The Ed chooses his favourite tracks to go into the evolving TT Playlist
Dom Roman – @DomRoman
“I do love my football (like you hadn’t noticed) but I also love my music and Sam Swann’s TT playlist has been ticking along nicely! I’ve decided it’s my turn to choose some tracks; tracks that I’ve played on repeat over the years; tracks that take me back to certain times and places; tracks that still sound perfect in 2020. It’s a fairly eclectic mix, with a heavy tilt towards guitar music but something for everyone on a football or non-footballing day. Anyway enough rambling, let’s do this (chronologically)”.
1 – The Beatles – Something (1969)
No I wasn’t alive to enjoy this originally! But the mid-nineties Brit Pop movement and especially Oasis were heavily influenced by the Beatles and that’s when I first connected with the fab four’s music. My favourite album is Abbey Road and ‘Something’ is an absolutely perfect love song by George Harrison, penned for his girlfriend Pattie Boyd. The guitar solo mid-way through is wondrous and so are the lyrics, with George proving that John and Paul weren’t the only ones with genius. A beaut of a record.
2 – Stevie Wonder – Knocks me off my feet (1976)
“I don’t want to bore you with my trouble. But there’s somethin ’bout your love. That makes me weak and knocks me off my feet”. Stevie Wonder was in his pomp during the 70s’ and this 1976 love song from album Songs in the Key of Life is just fantastic. I properly discovered Stevie’s music about 10 years ago and his Definitive Collection double album is one I go back to again and again. Not as well know as Superstitition, Sir Duke etc but still very much a classic I’d say.
3 – Primal Scream – Movin’ On Up (1991)
This could have been written about Gary Johnson’s Torquay United! Well we’ve reached the 90s’…Primal Scream are not a band I’ve ever loved, but I heard this on a Q compilation CD years ago and instantly loved the positivity of the song. From the breezy guitars at the start to the superb backing vocals that give a gospel feel to the tune, this is a proper uplifting 90s’ classic that will have you jigging…promise! Bloody great.
4 – Columbia – Oasis (1994)
Okay I hear what you’re saying “There’s better songs on Definitely Maybe than ‘Columbia’, don’t be silly”. Well that may well be true but this track no.5 just drew me back like no other on that amazing album. Slow build-up, heavy bass, guitar frenzy from Noel, Liam snarling and then harmony on the chorus…that’ll do for me. Oasis had everything for a few years and we all wanted to have some of their swagger and look, with little success. Their influence and tunes still echo now, and the latest guitar bands pale into insignificance in comparison.
5 – Sitting Up Straight – Supergrass (1995)
Having just finished school and with a long summer holiday ahead, Supergrass arrived on the scene at just the right time and I was captivated by their music. The three lads were only teenagers and completely raw and un-inhibited with their song writing, making every release a corker. The single ‘Alright’ was a belter but I always found more joy in an album track back then (I had more time to explore albums..). ‘Sitting Up Straight’ doesn’t hang around and it doesn’t need to – no classic for sure but still a joy after all these years from a band bang on form.
6 – The Universal – Blur (1995)
Blur had to be in here, and I could have picked Parklife..but that’s too predictable. Their 1995 album ‘The Great Escape’ didn’t grab the plaudits and was over-shadowed by some Oasis release (What’s the..something or other!). But it was still a tremendous album for me, full of melody and full of genius from Damon Albarn. The Universal is just one example of a great band flexing their muscles and trying different things. Slow-starting but eventually building to a crescendo with an orchestral arrangement. A top band in a top era of music (for me anyway).
7 – Faithless – Insomnia (1995)
I am surprised to look back at this and see it’s 1995, as it was basically played in clubs for the rest of the decade (and more). What a f##king tune this is and I’m not sure Faithless ever got close to matching it again. We always went mental when the DJ chucked this on the decks and rightly so. In recent times my two kids have given me insomnia and the phrase “I can’t get no sleep” just about summed up large parts of 2019 in the Roman household! Still a banger, whether you go long or radio edit version (go long).
8 – Further Away – Manic Street Preachers (1996)
The Manics had been around for a few years but I didn’t notice them until 1996 and the post-Richey Edwards ‘Everything Must Go’ album. Design for Life is a massive song, but skip a little further and you find this track, which is the only love song that the band has ever written (beginning to think I’m an old romantic..). James Dean Bradfield is an under-rated singer and guitarist to boot; we saw them play all their singles a few years back and he was an absolute machine. A band full of character and another track that hasn’t aged a day.
