Monday, 27 April 2015

From Inside The Pod Revisited #9

Looking back at the podcasts I created for my old blog, I was surprised how much good stuff I crammed onto each one over 30 short minutes. Compiling them was always interesting, but quite hard work deciding what to include and what to leave out. This one is a particularly strong set, eclectic and lively.

As with the rest of this series, I've not tinkered with the original article - what you see below is how it originally appeared more than four years ago. Enjoy.

Pod 10: Blue
(first published 4 January 2011)

We're told 2011 is going to be a tough year, which is something to look forward to!! Plenty of reasons to feel blue then, but for once in my life I'm going to try to be optimistic. Shit happens, right? What can you do but shrug your shoulders and get on with it? So with that in mind, here's another 10 gems to usher in another 12 months of excellent sounds which, even if things conspire against us, will offer us comfort in our hour(s) of need.

This post is dedicated to the late great Pete Postlethwaite who passed away at the weekend.

1. Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan Come Undone [live] (2010, Live At The Barbican)
While the pairing of the former Belle and Sebastian cellist and the ex-frontman of Screaming Trees may have been considered a little odd at the outset, three albums in and Campbell & Lanegan have more than proved they are a match made in musical heaven. This track, originally from last year's 'Hawk' album, was recorded in London during their recent tour.

2. Compulsion Air-Raid For The Neighbours (1994, Comforter)
One of my favourite albums of the 90s was the debut from Irish punks Compulsion, fronted by the man who would later become renowned and in-demand producer Jacknife Lee (R.E.M., Snow Patrol, U2). I saw them live at a gig in Devon while I was working with the support band, and they were really quite phenomenal.

3. The Peth Sunset Veranda (2008, The Golden Mile)
Ten-piece Welsh supergroup comprising members of Super Furry Animals, Sibrydion and actor Rhys Ifans (of Twin Town and the latest Harry Potter movie), who once fronted the Super Furries way back before they made a record. If you're wondering, 'Peth' translates from the Welsh as 'thing'.

4. Head Cat Big River (2006, Fool's Paradise)
Rockabilly supergroup made up of members of the Stray Cats, the Rockats and, erm, Lemmy from Motörhead. Yes, strange as it may seems, rock's premier hedonistic frontman grew up listening to the rock 'n' roll greats and made this album as a result of a studio jam with the other members. This is their take on Johnny Cash's classic.

5. Ólöf Arnalds Klara (2007, Við Og Við)
An active member of the Icelandic music scene since the start of the last decade, collaborating with numerous acts including Múm, Mugison and Skúli Sverrisson, Ólöf Arnalds produces the most extraordinary folk music, performed in the troubadour style. Haunting and delicate, yet unnervingly self-assured.

6. Speedball Jr. Inferno (2006, For The Broad Minded)
How about some surf-rock from Belgium, then? Not something you're likely to hear that often, but in Speedball Jr. we get some kick-ass riffs coupled with raw rock energy while keeping with the essence of the genre.

7. Jesse Fuller Whoa Mule (1963, San Francisco Bay Blues)
The original one-man-band, Jesse Fuller worked in factories, farms, quarries, railroads, shipyards and as a film extra before carving out a career in music, his first album being cut in 1958. He is also known for his invention of the 'fotdella', a bizarre musical instrument that allowed him to play a bass line in several keys in addition to guitar, drums, harmonica and kazoo simultaneously. A true genius.

8. Cold War Kids The Soloist in The Living Room (2005, The Mulberry Street EP)
A new Cold War Kids album is on the way, which is always something to get excited about. This is one of their earliest recordings which featured on their debut release.

9. Nouvelle Vague (Get A) Grip (On Yourself) (2010, Best Of Nouvelle Vague: Limited Edition)
Known for their inventive reworkings of British and American new wave classics, Nouvelle Vague have recently turned their attentions to songs of the 80s from their French homeland. However, last year's Best Of featured a bonus disc of rarities that rounds off the first chapter of their career, and this take on the Stranglers debut is one of the highlights.

10. Sister Rosetta Tharpe 99 And A Half Won't Do (1956, Gospel Train)
After making her name as a gospel singer during the 20s and 30s, Rosetta caused a storm when her first recordings surfaced in 1938. Her devout god-fearing followers, outraged at the mix of sacred and secular music, turned their backs on her. That, however, didn't stop her from becoming a smash hit with wider audiences and a massive influence on those who would follow - she is credited with inventing the rock 'n' roll guitar solo a good decade before that genre broke through. Here, she duets with fellow gospel singer Marie Knight.


  1. I'm a fan of the pods as you know. I love what seems to be a randomness of your selections, but I'm sure they weren't !

    1. It's what I call 'considered randomness'. I wanted a right old mix of stuff, but it had to fit together. Not quite random, but random-ish...