Sunday, 8 December 2013

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 12

Are you listening up? I hope so. I normally say this at the end, but I'm going to say it now because I mean it so much “Thank you for listening”. This is the JosieJo Show and each show includes two tracks from two different artists or bands and by the end of the show I do very much hope that you'll be glad you listened up. This show includes Israeli electronica and a track by a super talented first nations woman from British Columbia.
First to be listened up to is Syndrome a project in sound by Israeli born dudes now based in London. They are developing not just their musical sound, but a whole collaboration of video art and found sound. They are constantly swapping and sharing ideas with other artists, finding new ways of developing and experiencing music. They even play and record improvised sessions to create interesting and experimental sound. Their EP called “Colourful Cows” is a comment on how society is now and it uses many different genres, emotions, speeds and dynamic ranges to deliver its message. What's more it's available as a free download via the website They are really keen to hook up with a European band or artist to maybe swap and share venues with and are right now planning a summer tour.
I'm going to play you “Exhibition Trial” which is a harsh, often sinister track, about oppression and control as far as I can tell. It almost feels like something seen, but not quite seen; something heard, but not quite heard. As the track enters the centre of itself the soft piano is slightly discordantly under written by disturbing noises off as if within harmony there is always disquiet. There is another track on the EP called “Exhibition Trial II” which is much more based on this harmonious piano, but its video consists of moving camera shots and fast cut disturbing edits. This track has more of that disturbance and yet it still has a soft beauty. This is Syndrome and “Exhibition Trail”

Woof. Disturbing huh? Let's bring you something not quite so harsh. Ecko is a first nations woman from Sechelt, British Columbia (I'm not sure I pronounced that correctly. I'm not known for my correct pronunciation and would like to take this opportunity to apologise to MOXIE for saying that they come from Silgo when in fact they come from Sligo in Ireland. It's correct on my blog. Read that on Blogger or Tumblr if you want to check facts or spelling) Back to Ecko. She's on a mission to deliver her talent and beauty to the world. She's just successfully completed a fund raising project to allow her to travel to Los Angles to promote her modelling and acting career to the Model Talent Association in the new year. I send out my very best wishes to her for that. She has the beauty of a first nation's woman and an individuality that commands your attention. She will be showcasing her talent in L.A. , but the JosieJo show brings Ekco to you right now.
She admits to being a perfectionist and tells me that she doesn't think that this track is quite finished , but I love its delicate simplicity and lack of self pity. The message of this track “Hold Tight” is really just that – hold tight. We may walk a narrow path which can lurch between disaster and triumph, but as long as we believe and hold tight we can succeed. It's driven by the repeated beat and the punching rap that finds its flow and by the end swells around your head like a dream. It tails off into the distant future. This is the beautiful and multi-talented Ecko and “Hold Tight”

mmm “Hold Tight” and big JosieJo Show good luck wishes go out to Ecko for the Model Talent Association and wishing you all the best for a fabulous 2014. Don't forget you can hear all of the archived JosieJo shows on mixcloud. Just go to and click listen to the show. Like me on Facebook and visit the page for extra content and follow me on twitter @josiejoshow for news, events, gigs and releases. If you know of a band or artist that would like to be considered for a play on the show or just to let me know the tracks that have really rocked your boat, got under your skin or in anyway have made it into your favourite playlists then please drop me an old fashioned email Tell your friends about the show. You know that they deserve a fifteen minute break from stress and reality just like you do and I'll say it again because it never gets old “Thank you for listening”

Thursday, 5 December 2013

The JosieJo Show 11

Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 11

Greetings. Welcome to Show 11 of The JosieJo Show. Did you know that scientists have recently found that music can make solar panels more efficient in processing sunlight, particularly pop and rock for some reason? They think it's something to do with the vibrations, but honestly if we can capture more of the sun's energy by turning up the volume then I say “bring it on. Let's play some great tunes”. This show I have a track that has been around for a few years by a crazy Birmingham based band an a fairly new release from a UK South Coast 3 piece.

Let's start first with Misty's Big Adventure. This band is, indeed, an adventure in sound and it's big. It's an eight piece, brassy, bold and just fabulous. It's headed up by Grandmaster Gareth who is a solo artist in his own right and he gives Misty's its distinctive vocal sound. The rest of the sound is provided by the trumpet, sax, keyboards, bass, guitar and drums oh yes and Erotic Volvo as himself. Erotic is the secret weapon of Misty's Big Adventure live. A man painted in blue with many blue hands all over his crazy red onesie and he's been doing this long before there was a word for onesie. He is an important part of the band and dances to the tunes whilst visually describing the lyrics like some sort of sign language of the sub conscious. Once you have seen Misty's Big Adventure live you will never forget them. I saw them back in about 2004 I think and the track I'm going to play you is from that era, but they are still touring and I'm desperate to see them live again. You know when a band puts on facebook that little box “events”? Well when Misty's do a gig it really is an event. Get yourself to one if you can. They have a darkly funny video of the track “Aggression” that is so good that it's being screened at The London Short Film festival in January. It's available on You Tube and definitely worth a watch, but be warned it does contain somewhat adult content.

I'm going to play you a similarly dark, yet funny track called “Long Conveyor Belt” which was released on the album “Funny Times” . Every track on the album is a take on life and subjects covered include moving away from the place you grew up in to unrequited love that's sort of like stalking. This track is about life. The long trudge that is life. You know those days when you're pretty sure that someone just isn't telling you everything and you wonder really why you're getting up and going to work again? You know that feeling you get sometimes when you wash up again for the third time that day and realise that the dust is accumulating regardless of your cleaning efforts and you have to pay tax on it all, including the dust? Well this track explains all that. It starts and ends slowly with an inevitable, repeating beat as we travel on that conveyor belt and just can't get off. This all sounds depressing, but it's so jolly and funny you've just got to smile. How can trumpets and sax bring you down anyway? There is also some clever use of sound effects pacing and the voice over is hilarious. Roll up and join the carnival carousel that is Misty's Big Adventure and “The Long Conveyor Belt”

That was Misty's Big Adventure and “Long Conveyor Belt” . I'm very serious about seeing them live. They play at The Hare and Hounds at King's Heath, Birmingham UK on Christmas Eve. That is going to be a treat for anyone that can get there and remember that video for “Aggression”

