Thursday, 28 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 15 - Propaganda 'Wishful thinking'

Have you ever tried to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear? I’m here to tell you that it can’t be done (if you know otherwise please let me know – The International Proverb Society will have some serious questions to answer).
The reason I asked that apparently arbitrary question is to make you aware that our album today is a remix album, although according to ZTT these aren’t remixes, they’re actually ‘disturbdances’ (‘interesting’).
Now as we all know, remix albums are only an acceptable art form if the source material is a ‘silk purse’. Happily in this case the original Propaganda tunes are top quality, so the resulting album ‘Wishful thinking’ is excellent too. The first two tracks (segued together) ‘Abuse’ and ‘Machined’ set a pace which is never quite matched by the other tracks, except when ‘Abuse’ comes around again on side two.
Incidentally the cover painting is by Claudia Brücken herself (presumably for the German equivalent of ‘O’-level Art) showing that she made the right move choosing a career in music.
Just as a matter of remix album interest, if you’d like to know if it’s possible to make a sow’s ear out of a silk purse, just take a listen to the triple CD album, Depeche Mode ‘Remixes 81-04’
Label – ZTT
Year – 1985

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Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 14 - The Cocteau Twins 'Victorialand'

I'd barely driven out of our street this morning when I was cruelly cut-up by an 11 year old Daihatsu YRV.
I reached instinctively for the horn to warn other road-users of the impending road safety risk, when Elizabeth Fraser's voice on the appropriately titled opening track of Victorialand wrapped me in a warm comfortable blanket and I was suddenly becalmed.
The Cocteau Twins tend to do that to me - I don't listen to them every day or every week as some people do, but it's re-assuring to know that there's a warm musical blanket whenever it's required.
Choosing favourite tracks is difficult, because Cocteau Twins albums don’t tend to work like that – they’re usually best appreciated as a whole rather than singling out individual tracks. If pushed, however, I’d be inclined to point you towards side 2, track 2 ‘Little Spacey’. Not as you may suspect a tribute to the UK’s favourite adopted American thespian, but a beautiful piece of dreamy pop music (it’s The Cocteau Twins, what do you expect me to say?). Track titles are fabulous too – ‘Fluffy tufts’ or ‘Oomingmak’ are not the kind of words bandied about in song titles on your usual Robbie Williams album.
Needless to say for a Cocteau Twins album, the cover (or in the cassette’s case, insert) is a work of art too – so much so that I’ve decided to give the designers a credit below too!
Label – 4AD
Year – 1986
Sleeve (insert!) design – 23 Envelope

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 13 - Bill Nelson's Red Noise 'Sound on sound'

There aren’t many rock stars from Wakefield, (that’s a fact, it’s a thing we can’t deny) so it seems only right to treasure any that we have.

In 1979, Bill Nelson, formerly of 70s be-suited rock stars Be-Bop Deluxe unexpectedly released a bold, futuristic new wave (or ‘post-punk’ as I think it legally has to be referred to now) classic that sounds just as fresh and vibrant 34 years later.

Utopian and dystopian futures (two of my favourite kinds!) loom large with jerky, short tracks, six per side. ‘Furniture music’ is probably the best known, but many others are capable of reaching the same high standard. ‘Stop-Go-Stop’ and ‘Revolt into style’ are brilliant, but for me it’s the 100mph, slogan-upon-slogan-fest ‘Art – Empire – Industry’ that stands above everything else. Just when you think this track can’t get any better, in comes a robotic voice (one of my favourite things) and then one of the best track endings ever recorded. I love it when musicians have the confidence to end a track rather than just let it fade away.

Watch out too for references to the impending year of 1984.

At the time this album seemed like it was a million miles away from Be-Bop Deluxe, but with hindsight the natural progression now seems understandable and organic.

I recently placed this album just outside my favourite 50 – having listened to it again today (twice!) I’d be inclined to bump it up about 40 spaces.

This won’t be the last you hear of Bill Nelson in ‘the great 6 month cassette experiment’ – ‘Quit dreaming and get on the beam’ will be along in a few weeks.

Label – Harvest

Year - 1979

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Monday, 25 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 12 - Heaven 17 'The Luxury Gap'

Imagine, if you will, a world in which every day at work for the last 30 years you are surrounded by colleagues and congratulated on a report that you wrote in 1983 about the merits of a particular type of air conditioning. Every day. For 30 years.

