Chorizo Garbanzo’s Favourite Things of 2020

Some of the CDs I’ve bought in 2020


Favourite album of the year

A tie between

The back cover of Never Work says the album is about “work in the 21st century: hating it, needing it, the gig economy, platform capitalism and the robots that both threaten and primse to replace us.” The various events that have dominated the news this year have made the themes of the album even more appropriate.

The Goat is full of dark vignettes combined with some banging synth choons. Have a listen to my interview with John recorded last summer.

Both these albums use poetry, humour and melody to tell fascinating stories that reward repeated listening.


Other favourite albums of 2020

Making a Top 30 of the year, listed in no particular order…..

(I played songs from the albums in italics on my “favourite songs of 2020” podcast)

I bought a lot of music this year (thanks to Bandcamp Fridays!) so check out this list for some more albums I enjoyed.


Honourable mentions

A couple of albums that I got for Christmas, too late to make it onto the list above. But both albums are by long-term favourites of mine so I already know that I will love them!

Also I bought Dead Club by Tunng a few months back but I deliberately haven’t listened to it yet because I wanted to listen to all episodes of the accompanying podcast first. Both the album and the podcast are about death and our relationship to it. I’ve now listened to nearly all of the podcasts and would definitely recommend it.

Tunng presents Dead Club

Favourite covers albums

Favourite instrumental albums


Favourite EPs / singles 

In no particular order…..

Favourite compilation

Very Terry Edwards by Terry Edwards

3 CD career-spanning boxset released to celebrate Terry’s 60th birthday.

Very Terry Edwards


Runners-up: Archives Volume 1 by Joni Mitchell




Favourite label of the year

Reckless Yes

As well as the Order Of The Toad album and Liines singles mentioned above, I’ve also really enjoyed new music from Eilis Frawley, Captain Handsome and Duck.

Go and explore their website. You can even subscribe to receive all the new releases coming in 2021.


Favourite gigs

After attending 42 gigs in 2019, I was looking forward to a similar number this year before everything starting getting rescheduled / cancelled. Some of those are still hopefully going to take place in 2021, others have sadly been cancelled altogether.

I did manage to get to 4 gigs in the first couple of months though including the 2 acts I’ve seen more than any other over the years, The Wedding Present & Elvis Costello.

Here are some photos from those gigs. Can’t wait to be watching live music again. Until then please support venues in any way you can.

10th January: The Wedding Present @ Newhampton Arts Centre, Wolverhampton


13th February: My Life Story @ Jimmy’s, Liverpool

26th February: Mikal Cronin / Shannon Lay @ Soup Kitchen, Manchester

28th February: Elvis Costello & The Imposters @ Olympia, Liverpool



Favourite film

The Lighthouse

Robert Pattinson and Willem Defoe play 2 lighthouse keepers slowly going insane.

Also recommended…..

  • Colour Out Of Space (Nicolas Cage and his family slowly going insane) [Amazon Prime]
  • The Crew (French film about a heist gone wrong) [Netflix]
  • Juan Of The Dead (Mexican zombie film) [All4]
  • The Greasy Strangler (ridiculous, obscene and really really stupid) [All4]


Favourite TV series

The End of The F**king World

First series came out a while back but I only watched it this year and unlike many other programmes, series 2 was just as good. Tarantino relocated into dreary UK locations with two often unsympathetic yet compelling well-written lead characters.

Also recommended…

  • Out Of Her Mind [BBC]
  • Truth Seekers [Amazon Prime]
  • Apache: The Life Of Carlos Tevez [Netflix]
  • The Virtues [All4]


Favourite documentary

Sad Hill Unearthed [Netflix]

Sad Hill Unearthed

A must-watch for fans of the Sergio Leone “Fistful of Dollars / For A Few Dollars More / The Good The Bad & The Ugly” films.

Also recommended…

  • I Called Him Morgan (documentary about the jazz trumpeter Lee Morgan) [Netflix]
  • Don’t Fuck With Cats: Hunting An Internet Killer [Netflix]


Music books of the year

  • Broken Greek by Pete Paphides
  • What Makes The Monkey Dance: The Life & Music of Chuck Prophet & Green on Red by Stevie Simkin
  • Wichita Lineman: Searching in the Sun for the World’s Greatest Unfinished Song by Dylan Jones


In a typical year, I read about 70% non-fiction and 30% fiction but this year I don’t seem to have read any fiction at all! (unless you count the news, right kids? 😉)

The 3 books I’ve chosen as my favourites are all quite different really.

Broken Greek is a very personal account of a childhood riddled with anxiety and the pop music that made it bearable. He writes beautifully about both in this very special book, there’s a reason why it’s featuring in so many end of year lists. I’m already looking forward to re-reading it

What Makes The Monkey Dance will be principally of interest to fellow Chuck Prophet fans but it’s also brilliantly researched and written. Author Stevie Simkins definitely achieves his intended aim of allowing Chuck’s unique voice to come through.

When I picked up the Dylan Jones book in the library, I was dubious whether a single song would provide enough subject matter for a whole book. But it was a thoroughly engaging read, taking in the writing and recording of Wichita Lineman, some biographical detail about both Jimmy Webb and Glen Campbell and the impression that the song has made on countless listeners.

While we’re about it, a quick doff of the cap to whoever is responsible for choosing stock for section 780 at Cheshire Libraries. I reckon someone there is a Word In Your Ear listener because they are quick off the mark in getting in many of the music books by writers interviewed on that podcast.


Twitter hashtags of the year 

Yes, that is now a thing that I’m doing.

To cheer ourselves up in the first lockdown, Kicker & I started tweeting photos of ourselves in band t-shirts using the hashtag #selfisolatingbandtshirts. Big thanks to all others who have joined in with this but especially to our new Texan buddy Scott Jenkins whose t-shirt collection is a thing of wonder.

This year I finally got started on making a spreadsheet of every gig I’ve been to. Still quite a few missing but I’ve got 1,027 gigs on there which has enabled me to start joining in with the #giganniversary hashtag.

Have a browse through the t-shirts here and the gigs here.


Musical heroes of the year

Some people who have really helped me by providing entertainment during this most shitty of shitty years…..


Wishing you Peace, Love and Understanding in 2021 everybody!


Kicker of Elves’ Favourite Things from 2020

As is becoming tradition, let’s start with my favourite SONG OF THE YEAR – a full run down of all my favourite songs can be heard on one of our end of the year podcasts – the Kicker one , and, of those, my favourite is The Humdrum Express with this lyrical masterpiece. Bostin.


Top 50 Albums

1   The Cool Greenhouse – The Cool Greenhouse

A close call, but this is the album that I played the most this year. Despite failing to win the plant growing competition the band set up (on a technicality, I’d argue), I love everything about this band including their very natty set of t-shirts and badges.  

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2    Guided By Voices – Surrender Your Poppy Field

My favourite of the the two GbV records I have been able to listen to properly this year (a third, Styles We Paid For, was released this month, but hasn’t yet arrived in physical form in Liverpool, so will be considered for inclusion in 2021).

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3    The Apartments – In And Out Of The Light

The sound of heartbreak, This resonated, especially the line: “Ask me about goals, you know I don’t have any / Ask me about wishes, you know I got plenty of them / I’ve had plenty of them”

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4    The Lovely Eggs– I Am Moron

A great album from start to finish. My favourite of the more mature egg sound records.

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5    Revolutionary Army Of The Infant Jesus – Songs of Yearning / Nocturnes

Wonderful to have another (in fact, two) record from this most enigmatic of Liverpool bands just 5 years after the last. No-one else sounds like this. 