My next band Maths and the Moon is playing a gig even sooner than Christmas. Thursday Dec 5th 2013 you can catch this South Coast three piece at the Monarch in Chalk Farm London and it's free. This is loud guitar/wall of sound stuff from Andy Fielder, Matt Hirst and Luke Taplin and they launched their album called “Night Train Daydream” in September 2013. The title describes the sort of other worldliness of the rock that this band love. This is tunes for when the sun's gone down so it probably won't help the scientists improve the performance of solar panels, but maybe you can find another excuse to turn the volume up, because this band needs to be heard loud. I found this band listening to Nick Tann's podcast called “Is This Thing On?” Nick Tann is himself a musician but he has over 200 podcasts available packed full of great music that he's found and he's played some of my favourites like Bela Takes Chase. This great music is all there for you to find, it's just hard wading through the average stuff. Nick's done that for you with his podcast and that's how I found Maths and the Moon. I have no idea where the name of the band comes from, but it appeals both to the romantic and the engineer in me. What's not to love? They have a free download available called “Old Days/New Daze” since it's free I'll let you seek out that yourselves.
I love this track “Light and the 11th Hour” which is on the “Night Train Daydream” It starts with a classic rock feedback sound before the guitars and drums do what guitars and drums do best. This track is one of those tunes that feels like they learned guitar and started an band to get the girl and when that girl is in love with Keith Richards you can see how that would be a good plan. It's raw and rocky and even quite funny. I like it. Maths and The Moon and “Light and the 11th Hour”

There you go. Two tracks I like presented to you for your enjoyment. If you like what I do listen to the other shows on Mixcloud. Easy links to those can be found on my webpage and there is always extra content on my facebook page and follow me on twitter @josiejoshow for news, events, gigs and releases. Now back to that long conveyor belt people you have lives to enjoy. Thank you for listening.

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips

The JosieJo Show 10

Hello. This is The JosieJo Show number 10. It feels like a milestone for me so I'm going to do something different from the first nine shows. I normally present you with two tracks from two different artists. They don't have a common theme or even teselate into each other. You never know what you're going to get with this show and this time is no exception. I still have two tracks for you recorded by two different bands in two different genres, but here's the twist; they are the same song.
Not sure how you're going to feel about this, but it's the JosieJo Show – let's give it a go.

There is a band unlike any other. It's big in Korea, it's called Arco and it has some of the most wonderful and talented people I have ever had the pleasure to call my friends. Arco is Chris Healey, his twin brother Nick and my good friend Dave Milligan. Arco is named after a directive in music for string instruments to indicate to the performer that the passage should be played using the normal bowing technique. So it's the return to normal after a passage played in a different way. If you look the term up on Wikipedia in reference to music you get three definitions. One is the description above, one is a professional diploma for church organists and the third is Arco – a British slow-core band and it's this band that I want to introduce you to in this show. The songs are almost painfully quiet and they require – no they demand your attention. There is no hiding behind slide or rock guitars. Every note, word, pluck and pause is carefully thought out and in there for a reason. This makes for beautiful tracks that seem deceptively simple. The lyrics aren't obscure, they are what they are and speak of simple truths. It can make the tracks hard to hear because of their sadness, but when they speak to your raw emotion there is seldom anything more comforting than music that reflects that pain. I've seen them live several times and the audience is literally captivated by the stillness of the band and the soft quietness of the music.
There are a few tracks available as MP3s on Arco's website and I can highly recommend “Perfect World” on there, but be careful how you enter that URL unless you want stainless steel straps. On Arco's website (I'll say it again so you don't get confused with buckles and safety glass) you can also find links to the whole discography including the latest release “Yield”. When I say latest it was released back in 2010, but their whole back catalogue is worth a listen.
The track I'm going to play you is “Lullaby” and you'll see later on why I've chosen this track. It was the 11th and final track from the album “Coming To Terms” which was released way back in 2000 and that album has got me through many tough times in the last 13 years. “Lullaby” featured on the show Californication and it's easy to see how it could be used as a goodbye tune. This really is a beautiful track that is, undoubtedly, a lullaby. It's quiet, soothing and soft. However, when taken in the context of the whole album you can't fail to notice the slightly disturbing under current that suggests the passing of time. You can't help , but ask yourself if you really know the answer to the question “What does it mean to be loved?” Arco and “Lullaby”

So that was Arco and the tune “Lullaby” It's a good introduction to the band and a really good last track for a mixtape. My favourite Arco track is actually “Driving At Night” and it's like the law in the JosieJo household that the track “Happy New Year” has to be played in the very early hours of the first day of the year, just when the brandy is going down and the sun is coming up. That track is available as an MP3 on the Arco website and I highly recommend you go and get it for yourself. Links to all the bands I play on the show are available on my website and special links like the link right to the page with those Mp3s on it will be up on my Facebook page. JosieJo Show.
Now for the second track of show ten. Well it's the same song. “Lullaby” was covered by Arco's bass guitarist, Dave Milligan by his band The Penguin Party. It appears on their first album “See Thru Songs” and is completely different from the version you just heard. Whereas Arco are like floating through the quiet of falling snow on a dark night, The Penguin Party are sparkly, spangly power-pop who tell tales of quirky characters and drinking beer in British pubs. They are from Essex, England and as I said are headed up by Dave Milligan (gee whizz this is turning into the Dave Milligan show...maybe we should get him to do a show of his own...oh wait he does...that's Round At Milligan's. Go to my website for links to that. It's much longer than this and is packed with really really great music). The rest of The Penguin Party are Jake Milligan, Jan Black, Johnny Holburn and the mighty Gareth Hall on bass. I have played The Penguin Party on Show One, but I just thought that it would be an interesting exercise to play this version of the Arco track “Lullaby” right after the original. I think that this version really plays on that disturbing undercurrent of the track and the juxtapostion between the sentiment of the song “try and sleep now” and the loud, rip-roaringliness of the guitars is interesting and well just quite funny really.
So I ask you again “What does it mean to be loved?” This is the Penguin Party and their version of the Arco track “Lullaby”

Did I wake you up? Sorry. Are you any wiser at all? Never mind. You see two great tracks by two great bands. Normal service will be resumed next show when I will once again bring you two great tracks, but different tracks by two great bands or artists. Who knows what turn up next on The JosieJo Show. You'll just have to keep on listening and tell your friends. This year I'm doing an advent calender for my brother where I send him a different track every day starting on the first of December and ending on Christmas Day. Go on steal my idea and use the JosieJo Show for great ideas of tracks and bands you'd like to share. Thank you as always for listening.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 9

Greetings. This is The JosieJo Show and this is the deal. I play you two tracks from two different artists. I don't promise you'll like every track I play, but I like them I really want to share them. I don't spend my time on the internet servicing my need for kawaii by watching kitten videos, or even reading newspapers and informative articles to further my world knowledge. I honestly don't even do stuff that I requires my browsing history to be deleted. Not that I mind any of that. I just don't get chance. I'm too busy tracking down music old and new for stuff that is a little surprising or inspirational and often just good fun. I do this totally for my own pleasure, but The JosieJo Show allows me the chance to share it with you and that's just peachey. Neither of the choices in this show have deep, clever rhymes or poetic parlances, but they both tell stories with their sound and stir my soul unexpectedly.