You know you’ve written better reports, but everyone keeps banging on about the air conditioning one. In fact, every time you attend a meeting your colleagues won’t let the meeting end without you reading again from your famous report from 1983.

It would probably be likely to get on your nerves a bit after a while. Younger workers would be bound to wonder what all the fuss was about.

‘Temptation’ from ‘The Luxury Gap’ is Heaven 17’s air conditioning report. If you haven’t heard it (and I’m sure everyone has) then all you need to do is switch on BBC Radio 2 – ‘The National Radio Act (1984)’ states that ‘Temptation’ has to be played by the station at intervals of no greater than 37 minutes – and so it has been ever since The Act came into force. You would think that they never recorded any other tracks.

Well I’m here to tell you that Heaven 17 did record better tracks than ‘Temptation’. At least two of them feature on this album alone – the brilliant ‘Let me go’ and the even better ‘Come live with me’, with its age gap story line that still makes me just a little bit queasy. There’s also an impressive appearance by Earth, Wind & Fire’s horns (insert your own punchline here!)

At its highest points ‘The Luxury Gap’ reminds me of The Human League’s ‘Reproduction’ and ‘Travelogue’, and that’s high praise indeed.

Label – Virgin Records

Year - 1983

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Sunday, 24 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 11 - Stephen tintin Duffy 'the ups and downs'

Do you ever take a moment to ponder what might have been?

For example, if I hadn’t spectacularly failed my A levels I might well have been a Chartered Accountant by now (now there's a thought!).

Someone else who may wonder what might have been is Stephen (TinTin) Duffy. If he hadn't parted company with Duran Duran he might now be the millionaire lead singer of one of the most embarrassing bands of the 20th (and, sadly, 21st) century - or alternatively if he'd stayed around the boys may have recorded a catalogue of classics like 'Kiss me', 'Icing on the Cake', 'Laundry' or the mighty 'Wednesday Jones', which featured on almost every mixtape produced by yours-truly for about three years.

It has to be said, ‘The ups and downs’ has weathered the storms of the intervening 28 (yikes!) years rather successfully. The production sounds very 1985 but the songs, for the most part, are timeless. The singles, particularly ‘Kiss Me’ (candidate for the most remixed song of the 1980s) are well-known to most people over the age of 40, but the real treasures here are the tracks that weren’t singles. ‘The world at large alone’ and ‘Wednesday Jones’ are the best of an exceedingly impressive selection.

Look out for more of Stephen’s albums over the coming weeks – if you’re very good we might even listen to Dr Calculus.

Now if only Stephen could have talked John and Andy out of joining The Power Station.

Label – 10 Records

Year - 1985

Friday, 22 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 10 - It Bites 'Eat me in St. Louis'

I’d like to start today with a confession – I find the idea of rock bands from unlikely towns and cities to be faintly ridiculous.
Don’t ask me why, it’s not the world’s worst prejudice, but, admittedly, prejudice it is.
Before you start thinking badly of me please ask yourself whether or not it raises a personal titter that The Darkness hatched their jump-suited plans for world domination from Lowestoft, Saxon emerged on Wheels of Steel from Barnsley and the mighty Tygers of Pan Tang are ‘Straight outta’ one of the North East’s finest seaside resorts, Whitley Bay?
The reason I reveal this strange insight into my innermost rock prejudices is by way of introduction to Egremont’s finest, It Bites, and the only album of theirs that I own, the hilariously titled ‘Eat me in St. Louis’. I must admit I approached this album with some trepidation, unsure of how it would sound 24 years after its original release. Here’s the not particularly unforeseen revelation – like most ‘rock’ bands of the 1980s it sounds extremely well produced and more than a little bit silly. If you’re an ‘influence-spotter’ (and I am, it’s one of my favourite ways to completely waste an hour or two) you’ll spend most of the album muttering things like ‘ooh Genesis’, ‘ooh Yes’, ‘ooh Queen’,  ‘ooh Pink Floyd’, ‘ooh Styx’ and one surreal occasion, ‘ooh On Broadway’. Listeners of a less charitable disposition may also find Spinal Tap comparisons difficult to avoid.
Despite all of these reasons (and in many ways because of them) this is still a very likeable album, with the singles ‘Still too young to remember’ and Peter Gabriel-flavoured ‘Underneath your pillow’ the best tracks.
It seem that all the stops were pulled out for this album, with Mack hired to produce and LP cover royalty Roger Dean commissioned to design the cover (although I think as in the days of the construction of outside WCs, Roger gave his apprentice full control of this one).
As a minor, but I like to think interesting, musical footnote, Francis Dunnery (Lead vocalist, guitarist and ‘tapboard’ player) went on to perform on two of my all-time favourite albums . The fantastic ‘Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman and Howe (don’t knock it ‘til you’ve heard it – it’s on the cassette experiment list to play in the next few weeks) and the tremendous ‘The miseducation of Lauryn Hill’.
Label – Virgin Records
Year - 1989

