Tuesday, 6 October 2009

A long weekend in Detroit [3]

This is my final post of a much-delayed report from DEMF.
If your appetite has been whetted, I'd like to recommend a couple of others - pipecock at ISM and kenny hanlon at bodytonic - I know, for example, they had a very different time to me at the Mills thing. And they're top lads with great blogs. Check 'em out. Meanwhile, read on...

Monday (Memorial Day)

The last day was always going to be tricky. I knew that I had to drag my arse off site by 7pm, so I could realistically be in the car and crossing the border by about 8ish, to have any chance of getting home at a reasonable hour to be functioning as a responsible parent for the next day and rest of the week (we'll just not even pretend to think work was even an issue - but a 2 year old is). And there's always next year, and the fact that Detroit's literally a drive down the road from ours these days. But still.

I knew I was going to miss Los Hermanos live - which, if the live UR showcase (Galaxy 2 Galaxy as a full band, etc.) the last time I was here would be anything to go by, would be a real kick in the teeth. Particularly in the light of how relativly underwhelming the day before had been on site.

At last, I finally get to see Flying Lotus after missing him several times in the UK. Holy. Fucking. Shit. Completely mental but totally kicking it. Finished with something that was almost twisted deep house then went down to half-step on a real Alden Tyrell "Phaze Me" tip. Oooof. No idea if that's a big tune of his or if he was just going for it on the spot, but a Movement Moment if there ever was one. Sun's been shining, great turnout, stages all close together so you can go and catch someone even out of curiosity - strolled past Ellen Allien as she was dropping LFO and cutting up Wee Pappa Girl Rappers somewhere in it all. Mental. Dennis Ferrer was pretty good, Carl Craig didn't seem to be doing anything ground-breaking, but maybe next year as musical director he'll get some of the duff aspects of the festival sorted (particularly the Detroit stage piss-poor excuse for a sound system - and the slightly patchy programming).

But it's not just about the actual festival itself. Memorial Day weekend in Detroit is about so much more. Catching up with old mates. Meeting a shitload of great new folk. Record shopping. Bloody great off-festival parties. Rooftop afterparties in Greektown with the sun blazing down as you realise just exactly where you are, looking around,and feeling there's no place like this on earth. And knowing you'll be back. Who's up for a meetup next year?

Monday, 5 October 2009

A long weekend in Detroit [2]

First, apologies for the delay between blog posts - real life got in the way too much this summer. Typed this up with a slapped wrist, promise to do better in future!

An early start was well rewarded with a lovely chilled set from Liz Copeland on the Beatport stage. Can't remember who else I heard for most of the rest of the day, as reconnecting with old mates (and new) from far and wide: Iowa, NYC, Rotterdam, Pittsburgh, Dublin, Atlanta - yup, people travel for this. And it really adds to the good-natured, sociable vibe that makes this special.

An early night was had, cos I wanted to make it along to the Omar S party the next day, which was basically one of the best things of my whole weekend in Detroit - lovely sociable vibe, top sound, 70+ degrees sunshine, and some great tunes from Dave Powers (including some top tunes I later discovered were his own - which will definitely be getting airing on Purple Radio) before Omar S himself. I'd heard a lot about his guy, and wasn't disappointed. House music can mean anything these days, and most of it ain't good - so it was a pleasure to hear someone who keeps the faith, and lived up to the buzz I'd picked up from many different quarters.

Innervisions live were pretty damn good, MK was very disappointing (dire sound on the Detroit stage), Wighnomy Brothers, on the other hand, were amazing - . Missed Octave One and Osunlade, but you can't get to see everything at these things, and apart from the terrible setup and unlistenable sound at the Detroit stage, it was all good, as they say over here.

Ended up that night at a Jeff Mills afterparty which was ultimately disappointing: waiting >30 mins so they could double the admission after midnight. So was fucking cold, $20 lighter, then stepped in to a not-that-busy venue with it banging out in two rooms. Great. It was *incredibly* fucking loud (even with earplugs), and hardly any real variation on an overall theme of bangbangbangfuckingbang. NFM, as they say on a couple of fora. Room 2 was equally banging (to about 10 people), and then by the time Mills came on, the room was packed and pretty uncomfortable to say the least. By which time, I was shattered, despondant, and wishing I'd gone to something else. Overall, a totally overpriced and utterly underwhelming event. Oh well. You live and learn (but I wish I'd fucking well gone to one of the house-oriented parties that was also on - went with the flow, and ended up at something that simply wasn't for me at all. You live and learn..

But fuck it. I think that was an official afterparty, and the promoters seem to be showing themselves as cash grab merchants this year much more so than previous years, from what I could gather (boat party was $50 - same price as the whole weekend ticket - WTF?! - yet sold out within days. Hmm). That said, it merely strengthens the case for checking out the many other parties in town, which have historically been the ones to check out - such as the sublime Omar S the day before.