My first choice is Moxie, MOXIE a young, beautiful five piece from Sligo in Ireland. The banjos, guitars, percussion and button accordions make for a joyful Irish sound, but woven into that are strains of blue grass, a little jazz and modern beats. Playing mostly in Ireland you might expect cheery folky types with beards, but these guys aren't. They are serious chaps with music that has life and soul. They clearly love life and they love music. They are currently in the throes of a pledging campaign through a fundit page which will hopefully fund their next album. It has just over another month to run and you can get involved at whatever level you like. The pledges are all in Euros and each one gives you special benefits. If you want to propose and can get to Sligo they even have level a that let's you pledge 750 Euros to have MOXIE play next to the Glencar waterfall as you pop the question. Pledge even more and the benefits get even more personal. Any donations are welcome and you'll be warm and fuzzy knowing that you've helped get the album made. Check out the fundit page for details and you can find links for that on their Facebook page or my page for The JosieJo Show.
Let's give you a taste of what they're trying to create. I was going to play “What Lies Behind the Wall” because it has this hypnotic, mesmeric beat that draws you in whilst intriguing you with it's side story. That was the track I asked for, but MOXIE sent me two tracks and I really fell for the second track “Elixir's Waltz”. This is an instrumental track – no lyrics or rhymes to analyse or gush over, and yet the track seems to me to tell a story. It's like the narrative of a relationship. It starts hesitantly like trying to pluck up the courage for that first date and the arrested development of getting to know each other. Then it picks up with speed and passion developing into the feeling of throwing your hands out to the sides, your head back and spinning round as you look at the sky. Towards the end there is the rhythm of the familiar, but a side tone of passion. It reminds you that whilst things can always get routine, they can still surprise you. Give in to the inevitable tap of the feet as you listen to MOXIE and “Elixir's Waltz”

It's great that such young guys are honouring the traditional, but at the same time they're bringing their own freshness to it. If you liked that then check out Celtic Music Radio and  the show Due North which is where I found MOXIE and is a show co-hosted by the great Robin Ap Clericus. Remember you have just over a month to help with their Fundit campaign.
The second track for this show is from Message To Bears the moniker of composer and multi- instrumentalist Jerome Alexander. Message to Bears' work is hushed vocals, soundscapes, piano, guitars almost used as voices, sampling and electronica. He has a real freedom to his music. I get the sense that he uses music to embody the fully formed thoughts of his mind and sensibility.
This track “Moonlight” is from his third album “Maps” and the album is a flow of emotion and landscape. It's sort of soaring mountains, big skies, rolling hills and the dramatic irony of weather mirroring emotion. “Moonlight” reminds me of a journey and it's a journey unresolved. It is like watching the landscape change and evolve as you sit on a train and watch it pass silently by the only true sounds the thoughts in your head. The track has the rhythm of movement. It is intense and soothing like the rocking of carriage or the lull of a night journey. Free your spirit Message to Bears and his beautifully chilling track “Moonlight”

That track “Moonlight” is from the new album “Maps” which is out on CD right now, but be warned that Message to Bears always has a very limited run on his physical copies. Hopefully early 2014 will see the release of that album on limited edition vinyl so if vinyl is your thing you can wait for that.

You can find links to the bands on my webpage and my Facebook page has lots of extra content. If you would like to contribute to the show in any way contact me I'm particularly after outros for the show. So if you'd like to be a special part of the show record it into your voice memo app on your phone, tablet or computer and just pop it over to me as an email. I'll let you know what show it will appear on and I will be very happy. This week big thanks to the Mighty Bod for this week's payoff and big thanks to you for listening.

The JosieJo Show 8

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 8

Greetings! I'm JosieJo and this is the JosieJo Show. I'm trying to bring you music that you maybe wouldn't normally hear, but music that may just become your inspiration, your song, or the tunes you share because they just make you smile. I find this music in the most surprising places, but the great thing about music now is it's out there for you to find and there are many people who want to share it with you. Some of the best sources for my tunes have been the internet radio stations that are available now and you can access them wherever you are in the world. I can highly recommend particular Djs such as Dennis “Songsmith” Holseybrook on, the marathon Sunday sessions of Sparky on and anything that Steve Jarrott produces on Tampa Bay Florida's I say this because these guys need your listens to keep going. They don't just give musicians opportunities to have their music heard, they also form genuine communities through the loyalties they nurture and their chat rooms, so every now and then switch your listening habits from mainstream to independents. It will make a difference. This show is a snippet of those shows; a taster if you like. It's like popping round the shops for chocolate or a biscuit with your cup of tea (to translate a cookie with your coffee). It's your treat to yourself and this show, like all the others, has two tracks. One track is delicate and sparsely beautiful and the other is powerful, dangerous and strengthened with different styles. Let's show you what I mean. It's the JosieJo Show – let's give it a go.
Nottingham, England? Remember that? I've talked about it before because it really does have a wealth of musical talent coming out of it right now and Gallery 47 is no exception. Gallery 47 is a singer songwriter called Jack Peachey from Nottingham England who has complete control over his own sound. It's smoky club sound interweaved with the paranoia of caring, jealousy and just the basic toughness of being human. Similar to the oppression of possession, self awareness comes with a troubled mind.
This song is the first single from the Gallery 47's forthcoming album “All Will Be Well”. The single is being released on vinyl so it has two sides. The B side is “Please Not Yet”, but I have to play you the beautiful and fragile sound of the A side “Some Things”. The track is sparse, plucked guitar which provides the beat and the melody as the vocal harmonises over the top. I don't mean over the top in the exaggerated sense. This track is completely understated. The only thing “over the top” about it is that the vocal harmonizes “over the top” of the guitar. This is uncomplicated and seemingly effortless advocacy delivered in an unjudgemental way. If all the advice I was ever given was conveyed like this then I would pretty much be able to accept anything with no heartbreak. It's a shame that life isn't like this, but for the next few minutes let's enjoy the serenity and the lesson of Gallery 47's “Some Things”

“Some Things” by Gallery 47 and you can follow him on Twitter and check out his you tube channels for news of that vinyl single, the forth coming album and videos.
The next band Splext and the Effects have been played on Dave Milligan's show Round At Milligan's. When I introduced them on that show as one of my Great big Pair of Tips I said that the name of the bass player, Josh Sparkes always reads as Josh Sparkles to me and the band tells me that he really does, sparkle The bands vocals are provided by Splext himself and the wonderfully powerful Rachel Rose who is a solo artist in her own right. Splext also provides the synth, supported by Shane Green on guitar and Ben Jordan on drums. Their sound is ...well...what is it? It's a collaboration is what it is. Soft pop, rap, haunting female vocal, rock guitar, electronica, drum and bass, dubstep … confused? I'll tell you what; I'll get straight to the track. Let's not wait any longer. It's out the day this show gets uploaded. It's released 11th November 2013. The track is “Dangerous”. No I mean it's called “Dangerous”. I suppose it may be dangerous if you get distracted by it whilst walking your dog next to a cliff and you do a little skip to the beat or segway into an air guitar moment which insists you close your eyes and adopt a low stance whilst crossing a busy road. That is dangerous. Don't do that. That is a health and safety notice brought to you by The JosieJo Show. That's free. I'll give you that, but back to the track. “Dangerous” by Splext and the Effects is loud and proud. If you've not got guts, power and individuality then take a step back. Every member of the band brings something to this tune. Rachel Rose sings loud of the message that women are strong and not to be messed with. Shane's rock guitar hollers, Ben's drums push the whole thing through and Josh, of course, Sparkles. Splext comes in with unexpected, yet totally, naturally organic, rap. This track has it all. It's power pop, rock, rap and folk. Ok I'm just confusing you all now. It's powerful, that's all you need to know. Let me show you. Splext and the Effects and their brand new single “Dangerous”