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 9 - Poly Styrene 'Translucence'

As I walked round HMV today with the team slowly dismantling shelves ready for the big close down, my misty eyes were drawn toward a CD that I’ve been considering purchasing for a little while – ‘Trouble’ by Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs.
I tell you this for three distinct reasons
1. To show (despite the evidence to the contrary within my cassette collection) that I’m not permanently stuck musically between 1978 and 1987
2. To show that I listen to BBC 6Music
3. To show that I will not be tempted away from tapes by shiny CDs for at least the next 6 months (Rule 1 of ‘the great 6 month cassette experiment’)
All of that being said I do have a confession to make. After many months of trying I finally managed to get hold of a vinyl copy of ‘Translucence’ just a few days ago. It’s been somewhat of a personal crusade to finally replace the slightly stretched tape version of what you may or may not know is number 30 on my ‘favourite albums of all-time’ list with a vinyl alternative.
A brilliant, uplifting, under-appreciated and rarely heard post-punk (but not particularly ‘post-punk’) classic that has much in common with that other great lost album of the time ‘Pauline Murray and The Invisible Girls’ by the aforementioned Pauline Murray and her also aforementioned Invisible Girls.
‘Translucence’ is a dreamy, summery album that couldn’t be further from Poly’s earlier X-Ray Spex tunes (‘Germfree Adolescents’ is number 26 on my ‘favourite albums of all-time’ list incidentally). Picking favourite tracks is not really appropriate for such a great album, but if pressed I would point you in the direction of the title track or ‘Day that time forgot’. I’m not sure how much luck you’ll have finding a copy to listen to these tracks though – unless you already own a copy, in which case you’ll know exactly what I’ve been waffling on about.
Label – United Artists
Year - 1980

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 8 - Martin Stephenson and The Daintees 'The boy's heart'

I had an epiphany today.
I realised that, in some cases, I have been discriminating against particular albums simply because they exist in my collection only in cassette form. I think this is called ‘formatism’. If it isn’t I’d like to go on record as the first person to describe it as such.
My epiphany was reached while listening to ‘The Boy’s Heart’ by much-loved (in these parts anyway) Martin Stephenson and The Daintees. I learned that this Kitchenware Records album, which previously I hadn’t played that much, was every bit as good as their first three albums, which I own on CD.
‘We can roll’ is the album’s finest moment by some considerable amount, and still a fixture of (their very fine) live set. If you’ve never seen Martin and the boys live then you really should as I’ve never been disappointed when I’ve seen them (at Sunderland Empire, Newcastle Riverside (now those were the days), The Cluny and, where I first encountered them, busking in The Market Place in Sunderland).
When you hail from London, Liverpool or New York you must become blasé about hearing local landmarks mentioned in song. When you’re from Sunderland it doesn’t tend to happen quite as frequently. That’s the reason why ‘8.30 Mowbray Morning’ fills me with such a warm feeling – when we were little boys in short trousers we would walk through Mowbray Park every Wednesday morning on the way to our Gran and Granddad’s house, playing with our favourite matchbox cars on the park’s pathways as we slowly made our way.
Listen out for ‘Ballad of the English Rose’ too - recorded when Frank Turner was probably still in short trousers too.
Label – London/Kitchenware Records
Year - 1992

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 7 - OMD 'Crush'