Another epic win of the day was at the 'party store' ('offie' to our UK readers, 'beer store' to the Canucks). Michigan microbrew heaven, as discovered the first day I got here - so I stocked up as they were going to be closed on Monday (public holiday), and wanted to take some back to Canadia with me. Scored a couple of mixed cases, including: Third Coast Beer; Bell's Pale Ale; Arcadia IPA; and Arcadia Nut Brown Ale.

There's a lot to be said for the exceptionally fine ales you can get in this part of the world. And, indeed, some damn good places to eat in Detroit. Slows is incredible. This was another highlight of the Saturday, and one of my erudite and discerning buddies proclaimed they were some of the best ribs he's ever had. And he's not one to say such things lightly - far from it - so it would be churlish to disagree. Festivals in cities rule for this exact reason :)

Sunday, 19 July 2009

We've Moved!

After many months, the Purple Radio main site redesign has been compeleted (and *how* - big thanks to James and Laura for their sterling work.

After a few months of testing the water with this music blogging malarkey, the posts and comments from this site are now integrated with the remainder of our content, includng the forums, shoutboxes, photos and all manner of shiny, shiny toys, so come over and join us - the water's fine!

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Two hours of Michael Jackson magic

Saturday Soul MJ special

Broadcast live 27th June '09

The Jackson 5 ~ Never Can Say Goodbye
The Jacksons ~ Heartbreak Hotel
The Jacksons ~ Blues Away
Michael Jackson ~ Girlfriend
Michael Jackson ~ Baby, Be Mine
Michael Jackson ~ The Way You Make Me Feel
The Jacksons ~ Blame It On The Boogie
The Jacksons ~ Shake Your Body Down To The Ground
Michael Jackson ~ Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough
Michael Jackson ~ PYT (12" mix)
The Jacksons ~ Skywriter
The Jacksons ~ Walk Right Now
The Jacksons ~ Can You Feel It
Michael Jackson ~ Off The Wall
Michael Jackson ~ Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'
Michael Jackson ~ Rock With You
Michael Jackson ~ Do You Remember The Time
Michael Jackson ~ You Rock My World
Michael Jackson ~ Man In The Mirror
The Jackson 5 ~ I'll Be There
The Jackson 5 ~ Got To Be There
The Jackson 5 ~ Ain't No Sunshine
The Jacksons ~ Dreamer
Michael Jackson & Paul McCartney ~ The Girl Is Mine
The Jackson 5 ~ I Want You Back (Z Trip mix)
The Jackson 5 ~ It's Great To Be Here
Michael Jackson ~ Beat It
The Jackson 5 ~ Mirrors of My Mind
Michael Jackson ~ Thriller
Michael Jackson ~ Human Nature

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Down Under back over here.

Picked up a stack of tracks from an Aussie mate of mine the other day - we share similar tastes in music, so I send him links to British hip-hop and he returns the favour.

This time around, the recommendations were thoroughly sunny, so I thought I'd share a few of the best with you.

First up are Bliss N Eso. consisting MC Bliss, MC Esoterik and DJ Izm, they seemed to have been around on the Australian scene for a good few years now, so I feel I've been more than a bit behind the cutting edge on this one, this is cracking little summer evening number, from their album Flying Colours

The other end of the scale is Seth Sentry, who hasn't even been signed yet, but seems to be getting himself around a cult following around Melbourne. This guy has fantastic flow, and definitely falls under the 'relaxed, non-aggro' hip-hop that I really like. 'The Waitress Song' is due to be included on his yet-to-be-released EP 'The Waiter Minutes Promo'.

Last up is Shad, who isn't Australian, but Canadian. This track, 'The Old Prince Lives At Home', from the album of the same name, definitely ticks my 'phat horn line' box, and shows his skills with the acapella at the end - this bloke deserves to be better known over here.

Purple Radio presents: Big Chill Sundae

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Mellow, Mellow

We've started a new mix project thingy, which is basically an hour of non-scary tuneage to soothe your frazzled noggin after what has probably been yet another monster weekend. It runs midday 'til 1 fortnightly Sundays and is open to all. So if you fancy putting a mix together of suitably calming, laidback stuff for broadcast- please get in touch.

Here's the opening gambit from me.

Andre 3000 ~ Prototype
The Beatles ~ Sun King
Cantoma ~ Maja (dub)
Isley Brothers ~ For The Love Of You
Marvin Gaye ~ After The Dance (instrumental)
Sub Sub ~ Past
Crazy Penis ~ You've Lost That Feeling
Lemon Jelly ~ Soft
Marlena Shaw ~ Loving You Was Like A Party
The Futures ~ Ain't Got Time Fa Nothing
Lowrell ~ Mellow, Mellow
Leroy Hutson ~ All Because Of You



Thursday, 28 May 2009

A long weekend in Detroit [1]

So I was updating the thread I started on the purple radio forum with a few impressions from the weekend just gone, but thought it might be good to try and flesh things out somewhat for posterity.


