Lockdown playlist no6: Psychobilly

April 6, 2020

So this might be a good moment to dust off that Halloween costume …

Just been checking a few definitions of ‘psychobilly’, this is my favourite: “Psychobilly is as if rockabilly was somehow possessed by a demon, injected with punk rock speeds, inked by a zombie tattoo artist and fed a steady diet of crazy pills!”

But let’s not get too stuck on definitions. This music is about having fun.

The Cramps – Human Fly 1978

The Sharks – Short Sharp Shock 1983

The Deltas – Fashion Train 1984

Voodoo Dolls – Poison in your drink 1984

Guana Batz – King Rat 1985

Mad Sin – Straight to Hell 1988

The Meteors – Brains As Well 1989


As Diabatz – Psychomad Mary 2009

The Moonshine Stalkers – Satan Takes a Holiday 2019



Lockdown playlist no5: Pogues vs The Waterboys

April 3, 2020

Let battle commence !

The Pogues – Streams of Whiskey (Red Roses for Me 1984)

The Waterboys – Red Army Blues (A Pagan Place 1984) 

The Pogues – Sally MacLennane (Rum Sodomy & the Lash 1985)

The Waterboys – Don’t Bang the Drum (This is the Sea 1985)

The Pogues – A Pair of Brown Eyes (Rum Sodomy & the Lash 1985)

The Waterboys – Fisherman’s Blues (Fisherman’s Blues 1988)    

The Pogues & The Dubliners – The Irish Rover (Single, 1987)

The Waterboys – And a Bang on the Ear (Fisherman’s Blues 1988)   

The Pogues – Thousands Are Sailing (If I Should Fall from Grace with God 1988)

The Waterboys – How Long Will I Love You? (Room to Roam 1990)




Lockdown playlist no4: Liverpool bands

April 1, 2020

I might come back to this theme, because I’m barely scratching the surface here. These are rock, punk and indie bands from across the Merseyside area that I’ve been listening to recently.

The Farm – All Together Now (Spartacus 1991)

Julian Cope – Hung-up & Hanging Out To Dry (Peggy Suicide 1991)

The Coral – Don’t Think You’re the First  (Magic & Medicine 2003)

Pete Bentham & The Dinner Ladies – Do The Don´t  (Hip Potater 2013)

The Bordellos – The gospel according to Julian Cope (Will.I.Am, you’re really nothing 2014)

Circa Waves – T-Shirt Weather (Young Chasers 2015)

Ian Prowse – You Can’t Win Em All Mum (Companeros 2015)

She Drew The Gun – Resister (Revolution of Mind 2018)

SPINN – Notice Me (Spinn 2019) 

The Mysterines – Who’s Ur Girl? (single 2019)



Lockdown playlist no3: Salsa

March 30, 2020

Imagine the scene : it’s New York City in the early 1970s. In this place, just a few years earlier, salsa music was born. And now a whole generation of brilliant young Latino musicians were tearing it up, creating fresh exciting horn driven dance rhythms. These performances and recordings were to become the gold standard of the new music, as it was exported from New York across the Latin world. Fania was the famous New York label which brought all these musicians together (the rival Tico label was taken over by Fania in 1974).

Fania All-Stars – Que Barbaridad feat Hector Lavoe & Ismael Miranda on vocals (Live At The Cheetah Vol 2, Fania 1972)

Ray Barretto – Quitate La Mascara (Barretto Power, Fania 1970)

Roberto Roena Y Su Apollo Sound – Consolación (Roberto Roena Y Su Apollo Sound, Fania 1970)

Willie Colón & Héctor Lavoe – Soñando Despierto (El Juicio, Fania 1972)

Ismael Miranda Con Orchestra Harlow – Abran Paso (Abran Paso!,  Fania 1971)

Tito Puente ‎– Pa’Lante (Pa’Lante! Straight!, Tico 1970)

Eddie Palmieri – Bilongo (Superimposition, Tico 1970)

Bobby Valentin – Yo Soy Abacua  (Algo Nuevo / Something New, Fania 1970)

Pacheco y El Conde – Soy El Mejor (Los Compadres, Fania 1971)

Cheo Feliciano – Pa La Gente Panameña   (Felicidades, Vaya 1973)





Lockdown playlist no2: Tech House

March 28, 2020

Saturday night and nowhere to go ? We can do this. You supply the booze, and I’ll supply the grooves.

Miane – House so House 2019

Low Steppa – Sunshine 2020

Ashibah – Devotion 2020

Sascha Funke vs. Nina Kraviz – Moses 2010

Illyus & Barrientos – Shout 2019 

Matthias Tanzmann – The Treat 2019

Kinnerman – My Thang 2020

Camelphat – Drop It  2017

Sabb – Jeopardized 2018

Martin Ikin – Hooked 2019



Lockdown playlist no1 : Jamaican ska

March 26, 2020
March 26 2020

This is! A heavy, heavy monster sound, hittin' you smack there. 
So don't let no lockdown get you down, get up, get up, baby.

Laurel Aitken – Mabel 1962

Stranger Cole – Rough and Tough 1963

Justin Hinds & the Dominoes – Botheration 1963

Don Drummond – Scrap Iron 1963

Byron Lee & the Dragonaires – Jamaica Ska 1964

Prince Buster – One Step Beyond 1965

Clancy Eccles – Sammy No Dead 1965

The Skatalites – Guns Of Navarone 1965

Granville Williams & His Orchestra – Wailin’ 1965

The Wailers – Simmer Down 1965


Best female artists of the decade

March 8, 2020

Today, I publish my list of 100 favourite songs by female artists for 2010 – 2019. It’s a major list, I’ve put a lot of work into it over the past month, and I’m delighted to be able to feature so many strong and inspiring female singers and artists. I think the music’s pretty amazing too – but I’ll let you be the judge of that. As usual, I cover a wide range of different genres, including rock, indie rock, garage rock, punk, house, spoken word and hip hop, R&B, country, folk, world music, and uncategorisables.

Here’s the inimitable Courtney Barnett.