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6    Cornershop – England Is A Garden

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7    Guided By Voices – Mirrored Aztec

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8    Coriky – Coriky

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9    Royal Chant – Blank Verse

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10   The Nightingales – Four Against Fate

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11   Ariel Sharratt & Mathias Kom – Never Work

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12   Porridge Radio – Every Bad

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13   Bill Callahan – Gold Record

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14   Datblygu – Cwm Gwagle

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15   Babybird – Gun In A Clown’s Mouth

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16   The Just Joans – The Private Memoirs And Confessions Of The Just Joans

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17   Billy Nomates – Billy Nomates

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18   Working Men’s Club – Working Men’s Club

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19   epic45 – Cropping The Aftermath

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20   Boon – Morning’s

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21   Pop Filter – Banksia

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22   Permanent Clear Light – Cosmic Comics

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23 Nathan Hall & The Sinister Locals – On The Blink

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24   Kiko Dinucci – Rastilho

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25   The Humdrum Express – Ultracrepidarian Soup

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26   Anton Barbeau – Manbird

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27   Throwing Muses – Sun Racket

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28   Jason Henn – Jazz Pigs In High School

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29   Negativland – The World Will Decide

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30   Andrew Bunting – Dancers / For All The Loves Lost

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31  of Arrowe Hill – Hangover Square 

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32  The Microphones – Microphones In 2020

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33  Schizo Fun Addict – The Last Wave

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34  Dog! Paper! Submarine! – Slippery Satellites

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35  Babybird – God Upside Down

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36  Craven Faults – Erratics & Unconformities

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37  Pop Filter – Donkey Gully Road

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38  Moviola – Scrape and Cuss

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39  Veryan – Ebb & Flow

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40  The Soft Pink Truth – Shall We Go On Sinning So That Grace May Increase?

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41  Derrero – Time Lapse 

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42  Bob Mould – Blue Hearts

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43  The Orb – Abolition of The Royal Familia


44  Wire – Mind Hive

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45  The Bats – Foothills

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46  Asian Dub Foundation – Access Denied

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47  Figueroa – The World As We Know It

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48  The Chives – The Chives

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49  Mythical Motors – Sleepwalking On Main Street

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50  Canshaker Pi – Okay Decay

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… and making up a top 75 albums, all of which you should own, are, in alphabetical order, 25 more:

Belbury Poly – The Gone Away; Boyracer – On A Promise; Cabaret Voltaire – Shadow Of Fear; The Cleaners From Venus – Dolly Birds & Spies; Shirley Collins – Heart’s Ease; The Dream Syndicate – The Universe Inside; Eyelids – The Accidental Falls; The Flatmates – The Flatmates; Fort Not – The Club Is Open; Bernard Grancher – Aveugle Etincelle; The Heartwood Institute & Panamint Manse – Parapsychedelia; Joseph Airport – C O S M O S I S; Mekons – Exquisite; Memory Drawings – A Few Scattered Hours; Milky Wimpshake – Confessions Of An English Marxist; Mosses ‎– T.V. Sun; Pole – Fading; Chuck Prophet – The Land That Time Forgot; Proto Droids – Cybernetic World; The Reverse – Which Way Out; Sakuran Zensen ‎– おれは錯乱前戦だ!!; Sparks – A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip; St James Infirmary – And Then The Wires Sing; Tricky – Fall To Pieces; Zekeultra – (The Power Of) The Will Of Man


Top 12 Compilations

1  Strum & Thrum: The American Jangle Underground 1983-1987 (Captured Tracks)

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2  The Land of Sensations and Delights: The Psych Pop Sounds of White Whale Records, 1965–1970

3  Portals (Behind The Sky)

4  Dreams To Fill The Vacuum: The Sounds Of Sheffield 1977-1988 (Cherry Red)

5  Road To Istanbul (Almost Halloween Time Records)

6  The Isolation Tapes (Castles In Space)

7  Come Stay With Me (Come Play With Me)

8  Head In The Clouds (Fruits De Mer)

9  Some Neon Reason: Further Adventures of the Polytechnic Youth

10 Aquabear Vols. 7 & 8 / Mother Of Presidents (Aquabear Legion)

11 Signals, Wires & Amplifiers (Next Phase : Normal)

12 Musik Music Musique – 1980: The Dawn of Synth Pop (Cherry Red)


Top 12 EPs

Anthony Burrill – Birds

Yes, this is a record of mashed up birdsong and aircraft sound. It’s even better than that makes it sound.

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Jan The Man – Extended Play 1, 2, 3, 4

Fixtures – Weak Automatic

The Declining Winter – Occupying The Blanks

Wladyslaw Trejo – Es Una Bestia

The Stroppies – Look Alive!

Smug Brothers – Flame Verbatim / Room Of The Year / Every Surface Under Heaven

Metayouth – Speech Balloons In June

Gabe Knox – Cosmic Motorik Adventures & Machine Language Music

10  Pye Corner Audio – Where Things Are Hollow 2

11  Kneeling In Piss – Music For Peasants

12  Honey Radar – Bonus Snow


Top 10 Reissues / Re-pressings / Remixes / Not Strictly Speaking New Stuff

Grand Gestures – Low Lights

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Urusei Yatsura – Can You Spell Urusei Yatsura – Lost Songs 1993​-​2000

Honey Radar – Sing the Snow Away: The Chunklet Years

Neil Young – Homegrown

Wire – 10:20

Lou Barlow – At A Loss For Words

Soft Hearted Scientists – The Continuing Escapades

The Loves – Spread Love: The Loves Anthology 2000-2011

UFO – Strangers In The Night (Deluxe Edition)

10  The Pogues – The BBC Sessions 1984-1986


Top 10 Live Albums

Guided By Voices – Live From Dayton, Ohio, 2020


Guided By Voices – Doses Of Nonchalance, Live at Spaceland, Los Angeles, April 21, 1995

Urusei Yatsura – Live In London 1999

Negativland – Live Brain: Eurotour 2019

Lou Barlow & The Missingmen – Live 2009 (Artist Enabler Club – Part 13)

Chuck Prophet – Strings in the Temple: Live with Orchestra at the Great American Music Hall

Doug Gillard – Corona Classic Concert

Eyelids – Eyelids Live!

Courtney Barnett – MTV Unplugged – Live In Melbourne

10  The Unthanks – Diversions Vol. 5 – Live And Unaccompanied


Top 3 Gigs

Wire – The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds, 31 January

The only gig I got to go to in 2020 because of, you know, everything. Seems like a lifetime ago.