Here’s a tip – If you have anything that you consider to be in the slightest bit precious please don’t store it in a cold, damp loft.
Today’s tape received an awful lot of play on assorted  cassette players in Minis, Triumph Heralds, Ford Escorts, Morris Travellers, Renault 5s etc., and then it was placed in the aforementioned loft (or to be more precise, lofts) for over twenty years – and now it doesn’t sound too good. I guess that’s one of the reasons cassettes have become so unloved and unappreciated.
Musically though, if you ignore the sonic murk that has been deposited by the intervening years, it’s still an impressive listen. For the first time on this album the OMD boys (still just in their mid-20s remember) pretty much abandoned their love of electronic experimentation and embraced POP with all of their eight arms. The album cracks away with the chirpy ‘So in love’ and the pace continues brightly, only dipping slightly at the dawn of side 2 with the murkier (and not just on this copy!) ’88 seconds in Greensboro’ and ‘The Native Daughters of the Golden West’, then picking up again with two of their finest tracks ever committed to vinyl (or, in this case, tape) ‘La Femme Accident’ and ‘Hold You’. Tucked away on side two at bands (that’s a technical term!) 3 and 4 they really do merit another listen, as does the whole album.
Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (to give them their Sunday name) had previously released albums that were better than this, but subsequently they were never as good again – sorry boys.
Label – Virgin Records
Year - 1985
In an attempt to conquer the accumulated years of murk on these tapes I managed to find four (!) old head cleaner tapes, including one from HMV with the prophetic slogan ‘Know HMV – Know Music’. In Durham and many other places this is about to become a reality.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Cassette experiment Day 6 - Elvis Costello and the Attractions -Almost Blue (1981)

There are some great albums that you listen to over and over again, but they have no further meaningful effect on your listening tastes beyond the forty or so minutes that you spend with them.
There are others that lead you into other worlds that you’d never before considered entering – and once entered you never really want to leave. In 1981 I believed I had fairly diverse tastes. I loved OMD, The Clash, The Human League, Kraftwerk, Jean Michel Jarre and, crucially, I loved Elvis Costello. ‘Country’ music I didn’t love. I had heard a few songs by Kenny Rodgers and one or two by Dolly Parton, but beyond that I had absolutely no interest.
Then Elvis Costello released ‘Almost Blue’ in a (now very dog-eared) flip-topped cigarette-packet- style box and the world of Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, George Jones and Gram Parsons slowly but surely opened up before me. It’s difficult to pick a favourite track here and I must be honest with you and admit that this is the first tape so far where, because of the high quality of the album and the very poor quality of my tape copy, I’m considering purchasing again on CD. I’m not sure if this reflects favourably or unfavourably on the concept of ‘the great 6 month cassette experiment’

Incidentally, the poor sound quality of cassette tapes may have initially caused me to incorrectly believe that Hank harboured some racist tendencies, as I misheard the opening lines of ‘Why don’t you love me (like you used to do)’ as follows;

Well, why don't you love me like you used to do,
How come you treat me like a one-eyed Jew?

So I’d like to finish with a very big ‘sorry’ to Hank and a very big ‘thank you’ to Elvis Costello.


Saturday, 16 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 5 - BEF presents 'Music of Quality and Distinction Volume One' (1982)

When the history of 1980s cover versions is written, (back off! I’m doing it!) this album will have a special place therein.
I may be over-simplifying, but this is essentially Heaven 17 with guest vocalists (including their own!) covering ten classic songs originally made famous by no less than Lou Reed, David Bowie, Elvis Presley, Roy Orbison, Glen Campbell and more – talk about setting the bar high.
Add to that vocalists hand-picked for their ability to carry a tune (rather than their popularity in the world of popular music in 1982) and you have one great album – side one sets the pace – side two surpasses it by some considerable amount. Three of the all-time great 80s covers appear on this second side; ‘Wichita Lineman’ and ‘Perfect Day’, both by Glenn Gregory, and the colossal ‘It’s Over’ by Billy Mackenzie.
Time hasn’t particularly been kind to the participants though. Two of them (Billy Mackenzie and Paula Yates) are sadly no longer with us. And probably the less said about Gary Gl****r (who covers ‘Suspicious Minds’ here and gets top-billing on the cover) the better.
If you’re interested there was also a Volume 2. Released some years later, it’s almost bound to feature here in a few weeks time if you play your cards right. If you don’t want to know the result, please look away now – it’s not as good as Volume 1.
Unusual credit – ‘Special thanks to John Foxx and Gareth Jones for their unsolicited help and encouragement’

Friday, 15 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 4 - The B-52's - Whammy! (1983)

