I’ve actually been very lazy on the music front this year – Promise to do better in 2017. From the little I’ve done:

Album: - Bears Den, Red Earth & Pouring Rain 

Gig: Muse @ O2

Best Song: Kings of Leon “Don’t say its over”

Film: Deadpool

Worst musical moment: realising that half way through the Undertones gig that all their songs sound the same live
Best: the lighting and speaker rig at the Muse Gig



1 David Bowie - Black Star
2 Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree
3 Drive by Truckers - American Band
4 Whitney - Light Upon The Lake
5 Leonard Cohen - You want it Darker
6 Radiohead - Moon Shaped Pool
7 American Football - LP2
8 Frightened Rabbit - Painting of a Panic Attack
9 Wilco - Schmilco
10 The Rolling Stones - Blue & Lonesome

Live Gigs

1 Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band - Ricoh Arena, Coventry
2 David Gilmour - Royal Albert Hall
3 Neil Young & The Promise of the Real - O2 London
4 Coldplay - Wembley Stadium
5 AC/DC (with Axl Rose) - London Stadium
6 The Cure - Wembley Arena
7 Cinematic Orchestra - Rock City, Nottingham
8 Wilco - Brixton Academy
9 Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Genting Arena, Birmingham
10 Sleater Kinney - Sydney Opera House

Festival Performances

1 Thee Oh Sees - End of the Road
2 Low - Caught by the River
3 Warpaint - Green Man
4 Bill Ryder-Jones - Howlin' Fling, Eigg
5 Local Natives - End of the Road
6 Sigur ros - Citadel festival
7 The Magnetic North - Green Man
8 Whitney - Green Man
9 Beach House - Laneway Festival
10 Lush - Green Man

Best and worst Musical moments

Best: Going to a gig at the Sydney Opera House

Worst: The passing of David Bowie and all the musical legends who died this year.

Best Song

Julia Jacklin - Pool Party

Best Film

Black Mass

Best Book

David Millar - The Racer: The Inside Story of Life on the Road

Merry Christmas! Pete


1. Boy King - Wild Beasts
2. Skeleton Tree - Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
3. Hope Demolition Project - PJ Harvey
4. 22, A Million - Bon Iver
5. Bat For Lashes - The Bride
6. Kevin Morby - Singing Saw
7. GoGo Penguin - Man Made Object
8. Preoccupations - Preoccupations
9. Gold Panda - Good Luck and Do Your Best

Top track

Distant Sky - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

Top Ten Albums

Chaleur Humaine by Christine and the Queens is the only new album I've properly listened to that came out in 2016. Mostly in this year of shock, horror and dismay I've turned to comfortable favourites like Out of Time, Blue and Fleetwood Mac's greatest hits to guide me through. BUT, there is something positive on the horizon...I'm so looking forward to maybe finding new music from Bon Iver, Conor Oberst and Leonard Cohen in my Christmas stocking. So no top ten from me, but an anticipation of a better year ahead x

Top 2016 Gig

1) Christine and the Queens at Brixton Academy

Top Three 2016 Festival Appearances.

James @ On Blackheath (AMAZING)
Unknown Mortal Orchestra @ Green Man
Slow Club @ Green Man

Best Film

I Daniel Blake

Best Book

His Bloody Project by Graeme Macrae Burnet

Best song

Tilted by Christine and the Queens

Best and worst musical moments

Worst, the death of Leonard Cohen
Best, everyone dancing and singing along to Songhoy Blues at Green Man


Top Ten Albums

1 Beyond the Wizard's Sleeve – The Soft Bounce
2 Nancy Kerr- Instar
3 Minor Victories – The Debut Album
4 Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker - Overnight
5 Lucinda Williams – The Ghosts of Highway 20
6 Luh – Spiritual Songs for Lovers to Sing
7 Lisa Hannigan – At Swim
8 The Wedding Present – Going ,Going ...
9 Blair Dunlop – Gilded
10 Metallica – Hardwired ... to Self-destruct

Top Ten Gigs

1 Muse, Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
2 PJ Harvey, The Eden Project
3 Brian Wilson, Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham
4 Savages, The Junction, Cambridge
5 Preservation Hall Brass Band, Preservation Hall, New Orleans
6 Eliza Carthy and The Wayward Band, Glee Club, Nottingham
7 Wilco, Albert Hall, Manchester
8 Stick In The Wheel, Village Folk, Derby
9 Lake Street Dive, Scala, London
10 Lucinda Williams, The Plug, Sheffield
Individual performance worthy of mention – Dr Ruth Skipper of Moulettes rocking out with her bassoon, an instrument previously unknown to rock out with.