Guided By Voices – World Tour 2020, 17 July (Streamed)

Fontaines D.C. – A Night at Montrose, Dublin, 3 August (Streamed)


The Robert Pollard Annual Output Roundup

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Even in a killer virus affected twelve months, Robert Pollard has managed to maintain a release schedule to make most mortals weep. This year, we have had two new Guided By Voices albums (with a third delayed into January) – Surrender Your Poppy Field and Mirrored Aztec and the re-release of Vampire On Titus (in 2 different colour versions) and Alien Lanes (multi-coloured vinyl, natch). We also had two singles with non-LP b-sides – Volcano and Man Called Blunder – and a Record Store Day release of Hold On Hope on 10 inch. The latest edition of artwork in book form, EAT 16, also came with a 7 track Robert Pollard EP entitled Soundtrack To Planet Cake and we also had the last ever release of the alter-ego Cash Rivers & The Sinners with Bad Side Of The Coin. Tobin Sprout also released his first album for four years with the low key Empty Horses, and Doug Gillard appeared all over the latest Nada Surf album Never Not Together and The Bye Bye BlackbirdsBoxer At Rest (not pictured as I’ve just found out!). Many of us also had the pleasure of receiving a tremendous CD EP from Mitch Mitchell called Test 4. Slightly further afield in GbVWorld, Todd Tobias released his third collaboration with Pat Moonchy under the name Moonchy & Tobias, the appropriately entitled III, and Chris Slusarenko‘s band Eyelids released their fourth collection, the wonderful The Accidental Falls. Then there was the Hot Freaks subscription…. (see below)


Top 6 Music Related Books (Read This Year)

1  Broken Greek: A Story Of Chip Shops And Pop Songs – Pete Paphides

2  The Monkey Dance: The Life And Music Of Chuck Prophet And Green On Red – Stevie Simkin

3   Zeppelin Over Dayton: Guided By Voices Album By Album – Jeff Gomez

4   Diary Of A Hyperdreamer Vol. 2- Bill Nelson

5   Going For A Song – Garth Cartwright

6   Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl – Carrie Brownstein


Top 8 Music Films Seen (But Not Necessarily Released) This Year

1   Brainiac – Transmissions After Zero

2   Swearing At Motorists – It’s Not All Rock & Roll

3   I’m Now – The Story of Mudhoney

4   This Film Should Not Exist: Portrait Of Ben Wallers (Country Teasers)

5   Elliott Smith – Heaven Adores You

6   Rudeboy: The Story of Trojan Records

7   Upstairs Planet: Cleaners From Venus & the Universe of Martin Newell

8   The Go-Gos documentary


Best Song That Didn’t Quite Make The Playlist, But Had My Favourite Music Video Award

Well, this is just great in a life-affirming way, isn’t it? (Special thanks to Sean Padilla for alerting me to this in the first instance, and for his equally positive and joyful Monday morning musical recommendations posts).


The Stephen Jones One Man Domination Of Record Shelf Space Award


Just the 280 tracks released by Stephen Jones this year under various guises:

Black Reindeer – Pyre, Keep Me Warm

Babybird – Fake Blood / There Must Be Something Else / God Upside Down / If I Had A Gun / Babybird’s Happy Songs / Not English / Plastic Ape / Short Demos / Once We Have Destroyed Ourselves, We Will Build A New World / A Very Difficult Second Album / Gun In A Clown’s Mouth / Corona Christmas

Stephen Jones – Brain / No Heart Reimagined / The Planets

Gold Rabbit – Gold Rabbit 2

Blak Slab – Ivory Teeth

Anonymous – Untitled Album


New Musical Source Of The Year

Guided By Voices – Hot Freaks (Subscription):

Open since May, we have so far received, in the form of weekly downloads, the following:

Mirrored Aztec (preview); Soundtrack From Planet Cake (preview); Do The Collapse – Part 1 (Bob & Doug demos); Live From Industry City – Brooklyn, NY – September 27, 2019 (full show); Quiz Wednesday (How Do You Spell Heaven Demos); Sweating The Plague Live From The Black Cat, 2019; Psychopath Timecard (August By Cake Demos); 2020: Live From Dayton, Ohio; Live from The Metro – Chicago, IL – July 11, 1998; Cash Rivers And The Sinners – Whatever We Give You (Is What You Get); Space Gun Demos; Doses Of Nonchalance, live at Spaceland, Los Angeles, April 21, 1995; Kit Kat Acoustic Break; Live At Heedfest, Dayton, OH, August 30, 2019; Shaking Hands With A Ghost; Never Abandon Ship; Douglas Scott Gillard; Frankenstein’s New Nut Huggers – The Very Best Of Cash Rivers And The Sinners; 2019 Rara Avis (2019 Live Compilation); In Calculus Stratagem (Plus Demo); Robert Pollard – Freak Anthem (Demos); Freak Anthem (Revisited); War Of The Devils (Plus Demo); Douglas Scott Gillard 2; American Superdream Wow; American Superdream Wow (Part 2); Cub Scout Bowling Pins; Mark Shue: Freak Week; Do The Collapse – Part 2

I really hope this will continue well into 2021.


Favourite Music Related Moment (Outside of Everything Above)

Bespoke cover art – Ed NolbedBreaking Up Is Never Easy, I Know by Luigi Aht Falagario of Almost Halloween Time Records. I requested Guided By VoicesSame Place The Fly Got Smashed and received this masterpiece:

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As Luigi says: “This is an album of songs about breaking up and finding new love almost at the same time. It’s also an album about rediscovering an old love. It might also be an album about universal love. It’s definitely an album about letting go, picking up, finding hope, losing hope, hurt, healing, anger, reflection, inspiration, desperation.”

Physical copies can be ordered, with a personalised hand-painted cover over here: – limited to 100 copies. The idea is that you suggest an album cover of an album that meant something to you during a break-up or just a break-up album you like. This album cover will then be hand-painted and slightly adjusted to become your unique cover.


An Alternative Best of 2020 Playlist

Here is a playlist of songs I really enjoyed through this most dreadful of years, but that just missed out on inclusion on the podcast. All highly recommended.


Please help support all the wonderful musicians mentioned in the lists above by searching out their records, CDs, tapes and downloads and BUYING THEM!!!

Podcast 108: Chorizo’s Best of 2020

To liven up the notoriously tedious period between Christmas and New Year, here’s something to listen to while you’re going through cold turkey sandwiches.  
The year in general may have been a bit of a stinker but Chorizo Garbanzo reckons it’s been a great year for new music and here are some of his favourites.

You can hear Chorizo’s selections on two more preserve-packed sides of the show below:

Side A and Side B

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s on the list. Otherwise, here’s the run down:

  1. Do Nothing – New Life
  2. The Magic Wizard – Driving Down To Hastings
  3. John MOuse – The Raven Argonette
  4. Seazoo – Heading Out
  5. Squid – Sludge
  6. Lime – Surf N Turf
  7. Melenas – Ciencia Ficcion
  8. The Just Joans – The One I Loathe The Least
  9. Girobabies – Fetching Pitchfork
  10. Snowgoose – Everything
  11. The Glowe – You’ve Got Flies In Yr Eyes
  12. Gordon Koang – Te Ke Mi Thile Ji Kuoth Nhial
  13. So Cow – 108 FM
  14. Emma Kupa – Hey Love
  15. 10Tigers – Owned
  16. Loose Tooth – Lonely
  17. The Wind-up Birds – All The Gate Kickers
  18. Raf Rundell – Monsterpiece
  19. Stephen Malkmus – Signal Western
  20. Jockstrap – Acid
  21. Lost Horizons (Feat. The Hempolics) – I Woke Up With An Open Heart
  22. The Vat Egg Imposition – Sheriff Of Nottingham
  23. Sports Team – Going Soft
  24. Ariel Sharratt & Mathias Kom – The Robots vs. Mrs. Patel

The physicality (where there was some):

Podcast 107: Kicker’s Best of 2020

2020, eh? What a shitbag. But at least we had the music. And, as Kicker shows his fellow wizard, there was plenty of the really good stuff about.