I’m one of those people who think astrology is complete rubbish (a typical Cancerian), so I never bother reading my stars and give all things astrological an extremely wide berth.
With one exception.
Ever since The Floaters’ ‘Float on’ I’ve been an absolute sucker for any song where the group tell you their star signs. It’s illogical I know, but quirky too I like to think.
The B-52’s ‘Whammy’ has one of the great star sign songs – ‘Song for a future generation’ where our friends wax lyrical, Floaters style, about their star signs and their likes. Add to this the mighty veggie tribute ‘Butterbean’ (with the stunning lyric ‘pass me a plate full, I’ll be grateful’) and you have the makings of a pretty fine and unfortunately largely ignored album.
True it’s nowhere near the quality of their earlier stuff, but not very much is if we’re honest. You could probably lose the last three tracks for me – including the (on paper) appealing prospect of a cover version of Yoko Ono’s ‘Don’t worry’ which, unfortunately turns out to be just as ‘interesting’ as the original.
Incidentally, this cassette is one of Island Records’ 1+1 tapes – the complete album on side one and the complete album again on side two. You can choose to keep side two if you wish, or record over it if you prefer. Marketed using the grammatically ugly tagline ‘One side what you like. One side whatever you like’ (I chose to keep both sides intact if you’re wondering)
‘Wig-Do’s by Phyliss of Tiffany Wigs’

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 3 - The Lilac Time '& Love for All' (1990)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that there are only two kinds of people – those who consider ‘& Love for All’ to be a criminally overlooked pop masterpiece and those who haven’t heard it.
Once a regular feature of the turntable round our way (I have a copy of this on vinyl too), I listened to this today for probably the first time in ten years. It still sounds fantastic.
If ‘Laundry’ doesn’t make you cry then you’re made of stone – and I’d like to start a one man campaign (right here, right now) for ‘Let our land be the one’ to be adopted as our new national anthem without delay.
And if you think music is too expensive now, this 23 year old tape cost £8.49 when new – it still has its ‘Our Price’ sticker proudly displayed.
In not entirely unrelated news – I should never have embarked on this quest without first locating a functioning cassette head cleaning tape!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

The great 6 month cassette experiment - XTC The Big Express

I’d like to start today by pointing out two things;
1 I like XTC
2 I have an annoying habit of describing something as ‘interesting’ when what I really mean is it’s not very good.
Now that I’ve got that cleared up I feel ready to tell you that I find ‘The Big Express’ by XTC to be an extremely interesting album. It has many of the attributes that you might look for in a great album, such as sea-shanty influences, whistling, seagulls, donkeys, segued tracks etc. and somehow still misses the mark by some considerable amount. I’ve always wanted to love this album, but somehow I just can’t seem to do so.
There are some good bits too though (just not enough of them!), but if you are able to listen to ‘Train running low on soul coal’ without being driven to hurl your cassette player out of your car window, then you have stranger musical tastes than me. And, let’s face it, with a title like that it should be outstanding!
On an unrelated note, while travelling through Durham today I saw a chicken enthusiastically looking for food on a grass verge right in the centre of the city. She may well have been squashed by now.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Cassette experiment day 1 - Sparks - No.1 in Heaven

As muesli eaters are keen to remind us, ‘Today is the first day of the rest of your life’ – in my case ‘Today was the first day of the rest of the great 6 month cassette experiment’.
With the weight of potential history weighing heavily upon my shoulders I cleared all evidence of CDs from my car (frighteningly there were 34 of them in there!) and chose my first cassette. Now not all of my tapes are of the same musical high quality, but I thought that for day one it was important to choose a really, really good one. As if 34 was the theme of the day I chose one that just happened to be 34 years old – Sparks’ ‘No. 1 in Heaven’.
A brilliant electronic pop album (I have an unproven theory that many of the best electronic albums were made in the 70s rather than the 80s) with Giorgio Moroder’s influence ‘front and centre’. It’s a six track album too and for some reason that’s always good news.
Not all of the tracks are fantastic, it dips a bit on ‘My other voice’ for example, but for my money the whole album builds towards the ‘goosebump moment’ when, halfway through the final and almost title track ‘The Number One Song In Heaven’, the tempo shifts and Giorgio, in near ‘I feel love’ mode finally pulls out all of the stops and the album races headlong to finish, as all tapes do, with the familiar hiss of the run-out.
I always picture a disco in heaven when I hear this song, with departed DJs playing this track – although as we’ve recently found out, not all DJs go to heaven.