Arrived at the motel around 10:30pm. Being able to drive to Detroit after coming home from work still feels surreal (in a good way), but certainly wasn't complaining. About 3.5 hours' drive, plenty of time to listen to some recent downloads (Four Tet vs Burial stands out in particular, and the Surgeon RA podcast made a lot of sense en route). No fecking service stations were fully open on the 403/401 heading west, though - sort it out!

My room-mate, as discussed, has already left for the evening (he was off to a private barbeque/gig round someone's house) but my car license plate attracted comments from my neighbours - first time someone's GOT it, but hardly surprising under the circumstances. Turns out not only do these good folk know my room-mate, but we have other mates in common, *and* two of us are on DJHistory! You know when you sometimes feel "yup, I'm definitely in the right place"... hadn't been out of the car even an hour, and I knew this weekend was gonna be special :)

So I ended up tagging along with them to a party - early night, pah! - which my room-mate also happened to come along to. Can't really recall much, apart from Karizma was playing (and was great - so were the others who played before), struck by what a great crowd it was (very mixed, no attitude/lairiness, everyone up for it, and seemingly fuelled on little more than booze and ciggies - there's no smoking ban in Michigan). But a great first night in Motor City, and the festival hadn't even started!

Friday, 8 May 2009

Nostalgia: from there to here

I recently got my ears around House of House's Rushing to Paradise and it piqued my interest. Those Northern rave style pianos that I loved, coupled with a classic house vocal, strung out into a 15 minute epic, made me delve back into my memories of when i first started going out raving. A word now that almost creates a weird feeling: isnt that what people used to do before the government got appalled and tried to outlaw repetitive beats?

I remember a time when pianos were not just allowed, but de rigeur. Of big sweaty blokes who'd normally be beating each other up, grinning inanely at each other under a cloud of dry ice and lasers. Of clubs scattered across the northwest with people going to service stations afterwards to keep the party going.

I might be a mid-30's dad who doesnt go out as much as he used to, but when someone sent me this clip a bit ago, the hairs on the back of my neck stood on end and I remembered when it all started for me. The clip is from Quadrant Park in Liverpool roundabout the start of the 1990's and the tune is N Joi's unbeatable Anthem. Rave on.

House of House - Rushing to Paradise listen here

Friday, 24 April 2009


Perusing through the new releases on Junodownload earlier today and in so doing started a morning journey to destination lost hope, my speakers indifferently spewed forth shit tunes after shit tunes then came average tune after average tune then more shit ones . A break in the audio clouds came when I happened upon an artist called Charles Trees. Charles' big bummed off kilter beats and cut up stuttery atmospheres started pulling me down from a retail no shop. There's something sunny, warm, nostalgic and forward looking about Charles' music that made me put my hand into my digital wallet and fork out some not so hard earned cash. I then went on to listen to other artists from Charles' home label Moodgadget. I have to thank Charles for both making his music and introducing me to Moodgadget.

Brooklyn and Los Angeles based Jakub Alexander and Adam E hunt set Moodgadget up in 2004 originally only distributing through BitTorrent and have since then racked up a nice sized roster of artists with a really diverse and high quality output of content .

Take a look and listen here Moodgadget@junodownloads

More info on Moodgadget artists here.

Friday, 17 April 2009

Thursday, 16 April 2009


I'm having a listening to The Beatles phase at the moment. I'd recommend one to anyone.

I put this mix together in Ableton. It ain't just them Beatles lads though. It's a ton of stuff. Some familiar to most some not so. So if you ever wanted to hear 'You Never Give Me Your Money' blended with some 4hero this could be a right nice day for you.


Mix done by Stu Eleventhirtyeight live in Ableton live April 2009 contains loops,sections and sounds from the following artists.
THE BEATLES-come together, cut up and programmed beats, DOCTOR QUANDARY-the forest
THE BEATLES you never give me your money,4hero-Our own place.Lewis Taylor-lucky-various programmed bits.DJ HELTA SKELTA- midnight madness instrumental
GHOST-42 instrumental
ALGORHYTHMS- kiss of death,THE BEATLES-Lucy in the sky with diamonds,SHAWN LEE cut up drums
SUPER SMOKY SOUL AND GUILTY SIMPSON-Knockout kings instrumental,THE CLONIUS-Valediction instrumental,programmed bass synth modulation
DOCTOR QUANDARY-Masks,MINNIE RIPPERTON-here we go,WORDSMITH-The Cro Debate instrumental,AIR-Alone in Tokyo,BiLL WITHERS-Lovely day,GROVER WASHINGTON JR-Inner city Blues,PORTISHEAD-Sour times,THE DAP KINGS-Tell me,Programmed dub drum Loop
CHANNEL TWO-Universal King,SHAWN LEE cut up loops and various programmed bits
GEORGE DUKE-Smooth,TONY ALLEN drum loop,cut up rhodes chords
THE BEATLES-Tomorrow Never knows, within without you,4HERO drums cutup,programmed beats and synths, rhodes sample outro.


Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Norman Connors ~ Once I've Been There

Started my latest show with this beauty, so thought I'd share with you (but feel free to splash out on the £200 12" if you like)

Norman Connors ~ Once I've Been There

Monday, 6 April 2009

4/4 - 60:07

Here's an hour (and seven seconds!) mix that I did for Jez's excellent Throbbing Couch show (7 'til 9 fortnightly Saturday evenings, you know where)

I very rarely play more than three 'house' records in a row these days (despite being a proper househeads when it was once acceptable for men to wear leather strides without owning a motorbike), so it was a real pleasure to string some 4/4 stuff together for a change.

Cheers to Jez for hosting the mix - don't forget 7-9 Saturday's fortnightly! - and I hope you enjoy the tunes.


Williams ~ Bubble Jam
Mudd ~ 54B
Holy Ghost ~ Hold On (Instrumental mix)
Grizzle Hands ~ Its Disco Dub
Sugardaddy ~ Stripped To The Bone
City Reverb ~ City Of Lights (Larry Fives Dub)
Maxim Samos ~ Alpha Storm (AN-2 mix)
Amplified Orchestra ~ Moon Voyage
Mutant Disco ~ Musica
Faze Action ~ Space Disco
Underworld ~ Dirty Epic (Jori Hukonen mix)
Kariya ~ Let Me Love You Tonight
Povar Pavel Khaleev ~ Wait For Me
Deep Space Orchestra ~ City Streets

4/4 - 60:07

Friday, 3 April 2009

Double Exposure ~ My Love Is Free

Top notch dancefloor action from the mighty Salsoul label, which already has me questioning my 'favourite disco record' claim below, haha.

Ripped at a fat-as-you-like 320 kbps; fill your boots.



Double Exposure ~ My Love Is Free

Rufus & Chaka Khan ~ Live In Me

Taken from the excellent Masterjam album (which you can find on Discogs, etc. for no more than a fiver), Live In Me is essential listening for anyone who's ever been moved by what we call 'disco'.

Produced by the living legend that is Quincy Jones and written by Heatwave's Rod Temperton - who, along with QJ, was responsibly for some of the high points of Jacko's Off The Wall and Thriller albums, amongst a ton of other great records, some of which will feature on this blog, no doubt - its definitely my favourite Chaka Khan song and maybe even my favourite disco track too. (although ask me the same question again tomorrow and I'm sure you'll get a different answer, haha)

Anyway, download, enjoy and wonder how you ever made it this far without this record in your life.



Beat Mining with the Vinyl Hoover

Great feature on the history of crate digging this week on Radio 4 (of all places)

Can't remember the last time I bothered my arse to go to a boot sale/charity shop, etc., as the pickings have become slimmer and slimmer over the years (and what with t'interweb whatever you want you can pretty much have) - but this is a great listen all the same so dive in.



Beat Mining with the Vinyl Hoover

Friday, 27 March 2009

Purple Radio presents: Funkatarium

There’s a new direction music-wise for our monthly knees up at the Prince in Brixton.

Underground disco, vintage house, upfront re-edit action, electro-funk & deep soul will be the Saturday night soundtrack, spun by Purple Radio DJs and friends.

This month we're stoked to have birthday boy Bob (King of the Delta Blues) and Tim and Max from the most excellent Unlimited Soundsystem manning the Funkatarium decks.

The party starts at 10 and wraps up around 3; so simply give us a shout via here for a place on the guestlist (£3 on the door otherwise)

See you on the dancefloor.


Purple Radio

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Just Say Mo' To Drugs


Here's a mix I did especially for our blog (aren't I nice, eh).

Broadcast live on 25th March (err, last night), its an hour or so of chugging slo-mo disco and a few other bits and pieces that seem to fit the bill. It's probably not up to the standard of what our man above can throw down, but I hope you enjoy it all the same.




Luther Ringo ~ Minnie's Dope
6th Borough Project ~ Do It To The Max
Mark E ~ Déjà Vu
Morgan Geist ~ Nocebo
Sylvia Love ~ Extraterrestrial Love (Jaz edit)
Tangoterje ~ Give Me Your Love
Black Cock ~ Blue Love
Creative Use ~ Night Mover
Holy Ghost ~ Walk On Air (Sun & Moon mix)
Trus' Me ~ W.A.R.
Flying Lotus ~ Tea Leaf Dancers
Beatconductor ~ Hangin' Around

Monday, 23 March 2009



A week ago for my show I did a live dub re edit session for 40 minutes or so of four Led Zeppelin songs . I thought maybe you would like to have one to listen to while smashing ants with heavy masonry tools.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009


On my Purple radio show two weeks ago I featured Boston and Hip Hop's best kept secret, The Algorhythms and their beatsmith Doctor Quandary. At time of writing all algorhythms music is free to download. Which is unbelievably kind considering the quality. I particularly like how most of their tunes stick to the punk rock format of around 3 minutes.So get clicking on links, downloading and listening and write them a thank you note.