Thanks to Splext and the Effects for sharing their brand new single with the JosieJo Show. Thank you for listening. Go to and click listen to the show for all the archived shows aswell as links to the bands, photos and the backstory to why this all started. Follow me on twitter @josiejoshow for news events gigs and releases and extra content on my facebook page. Tell your friends. It's like mixtapes without the pencils.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

The JosieJo Show 7

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 7

The first band this show are Two Man Ting the infectious duo John Lewis and Jah Man Aggey. Stand by for upbeatness and tonkingly good tunes. Now I'm not au fait with genres really. My love of music is not technical or even that well informed really, but I listen a lot and some of my best friends are musical heroes. When I played this to one of those musical heroes, the much more informed Dave Milligan, of Round At Milligan's fame, he described this as Highlife. I ran this description by John of Two Man Ting and he agreed that the tunes do have Highlife elements. This is sometimes known as Soukous. He then went on to detail other influences of their music and introduced me to some of the most delightful descriptions of genres I have ever heard. Amongst these were Palm Wine, or Maranga, jit-jive and acoustic dub. However, most reviewers of Two Man Ting seem to use the term “Sunshine” and I'd definitely go along with that. For me, the word that I just can't get away from when listening to their tunes is “Smiley” So if you need a bit of smiley sunshine with afro-roots check out their EP “Ar Lek U” or go onto their Facebook page and stream three tracks for free including this one “Duvet Song” It needs little explanation and is pretty much a song about wrapping yourself in a duvet and having a sunny day in bed regardless of the weather outside. I suspect much love has been made to this track. Two Man Ting and “Duvet Song”

Ahhh hahahaha The Sunshine sound of Two Man Ting and “Duvet Song”
The next track is a solo project from Francine Perry called la leif. Francine used to drum and sing in the fabulous band Apples and Eve who are sadly in the process of winding down. Their last gig will be on the 30th November 2013 at old Market in Brighton. Dave Milligan played a track of theirs on show 79 of Round At Milligan's and there is a link to all those shows on my webpage click on the link to listen to Round At Milligan's which is on the home page just below the link to listen to this show. That Show, Round At Milligan's 79 also has a track by Fran's brother Matthew Perry. It was very exciting to present the music of very talented siblings in the same show. I'll post a link to that on my Facebook page and you can listen to Apples and Eve by going to their facebook page. Francine's solo project though is brand new and very exciting. It's mesmeric electronica that's awesome in the sense that it induces awe. She has a haunting voice and weaves sound like silk. This track “Little Life” is like a water nymph gliding underwater; naiadic in its bewitching chant it harnesses the themes of time, temptation and the power of natural forces. The end is like breaking through the surface of water or waking from a dream. Surrender yourself to the enchanting music of la leif and “Little Life”

Gosh just beautiful. Check out the whole of  la leif on soundcloud and Francine is also working on a new duo called Brothers. Follow me on twitter and like my page on Facebook for news of all that and extra content including videos and photos. You can find both of those by searching for josiejo show or follow the links from my website
Let's bring back the mixtape and really share music with each other. If you have a favourite band or artist that you think really should be heard by more people then drop me a line and tell your friends. Music is truly global now and sharing it is one of my passions. It takes me time to create this show for you but quite frankly if only one person hears it and finds something that moves them then it is worth every second. I mean this sincerely, Thank you for listening.

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

The JosieJo Show 6

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 6

I write this blog because I love great music and I want to share some of it. You're reading this blog and you're looking for great music. I'm JosieJo and this is The JosieJo Show. Each show includes two tracks by two different artists.
The first of the two in this show is The Undercover Hippy. The Undercover Hippy is Billy Rowan from Bristol in the U.K. and he does the whole nine yards. He writes a politically aware blog, creates great, feel-good live videos and delivers deep, yet upbeat, heartfelt music. Teaming up with Alex Crane, Andreas Millns and Joe Gaywood Billy's band The Undercover Hippy creates a sound rooted in reggae, hip-hop and a musical enjoyment that is even more infectious live. I discovered them at Farmer Phil's Festival in 2012 and Billy was the first act I saw. I'd met up with my dear friend, Lisa Greer and her family and both me and her son Adam were immediately interested in the bouncing beats and playful, catchy, semi-acoustic sound. Adam bought the four track E.P. “Why We Fight”and I was hooked. It's Billy's rhymes woven into the music that are the real genius of the stand out sound. The track “Why We Fight” has a brilliant couplet :
“The U.S. Think Tank
Well they tend to think tanks”
I could just recite Billy's lyrics for the whole show, but it's better if I let him do it.
I'm going to play Adam's favourite track “Boyfriend” and it is full of these great rhymes. The Greer family know all the lyrics to this track and sing it loudly altogether in the car. Listen out for “ecstasy” rhymed with “sex for me” and the saturated image that he creates as he rhymes “lips” with “chips”. Also he uses the word “procrastinating” which will always get my vote. With backing vocals by Chloe Laing and Jessica Langton this is The Undercover Hippy and “Boyfriend”

Billy is in the process of trying to record a new album “Monkey Suit” and you can help make that happen by pledging towards it and in return you get exclusive news and pre-release perks and, depending on how much you pledge, they range from just the download through signed copies and t-shirts right up to your very own song written for you if you pledge £500.
You don't have to wait very long at all for the next band's new release because Scowlin Owl have a CD coming out called “These Strange Companions” on the 23rd November 2013. Scowlin Owl are a band of harmonies and stories, but no twee, sugary hearts and flowers for these ladies. They are Nina Lovelace, Yvonne Borden, Sally Gainsbury and Karina Zakri and they have a astonishing ability to expand the versatility of the human voice as well as giving me in a lesson on the gymnastics of the violin. Their songs are about their favourite places, films and inspirational stories. While you're waiting for the physical copy to be formally released, you can actually listen to the tracks from the new E.P. By going to You'll find there a track about the inspirational frontierswoman, Alice Tubbs who ran a poker house in the 1800s, a track about the fight between the grey and the red squirrels, a song about a Japanese John Wayne and this track, “Sugawara and the Sunflower” which tells the story of a Japanese man Mr. Sugawara who managed to sail his boat Sunflower over the 2011 tsuami and survive. There is an absolutely delightful photo of Mr. S. and his wife holding the CD of the song of his story that Scowlin Owl sent him. His grin is infectious, his story inspirational and the song is genuinely beautiful and moving. Like many of Scowlin Owls songs it starts with a remarkable soft sound. The track rises gently and invites you to come through until the end washes over you with the lap of a wave. Scowlin Owl and “Sugawara and The Sunflower”