9 – Bitter Sweet Symphony – The Verve (1997)
“Well it’s a Bitter Sweet Symphony, that’s li-ife”. Yes I am still in the 90s’ and I make no apologies for that. The Verve had been low-key and firmly in the shadow of Oasis, but the dynamite 1997 album Urban Hymns changed all that and track no.1 Bitter Sweet Symphony is simply an epic record. I became obsessed with the band around that time and Richard Ashcroft’s attitude and swagger was right on the money. Tremendous video as well. A band I never caught live as they imploded soon after and Ashcroft’s solo music never hit the same heights…which was a shame.
10 – Red Alert – Basement Jaxx (1999)
Saturday nights were Torquay clubbing nights and ‘Red Alert’ was always welcome on the dancefloor. I will never profess to being into that kind of music, but this was a golden period for it’s genre. I could have picked “Music Sounds Better With You” from Stardust or a few others, but this 4:19 of magic gets the nod. The vocals from Blu James (yes I looked that up) are spot-on and convey the hedonistic (and fun) times from the late-nineties. Plug it in and enjoy.
11 – The Bluetones – Never Going Nowhere (2003)
The Bluetones were my first proper gig at Exeter Great Hall in the mid-nineties and they instantly became my favourite band. They had melodies galore and an underdog feel that appealed to me then, and still appeals to me now, having seen them at least 10 times since! ‘Never Going Nowhere’ was released after their initial success had evaporated but is definitely one of their best tunes, unsurprisingly discussing heartache and break-up which makes up a large percentage of songwriter Mark Morriss’s songs. A bittersweet yet lovely rhythmic song. I could have chosen numerous Tones tracks and just discussed their excellence for the entire blog..but that would have just been indulgent!
12 – Beyoncé – Crazy in Love (2003)
This song and artist is at the other end of the spectrum from the Bluetones, well I did say eclectic! Beyoncé arrived with this huge pop banger in 2003 and quickly began to take over the world. The hook on the song is instant and it demands that you shuffle to it. The video also caught my attention, and made you wonder what she saw in less than beautiful looking Jay Z – but that’s a whole other discussion! Just a superb pop song to get you in the right mood, end of.
13 – The Streets – Not Addicted (2004)
In 2004 The Streets second album ‘A Grand Don’t Come for Free’ was continually on my playlist and I could have just about chosen any track from the 11. The album sound-tracked the Euro 2004 tournament as four of us travelled to Portugal and it also sound-tracked the England defeat (Dry Your Eyes Mate…). Track 3 Not Addicted is a cracking 3:40, with a heavy thumping beat and a discussion of sports gambling addiction in a style only Mr Mike Skinner could pull off. Genius from the brummie.
14 – Kasabian – Fire (2009)
Oasis have never been replaced since the brothers went their separate ways, but I guess Kasabian have come closest. I’m not actually a big fan of the band (can take em or leave em), but ‘Fire’ hits the spot. It has the tribal feel of a lot of Kasabian’s early stuff and builds up and up into a stomping tune. A riotous effort that had us pogoing on the dancefloor, even if by then it was at weddings rather than Venue nightclub! Celebratory stuff and just the ticket to get you ready for a game of Torquay United football.
15 – Plan B – Stay Too Long (2010)
Plan B’s album ‘The Defamation of Strickland Banks’ was a constant in our lives between 2010-11 (maybe longer). Every original sounding track is a winner from the guy with the unbelievably high falsetto. Stay Too Long is one of the most up-tempo tracks on the album and mixes Ben Drew’s falsetto with rapping – this guy has serious skills! It’s a banger to turn up loud in the car and head-bang accordingly (keep your eyes on the road mind!), love it.
16 – Adele – Don’t You Remember (2011)
Adele songs just ooze class and ‘Don’t You Remember’ off the album 21 is a simply beautiful track, which sounds almost country-inspired, but is stamped completely by this amazing voice. A tale of love woes wonderfully produced and released by an artist who’ll be remembered for a long, long time I’m sure. Mood music for a disappointing defeat!
17 – Years & Years – King (2015)
By 2015 I had become a father and time began to get much more limited for exploring music, with Wheels on the Bus and Twinkle Twinkle far more likely on the Roman jukebox than a pop song! One accessible record that did stand out was Years & Years – Communion. The album is full of melody and dance tunes, with not a bad track amongst them, heck even my noise sensitive wife enjoys this one. ‘King’ is a stand-out track, with a groove and catchy chorus good enough to play at any time. Pop-tastic.
18 – Sam Fender – Saturday (2019)
Nice to have something current and that song is from the best thing to come out of Newcastle since Kyle Cameron! Not many artists caught my attention last year, but as 2019 reached it’s climax I did manage to listen to more new music and that included Sam Fender’s debut album Hypersonic Missiles. The album is consistently quality but I just love a football connection and the lyric “And if Saturday doesn’t come soon, I’ve gonna lose my mind” reminds me of the anticipation of the weekend and a game at Plainmoor. Bonnie lad.