heard on the wire

Hymn on the 45


They cut it fine, but it’s never too late to release a great record. And especially when it’s a record that, head and shoulders above the competition, claims the Heard on the Wire award for single of the year.

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Cherry pie


Joyous, like apples dipped in toffee, this is 2016’s perfect pop tune.

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A star in my own right


Words are often unnecessary.

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How it feels


I love the tags on Bandcamp. If ever anything further muddied the cloudy waters of genre, it is they.

Take, for instance, the Kickstand Band, who describe themselves as “rock garage garage pop indie pop indie rock power pop powerpop surf surf pop Detroit”.

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I’m a 50-year-old man


I’m a fifty year old man
And I like it
I’m a fifty year old man
What’re you gonna do about it?

It’s my birthday and I’ll listen to the Fall if I want to.

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Top sound


As a rule of thumb, it’s generally wise to avoid bands that court publicity. Those are the bands for whom style is a substitute for substance, bands who co-ordinate their outfits, grow carefully trimmed beards and pose in stairwells.

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If I Were the President


Between the devil and the deep blue sea.

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Lost in a love story


It’s a simple idea, perfectly executed.

Take three songs you like and re-record them. If you’re New York trio Pep, that means giving them sixties-tinged pop twist that sounds at the same time retro and oh-so-up-to-date.

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Fast rough factory trade


I used to hate this; now I love it.

Featuring Ellen Foley on vocals, this was the second single from Sandinista, the Clash’s fourth LP.

Actor and singer Foley was at the time in a relationship with the Clash’s Mick Jones. The breakdown of that relationship was the subject of the band’s biggest hit, Should I Stay or Should I Go.

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Savoir faire


Love ’em or loathe ’em, there’s no doubt that Coldplay have cast an immense shadow ever since the radio-friendly, Radiohead-light sound of Yellow launched middle-aged angst music into the mainstream.

A generation of white male rockers has tweaked the Chris Martin blueprint to great commercial effect and at times critical acclaim. Perhaps the greatest of these is Elbow, who eclipsed their mentors by claiming the Mercury Music Prize in 2008. Coldplay have been nominated three times for the award that almost serves as a litmus test for “grown-up” music.

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heard on the wire is a blog about music old and new, but mostly new. It occasionally uses 21st century file formats that may not be supported by 20th century web browsers. For best results use Safari or Chrome. And If you like the music posted here, please think of the effort and expense that has gone into making it and consider buying a copy of your own.


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All the music on this site is posted to encourage listeners to enjoy it and then rush out and buy as many songs by the artist as they possibly can. Any artist, record label boss, publisher or other rightsholder who doesn't want their works featured here only needs to get in touch and the offending file(s) will be removed at the earliest opportunity.