Top Ten Festival Appearances

1 Josienne Clarke & Ben Walker, Derby Cathedral, Derby Folk Festival
2 Peggy Seeger, Derby Folk Festival
3 The Human League, Splendour
4 Bat for Lashes, End of The Road
5 Goat, End of The Road
6 Broken Social Scene, End of The Road
7 Primal Scream , On Roundhay
8 Fairport Convention, Derby Folk Festival
9 Teenage Fan Club ,End of The Road
10 Whitney , End of The Road

Worst and Best Musical moments – (sadly) David Bowie dying and then hearing all the great music he made being played everywhere for the next week. The intro to 'All The Young Dudes' still brings a tear.

Annoying developing live music trend - People talking during shows. It easy folks, music is designed to be listened to, sung along with, danced to, or all three, not for being talked over. Talking whilst a musician is playing is disrespectful to the musicians and annoys other audience members who have paid to hear the musician, not you. Stop It Now.

Best Song – Riding The Low 'Heed'

Best Film
Hunt for The Wilderpeople

Alisdair Whyte



1.  I Love You, Honeybear - Father John Misty

2.  Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit - Courtney Barnett

3.  Perpetual Motion People - Ezra Furman

4.  Have You In My Wilderness - Julia Holter

5.  Carrie and Lowell - Sufjan Stevens

6.  B'lieve I'm Goin' Down - Kurt Vile

7.  On Your Own Love Again - Jessica Pratt

8.  Currents - Tame Impala

9.  Constant Bop - Bop English

10. Born Under Saturn - Django Django


Father John Misty - Village Underground, London

Sufjan Stevens - Royal Festival Hall, London

Public Service Broadcasting - Roundhouse, London

Super Furry Animals - Brixton, London

Jeff Lynne's ELO - Porchester Hall, London

Patti Smith - Roundhouse, London

Kurt Vile & The Violators, Anson Rooms, Bristol

Bob Dylan - Royal Albert Hall, London

Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Islington Assembly Hall, London

Gruff Rhys - Ebbw Vale Institute

Festival performances

St Vincent, Green Man

Beck, British Summer Time

Father John Misty, Green Man

Future Islands, British Summer Time

Public Service Broadcasting, Green Man

Super Furry Animals, Green Man

Manic Street Preachers, On Blackheath

808 State, On Blackheath

Mew, Green Man

Meilyr Jones, Green Man




1.  Maccabees - Marks To Prove It

2.  Tame Impala - Currents

3.  Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit And Think And Sometimes I Just Sit

4.  Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Multi Love

5.  Ezra Furman -Perpetual Motion People

6.  Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear

7.  Ghenghar - A Dream Outside

8.  East India Youth - Culture of Volume

9.  Public Service Broadcasting - The Race For Space

10. Girlband - Holding Hands With Jamie


Father John Misty - Village Underground London

Maccabees - Coronet London

Laura Marling - The Thekla Bristol

The Decemberists - O2 Glasgow

Foals - Village Underground London

Adem - Moth Club London

Alvvays/Genghar - Joiners Southampton

East India Youth - Village Underground London

Christopher Owens - St John's Church Bethnal Green

Wolf Alice - Old Fire Station Bournemouth


Tame Impala - End of The Road

Royal Blood - Best Kept Secret

East India Youth - End of The Road

Surjan Stevens - End of The Road

Meilyr Jones - End of The Road

Alvvays - End of The Road

Hinds - Visions

Darwen Deez - Truck Festival

Elbow - On Blackheath


Here's to more of the same in 2016 !!