Check this mix of fine fine female led african music by DJ Debbie done for my show yesterday.
Debbie will be playing at an event this week in London alongside some of the incredible artists you can hear on the mix.Details below. Tracklist here at our facebook group.
March 20th 2009

Inn on the Green,
3-5 Thorpe Close,
London W10 5XL
Stair lift, covered smoking balcony, food, women friendly welcoming venue, taxis easily secured
Bus 7, 15, 23,52,295, Ladbroke Grove tube

8pm - late £5.00

Wom@tt presents Mama Africa: African Women in Concert

A host of wonderful UK based women celebrate International Women’s Month African women in music Style backed by Ray Carless and the inimitable Club Skaaville Lively Up crew:

An all too rare opportunity to enjoy world class UK based African female artists in full flow individually and together. A sonorous and joyful evening ramjammed with excellent music with Kora virtuoso MAYA SONA JOBARTEH (Gambia/UK) who enjoys a distinguished heritage - Toumani Diabate's cousin, VANYA REID & DELPHINA JAMES – Pan Supremos of Engine Room Collective , PAULINA ODURO – Mama Africa incarnate (Ghana), BONOLO (Humble) – 3 piece South African acapella and MEGUMI MESAKU (Ska Cubano)– Saxophonist extraordinaire + a feisty African mash up from DJ TJOMGZ, DJ Debbie and other guest female DJs.

MAYA SONA JOBARTEH celebrates her debut album Afro Acoustic Soul with its bittersweet beautifully crafted tales of live and love; THE ENGINE ROOM COLLECTIVE women play awesome energetic inspiring tenor pans, PAULINA ODURO (AKA Princess Adwoa) has the finest voice honed travelling worldwide with her own and other's bands, whilst BONOLO boast RUBY SERAME an original member of Shikisha and vocal harmonies to send shivers down the spine. Japanese MEGUMI MESAKU has to be seen to be believed – dubbed the world’s finest Ska saxophonist, she brings new verve and style to the African stage - baritone sax played behind your back anyone?

All alongside Ray Carless' (Formerly Jazz Warriors/Incognito) impossibly tight Club Skaaville band who Lively Up the African vibes in all styles. The women perform their own material and then everything explodes into a glorious jam. You'll find it hard to stay in your seats.

Wom @ tt in association with Limpopo Club, Club Skaaville and Outerglobe

For more info: womaatt@googlemail.com

This Is The One

There's been loads of conjecture and nonsense in the press about Stone Roses reforming to tour again. I doubt and hope it won't happen.

It's nothing more than a PR spin to promote the reissue of 'The Stone Roses'. Which is twenty years old. Twenty. Years. Old.

That means it was twenty years ago this May that I played cricket at some school in Yorkshire and then drove my granny's Fiesta back to the International Two to see the Manchester show, six days after the album's original release. That means that the grey T-shirt I still sometimes wear, and wore that night, is Twenty Years Old.

It also means that Second Coming is fifteen years old. And that it's 15 years since I bought it on cassette in a record shop in Red Eye Records in Sydney.

It's widely agreed that the Second Coming never really arrived. Even Ian Brown recently said as much, stating that whilst it had the "rock", it had lost the "roll" of the first record. It was largely, apart from a few songs, John Squire's work and the guitars are all over it. And it's a shame, because when all the band got involved in the writing, then the groove came back.

Listen to this studio instrumental that went on to be "Daybreak". If they ever do reform, then let's hope it's like this.

Stone Roses - JB Groove (aka Daybreak)

Thursday, 12 March 2009

LuvDup - purple hearts all round!

For those of you of a certain age, the above image might bring back some *very* happy memories. Adrian and Mark (together with 'Junior LuvDups' Alan and Mike - the latter now known as the 'Balearic' one) were responsible for many a great night out, and some very happy memories for me. From the intimate dos at The Venue (just down the road from t'Hac and Canal Bar - that'll certainly date me now!) to hearing some memorable sets at Sat@Home (Victor Simonelli in back room at Home being one of my all-time favourites, honourable mention to Kenny Dope playing hip-hop in the bar to a crowd of grinning northern heads) and Thursday nights at the Paradise Factory - where Moonboots (or was it McCready?) played 'How Soon Is Now' at 1am one night upstairs in the Crows Nest, and my antipathy for The Smiths gave way.

So it's with some delight that I discovered, through the magic of facecrack, that Adrian LuvDup set up a group called The Eclectic Circus - to share some favourites that he never got booked to play - although the Piñata boys have snapped him up for a sesh at the Salutation later this month, which sounds great on so many levels (I can almost taste the Guinness...), and I could definitely see him going down a storm at the Big Chill or Festinho (hint, hint).