You can hear Kicker’s selections on two jam-packed sides of the show below:

Side A and Side B

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s on the list. Otherwise, here’s the run down:

  1. Bill Callahan – Pigeons
  2. Revolutionary Army Of The Infant Jesus – I Carry The Sun
  3. Cornershop – St. Marie Under Canon
  4. Coriky – Clean Kill
  5. Datblygu – A i Z
  6. The Nightingales – Wicked Winter (Lost In Highland Park)
  7. Royal Chant – Jet Fighter
  8. Guided By Voices – Volcano
  9. Robyn Hitchcock – The President (2020 Version)
  10. Nathan Hall & The Sinister Locals – Stand And Deliver
  11. Porridge Radio – Give/Take
  12. The Cool Greenhouse – Smile, Love!
  13. The Lovely Eggs – I Wanna
  14. Working Men’s Club – White Rooms And People
  15. Babybird – Nihilistic
  16. epic45 – Caught In Branches
  17. The Just Joans – Hey Ho, Let’s Not Go
  18. The Humdrum Express – Motivational Wall Art
  19. Billy Nomates – Modern Hart
  20. Pop Filter – Checkin’ Out
  21. Ariel Sharratt & Mathias Kom – Two Jeffs
  22. Calacas – Free Time Forever/Fear Doubt Forever
  23. The Apartments – Where You Used To Be
  24. Tremolo Ghosts – The Official Ironmen Rally Song

The physicality (where there was some):

Robert Pollard’s Guide To The 60s – Tape 4: The Beatles – Past Masters Vol. 1 & 2

The final Beatles album to get the Wizard treatment is a chronological collection of non-LP tracks comprising mostly B-sides and EPs, but also a couple of reworkings: Past Masters Volumes 1 and 2.

In addition to giving the album the all important Wizard rating, we not only announce our all-time favourite (and least favourite) Beatles efforts, we also introduced a devilishly difficult Beatles quiz. Hooray!

Click on the image below to get yr Beatlemania blood boiling;

To avoid disappointment, you can now follow our podcast on Spotify and subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Robert Pollard’s Guide To The 60s – Tape 3: The Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band & The Kinks – Something Else By The Kinks

Another Beatles album under discussion in this episode, you know the one, “it was 53 years ago today…”, yep, SPLHCB (as no-one calls it). Released in the same year, 1967, as the fifth album by The Kinks, which is, er, Something Else. But how do they compare?

Enjoy the rare experience of the wizards generally feeling very positive about a couple of legendary releases, and see how they rate ’em on the TTW scale right here:


You can also listen and follow the podcast on Spotify.

You can also tell us just how wrong we are on that there Twitter and Facebook.

Podcast 106: Isolation Pod #15

Back with a bang and, er, the return of the Guided By Voices – is it a song or band name? quiz, that, frankly, took a number of takes to get right. This show also features bands with mates of Garbanzo in, advice on better podcasts to listen to than this one, Mandy, and, notably, an all too believable California – Wolverhampton confusion. At least we didn’t have to apologies to anyone this time.

Recorded, at least in part, direct from a new studio car park that we definitely meant to book, all of that can be found on two virtual sides of a very real podcast:

Side A and Side B

and back on Soundcloud…

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. AJJ – Psychic Warfare
  2. My Name Is Ian – See You Later Alligator, Elephant In The Room
  3. Guided By Voices – Bunco Men
  4. The Lazy Survivors – Walking The Earth
  5. Kiko Dinucci (Feat. OGI) – Veneno
  6. The Breeders – Happiness Is A Warm Gun
  7. Silver Sun – Far Out
  8. The Californians – The Cooks Of Cake And Kindness
  9. The Buttertones – Rise And Shine
  10. The Box Tops – Neon Rainbow
  11. Phantoms Vs Fire – Full Of Scorpions Is My Mind
  12. epic45 – Buildings Aren’t Haunted, People Are

(Some of) the physicality:

Robert Pollard’s Guide To The 60s – Tape 2: The Beatles White Album

Just the one album under discussion from Tape 2 – the self titled 1968 double album, commonly know as The White Album, by those loveable  moptops moustachioed hippies, The Beatles.

Have a listen to the wizards discuss the 30 track behemoth right here and discover just where they first heard these tracks and where exactly Kicker’s CD copy (see above) comes from.

Not only do the wizards give the album the all important TTW grade, they also consider what a single 12 track album might look like.

Here’s the chatter:

You can also listen and follow the podcast on Spotify.


And here are those wizard’s single albums:


Let us know whose you prefer on that there Twitter and send us yours on Facebook.

Podcast 105: Isolation Pod #14

Warning: this podcast contains highbrow film references, an unfortunate abuse of one of the world’s favourite languages, and far too much discussion about stone throwing.

that’ll be yer reverse skim right there

Fortunately, there is also plenty of tip top music to keep you, the listener, entertained as well as useful Wizardly tips on how music should be listened to, and the inevitable apology (or two).


All of that can be found on two virtual sides of a very real podcast below, and now back on Soundcloud….

Side A

Side B

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Milky Wimpshake – Capitalism Is A Peversion
  2. Guided By Voices – Windjammer
  3. June Jones – Overfloweth
  4. The Imbeciles – D.I.E.
  5. The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion – Flavor Part 2
  6. Edward H. Dafis – Y Penderfyniad
  7. Heavenly – Wrap My Arms Around Him
  8. Tenpole Tudor – I Wish
  9. Cocteau Twins – Rilkean Heart
  10. The Reverse – Skimming Stones
  11. Irma Vep – I Do What I Want

The physicality:

Robert Pollard’s Guide To The 60s – Tape 1 Abbey Road / Revolver by The Beatles

The first tape under discussion contains two classic albums by a little known band from Merseyside, no, not The Kinsleys, it’s The Beatles, of course.

So what do Kicker and Chorizo make of Abbey Road and Revolver?

Listen here to see which album makes it out on top and for the wizards top and, er, bottom picks from each.

Let us know why we were wrong and what your favourites/least favourites are from these two titanic albums on the following social media disgraces:



Podcast 104: Isolation Pod #13

This is the show where we really display our eclectic* taste in music and present a myriad of styles from bands from Birmingham to Melbourne. We talk about cover versions of songs by bands we’ve never heard of, provide some excellent** life advice, and celebrate some of our favourite coquettish characters.

*it’s not all rock bands from Dayton, OH, you know. [Or is it? – TTW Ed.]


All of this wonderful entertainment can be found both here on the A-side and also here on the B-side. Don’t forget to flip!

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Mzylkypop – I Was A Teenage Brexit Thwarter
  2. Lettuce Prey – Bicycle Of Bees
  3. Pop Filter – Romance At The Petrol Station
  4. Marathon – Movin’ (Negro’s 7 – Edit)
  5. Robert Pollard – Edison’s Memos
  6. Shopping – Trust In Us (Live)
  7. Robert Pollard – Professional Goose Trainer
  8. Kevin Rowland – Rag Doll
  9. Steel Pulse – A Who Responsible?
  10. Sea Glass – Give Up

The physicality:

As promised on the pod, here’s the original version of the song covered by Pop Filter.

Podcast 103: Isolation Pod #12

This is the show where we talk Japanese monkeys, bands that sound like other bands, and welcome back Chorizo Garbanzo’s much loved (by everyone other than Kicker) quiz. There’s also some footballer confusion, where some players are more abel than others.

You can hear all of that plus some cracking tunes in the newly fangled pod of two halves with the A-side here and the B-side here and there and there:

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Sakuran Zensen – Monkey O Monkey
  2. Vision Fortune – Habitat
  3. Coriky – Too Many Husbands
  4. For Abel – Yorkshire
  5. La Sera – Hold
  6. Davey Woodward & The Winter Orphans – Dylan’s Poster
  7. Boston Spaceships – German Field Of Shadows
  8. The Replacements – Within Your Reach
  9. Bobby Darin – The Proper Gander
  10. Gandhi’s Hands – Brain Bugs

The physicality:

Those all important singalong lyrics…

Monkii – O – Monkii

tokai no kawa ha, yozora okkochite

yogoreta kanashimi no kao ha utsuranai

ishikoro ketobashite atare merusedesu

kizukeba ikitomari zuibun kiteta.

anoko ha yozora wo makka ni nurikaete

anoko ha sarutachi wo makka ni nurikaete

akuma to odoru himitsu mitsuketara

takai biru kara tobu wa uketomete

anoko ha yozora wo makka ni nurikaete

anoko ha sarutachi wo makka ni nurikaete

anoko ha yozora wo makka ni nurikaete

anoko ha sarutachi wo makka ni nurikaete

Monkey O Monkey – Sakuran Zensen

(Translated by Kicker Jr)

As the night sky falls away into the city river,

It doesn’t reflect my dirty sad face.

