks our friends from public radio stations across the country — hosts, music directors and writers — for the new songs they simply can't stop listening to. Sometimes they're hot tracks that have dropped just the week before, and sometimes they're songs that have taken a couple months to slow-burn into our memories. Either way, the result is a mix that's perfect for the moment.

Richard D. James loves to clear the vaults. A couple years ago, he sent Aphex Twin fans on a scavenger hunt through a series of anonymous SoundCloud accounts, where he had uploaded 200 old tracks and demos leading up to the release of Syro. Then he deleted them.

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Out here, in West Pokot County, Kenya, the landscape looks like Mars — red clay, rocks, and in the distance, a mountain so bare, it looks like a giant boulder.

Stephen Long'uriareng, 80, has walked two hours to bring her two cows and goats to this watering hole. It's really just a dam carved out the earth, where the rain water mixes with mud and turns into a dark brown color.

This is not the place Long'uriareng remembers from her youth.

"This whole place used to be green with a lot of pasture. There was nothing being experienced like drought," she said.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Jason Greenblatt was the chief legal officer at the Trump Organization. Now President Trump has tapped him to help end the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

It's a job that has become even harder in the past several days, with a new eruption of violence: Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel fatally shooting Israeli police at an important holy site; three Palestinians killed in clashes with Israeli forces; three Israelis stabbed to death in their home by a young Palestinian.

You probably have a mental image of what NASA's space missions look like — rockets blasting off into the sky, fiery clouds of exhaust after liftoff — but what do they sound like?

One of the biggest fishing magnates in the country could be sentenced to prison this coming week, and the forfeiture of his boats could be a big hit for the Massachusetts port where he amassed a small empire.

Between his scalloping and groundfishing boats, Carlos Rafael – nicknamed "the Codfather" — came to be the largest single owner of fishing vessels in New England, and possibly in the country.

The next Game of Thrones could be a sci-fi epic set in Africa.

On Monday, Nigerian-American author Nnedi Okorafor posted an announcement on her Facebook page:

"I'm finally free to announce this: My World Fantasy Award winning novel WHO FEARS DEATH has been optioned by HBO and is now in early development as a TV series with George R. R. Martin as executive producer. Note: This did not happen overnight. It's been nearly 4 years coming."

In Sam Kean's previous nonfiction books, The Disappearing Spoon and The Violinist's Thumb, the bestselling pop-science writer tackled the topics of the periodic table and DNA, respectively. His new book, Caesar's Last Breath, goes after something equally as essential. Subtitled Decoding the Secrets of the Air Around Us, it's a conversational and illuminating view of the history and inner workings of Earth's atmosphere — what comprises it, how we've harnessed it for better and for worse, and what it means to us going forward as a civilization.

Update at 5:30 p.m. ET

At least nine people have died after being crammed into the back of a tractor-trailer and traveling under scorching conditions, officials say, in an update on a case of apparent human trafficking.

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