Anyway, Adrian has very kindly said we can broadcast his mixes on Purple Radio, and we're delighted to share the love and spread the vibe. This is music from the heart, for music-loving heads (just like us).

Tuesday, 3 March 2009


Stu from eleventhirtyeight writes:

"Get yourself some of this stunning techy mix from the UK's heartland. Birmingham's NONO.

NONO are Jason Moore and Aaron Howells, and for the past couple of years have been ripping club rooms and minds apart with their deep and solid sonic footprint.

They're not as big as they should so get your head round this beauty of blending and spread the word. "

1-Dapayk and Padberg-Khes_Mo's Ferry
2-Sweet n Candy-Pancakes_Einmaleins Musik
3-Tadeo-Fractal (Fusiphorm Remix)_Cray1 Labworks
5-Miss Kittin-Kitten Is High (JoJo De Freq's Beauty Is Terror Remix)_Nobody's Bizzness
6-Boys Noize-The Battery (Album Version)_BoysNoize Recordings
7-Falko Brocksieper-Off The Rack_Sub Static
8-Popof-My Toyz (Nono's Double Drop Re-Edit)_Skryptom Records
9-Ruede Hagelstein_Der Kammblaser_Lebensfreude Records
10-The Cheapers-Fog_Upon.You Records
11-Format B-Mondo Time (Nono's 'Noise Nicker' Re-Edit)_Stil Vor Talent
12-Afternoon Coffee Boys-My Drunk Foot_Clink
13-Heinrichs and Hirtenfellner-I Don't Like a Fault_Highgrade Records
14-Oliver Huntemann-DRP_Confused Recordings
16-Extrawelt-Titelheld_Cocoon Recordings
17-Swayzak-Smile and Receive (Apparat Remix)_!K7



Maybe I'm Amazed

Me and my mate Joe have a long running argument. Jagger vs McCartney. There's no allowing for past form. We have to judge them on their current standing. He's of the opinion that Mick Jagger is still cool, that The Stones still have it and that McCartney is an aubergine-haired national embarrassment.

He's wrong of course. Sir Mick is a drooling, loose-limbed goon, still trotting out increasingly parodic versions of his old hits, whereas Sir Paul still seems to get a buzz out of making new music and keeping his (recently chewed off) ear to the ground.

The proof is in recent their recent output. The godawful Shine A Light documentary, and the occasionally brilliant Fireman record.

And McCartney still surprises. I just discovered Twin Freaks, a collaboration with Freelance Hellraiser. Some marvellous mixes and mash-ups of his solo and Wings output - in particular a brilliant brilliant version of Maybe I'm Amazed. Read all about it.

Twin Freaks - Maybe I'm Amazed.

Monday, 16 February 2009


I missed the release of Jeb Loy Nichol's latest long player, 'Parish Bar', but I'm making up for lost time. You should too.

He's one of those artists who just keep cropping up. It started with Country Got Soul, put out by Jeb & Ross Allen on Casual Records, their label. And then, in a field in a summer, I went to watch the Country Got Soul Revue which was unfortunately cancelled so we got an hour of Jeb and his guitar. Then someone told me he was in Underwolves too. A covermount CD included his incredible bouncy folky rootsy dubby cover of Johnny Cash's 'Worried Man'.

And then he DJed at my friends Calum & Anna's wedding, becuase he lives near them in mid-Wales. As you'd least expect from someone born in Wyoming, brought up on jazz, country and punk in Texas and there for the birth of hip-hop in New York.

If this leaves you scratching your head as to what the music sounds like, then have a listen to the free MP3 he has posted on his site. The title is a clue, "Countrymusicdisco", but if you really wanted to define his unique sound, you'd a lot more letters than that.

Jeb Loy Nichols - Countrymusicdisco

Buy the new album - Parish Bar

Monday, 9 February 2009

My dad's bigger than your dad

You've got to love this cheeky cover of 'Straight To Hell' from Lily Allen.

The way I see it, she's seen MIA smash it worldwide with a brilliant lift from The Clash and some very cool percussive sound design. And, provocatively, decided to point out that it's not far short of a cover version.

Oh, and roped in her family friends. Which, when your old man was best pals with Joe Strummer can go a long way. Listen out for Mick Jones on backing vocals.

Lily Allen - Straight To Hell

Make sure you buy the Warchild record.

Purple Radio presents: The Big Chill Sundae

Live again, this time in London, at the spiritual home of the station

Featuring the talents of Ketsbaia, Remote, Andy Devine, and Jez Wells, this will be the lads decending on the Big Chill Bar to spin a smattering of tunes for people to drink and relax to.

Come down and get involved!

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Purple Radio LIVE!

For one night only (at least we play there again in March anyway ...)

Saturday sees the Purple Radio DJs spinning tunes at The Bank in Bristol, so if you'd listened to what we do over the 'web, come and see us in the flesh!