I kick away pebbles, take that, Mercedes!

I’ve walked for a long time, if only I’d noticed the dead end.

She’s painting the night sky bright red,

She’s painting the monkeys bright red.

If you find out about the secret dance with the devil,

I’ll fly from a tall building. Please catch me.

She’s painting the night sky bright red,

She’s painting the monkeys bright red.

She’s painting the night sky bright red,

She’s painting the monkeys bright red.

Podcast 102: Isolation Pod #11

With the football season in its opening weeks, this show appropriately combines the wizards’ two major obsessions. Not only do we get a number of football related songs, but also some blistering guitar solos, as well as mention of musical dreams of eggs, turds and forgotten front men.

Suitably* presented in what can best be described as a podcast of two halves, you can hear it all here and here and there and there:

Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Courting – Football
  2. Guided By Voices – Party Rages On
  3. The Wave Pictures – Cabwaylingo
  4. Wladyslaw Trejo – Movida
  5. Throwing Muses – Backroad
  6. The Hush – Grey
  7. Soccer96 – I Was Gonna Fight Fascism
  8. Guided By Voices – Peep-Hole
  9. Joe Gibbs & The Professionals – Hully Gully Rock
  10. The Chills – Familiarity Breeds Contempt

The physicality:

Songs of Jason Molina

*actually due to Garbanzo’s new fangled recording device and not, in any way, by design. As if.

Q & A with John MOuse

Snooker, caravans, pigeons and Next clothing all feature on John MOuse’s brilliant new album “The Goat.”

Hear us talk to him about all those things and more right here.


Here’s a link to the album


Other John MOuse related posts on this website:

Podcast 101: Isolation Pod #10

After the excitement of completing their first century of podcasts culminated in the celebration of lots of short songs (some songs are shorter than others), the wizards are back to begin their next phase. And, almost inevitably, it involves eggs.


how does this work then?

On the music front, this show features tracks from albums that haven’t been released yet or don’t exist at all, as well as a couple of random selections from the wizard vaults. There’s a very special Kicker’s Kooking Korner and the welcome return of the songs-by-bands-you-don’t-like-that-you-might-like section. Plus correspondence and the usual dim bulbery.

All of which can be found right here, and down there:


Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Guided By Voices – Expecting Brainchild
  2. Pill Fangs – Mushrooms In Maastricht
  3. Royal Chant – Everyone Is Faking It, Can’t You Tell?
  4. The Disposable Heroes Of Hiphoprisy – Language Of Violence
  5. Manic Street Preachers – The Year Of Purification
  6. Cheap Trick – Downed
  7. The Vat Egg Imposition – Sheriff Of Nottingham
  8. The Ocean Party – Every House
  9. TWEN – Thrice
  10. Anton Barbeau – Fear Of Flying


The physicality:



can’t believe the things we want

Podcast 100: Isolation Pod #9

Whilst there might be some doubt as to the exact timing restrictions that were placed on what was allowed to be played on this landmark show, what is certain is that this is the 100th podcast that the wizards have released into the wild since those heady days of December 2012 when one song constituted a show.

To show just how far they have come, this centenary show features a whopping great 24 songs and a shedload of wizardy bantz to boot.


the songs have to be how long?

Many thanks to some of our online contributors: Balloon Man, Stevie Flaxen, Rockin’ Robot Forster, Nimrod X, Jack K, Connor Henricksen, Steve Tamburello, Dan Haywood, Richard J Turner, and The Cat & Drum Social (Distancing) Club who sent us song suggestions, some of which were exactly 1’40” (100 seconds = excellent), but most of which were simply top notch short songs (and therefore invalid according to KoE, but not according to C. Garbanzo) all of which can be found on our Twitter feed here: @trustthewizards.

We ignored all of them in any case, of course, and you can find what we actually played right here, and down there:


Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Guided By Voices – Blimps Go 90
  2. 84 Nash – I’ve Got ‘Em All
  3. Dawn Of The Replicants – Sleepy Spiders
  4. Big Eyes – The Boo Girl
  5. The Slits – Shoplifting
  6. Clearance – She’s A Peach
  7. The Magnetic Fields – She Says Hello
  8. Frank Sidebottom – Estudiantes (Striped Shirts/Black Panties)
  9. Redbrick Shithouse – Someone
  10. Tramp Attack – Eight Years Since School
  11. Ken Nordine – Yellow
  12. P.J. Harvey – Snake
  13. Honey Radar – Cocaine Piano/Where’s The Pig?
  14. Tall Dwarfs – The Green Green Grass Of Someone Else’s Home
  15. Town Bike – Three Chords, Three Notes
  16. Elvis Presley – Thanks To The Rolling Sea
  17. Nervous Twitch – Jonny’s Got A Gun
  18. Von Hayes – Urinal Cookies
  19. The Pipettes – It Hurts To See You Dance So Well
  20. The Mountain Goats – Anti-Music Song
  21. Michael Cole & Michael Jessett – Fingerbobs Theme
  22. Kriss Foster – Vimto Song
  23. The Glass Delusion – The Society For The Prevention Of People Being Buried Alive
  24. Ian Dury & The Blockheads – Bus Driver’s Prayer


The physicality:


And she said “wow” a hundred times, not just for people people…

Elvis Costello Sings The Rainbow

Back in March, I wrote this post about how Steve Nieve’s videos were helping me stay positive during lockdown. They’ve stopped doing them every day now but at its peak Steve had his long-term bandmate Elvis Costello regularly dialling in to play and sing along with him. These performances are an absolute joy to watch, even though they are frequently disrupted by all the technical and temporal issues you may expect when there are 8,000 miles separating them! One of my favourite videos they’ve done so far was this Colours special.



As E.C. has remarked a few times in these videos, he really enjoys getting the chance to play songs they’ve never played before. It was a real treat to hear him sing the John Sebastian song “Rainbows All Over Your Blues” here, a song I’ve loved ever since hearing it in the “Woodstock Diaries” film. As far as I know that’s the first time Elvis has ever played that song, although he previously covered another Sebastian song from the same album (“The Room Nobody Lives In” on the b-side of “Veronica”)

Anyway, hearing Elvis and Steve play so many great songs in this video inspired me to make this playlist of my favourite Elvis Costello songs with colours in the title.


“Green Shirt” is one of Elvis’ best known songs and probably my favourite on the “Armed Forces” album. The live version The Imposters were playing on the recent tour was just brilliant too. “When Green Eyes Turn Blue” from the “North” album was the only other contender, but in my opinion it’s not one of the standout tracks from that album.


Moving on to a more specific shade of green, I think “Under Lime” might be unique amongst all of Elvis Costello’s 600+ songs because it is a sequel to one of his previous songs. The 2010 song “Jimmie Standing in the Rain” tells the sorry tale of a musician struggling with his health and with making a living waiting on a rainy train platform somewhere in Lancashire. Speaking in a 2018 BBC interview: “I imagined a guy going round the music halls where my grandfather played… traipsing round the north of England trying to sing cowboy songs… He’s a travelling musician, he takes comfort in the arms of a woman that calls him by another man’s name.” Elvis then goes on to say that there’s a little bit of him, his father and his grandfather in this travelling musician character.

