Monday, February 23, 2015

Radio Podrophenia - the Letter V. Now up for download

If you fancy something to lively up your commute and doings over the coming week - grab a take away version of our Radio Podrophenia show, featuring a mix of musical styles fitted around the theme of V recorded and broadcast live from The Railway, Southend...

Steven Hastings from Harbour Bazaar spotlights a classic Velvet Underground album with a rare take of a VU tune. Gentleman George Crockford from Box of Delights mans the Tech Decks - and our special guest is Chris Constantinou ex of Adam and the Ants talking about covering a Velvet Underground lost song and working with Tony Visconti on Adam's Vive Le Rock album and his current project The Mutants

Tune-wise we've got South African soul, Motown stompers, first-wave and now-wave punk

We also, ask what happens when you show retro children's TV shows to today's children... get listeners fancy dress confessions  (Peters and Lee, the 'hills' from The Sound of Music)...

Grab here Radio Podrophenia - the Letter V 

Stream here

Or via iTunes..

And what has this video got to do with the Letter V - find out inside..

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Podrophenia Alphabet: V is for Velvets, Visconti and Vive Le Rock

Pod-bods: tonight it’s the February issue of Podrophenia, where we’ll be thumbing through the 'V' chapter of our Podrophonic Alphabet…

Pal Piley is out of action for this edition but – but Steven Hastings from SFOB’s show Harbour Bazaar will be stepping in and bringing some of Harbour's formats and features with him - focusing on a key/classic album and introducing us to Cover/Uncover..

Roll-out wise, we’ll be after #spiritsongsorsingsers and asking - do Schpunk have a point that 'boxsets retrospectively ruin your childhood' 

And behold: as we come face to face with a real life Ant Man and Mutant when Chris Constantinou (spottable on bass below)  phones in from The Mutants HQ

Join us online, 8pm at Ship Full of Bombs or chip in with the chat and natter at Chatwing

Friday, February 6, 2015

Radio Two Times: hits, highlights, finds - and Mick Ronson remembered

Should you fancy grabbing the latest edition of Podrophenia wherein Piley and I (assisted by Weird Gear's Paul Wolf on the tech decks) run through our hits, highlights and finds of 2014 - dig in below.

There's a fistful of new tunes, threading together - blues, funk, indie and retro-disco and Southend band

For natterings -  we ask which celebs are look-a-likes for these Essex police photo fits  and #beersongs and #shoesongs... plus an appearance from James of The Ends to discuss the upcoming single

Radio Podrophenia - Best of 2014

Last Sunday (31st Jan), I was invited to take part in Steven Hastings always excellent Harbour Bazaar: The theme of this edition - Love's Forever Changes (an album new to me). - where, we were joined by Roman Jugg (The Damned, Phantom Chords, Naz Nomad)

Also on the menu were lost gems from Daniel Newman, and we discuss majesty of Mick Ronson... Who did Bowie clone his Ziggy Tone from, which local legend is also secret TV drummer - what is the Southend connection with Teddy Boys - and Roman Jugg brings you Ronno's most perfect note...all contained within this podcast. Download, dig in and groove on...

Harbour Bazaar with Steven Hastings : Love Forever Changes, Mick Ronson & Lost Gems

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Last Ramone Standing...

The latest edition of Britain's most rocking, rolling mag  - Vive Le Rock has just hit the shelves - and worra walloper it is. Going heavy on the Sex Pistols and spin off related projects...there's also Bauhaus, and Ian McLagen remembered..

You'll find tucked away in the back pages me scribbling about Bruce Joyner and Atomic Clock. One review that should have been, but never made the final print is my take on C. J. Ramone's revved up newbie Last Chance to Dance...

But, nothing goes to waste - so dig in below.....

Punk fact: Glam Rock Super-Yobs, Slade were a major influence on The Ramones. Vocalist and black-leather mantis Joey once said 'I spent most of the early 70s listening to 'Slade Alive!' - thinking this is what I want to do'. And check the Da Brudda's barnets - pure Dave Hill. Bassist CJ may have been a late addition to The Ramones’ line-up (replacing Dee Dee in 1989), but he’s kept the band’s integrity intact - backtracking to Slade's romper-stomping roots, fusing it with authentic Lower East Side slam-handed riffs and rumbling thunder. ‘Long Way to Go’, ‘Won't Stop Swinging’ and ‘Mr Kalashnikov’ are classic Gabba Gabba updated with a twenty first century clout. While ‘One More Chance’, ‘Undertand Me’, ‘Pitstop’, and ‘Last Chance to Dance’ sit alongside key period Ramones bankers and in the back catalogue. An album that will keep hardcore avids and casual fans blitzkrieg bopping

Friday, January 30, 2015

7 inches in 4 weeks

Southenders and out of towners - the irreversible countdown has begun. For in four weeks time Podophenia brings you a triple whammy wing-ding of Southend's most combustible bands.

Canvey's Double Headed Jester -  Eight Rounds Rapid making a long awaited return the their home ground and the ever-fizzing Ends heading up the event.

The freshly pressed vinyl of You Write the Hits (I Write the B Sides) will be available on the night along with some other collectibles and fancies.