To get you in the mood, here's my set from the Purple Radio night we did last month.

Come down and say hello.

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Another Day, Another Eulogy ...

I've just found out that one of my favourite English blues/folk musicians, John Martyn has died today, after a long battle with alcoholism and drug addiction.

Throughout his career, John Martyn blurred the lines between blues, folk, and dub, experimenting with taking the traditional folk sound and adding elecronic effects in the 70's. he mixed with some of the most influential musicians of the era, including Jimi Hendrix, Lee 'Scratch' Perry, David Gilmour and Eric Clapton.

He hit the big-time with his 1973 album, 'Solid Air', written in response to the death of his friend, Nick Drake. He followed this up with a number of live album, before the breakup of his marriage inspired John to write 'Grace and Danger'. The material was so close to the bone that Island Records initially refused to release it. John described himself as 'going off a cliff' after it's release, and started on a downward spiral of drugs and drink.

I first heard John Martyn's work on a compilation, where he covered Portishead's 'Glory Box' so well that I thought it was the original. Soon afterwards I picked up on of the Cafe del Mar compilations that had Talvin Singh's remix of 'Sunshine's Better', which is equally fantastic. His 'Solid Air' album was such a favourite of mine and my wifes that we played 'May You Never' during the signing of the register at our wedding.

John Martyn / May You Never

John Martyn / Glory Box

John Martyn / Sunshine's Better (Talvin Singh Remix)

I'm sad he's gone. RIP John Martyn

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Rest In Peace, Charles Cooper

Heartbreaking news, but a lovely tribute from ElevenThirtyEight.

"Well today my musical soul received the truly devastating news that Charles Cooper one half of the excellent production team Telefon Tel Aviv died.

At the time of writing this, the rumour mill is starting to hint at Charles taking his own life, but along with this, the electronic music community on the web on many many forums is expressing a deep sadness and shock at this loss.

Whatever the circumstances that lie at the cause of his death, what I will remember him for is that Charles and his musical partner Joshua Eustis have made some of the most beautiful and technically outstanding recordings I have heard this decade. You may not have heard of their music but once you take a listen you will hear their influence resonating through many a top producers output over recent years.

Please go buy the new album, turn your lights off turn, the sound up and peek into the wonderful sonic world of Charles Cooper and Joshua Eustis.

Bless yer soul Charles."

Playing the 'anonymous' game?

Following up a recent recommendation, I picked up a 'Walking Backwards' by the slightly mysterious Clutchy Hopkins a couple of weeks ago. If you're a fan of old school, soul based instrumental hip-hop a la MF DOOM then this is definitely worth a look.

If you believe the blurb on his website, Clutchy is the son of a Motown engineer, who went to Japan to be Zen Monk, before going to India to study Yoga. As if this wasn't enough he moved to Nigeria to learn the drums, before being persuaded into becoming a gun runner during their civil war, then went back to the States to release his music, which he's being doing under different identities since the 70's before retiring to live in an underground cave in the desert. The album was bought as a set of reels found at a yard sale in 1992.

Obviously, this information could only be revealed by his friend, a Mohave Indian Shaman, making the entire far-fetched tale even more unlikely.

The Internet rumour mill has been working itself into overdrive in an attempt to work out who he really is, with suggestions as to his real identity running from Cut Chemist, via the Beastie Boys, to Money Mark.

All I know is that the album is brilliant, full of dry snare cracks, organic woodwind and shimmering organ lines, perfect for late night listening.

Clutchy Hopkins / Percy's on the One

Clutchy Hopkins on Myspace

I'd bag a copy now before it turns out to be DJ Shadow in disguise, and copies start turning up on eBay for £200 a time ...

Friday, 23 January 2009

It's not all about beats

If you are like me, then you occasionally get obsessed with a song.

I've been playing Playing Dead for three months and I still can't get enough. There's something magical about it - the percussion is deep, the strings are mournful, the words are hard to work out but ultimately optimistic, he's got a bit of Bill Callahan about him and she sounds like she's fifty years too late. It'd be easy to lump this in with Bon Iver and the rest of them, but there's something extra special about it.

Who knows who Breathe Owl Breathe are, but they look great and I hope they come over here soon.

Breathe Owl Breathe - Playing Dead

Buy Breathe Owl Breathe at eMusic

"I got you, didn't I." Yep, you did.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Happy Birthday Ray!

Thanks to eleventhirtyeight for this twisted birthday tribute to Ray Dolby who was born three calendar days ago, in 1933.

"Ray Dolby not dobly. Ray invented the Dolby noise reduction system and also co-invented video recording on tapes. It says this of the Dolby system on Rays wikipedia entry.

'Dolby noise reduction works by increasing the volume of high-frequency sounds during recording and correspondingly reducing them during playback. This reduction in high-frequency volume reduces the audible level of tape hiss.'