The sequel song revisits Jimmie 20 years later appearing as a guest on a “What’s My Line?” style show. There’s a lot of wordplay here, not least in the title where “lime” refers to both the building material and the Lime Grove address of the BBC studio where the song’s events take place.


I can only think of 2 song titles that qualify here and both of them are big favourites!

I love “Black and White World” especially the Beatles-y demo version from the “10 Bloody Marys and 10 How’s Your Fathers” album (the first Costello album I bought!) That album was a round-up of non-album tracks and b-sides, as was a later compilation “Out Of Our Idiot” which is where I first heard “Black Sails In The Sunset.” Originally released as the b-side to “Tokyo Storm Warning,” the live version from the Costello Nieve boxset is pretty special too.


There’s “Black and White World” of course but that’s already been discussed above. I’m not much of a fan of “Wave A White Flag,” a very early song that was included on re-issues of “My Aim Is True.” It’s a jolly little number about domestic violence and whilst it includes some good lyrics, the music is a bit too derivative for my tastes.

I much prefer a later song that also addresses some similar lyrical themes is “White Knuckles.” This is an absolute gem of a song from 1981’s “Trust” album. You won’t find many songs that Elvis has played live as infrequently as this one which is surprising because because the melody, the arrangement and the Attractions’ performance are all fantastic.



A few years ago, producer T-Bone Burnett was given a load of unused handwritten Bob Dylan lyrics and with Dylan’s blessing he rounded up a posse to write new music for these words and record them. Inevitably given their long-standing friendship, Elvis was one of the first people Burnett called. The resulting double album “Lost On The River: The New Basement Tapes” is, perhaps unavoidably, a little bit of a disappointment given the backstory and the calibre of talent present.

The best of the Costello songs is “Golden Tom Silver Judas.” Musically it reminds me more of “John Wesley Harding” or “Nashville Skyline” than “The Basement Tapes.”

But actually my 2 favourite songs on the album aren’t ones that Elvis sings.




Andrew Schofield and Elvis Costello in “Scully”

I first heard “Turning The Town Red” in the credits of a Channel 4 TV series called “Scully” about a football-obsessed schoolkid that I loved when I was a football-obsessed schoolkid. It made a very unexpected, but very welcome, appearance in the setlist when I saw Elvis in Liverpool in February, accompanied by the LFC-inspired badge designed by Bands FC.


Elvis also wrote the music for 2 later Alan Bleasdale series on Channel 4, GBH and Jake’s Progress which are both still available to watch on All4.

Before “Watching The Detectives” became a hit in 1977, Elvis released 3 singles earlier that year that didn’t trouble the chart compilers. The third of those was “(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes” a brilliant song rather let down by a rather thin and weedy sounding band/production. Many would consider it sacrilegious to slate off that much-acclaimed debut album but I have always thought it would be a much better album if it had had been played by The Attractions. So rather than the original version, I’ve included the Live At The Hollywood High version in the playlist.

“Red Cotton” is one of ten songs Elvis wrote for a chamber opera about the singer Jenny Lind and two of her high profile acquaintances P.T. Barnum and Hans Christian Anderson, four of which ended up being released on 2009’s acoustic Americana album “Secret Profane and Sugarcane.” The lyric doesn’t pull any punches on the subject of slavery as it travels to Benin, Liverpool and Barnum’s travelling show in the New World.



Veering across the spectrum from Red brings us to “The Scarlet Tide” co-written with the aforementioned T-Bone Burnett. A beautiful piano-led version by Alison Krauss was used in the soundtrack to the epic Civil War film Cold Mountain.

The following year Elvis released his own version as the closing track on “The Delivery Man.” Like many of the album’s best songs, this one features a harmony vocal from the peerless Emmylou Harris.  The Imposters are in outstanding form throughout the rest of the album but they aren’t playing on this song. With its sparse acoustic arrangement it may have been a better fit on the “Secret Profane and Sugarcane” album discussed above.



The singer Arthur Alexander is best known for having his song “Anna (Go To Him)” covered by The Beatles on their first album.  After he died in 1993, a tribute album called “Adios Amigo” was released. It’s got some great stuff on it and I’d particularly recommend the Nick Lowe, John Prine and Frank Black songs.

Elvis contributed a rollicking version of “Sally Sue Brown” featuring just vocals and electric guitars.

Incidentally the same song was covered by Bob Dylan on his “Down In The Groove” album. Definitely not one of his most acclaimed albums but I have a bit of a soft spot for it. Admittedly quite a lot of it is Dylan playing half-arsed covers of old rock’n’roll tunes which nobody needs to hear. But there is also “Death Is Not The End” as covered by Nick Cave, Shane McGowan, Kylie Minogue et al for the jolly closing number of the “Murder Ballads” LP and a very silly and probably offensive number called “Ugliest Girl In The World” that my teenage band used to cover.



This is the big one. Elvis has recorded more songs with “blue” in the title than all the other colours added together. He’s also used that word in 3 of his album titles “Almost Blue” “Deep Dead Blue” and “My Flame Burns Blue.” So here are a few of my favourites.

Confusingly, the song “Almost Blue” does not appear on the album of that name. (See also “Imperial Bedroom”)

Originally written with the jazz trumpeter Chet Baker in mind and later recorded by him, Elvis tells that story well in this interview and even better in his book. The Baker version is not on Spotify so I’ve included Everything But The Girl’s brilliant cover instead.

“Upon A Veil Of Midnight Blue” was also written for someone else but its intended performer Charles Brown changed most of the lyrics and re-titled it “I Wonder How She Knows.” Elvis eventually released his own version on the orchestral live album “My Flame Burns Blue.” But my favourite version is from a different live album, Mary Coughlan’s “Love For Sale” recorded in 1993 at the much-missed Mean Fiddler in Harlesden.

“My Little Blue Window” is just a brilliant lyric, melody and vocal performance, an under-appreciated song on an under-appreciated album (When I Was Cruel)

On the day that album was released in 2002, I saw Elvis & The Imposters at another much-missed London venue The Astoria and they opened the gig with it. It’s not on Spotify so there’s a YouTube clip below.

In the summer of 1995 Elvis curated the Meltdown festival at the Royal Festival Hall and performed alongside many different musicians. One of those was Bill Frisell and just a few weeks later some of that evening’s performance was released as Elvis’s first ever live album. The final track and album itself were both titled “Deep Dead Blue,” a new song co-written with Frisell. As well as another inventive and unpredictable melody, I really like the lyrics here. My interpretation is that they are about accepting and embracing sadness. In other words being “Glad to be Unhappy” to quote the title of a Rodgers and Hart song Elvis performed later that week.

That live version is not on Spotify so instead I’ve included a version from Bill Frisell’s most recent album “Harmony” where it is sung by the multi-talented Petra Haden. She once recorded an acapella version of the entire “The Who Sell Out” album!



My other favourite “blue” song was originally recorded during the “King of America” sessions but left off that album and released later as a standalone single.


I’m not that keen on that version of “Blue Chair” but thankfully Elvis had another crack at it when recording “Blood and Chocolate” with The Attractions. That version is amazing and right up there with the very best songs on one of Elvis’ very best albums. An absolute masterpiece.

The keen-eared amongst you may notice that the “oh oh oh oh oh oh” bit at 2:15 is lifted note-for-note from The Beatles version of “Anna (Go To Him)” mentioned above.


No officially released version exists but on his solo acoustic tours in the mid-80s Elvis often used to play a cover “Pretty In Pink” by The Psychedelic Furs.