Top 10 Albums 

1.  Mew,  + / -

2.  Decemberists - What A Terrible World, What A Beautiful World

3.  Gengahr - A Dream Outside

4.  Torres - Sprinter

5.  Maccabees - Marks To Prove It

6.  Libertines - Anthems For Doomed Youth

7.  Tame Impala - Currents

8.  Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit

9.  Laura Marling - Short Movie

10. Leisure Society - The Fine Art Of Hanging On 


Top 10 Gigs (in date order)

Barr Brothers 31-Jan Winchester, Railway

Little Comets 25-Feb Portsmouth, Wedgewood Rooms

Father John Misty 26-Feb Village Underground

The Leisure Society 15-Apr Islington Assembly Halls

Pretty Vicious 17-May Winchester, Railway

Alvvays (support Gengahr) 25-May Southampton, Joiners Arms

Adem 19-Oct MOTH Club, Hackney

Akala 01-Dec Village Underground

Christopher Owens 03-Dec Bethnal Green, St John

Mew 14-Dec Village Underground


Top 10 Festival Appearances (in date order)

Plastic Mermaids - Southampton, Common People Festival

Kindness - Best Kept Secret Festival, Netherlands

Royal Blood - Best Kept Secret Festival, Netherlands

Ratboy - Truck Festival

Girl Band - Visions Festival

Rae Morris - Victorious Festival, Portsmouth

Meilyr Jones - End Of the Road

Torres - End Of the Road

Tame Impala - End Of the Road

Gaz Coombes - Independence Festival, Southampton 

Best Song of the Year:

Pumpkin Noir, by Happyness

TV show of the year: Family Guy

Film of the Year: Kingsman, The Secret Service

Best musical moments of the year:

1. Will Doyle (East India Youth) performing solo and unmicked on the ‘Piano in The Woods Stage’ at End Of The Road Festival

2. Dancing to ‘Let it happen’ the 8-minute opening track of Tame Impala’s ‘Currents’ album at EOTR silent disco


Most disappointing musical moment of the year : Songhoy Blues live set.......

Mike Youe of The Blue Aeroplanes selects his Top Ten Albums of 2015

1.  Richard Thompson - Still

2.  Jemima Surrender - The Uninhabited World

3.  Sun Kil Moon - Universal Themes

4.  Akala - Knowledge Is Power Vol II

5.  Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometime I Just Sit

6.  John Carpenter - John Carpenter's Lost Themes

7.  Slaves - Are You Satisfied?

8.  Martin Simpson, Andy Cutting & Nancy Kerr - Murmurs

9.  The Unthanks - Mount The Air

10. Neil Young & The Promise Of The Real - The Monsanto Years


Top Ten Albums 2015

1.  Bully- Feels Like

2.  Blur- The Magic Whip

3.  Du Blonde – Welcome Back To Milk

4.  Destroyer- Poison Season

5.  Sufjan Stevens – Carrie and Lovell

6.  Sleater-Kinney- No Cities to Love

7.  White Reaper – White Reaper Does It Again

8.  Matthew E. White – Fresh Blood

9.  Bella Hardy – With The Dawn

10. The Charlatans- Modern Nature


Top Ten 2015 Gigs

Sleaford Mods @ Rock City, Nottingham

Bella Hardy @ MAC Birmingham

Haiku Salut @The Guildhall, Derby

Chris Leslie @Village Folk, Chellaston

White Reaper @ The Leadmill, Sheffield

Super Furry Animals @ Brixton Academy

Metric @ The Institute Birmingham

Menace Beach @ The Hairy Dog, Derby

Ben Holder & Stuart Smith @ Dog & Partridge, Marchington

The Charlatans @ Civic hall, Wolverhampton


Top Ten 2015 Festival Appearances.

Chris Wood , The Mighty Doonans @ Unity Folk festival in Wakefield

Boxed In @ Long Division in Wakefield

Slug, Du Blonde, Ibibio Sound Machine @ Deershed

Sufjan Stevens, Low @ End of the road

Calan , The Dovetail Trio @ Derby Folk Festival

Song of the year

Savages – The Answer




1 - Admiral Fallow - Tiny Rewards

2 - The Staves - If I Was

3 – Lau - The Bell That Never Rang

4- The Decemberists - What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World

5 – Blur – Magic Whip

6 - Richard Hawley - Hollow Meadows

7 – The Unthanks – Mount the Air

8 - Death Cab for Cutie – Kintsugi

9 – Idlewild – Everything ever Written

10 - Father John Misty – I Love You Honeybear


1 - Lau - Colchester Arts Centre

2 – Suede – Roundhouse

3 - Admiral Fallow - Bush Hall

4 - The Rails - Bush Hall

5 - Danny & The Champions of the World - Colchester Arts Centre

Song of the Year

Blur - Ong Ong


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