Our last get together with The Ends ended up (scuse pun) with our first Podrophonic mosh-pit, so who knows what could happen with this triple fisted bill

Should you fancy placing a pre-order - give Norman Records a knock here

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Look-in: New video and sleeve art revealed for The Ends - You Write The Hits (I Write The B-Sides). On Podrophenia Records

Buckle up and behold pals: as we bring you, blasting their way out of Canvey's sea-walls- The Ends. As featured in session here on Podrophenia last year.

A live session in fact, that sowed the seed for the idea of our second release on the Podrophenia record label.

When can we get our sticky mitts on a copy they chorused. Febuary 28th...with a live night in Southend, Natch!

Tune in and and tell a pal...

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Dixieland, that's where he was born, early Lord one frosty morning

Elvis actual birth certificate - photo by me

Elvis' death was my JFK assassination moment. I remember precisely where I was when the news was first whispered around the room - at my paternal Aunt Shirley's, well her ladies hairdressing salon in Salisbury (the glamour!). It was like being caught in a morbid tornado hearing this omnipresent superstar had faded, flat-lined and was now, gone forever.

Although I was too young catch the sonic boom of his Rock 'n' Roll years - the aftershock of Elvisness was still resonating in my era - the seventies. His films were repeated in the schedules during the summer holidays, record shops and department stores had endless variations of compilation albums (Separate Ways was a standard) in the racks (including budget tribute LPs - 'insert name here' sings Elvis). Regular radio play for hits from the fifties to the seventies, while Live via Satellite gave a white-suited Elvis the aura of a rock 'n' roll astronaut.

But more than this, his influence was at the core of popular culture: from ginger quiffed, crepe-booted Teddy Boys to prime-time impressionists - whether comic (Freddy Starr) or musical (Alvin Stardust, Cliff, Les Gray) and any number of white suited popsters The Osmonds, showaddywaddy, The Rubettes. At the more respectable end of R.O.C.K  Bryan Ferry and Bowie both lent heavily on Elvis' legacy...

An indicator of Presley-power is: long before I had any real awareness of The Beatles, Stones or in fact who any of Rock's heavy-hitters were - Elvis seemed - to me anyway - like an untouchable international idol with a seemingly god-like presence and super-hero stature, revered across the world - while other rock and rollers had come, copied, gone or been forgotten. For perspective, thumb through David E. Stanley's The Elvis Encyclopedia and you'll find Clapton and Led Zeppelin desperate to get an audience with Elvis..

Should you (and you really should, as it's his 80th birthday this year) fancy coming as close as possible to The King, book yourself a trip to Elvis at the 02. It houses the largest collection of Elvis' items ever to appear in the UK, all imported from Graceland and overseen by Priscilla Presley.

Items that include.....

The Heartbreak Hotel Acetate

Dress down casual Elvis-style

 The American Eagle suit cape

Front detail 

 Suits you 

68 Special 'Trouble' outfit

A gift from Ali 

The Vegas Room

A defining performance is, of course the 68 Special - where you could lucky dip any clip for pure-brewed musical-boom. Although this medley, with Elvis in full flight, revisiting his Rock 'n' Roll back catalogue with a renewed and unrelenting energy is explosive. 


But for the essence of Elvis - this outtake is the key to his magic as I wrote a few years back..

' While the offstage boffins were making technical tweaks and possibly 'checking levels' between takes, Elvis asks for his guitar, kicks off the riff for 'Baby What You Want Me To Do' the orchestra jump in, start jamming and the audience go wild'

If you're a Bookfacer - you can see the full set of my Elvis 02 pics here 

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Old Mondo's Almanac

An annual tradition where local paper the Essex Echo asked locally-sourced bods and whatnots for reviews, rear views and a reading of the musical tea-leaves for 2015. Have a squizz and scan above and you'll find my findings and future doings for '14 and '15.

And what's that at the bottom of question 3 - a new single on Podrophenia Records! Watch this space, and Happy New Year playmates.....

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Planet Mondo Annual 2014

It's the annual Sadlads CD swap tonight, and my contribution -volume Five (we started back in 2010 with this) of the Planet Mondo annual brings you my favourite finds of 2014, threading together new nuggets and vintage discoveries. Although this is possibly the most contemporary-heavy set to date. Soul, funk, electro and power-mod and acoustic tunes are all in the mix. Along with a solid spread of Southenders: Wilko Johnson, Howling Black Soul, M G Boulter, West Weston & Martin McNeill and The Ends

And behold - two PM exclusives from Dave Woodcock, and Steve Weston with Martin McNeill - live in session versions of unreleased tracks.

It's yours to grab/stream  below

The Planet Mondo Annual 2014

A couple that I just didn't have space to squeeze in were ...

Friday, December 19, 2014

My Top Five from 2014....

An annual tradtition at Vive Le Rock HQ is the writers' Top Fives of the year. No surprises from me really - as these are names getting mutiple mentions on the blog, podcast and various scribblings and mags for the last four years...

Dig around the back pages and you'll also find reviews from for  Marriot and Lane's Magic Mijits and The Quireboys

In case you have hadn't had the chance to check out any of the above - dig in below....