There are no oranges or yellows on the Costello palette. No purple either apart from a couple of verses of “Purple Rain” that occasionally appeared in the encore of some Spinning Songbook shows.



Related posts on this website:

Other links:

Podcast 99: Isolation Pod #8

With its usual combination of weak jokes, ill-informed comment and erroneous background noise, the pod returns in double quick time to help keep the masked masses sane if not easily identifiable.



This show features a plethora of cracking tunes (a full dozen, in fact), a real musician’s musician dream, some proper kooking advice, and an exciting heads-up for the forthcoming century podcast.

You can find all that right here, and down there:




Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Reg Guitar – He Has Changed
  2. The Pogues – Jack’s Heroes
  3. Magoo – Swiss Border Escape
  4. Christelle Bofale – Miles
  5. Talkboy – Over & Under
  6. Consolidated – Guerrillas In The Mist
  7. Lou Barlow – Reason To Live
  8. Sarandon – The Big Question / Dinosaur
  9. Hefner – I Took Her Love For Granted
  10. Ennio Morricone – Man With A Harmonica
  11. Terry Edwards – Never Understand
  12. Guided By Voices – Short On Posters


The physicality:

The Secret Diary of Mark Kozelek aged 13 and 3 quarters

I woke up after having a dream about [insert name of arty European film here] and I saw an injured [insert name of animal here] outside my window. It reminded me of [insert name of some boxer] at the end of his career and I felt sad.

I had to fly to [insert name of city] to play a show. I wasn’t really into it because I was thinking about [insert name of relative] who was dying from [insert name of obscure illness].

The audience was mostly [insert generalisation / slur] but it was cool because [drop name of moderately well-known alternative musician] was there. It made me think back to when I saw [insert name of forgotten 90s band] play at the [insert name of venue] supporting [insert name of other forgotten 90s band].

After the gig I called my Dad and told him that the audience were all [choose between indie brats / blogger bedwetters / braindead journalists] and they didn’t appreciate true genius when they saw it so I told them all to suck my cock.

Dad said “well instead of just singing about everything you see and do, why don’t you try writing some proper lyrics?” I told him to suck my cock and hung up.

On the way back to the hotel I saw a little kitten sitting in the gutter. When I got back I talked to the hotel receptionist who was called [insert female name here]. I didn’t sleep with her but I totally could have because she was, like, totally into me.


The Wizards’ Half Year Report 2020 – Favourite albums of the year (so far)

Whilst the live musical experience is sadly fading into merely a vague memory, this year has already been a bonanza for quality new music both in the form of physical releases and online downloads.

Kicker and Chorizo talked about some of their favourites so far on Podcast 98, and just in case you were that listener who wants to follow up their suggestions, here are those recommended albums in alphabetical order with links to where you can get them.

Nearly all these albums are available through Bandcamp who during this pandemic have started hosting regular “Bandcamp Fridays.” This is when they guarantee that every penny spent on their site goes directly to the artist. We have always been strong advocates for supporting musicians by buying their music and we urge you to do the same. This handy website will let you know when the next Bandcamp Friday is coming.


Kicker’s current favourite albums of 2020:


BabybirdPlastic Ape

Andrew BuntingDancers / For All The Loves Lost

Canshaker PiOkay Decay

The Cool GreenhouseThe Cool Greenhouse

CornershopEngland Is A Garden

DerreroTime Lapse

Ex PilotsEx Pilots

The FlatmatesThe Flatmates

Guided By VoicesSurrender Your Poppy Field

Luke Haines & Peter BuckBeat Poetry For Survivalists

The Humdrum ExpressUltracrepidarian Soup

The Just JoansThe Private Memoirs And Confessions Of The Just Joans

The Lovely EggsI Am Moron


The NightingalesFour Against Fate

The OrbAbolition of The Royal Familia

Revolutionary Army Of The Infant JesusSongs of Yearning / Nocturnes


Ariel Sharratt & Mathias KomNever Work

VeryanEbb & Flow


Chorizo’s current favourite albums of 2020:


Andrew Jackson JihadGood Luck Everybody

The ButtertonesJazzhound

Doleful LionsThe Light of the Infinite

Irma VepEmbarrassed Landscape

The Just JoansThe Private Memoirs And Confessions Of The Just Joans

Stephen MalkmusTraditional Techniques

Maria McKeeLa Vita Nuova

John Mouse The Goat

The OriellesDisco Volador

Percy Seaside Donkeys

Savage MansionWeird Country

Ariel Sharratt & Mathias KomNever Work


ShoppingAll or Nothing

Slum Of LegsSlum Of Legs

SnowgooseThe Making of You

Sports TeamDeep Down Happy

Synthetic Villains Synthetic Villains

Thousand Yard StareThe Panglossian Momentum


The Wind-Up BirdsSummer Haunts


Podcast 98: Isolation Pod #7

Who are the wizards to deny Ms Spears when at the end of the last podcast, she could once again be heard murmuring “so, give me more, oh give me more, a little more, a little more…”?


alright, alright, we’ll record another one


Yes, the lockdown duo are back with another show that brings its usual mix of old and new, pink and blue, and, er, false and true. No idea what that means, but who reads this nonsense anyway? What is certain is that we have an exclusive play of a track from a rock legend, a record number of listeners writing in (not just to complain), and, at the halfway mark, the wizards’ favourite albums of the year so far.

You can find all that right here, and down there:





Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Dumb – Roast Beef
  2. Guided By Voices – She Wants To Know
  3. The Terrifying Experience – Untitled
  4. St. James Infirmary – Like A Boy Detective
  5. Hollow Threats – House Arrest
  6. The Bangles – Following
  7. Paul Jones – The Dog Presides
  8. Hulaboy – Part-Time Goth
  9. Babybird – Twilight Of Our Lives
  10. Snowgoose – Everything
  11. Benny Profane – Devil Laughing

The physicality:


And here are links for the other bands that members of Hollow Threats play in….

Podcast 97: Isolation Pod #6

The boys are back in tow-ow-ow-own! Not really. More like two old farts are back in their bedrooms talking at their computers. Hooray!!

In this show, the wizards nearly play Tom Waits again, almost deliver on their culinary promises, and get as close as they ever will to playing the music of an erstwhile Watford FC chairman. Oh, and abusing listeners is back. Sake, Kicker.


no cigar for you, Reg


They do, however, manage to squeeze in eleven (ELEVEN) tunes you can dance to no matter how tiny you might be.

You can find all that still standing right here, and burning out its fuse down there:


Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Ice Cream – Peanut Butter
  2. Wally Tax – The Entertainer
  3. Red Snapper – Fat Roller
  4. Tomoyasu Hotei – Battle Without Honor Or Humanity
  5. Miaow – When It All Comes Down
  6. Guided By Voices – Real
  7. The Kyle Sowashes – When We Unloaded The Van
  8. Pete Shelley – Better Off Without A Wife
  9. The Nightingales – The Desperate Quartet
  10. Simple Kid – The Ballad Of Elton John
  11. Simon Love – Elton John


The physicality:

And some more…




Podcast 96: Isolation Pod #5

They’re back! Back! Baby! Back! Yes, the wizards have once again reconvened (at a safe social distance) to bring you the best of their record collections.