For news, events gigs and releases follow me on twitter @josiejoshow and go and like my Facebook page for extra content including videos and photos. For links to all the bands I've played on the JosieJo Show visit

Saturday, 26 October 2013

JosieJo's great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 5

I'm JosieJo and each JosieJo Show contains two tracks from two very different artists. There s no thread or genre linking the two tracks.This means that the upside of this is that you may just, unexpectedly, find your new favourite band even if you hated the other track in the show. So let's try you on this one.
The Empty Can are from Dudley, in the middle of the UK; what is known as The Black Country. This makes me very happy because I can describe this band as BLACK COUNTRY BLUES. With slide guitar and a lived in vocal you might expect soulful stories of lost love and hobo travels, but James Stevens and Steven Henly have much more to say than that. There's social comment and witty observations in every tune. Couple this with the almost orchestral violin of Rachel Slater brilliantly mixed in and the music takes on a life of its own. The Empty Can is on the Sticky Mamma record label and if you find them on Facebook you can download the whole of the first EP for free. This is British Blues with no buyer remorse. As a lover of narrative how could I resist a track called “The Greatest Story Ever Told”? It starts with that plucked, deep-south sound, but this is no glorious tribute to the great American Way. It is an uncomfortable comment on that element of society that just wants you to “keep your head down” and “tow the line”. Just a warning though, if social criticism and rude words are not your thing this track contains them both. The track has a wonderful classical swell that kicks butt and ends with a spine bending, wobbly reverb. I can't discern a chorus as such, only a thumping, repeated pattern that drives home the theme of the track. Life is too short and if received wisdom isn't questioned we'll run out of time. Listen carefully to The Empty can and “The Greatest Story Ever Told”

I found the last band because they supported another band we played on Round At Milligan's called Flat Stanley Got a New Hideout (you can hear archived versions of Round At Milligan's by going to and click “Listen To The Show” I also get myself to live gigs and this delivers amazing and unexpected experiences.This is how I found Paul Hawkins and Thee Awkward Silences. There is a wonderful lady called Kate Arnold who is in several bands including Fear of The Forest and Lime Quartet and she opens up her living room to invited guests and gives you tea, cake and a live band. I kid you not. The cake is great and the atmosphere is intimate, intense and quite remarkable. Her last “Living Room Special” featured Paul Hawkins and Thee Awkward Silences. That's “Thee” as in “I vow to thee my country”. You see Paul constantly plays with words in a way that had me laughing out loud which, when the audience is small enough to fit into a front room in South London, kinda gets noticed by the band and everyone else there. It's a very extraordinary experience seeing live music like this. Paul Hawkins has played both Latitude and Swn Festivals aswell as other large venues and the band includes Death In Vegas guitarist, Ian Button. All the tunes involve unconventional stories of unconventional characters. It's black comedy about a bunch of oddballs that I can strangely relate to. It's “outsider pop” which, I suppose, is, in itself, a dichotomy. Paul makes the weird accessible and the odd oddly personal. He takes the sort of strange story you hear on the next table in a pub and puts it to music.
This track “The Precautionary Principle” is best heard on headphones or really good, wide spaced speakers because it arrives from the left and leaves boring through your skull. It's about a sort of scientist geek that you imagine wants to blow up the world just to see what colour it would be as it burned or what sound it would make as all life was extinguished. However, he doesn't because the precautionary principle stops him. The subtext of the song is “I really want to ask that girl out in a funny crazy way, but I won't just in case my heart gets broken”. Break your heart anyway with Paul Hawkins and Thee Awkward Silences “Precautionary Principle”

Monday, 14 October 2013

JosieJo’s Great Big pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 4

Hello. Now you know how important music is.  I don’t need to tell you that.  Music can get into your mind, it can serve as a memory cue, it can be a companion in the harshest of times and scientists have found that it can even release feel good chemicals to change your whole mood.  I’ve heard it described as many things and one of those is that “Music is how emotions sound”.  Now I don’t know how you’re feeling right now, but for this show, as for all my shows, I’ve got two very different tracks from two very different bands.  One band is drums, guitars, bass and an in-yer-face vocal.  The other band…isn’t.
One of the wonderful side effects of loving independent music and consequentially producing this show for you is that I’ve met and befriended some of the most genuinely lovely people in my life.  Among these I can count The Big I Am.  The Big I Am are Peter MacPartland and Colin Heany a duo disregarding the rush and noise of modern life to bring you beautiful sounds that gladden the heart.  I can’t lay claim to the description “acoustic lovelyness” in reference to The Big I Am, but I honestly can’t think of a better one.  With a tenor Ukulele and a Cuatro guitar (which is how I think you pronounce it and is definitely, probably, so I’m told a guitar of the lute family)…with those instruments you can imagine a folky sound, but this Liverpool duo are much more than that.  Not only are they genuinely delightful, calm and charming, together they create an engaging tonal performance.  I’ve seen them play live on a tiny stage in a North London pub, but their uplifting, swelling sound is so much more than the sum of its parts. You can close your eyes and imagine them filling a festival stage, a stadium and even the sky above you.
With this in mind I’m going to play you the title track from their beautiful album “Collecting Skies”, but if you want to hear more of their tracks there are some available for free download on their reverbnation page and if you seek them out on Facebook you can hear over 20 tracks.  If you would like to hear more acoustic versions of their songs try the Rash Records release of the album “Better Days”, but back to the track for this show “Collecting Skies” from the album “Collecting Skies” is a really excellent way to start with The Big I Am.  It has a soulful feel that makes you want to find a hill, stand on the very top of it, to fill your lungs with a big sky, your heart with love and your life with more…well stillness really.  It is subtle and gentle whilst coaxing you to a higher plane.  Lift yourself up with the confidence, pride and gorgeous music of The Big I Am and “Collecting Skies”
“Collecting Skies” by The Big I Am.  I love that track.  It makes me want to never miss a minute of this life, well apart from sleeping; sleeping is good and the really yucky icky bits of life, I could miss those too.  As a little aside there is an exciting project from The Big I Am’s record label Rash Records which involves Peter and others called “The Musician’s Musician”.  Like minded musicians have come together to create a compilation of covers, remixes and collaborations of each others work.  This album includes a performance by The Penguin Party of the funny sunny song “You’re 24, Stop Talking About Disney, Girl” by Ian Thistlethwaite.  Go to the Rash Records homepage and get a copy for a voluntary donation to the charity Epillepsy Action.  Choose what you pay in other words.  Psst be generous it’s for a good cause.

