Why it’s on the list: This matches the reading task – I love music and have a large and fairly varied collection of CDs but there’s lots more out there I’ve never listened to. This will encourage me to seek out some new bands and maybe even find a new favourite!
How/when I’ll judge this task to be completed:When I have heard 26 new artists, one for each letter of the alphabet. I can listen to CDs, online or live at events. I must not knowingly have heard the band/singer before. I need to list the bands and do a quick review here.
A: Admiral Fallow – a Truck find. Really good folky stuff, seen them a couple of times now.
B: Bellowhead – folky gypsy music. Saw them live at Truck and absolutely loved them. Favourite track is London Town, which just gets in your head and stays there! Not quite so good on CD but they are really a band to experience in the flesh.
Also .. Birdy. Someone on Facebook was listening to their album on Spotify so I gave it a lsiten – wow, it’s amazing.
C: The Candle Thieves – Birthday present from my friend Belinda. Really enjoyable alt pop.
D: Dog is Dead. Perfect sunny pop band for a summer day.
E: Everything Everything – Sought out their album after reading about them in the Guardian Guide. Described as “smart pop”, they are very different to anything I’ve heard before. Enjoyed the album but will probably take a few more listens to get the hang of!
Also … Empire of the Sun. heard a track on Jack FM, loved it so much I bought the album.
F: Frightened Rabbit – folky stuff similar to Stornaway, not bad but not especially memorable either.
G: Gaggle – OMG this lot are weird. Troupe of ant twenty women who sing (I think!) and make strange noises. Worth seeing live just for the weirdness!
H: Ben Howard – heard some live tracks of his whole in the car one day. Really lovely acousticy stuff ( though despite Steve buying the album I haven’t listened to it yet – must do soon!
I: imagine Dragons – got a free download on iTunes and really enjoyed it, will be looking it for more.
J: John Grant – Truck again … Love I Wanna Go To Mars but not so keen on his other stuff.
K: King Charles. Saw them at Truck, amazing band whose album is sheer genius. Want to see them again
L: Los Campesinos. Great fun, great party band, saw at Truck and a year later in Oxford.
M: Man Like Me. Awesome band we saw at Truck. Very entertaining … Check out their videos on Facebook!
N: Nathaniel Rateliffe – bluesy singer we saw at Truck. Listened to his album beforehand and fell in love with his voice.
O: Olly Knights – a bit of a cheat here as Olly is part of Turin Brakes and his solo stuff is very similar in type, but his album was one of my favourites of 2012.
P: Pete Lawrie- saw him supporting the aforementioned Turin Brakes, very good and listened t his album lots since
Q: Quantic Soul Orchestra. orchestral movements as I’ve never heard them before. LI,e something out of an 80s American cop show, this is a little too funky for me – but I’m glad I listened! Also Quantum Jump, mad looking 70s group worth looking up on YouTube. Reckon Man Li,e Me must have modelled themselves on this lot! ,post interesting for the fact that the singer went on to produce Thompson Twins, Waterboys and Suzanne Vega, among others.
R: Rage Against The Machine – ok before this group were magically catapulted to the Xmas no 1 slot I’d never heard of them. Listened to a few bits since and while I might have enjoyed them 10 years ago my tastes have changed and they’re way too loud, sweaty and heavy for me now!
S: The See See – Madchester sound though the band are from America, Sweden, New Zealand and Leeds!
T: The Temper Trap – like their single Sweet Disposition but found them a bit dull live
U: The Unthanks – the kind of soft folk music I would have hated years ago but maturity has softened my ear and this lot sound really pleasing.
V: Villagers – lilting alt rock, very enjoyable and a couple of crowd singalong songs too.
W: We Aeronauts – bubbly indie pop in a similar vein to Alphabet Backwards
X: The XX – Another band I read about in the Guardian. Thought they’d be quite rocky gothy stuff but they’re much more subtle. Not sure if I like them or not to be honest!
Y: Yellow Fever – ok but a bit too heavy for my tastes
Z: Zebrahead. Shouty American band in the same vein as Less Than Jake and sum 41. The kind of thing I’d have loved 10 years ago but with my more mature tastes now this is a bit loud and fast for me.