This show not only has punk, it has funk, absolutely no junk or gunk, in fact it’s a slam dunk from the two hunks! Ahem. OK, so all the factually correct information comes via listener correspondence, and the less said about the culinary content, the better, but still, it’s the d’s b’s!


a source of knowledge


You can hear all the shenanigans and 10 (TEN) top notch tunes right here, or if you’d rather, down there:


Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. The Edsel Auctioneer – Undertow
  2. Chairmen Of The Board – Elmo James
  3. The Flatmates – Something In My Eye
  4. White Reaper – Wolf Trap Hotel
  5. Adult Net – Take Me
  6. Elvis Costello – My Little Blue Window
  7. Circus Devils – Diamond Boys
  8. The Bobs – Something In My Ear
  9. Elliott Smith – Pictures Of Me
  10. Eilis Frawley – Intellectual Men


The physicality:



yr life’s work? that’ll be £8.95




not necessarily food, apparently

Podcast 95: Isolation Pod #4

The wizards return to present an unprecedented mix of Eastern and Western culture and cuisine.


how could this possibly be improved?


They out cool bands with uncool names, clarify once and for all Chorizo Garbanzo’s role on the podcast, and mostly refrain from being (too) unpleasant to listeners. It’s all good. There’s even a hashtag to follow (#SelfIsolatingBandTshirts) and some guidance on the pronunciation of difficult words.

You can hear all that and 10 (TEN) top notch tunes right here, or if you’d rather, down there:


Turn away now if you don’t want to know what’s coming up. Otherwise, here’s what we played:

  1. Robert Pollard – Each Is Good In His Own House
  2. Axolotes Mexicanos – Te Quiero
  3. Tremolo Ghosts – Behemoth
  4. Thousand Yard Stare – Precious Pressures
  5. Ulrika Spacek – Beta Male
  6. Synthetic Villains – Yes, We Have No Bonanza
  7. Urusei Yatsura – Majesty
  8. Public Enemy – By The Time I Get To Arizona
  9. Zekeultra – Hurts
  10. Deboarah Harry – End Of The Run


The physicality:


thumbnail (1)

robert pollard’s cock, seemingly


thumbnail (6)

kicker loves those noisy guys



join the bandwagon

People Are Alright by M.J. Hibbett & The Validators

The man previously described on our podcast as “the East Midlands Springsteen” is BACK with a new single and it’s GRATE!

As always The Validators are professional, competent, rocking and tight and M.J. Hibbett’s lyrics touch a lot of nerves, tickle a lot of ribs, ring a lot of bells and hit a lot of nails on their little steely heads.

Here he is answering a few questions about the new single before the conversation boldly goes off on a tangent.



I heard you play this song at the Gullivers gig in Manchester a while back. It’s changed a bit since then though, right?

Yes, it’s changed title at least twice along the way. Initially it was called “In The Pub (talking crap)” which, while descriptive, was a bit boring. We discussed it during our Annual Validators Practice (instead of practicing) and decided that “Two Blokes, One Pub” was a HILARIOUS name, but this turned out not to be the case. It was also a bit confusing, so eventually I bowed to the inevitable and gave it the name it should have had all along,

MJ Hibbett @ Gullivers Manchester 2019


What made you choose the “repeat last line several times to end the song” approach here?

The straight and honest answer was that I wanted to rip off Gavin Osborn. A slightly more polite answer would be that over the past couple of years I’ve toured with people like Gav, Matt Tiller and Grace Petrie, all of whom have songs specifically engineered to get groups of people singing along and I wanted some of that action. I do have a couple of songs that people do sing along with, but they always have fiddly choruses that change as they go along, or wonky bits. So I wanted something like Gav’s “Closing Montage” song that I could potentially close gigs with.


Quiz question….. The Smiths Panic, Buzzcocks I Believe, Daddy Cool by Boney M and that Killers I’ve got soul but I’m not a soldier one.

Without listening to the songs, put those songs in order of who repeats the last line the most.

I don’t know the Buzzcocks or the Killers ones I’m afraid so I’ll GUESS that it goes Boney M / Killers / Buzzcocks / Smiths but I have no idea!

That’s EXACTLY the right order! Astounding skills there MJ.

Do you have any other favourite examples of this you’d like to mention?

Clearly the big daddy of ALL Repeat Last Line Songs is “Hey Jude”, which makes it a bit of an obvious one to mention, but I think its omnipresence sometimes makes us forget how amazing it is. I went to see Macca a few years ago and (of course) he did it as the big finale of his main set, and I suddenly found myself in floods of tears, as the whole of the Millenium Dome O2 went “na, na na, nananana” together. It’s one of those songs which TRANSCENDS words and goes straight to MEANING (hem hem), and it is ace.



Next questions are all from Mrs Garbanzo who noticed the Star Trek reference in your song and wanted to ask you these questions……..

What is the worst Star Trek TV series?

In the song I say it’s Voyager, but I am prepared to hear arguments for it being Enterprise, although I only lasted a couple of seasons with the latter. For both shows it’s because they’re so BORING. The Next Generation managed to make management meetings (in space) look fun and Deep Space Nine got regular thrills about the management of a parade of shops (in space), so there really is no excuse for making being completely lost (in space) or going exploring for the first time (in space) so completely dull.


What is the best Star Trek TV series?

Deep Space Nine. Every time I watch it over again I think “the first few seasons will be rubbish” but it’s GRATE from the start. I love how all the relationships work, like between Miles and Julian, or Odo and Quark, or Kira and Kai Winn (best baddy EVER) , and then when it all kicks off with the Romulans in the second half it is AMAZING. The One Where Captain Sisko Lets A Bomb Go Off is bloody brilliant!



Have you watched Picard and what did you think?

It was a bit disappointing to be honest, especially after Discovery being so much fun. Somewhere around episode eight I realised I didn’t have a clue what was meant to be going on – suddenly all these space robots turn up with Data who isn’t Data and there are Space Flowers and some secret Romulans and Borg Octopuses and I found that I didn’t give a toss and would much rather go back and watch Ryker making Pizza instead.


WARNING: The next question contains a MASSIVE SPOILER for the current series of Picard so if you don’t want to know the score, look away now.

Are the Borg alright if given half a chance?

The Borg as a whole, no, because they’re the Borg, but the people who WERE the Borg, if they’re given a chance (i.e. freed from the Collective) then yes, some of them will turn out to be poorly motivated, mysteriously funded, unconvincing parents who are still somehow completely BADASS and ace. I feel that this is an excellent example/metaphor for what the song is all about!


Tell us about the Totally Acoustic videos you’ve been doing during the lockdown. 

The original Totally Acoustic night was a regular gig I did in the upstairs room of a pub (most recently the lovely King & Queen in Fitzrovia) where I got people who didn’t generally do acoustic sets to play COMPLETELY acoustically i.e. without a PA system or any amplification whatsoever. The idea came about after I ended up having to do a couple of gigs like that when the sound fell apart and realising that, actually, with the size of rooms and audiences that I play for, a PA was entirely unnecessary, and that singing directly to people without it was much much nicer. Most people tend to agree once they’ve tried it!

The videos came about because I had to cancel a couple of shows that I’d booked – we’d also had to cancel a conference at work, and my other half had suggested doing it all VIRTUALLY, so I thought I’d have a go at doing gigs that way too. It’s been really nice to put together, not least because it’s a lovely way to keep in touch with people I actually like in real life!
I’ve done

Here’s a playlist of all of them by the way.

Anything else you’d particularly recommend that’s been helping you get through isolation. 

I’ve been doing some Comfort Reading, like PG Wodehouse, Douglas Adams, Jane Austen and currently “Microserfs” by Douglas Copeland. Lovely books with ace characters where I know it’ll all turn out all right in the end!

Also I have just discovered that the sister of Tom, our violin player, appears in the latest series of The Repair Shop so I need to go and watch all of that!


Here’s a link to buy the single….


and here’s the video….

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