Now wake up.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve learnt that you can love life and everyone in it whilst, at the same time, realising just how objectionable and unpleasant people can be.  The world is a great place, but it can be a bit trying and well…”GRRR….” making.  If music is really how emotions sound then this next band is probably how “Grr” sounds.  This is The St. Pierre Snake Invasion from Bristol, England and they are punk garage alternative rock to shake your bones and shout your general annoyance along to. Live, by all accounts, they are frenzied, committed and crowd surfing.  Their sound is guitars, bass, drums and growling vocals that makes absolutely no excuses for itself.  TSPSI fans (and if you are a true fan that’s what you call them) simply can’t get enough of them live.  If you want to get get up close and personal and help pass the lead singer, Damien, over the crowd then get down the front row with your dancing boots on.  They play the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds on 19th October 2013.
They have a track, “Encore, Encore” out on the Red Side of the 12 inch vinyl Best of Bristol and that track can also be found on their own EP “Everyone is Entitled To My Opinion”, but it is the vocal gymnastics and musical definition of “Call the Coroner” that I want to introduce in this show.  It’s a track about the death of conversation and the instruments very cleverly mirror the “my go- your go” of a conversation at the start of the track.  As the song progresses and the music and the lyrics get increasingly cynical of social interaction, the gaps get shorter so that the other person can’t get in.  The death of the conversation becomes inevitable as the emotion rises and the band gets stronger.  The St. Pierre Snake Invasion and “Call the Coroner”
Boom… and if you’d like to join the TSPSI dedicated fan base, or you’d just like to get your happy little hands on downloads and merchandise then go to
For other links including how get those compilations I talked about The Musician’s Musican and Best of Bristol then go to my facebook page JosieJo Show and you’ll also find extra content including my photos of The Big I Am and others.  For new, events, gigs and releases follow me on twitter @JosieJoShow.  I also blog this show on tumblr and blogger and visit my website where you can contact me with suggestions for future shows and find links to the bands and the show that all started this Round At Milligan’s.  I am and always will be, JosieJo and you are and I suspect always will be lovely.  Thank you for listening.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

by Funke and the Two Tone Baby.

What you get with Funke and the Two Tone Baby is percussion, harmonicas, guitar and a growling, “lived in” vocal that can surprise you with its sudden softness.
“Battles” doesn’t start with the title track. It starts with a dramatic, swelling sound that tickles your attention, then grabs it. “Bella’s Kiss” really stamps Funke’s mark on you as a good opening track should. It makes no excuses. Once your attention is deservedly gained the second track “Mountains” takes you high and firmly establishes the tone of the album with its twanging guitar, relentless beats and elemental themes. It takes you to the top of the mountain and dives you deep as the album swings into the intriguing second track “The Woman Who Stood at the Edge of the Sea”. Its double bass sound and tale of waiting and yearning reminds me of travelling troubadours and of wandering, rail-road riding hobo types peddling tunes just because they can. If you are going to tell tales then what better subject matter than pirates, ghosts or witches? Well a song about a “Pirate Ghost Witch” of course. It’s spooky and slightly scary and rides you into the storm at its conclusion preparing you very nicely for the big hitting title track “Battles” which follows it. It’s clearly intended to be the“main event” of the album and its echoing, calling guitars harmonise with the intention of the words. The anger and determination of the lyrics are all part of the battle as is the way the voice and instruments all parry and support each other, rushing in and withdrawing back ending in a sustaining echo.
After all that pounding emotion comes “I’ll Love You”. This is like the sunny picnic in the middle of a challenging day and has become my “mixtape”, sharing track of the week. With the beautiful sounds of Dulcima Showan duetting on vocals and Laura Callaghan on flute it’s a song about technical sentimentalism; the description of emotions in pragmatic terms and the very best use of the word “luminosity” in a song that I have ever heard. The cute jiggyness of this track makes the next one quite startling. “Now You See Me” has a gentle start giving the harshness of the lyric and its subject a subtle shock. This is an instrumentally sparse ballad with a beatbox backbeat. It’s the dichotomy of this track that defines it. The growling vocal blends into a soft plea and right back again. It’s hard and easy, love and hate, fragmented and flowing, a haunting harmonica and a pounding kick drum. How does Funke and The Two Tone baby follow that? With a kick to the stomach that is “Cannonball” that’s how. As we approach the end of the album I get the sense that we are swishing the ice round the whiskey glass as we deal with the introspective “The Morning After”; a tale of loss and friendship. Then we pour ourselves just one more shot and stare into the comforting flames of the fire as the last chords of “The Morning After” mix into the final track “Winter’s Return”. This track is not a pessimistic, self indulgent roll into greyness, but a celebration of winter. It delivers an uplifting, fresh perspective on endings. It’s the longest track on the album, but somehow as it delightfully fades I find myself leaning forward to pour yet another glass, hit repeat and play the whole thing again. “Battles” is an album that could just get you through Winter’s return and bring you back round to Spring.
JosieJo’s great Big Pair of Tips
The JoiseJo Show 3

Greetings  to you.  I’m glad you’re here. I’m JosieJo bringing you two tracks from two very different bands. Listen up indeed, because I’ll also give you links to extra content and both these bands offer interesting special products and free downloads if you know where to look.  It’s The JosieJo Show – let’s go.
Let me tell you about Nottingham, England.  It is the home town of the record label I’m Not From London which is a label that is an absolute goldmine of great music and we have played quite a bit of it on Round At Milligan’s over the last few years including Captain Dangerous and Practical Lovers.  By following the activity of the label on Twitter I found We Show Up On RadaR also from Nottingham.  We Show Up on RadaR, headed up by Andrew Wright is a pretty pared down sound; magical and sort of sparkly with slightly disturbing subject matter.  It’s a bit like feeling a black shadow move just out of vision on a bright sunny day.  Andrew even apologizes for one of his tracks, “Out For Fallow”, being “a bit of a misery”, however considering that this track is the B-side of a pink vinyl single, the warning is probably justified.  If pink isn’t your colour the 11 track LP is available on blue vinyl and has the curious title “Sadness Defeated” which, whilst being a hopeful phrase somehow always manages to sound unhappy.  I’ve never seen the band live, but, like Golden Fable who are featured on Show 2, they are due to play 2013’s Swn festival in Cardiff.  Listening to We Show Up on RadaR and encountering their videos I soon realised that it is the half sensed enchantment that is the source of the band’s power.  I personally have a secret obsession with puppets and their place in animation and our psyche and this band share that sense of wonder.  There is a spellbinding video for their track “Hands Up if You’re Lost” which is a charming tableau of the puppet band set in the forest; a dark forest that is slightly sinister.
The track “I’ll be the Ghost” that I’m going to play also has that macabre side.  It’s cute and twinkly, speaking of love, comfort and of taking care of the one he loves, jumping over fences and putting coasters under hot drinks and yet…and yet.. it is also voyeuristic and slightly controlling.  Not surprisingly, given its title, it’s a haunting track; fascinating and alarming like the wasp in its story.  Enjoy the baleful and the beautiful as you catch a glimpse from the corner of your understanding .
We Show Up On RadaR and “I’ll be the Ghost”