This is probably true but to me Dolby was the switch on my dad's old cassette deck. If turned to the on position it took away hiss, simulated high frequency hearing range deafness and added a smattering of 'this sounds a little bit shitter than it did without it' to anything played on it. Thanks Ray.

Ray also co-invented video tape recording and in doing so probably hoped to and actually did co-invent the home porn film collection. Ray is also said to be worth $2.9 billion. He married a lady who has now the misfortune to be called Dagmar Dolby. He also has two children, B Dolby and C Dolby. Ray was inducted into the consumer electronics hall of fame in 2004. What an event that must have been...one other inductee that night was Woo Paik. There's no wiki on Woo Paik. I'd hazard a small wager that Woo was a stooge hired that night by Ray to dissuade anyone from thinking Dagmar Dolby had the funniest name at the buffet.

Ray and Dagmar have contributed 16 million dollars to a stem cell research centre in San Francisco. Happy Birthday Ray. "

Cheers Stu.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Ode to Joy?

As today sees the world wave goodbye to what has to be the least popular commander-in-chief in living memory, I thought I'd put up a track that has been written to welcome his replacement.

Barack Obama seems to have had the support from a lot of artists since the early days of his run for the Presidency of the USA, with musicians of all colours, creeds and musical styles all doing their bit to support the 'Great White Hope' of the more liberal side of the American public.

This track is from a recently discovered artist for me, as much as I love Hip-Hop, I tend to steer clear of a lot of the American pseudo-gangster style, but Brother Ali's album, The Undisputed Truth, has some stand out tracks on it. In the course of finding out more about his work, I came across this:

Brother Ali - Mr. President (You're The Man)

Brother Ali on Myspace

I might well play this tonight on my show from 10-12 GMT, in honour of the first Black President of the USA - hope you listen in. If you do, get involved on the Purple Radio Forum

Sunday, 18 January 2009

Blue Monday

Apparently tomorrow is Blue Monday, according to the BBC (have a search on Google for "blue monday" and "19th January 2009"). I like the idea of it being reclaimed by the International Optimists Society though.

Expect a version of New Order's Blue Monday on tomorrow night's Rob on the Radio, but in the meantime, here's a link to a gabba flavoured version, which was part of the 1995 release remixes.

New Order - Blue Monday (Plutone Remix).

New Order at Amazon

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Isn't this brilliant?

A couple of months back, I was raving on the Purple Radio forum about the time that the Pet Shop Boys took over Radio 1, replacing Simon Bates for a week. And instead of Our Tune, they invited DJs to come and do a 20 minute mix. This was when house music was just crossing into the real mainstream. When there was no such thing as the superstar DJ. A time when big records caused real excitement. Because there was no internet. If you didn’t have the white label or a tape that you’d bought from Camden Market or Affleck’s or recorded from Stu Allen or Kiss (when it was a pirate.) then you couldn't hear the tune. Until the next time it was played in a club.

On the Friday, they got Sasha in. I was working in a summer job at Baxter, Woodhouse & Taylor in Poynton. Proper factory. Rows of people making expensive, almost papier mache elements for aeroplane air-conditioning units. Unskilled, and boring as fuck. We used so much glue that ‘Health & Safety’ recommended that you drink a pint of full-fat milk to line your stomach before the day started. We always had Radio 1 on. Predictably, the old guard were up in arms this week. “PET Shop Boys? You do know why they are called the PET SHOP Boys, don’t you?”.

We taped it, of course. We played it to death. It soundtracked driving to work, to clubs, and camping in lay-bys in Edale.

I lost all my tapes.

And then, this week, this bloke got in touch. He’d been trawling the internet for a tracklisting. And found my post. And then got in touch with a copy.

Get on the download. Because when Sasha does that clever business with two copies of K-Klass, it might just give you a feeling you’ve not had for a bit.

Sasha Radio 1 Mix, 16th August 1991

1. Horse - Careful (original) 2. The Meaning feat DJ Mellow - Showing You The Feeling 3. Urban Soul - Alright 4. Angels & Images - Heaven on earth (inst piano) 5. Dupree - Brass Disk (Accapella) 6. Congress - 40 Miles better groove 7. Raze - Bass Power (Accapella) 8. Leftfield - Not Forgotten 9. Whitney Houston - I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Accapella) 10. Moby - Go 11. K Klass - Rhythm Is a Mystery (2 copies)

Might as well start with a contentious one.

We meant it when we said we support new music. The last thing we want to do is upset anyone - especially new artists struggling to make a crust.

So, Brian, if you are reading and want us to take it down then give us a call.

Until then, have a bit of this. More genius from the Belgian plane-spotters. You've got to have a fair amount of self-belief to take on a song like this but they've nailed it. I played this when I was standing in for Blackie on Friday night - a great excuse for me to do something aimed at the feet instead of a hungover head. This started that couple of hours perfectly.

Well, I enjoyed it anyway.

Aeroplane - Only God

Aeroplane's MySpace