If you enjoyed this post (and I really hope you did) then you can read about the whole six months on your Kindle. Simply search for 'The Great Cassette Experiment - The Joy of Cassettes' by Neil Pace. Thank you. 

Sunday, 10 February 2013

The great 6 month cassette experiment

Yesterday, while loftsurfing TM I chanced upon possibly the least-loved items in my music collection – my cassette tapes. There are hundreds of them lurking in five big cardboard boxes, (around 85% of these tapes emerged during the 1980s, 10% the 1990s with maybe 5% or so from the 1970s).
It seems difficult to imagine now, but cassettes used to be the only way to listen to music of your own (rather than the radio DJ’s) choice while in the car (unless you count the short-lived but magnificent 8 track cartridge of course!). Once I got a car with a CD player (a V registered Ford Fiesta 1.25 Zetec if you’re interested) I don’t think I bought another cassette.
I realised yesterday that this is a major part of my music collection that I never listen to and I hatched a plan to rediscover the treasures (and trash) hidden within those five cardboard boxes – using my old personal stereo, a JVC CX-6, an auxiliary cable and an unfeasibly large number of AA batteries I will exclusively listen to music on cassette tape in the car for the next 6 months. Starting tomorrow, 11th February 2013 and ending 10th August 2013.

I figure it’ll be a great way to rediscover some great albums, but please rest assured I won’t shy away from the not so great albums too. Along the way I’ll blog about the albums that I listen to, but you’ll have to make allowances as the albums listened to will be generally my 1980s taste. I might throw in a few mixtapes recorded during the 80s and 90s, so you’re in luck if you’re a big fan of Fiat Lux, the Farmer’s Boys or I Start Counting. Another important consideration is this – cassettes were not usually my most preferred format (my recent top 50 albums only included two albums that I only own in cassette format) so many will have been purchased on tape because they were cheaper or difficult to find on vinyl – essentially this is a collection of ‘second-bests’ and in many ways that’s what makes it even more interesting (hopefully!)
If you'd like to join me on my retro journey you'll be very welcome!

Saturday, 9 February 2013

The great Top 52 Album Tweetathon

Just over a month ago some of the finest musical minds on twitter (and me, @boxofpeppers) compiled their Top 50 album lists.
I thought you might like to see my list. Obviously it's just a snapshot. I've already changed my mind about some of the albums that made the list, along with some of the ones that missed out (how could I have forgotten about 'Tapestry' for example) and as I shortlisted 52 albums I've shown all 52, so you can see the two that just missed out.
There's also a longlist, which I may (or may not) include in a blog one day. The photograph above shows one batch of albums considered for movement from long to shortlist. (Why not see how many of them you can name!)
Back in your life
Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers
Grand Prix
Teenage Fanclub
John Foxx
Hunky Dory
David Bowie
Trans-Europe Express
Sign 'o' The Times
London Calling
The Clash
My Beauty
Kevin Rowland
Tin Drum
Queen of Denmark
John Grant
The Human League
For your pleasure
Roxy Music
808s and Heartbreak
Kanye West
The Sophtware Slump
Moon Safari
Songs to remember
Scritti Politti
Out of the blue
Electric Light Orchestra
Joy Division
Jordan:The Comeback
Prefab Sprout
Pet Sounds
The Beach Boys
Songs from Northern Britain
Teenage Fanclub
The Man Machine
I'm wide awake it's morning
Bright Eyes
Yoshimi battles the pink robots
The Flaming lips
Construction time again
Depeche Mode
Germfree Adolescents
X-Ray Spex
Roxy Music
Roxy Music
Upstairs at Eric's
Modern Lovers Live
Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers
Poly Styrene
Thunder, Lightning, Strike
The Go Team
Abbey Road
The Beatles
Tupelo Honey
Van Morrison
The Smiths
The Smiths
Salutation Road
Martin Stephenson and The Daintees
Kathryn Williams
Licensed to Ill
The Beastie Boys
The Clash
Raising Hell
Mull Historical Society
The Lamb lies down on Broadway
Pauline Murray and The Invisible Girls
Pauline Murray and The Invisible Girls
The age of plastic
The Buggles
69 Love Songs
The Magnetic Fields
Before and after science
Brian Eno
Street  Sounds NY v LA Beats
New Wave
The Auteurs
3 feet high and rising
De La Soul
Tron Legacy (soundtrack)
Daft Punk
Bill Nelson's Red Noise
The Archandroid
Janelle Monae