That was We Show Up On RadaR and “I’ll be the Ghost” and if you are interested in blue and pink vinyl, those amazing videos or even digital downloads head to and if you click the Last FM button on the homepage you can access 6 tracks for free download.
Now then, my next  band is Magic Brothers.  What you need to know about this North London band is that, well they are brothers and that they are Daniel Woodgate who is Woody, the drummer from Madness and his delightful, big souled and also very talented brother Nicky Woodgate.  Now Dave Milligan has been playing Magic Brothers tracks for a little bit now as well as Nicky’s solo projects on his show Round At Milligan’s.  You can dig around in archived version of that show by going to and click the link for listen to the show.  I just adore Nicky’s album Magic Carpets, but the Magic Brothers’s album The Magic line (do you see a thread here) came out this week and they are very proud of it.  I heard it first when  it was played on the jukebox in The Dublin Castle pub in Camden, North London as the boys signed autographs and chatted to fans.  The event had a lovely atmosphere to it and Woody and Nick were charming so given that my first listen of the whole album was whilst I was surrounded by Madness fans in fezs and pith helmets, it wasn’t a huge stretch to hear the soft ska influences of Madness.  Indeed Nick has written many tracks for Madness several of which appear on the last album, having said that you can also discern the sweetness of Nick’s solo sound.  It is seasoned with witty touches such as the thunderclap and rainstorm that opens the track “Sunshine”.  I’ve already got my signed CD, but if you go to the Magic brothers website you can buy the CD (pay a little more and you get it signed) and t-shirts.  You can even order one of only 25 limited edition Collector’s packs which include: a signed CD, digital download, a T-shirt, Woody’s signed drumsticks and Nick’s signed guitar pick, a copy of the album lyrics and a Thank You telephone call from Woody and Nick.

The songs are stories set around their childhood and their adult lives and include many references to north London and that Kentish Town/Camden area around the Magic Line of the title of the album.  The title track “The Magic Line” is the last, not the first track and this is the one I’ve chosen to play you.  Unusual for the album it has no lyrics as such and uses sound that feels like it was found as well as the symphony of the London underground its engines, sirens, voices and the rhythm of the train track laid under, over and through delicate drums, electronic sounds and a guitar that seems to push the air through the tunnel like the train does.  It’s not the most typical track on the album, but with its orchestration and swimmingly floating movement it takes you on its own lilting journey.  This is Magic Brothers and “The Magic Line”

That was magic brothers and “The Magic Line” and you can get free downloads of tracks that didn’t quite fit on the album by going to their Facebook page and click free music.
For bonus content from me including photos of that day in The Dublin Castle, videos I’ve filmed and links to other great bands go visit and like my Facebook page under josiejoshow.  For news, events gigs and releases follow me on twitter @josiejoshow and for my blogs including reviews of full albums follow me on Blogger or Tumblr and links to all that and band s I’ve featured on the show can be found on my website  Follow me on Mixcloud and you’ll never miss a show. Tell your friends and between us we can get the good stuff heard.  It’s been a blast to have your company.  Thank You for Listening.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Against The Grain - "Out of the Rain"

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips

JosieJo's Great Big Pair of Tips
The JosieJo Show 3

Greetings to the third JosieJo Show. Each show I bring you two great tracks from two different bands or musicians that you may, or may not have come across before. I can't promise that you'll like everything I play, but you may just find your new favourite band. The JosieJo Show – let's give it a go.

My first track is by the stunning duo Golden Fable. They are Tim McIver and Rebecca Palin. I heard their beautiful choral backgrounds, folk textures and electronic creations at the End Of The Road Festival 2013 and they recently supported Charlotte Church on her recent British tour. They have also played The Union Chapel in London, a venue which used to be a church and, I image, lends itself beautifully to the range and echo of this band. True to their Welsh roots they are due to play the SWN festival in Cardiff (swn is the welsh word for sound. It should have a little roof over the “w”, but I can't find it on the keyboard. Everyday's a school day on the JosieJo Show). Their delicate sound has been captured in a recording studio in North Wales on their debut album “Star Map” by David Wrench. They really are a delightful band. Hauntingly captivating live and just jolly, jolly nice. Plus, because they come from North Wales I have a huge soft spot for them.
You can buy the album via their webpage and if you buy the deluxe CD you are not only buying a low carbon product, you are also getting detailed drawings that have a folk/fable sense about them. You get a poster that is hand stitched, an origami case printed with vegetable based inks, a twelve page booklet and the CD is signed and numbered. These a rea limited edition though so don't hang around.
They are, at the moment, working on a new album, but this track, “Always Golden” is from that first album “Star Map” and it has a beautiful video on You Tube which showcases Rebecca's incredible eyelashes and stunning ear-pieces as well as the pulsating off-beats and layers of sound. It flows in and out of monochrome to colour a little like the music itself. This track reminds me of a life enhancing rainstorm and it ends with big chords of sound like raindrops on soft eyelashes. Enrich your life with Golden Fable and “Always Golden”.

Now ICHI. An artist from Japan who plays with sound in a way you can't even imagine, even if you have seen him live. I've been lucky enough to catch him live twice now, both times at festivals and he is always unexpected and always endearing. He communicates articulately through his music and quite frankly charms the bees from the flowers. One of the genuinely nicest things about seeing Ichi live is the way that children respond to his music. They really get engaged with his performance watching and listening closely as he moves from instrument to instrument. You really have to see what he does as well as hear it, which is why I'm going to point you to a YouTube video, but you can see more of his work by going to his website or follow him on twitter @ICHIcreator...and he really is a creator. I'll try to describe some of the ways he creates music, but frankly I probably won't even get close. He blows up a balloon through a megaphone, bounces a ping-pong ball on a bat and launches it into the audience, he uses his wedding ring as a percussion instrument on the steel muffler of a trumpet, he brushes his teeth to produce a tune, he has a harp that is also a wind instrument, a bass that also doubles up as stilts and he puts water in a steel drum and rolls a ball around under a microphone to create a very weird sound. He also concludes his shows with a wonderful finale involving his hat, but that's all I'm going to say.
This track is called “Wakka” (Ring) and is about the letter “P” on the Japanese alphabet. You don't have to be fluent in Japanese to enjoy the pure, playful pleasure of the alliteration of this track (do you see what I did there?) When I saw it live, his wife, the wonderful Rachel Dadd joined him on stage and harmonised with “Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper” whilst they played a clapping game. There's no point on talking any more about this track you have to hear it and see it. Watch it right to the end to see the lengths he goes to for his music. Ichi and “Wakka”(Ring)
For extra content including a doodle I did of Ichi and Rachel as well as photos and videos check out my facebook page
For news, events, gigs and releases follow me on twitter @josiejoshow
Easy links to all this and links to the bands can be found on my website
Cheers and thanks for reading.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Thursday, 26 September 2013

The JosieJo Show Number 1

The JosieJo Show 1
 JosieJo’s Great Big Pair of Tips
   Greetings. This is The JosieJo Show and I’m JosieJo here to bring you two great tips every show a track each from two different artists/bands/musicians. I’ve been going to gigs, digging around on the internet and generally making a nuisance of myself to find the good stuff out there. You probably won’t like all that I play, but hopefully you’ll discover your new favourite band right here. It’s the JosieJo Show – let’s give it a go. 

    First up I simply have to play you The Penguin Party. They are the reason I started this show. If you want to hear the story of that then go to my website, but let me tell you about The Penguin Party. Formed by Dave Milligan it’s a rocky five piece from Essex, England and they’re pure power pop. The songs are stories; stories of local characters and the landscape and scrapes they encounter in everyday life. From commuting into London to the challenges of being a transvestite roofer, single parent. It may not be life exactly as you know it, but it is life nonetheless. Headed up Dave Milligan and co-produced by Gareth David hall on bass, this band is tight. You also get Jan Black and the most amazing hair you’ll ever see on a keyboard player, Johnny Holburn kicking in large in a nifty hat on drums and Dave’s Uber talented and effortlessly cool son, Jake Milligan, on guitar. Live at The Railway Hotel recently (21st September 2013) they played two enthusiastic sets that were…well just really, really good fun. 
    The track I’ve chosen is “Mike-Leigh-On-Sea” is from their second album “Sex Furniture Warehouse and Other Stories” which comes packaged in a book packed with lyrics and photos (there’s even a picture of my tattoo for those of you with a curious disposition). The album is full of the tales that I talked of earlier, but this track is a real anthem of the area; that Canvey Island, Essex delta that the likes of Dr. Feelgood introduced us to. This is a song about getting drunk (many of them on the album are and if you want to read my full review go to my Tumblr or Blogger sites under JosieJo Show). It catalogues that roller coaster journey you take as you are lifted up to hero status and come crashing back down into the day after. It’s got a hooky tune and chorus with pace changes that keep you disoriented and subtle word play over clever rifts. Enjoy a night out with The Penguin Party and “Mike-Leigh-On-Sea”
 It’s the second track on the album which you can stream for free 

    That was The Penguin Party and “Mike-Leigh-On-Sea” and you can see photos, videos and buy CDs and merchandise via their webpage 

     So from powerpop, to punk. Get used to this, I’m not known for my specialist genres. The JosieJo Show is trans-genre. Standby for The Charly Syndrome from Burnley, U.K. A bleak yet starkly beautiful town in northern England, Burnley has an impressive treasure chest of brilliant independent music. Stick with the show and I’ll introduce you to some of it. I came across The Charly Syndrome because I went to school with the drummer, Frankie Fontaine, or Barry from Burnley as we called him, (nicknames weren’t very inventive at my school). Frankie Fontaine is a much better name for him. Flamboyant and charismatic, Frankie creates what can only be described as BIG DRUMS. Some may say that they are not quite physically big enough due to the fact that he has a tendency to end up naked by the end of the gig. Although when I saw them play live in Nelson his wife made him keep his pants on (that’s underwear for our American readers) due to the fact that his daughter was in the audience. Naked drummers are just part of the show that this intensely physical band put on. Couple that entertainment with a sound that crawls into your soul through punk beats raw guitar, and the deep vocals of Brocky the singer who often migrates into the audience leaving you no-where to hide, you can’t ignore The Charly Syndrome. At full tilt they can fill the room and spill out of the door.
     This track “E.G.O” is pure, in-yer-face comment that you can’t turn away from. These guys aren’t dum. Their lyrics may seem a little bit cross, but they are a comment on our self -absorption and society’s struggle against the personal fable that people often use to relinquish responsibility. Having said that, don’t worry too much about the message because it’s the energy of this track that really counts. I find it just lets me be ok with not always liking other people the whole time and that, in itself, keeps me from punching them. So enjoy the social service that is The Charly Syndrome and “E.G.O” 

I can’t find this as a free stream so you’ll just have to listen to the audio version of JosieJo’s Great Big Pair of Tips by listening to show one of “The JosieJo Show”

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Review "Sex Furniture Warehouse and Other Stories" - The Penguin Party

For all of you who bemoan the demise of cover notes and those fabulous pull out bits of Album sleeves that we used to pour over in our youth, welcome to "Sex furniture Warehouse and other Stories" by the essex based band The Penguin Party. The album comes packaged in its own book which includes the lyrics and photographs that provide a witty nod to the quirky-pop, quirky-clever, and sometimes quirkily-dark album within.
You won't find a band surprised that hearts get broken or that teenage boys like cars. What you will find is crafted power-pop sneakily wrapped round life stories from a bunch of guys who lived and, sort of, learnt. If you've got a middle-aged hangover again (and who hasn't) try "It's Not Big". If you've fallen in love with your wife all over again after bringing up kids together try "Song For My Old Lady" and if you've ever thought your Dad did a great job just being your dad or you are a transvestite roofer, then try "Roofer's Daughter"

This is just a great English band telling great stories that will catch in your head make you go "yeah I know what you mean"
This album probably won't change the world or even your life, but it'll probably make you laugh and make you feel just a bit better about not being a teenage boy with a broken heart who likes cars.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

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On a sunny day, there is often an unexpected, deep joy involved in stumbling across good reggae gold. Nucleus Roots is such a sound. It's a pure reggae roots sound from Manchester, England fronted by Paul Lush. This sound comes straight from Partial Records reggae label run by my mate Liam McGurk who is passionate about everything reggae. I think his inner life must just feel like one big ball of yellow sunshine. The label is free from any whizzy graphics or aggressive marketing. It's sense of identity is parred down and committed to vinyl. You don't have to be a “reggae vinyl head” to love this label (the music is available on other formats), but it helps. There is almost a sense of White label-ness about the way it let's the music sell itself.
This track from Nucleus Roots is called “Deep Roots” and features Don Hartley. You can't get much groovier than this. It's recently been released on 10 inch vinyl that includes four mixes of the track. FOUR mixes. You can choose a different one for each day of the weekend and believe me a listen or two of this track will have you taking four day weekends as standard. There is nothing over flouncy or bone shaking about this track. It is was it is and it is Nucleus roots featuring Don Hartley and “Deep Roots”

Now here's a thing. Sound people, that is people that work in the artistic and technical field of sound, are often in bands. Uber aware of the effect of music on so many levels of our pyschological well being, soundies often take to instruments like clouds take to rain (don't analyse that simile too closely, just go with it). This band, Foley Artist, are no exception. You probably know that foley artists are the people that dub on those effective and often sub-concious sounds in films by stamping on gravel, hooting horns and generally having fun with sound. The band Foley Artist definitely has that sense of of the excitement and trickery of sound. They are based in the South of England and are three guys that take you on a journey.
This track, “Gravity”, is a six minute landscape of rock. I have no idea what genre or style you would call this so I'm just going to let you spend your time listening to the track, rather than reading my vague ramblings about it. It's spiky and quirky then flowing and harmonious. You'll come to your own conclusions about it I'm sure, but try not to just dip on and out of it and give the whole project a listen from start to end if you can.. Let Foley Artist take you on a trip with “Gravity”