heard on the wire

We come from the same place

Synonyms for moribund: at death’s door, at the end of the rope, declining, done for, doomed, expiring, fading, fated, going, mortal, mortally ill, on one’s deathbed, on one’s last leg, one foot in the grave, passing, perishing.

Some of those may be a little extreme, but that’s basically what’s become of this blog of late.

Read the rest of this entry »

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.

Read the rest of this entry »

I’m really talking to myself


Every band should have a toilet song, that one moment in the live set when you say to yourself, “I don’t really like this one”, and toddle off to the loo.

After several pints, what else can you do?

Until recently this was my pattern. Sink some decent pints before the gig, a few bad ones inside then wait, increasingly uncomfortably for the toilet song, a track from the disappointing last LP perhaps.

Read the rest of this entry »

Shoot ’em in the back now

Harry Styles Ramones t-shirt

I harbour too many irrational prejudices. Really, why do vegetarians, tattoos, comfortable shoes, unpolished shoes, men in hoodies, comic books (as opposed to comics), ill-fitting jeans and DSLRs in the hands of amateurs annoy me so much?

The presence of any of them neither inconveniences me nor otherwise diminishes the quality of my life, but still…

I’m learning to control my pique and hide my distaste, but it’s not easy. And it’s most difficult when I see a Ramones t-shirt.

Read the rest of this entry »

This one time, at Bandcamp…


I love Bandcamp, the music store with full-length previews, where the artist sets the price—or lets the listener set it—and the listener chooses the format. Whether they opt for crappy old MP3 or state-of-the-art lossless AACs, the price is the same. It’s exactly how a digital music store should work and its cut, a maximum 15%, is a lot less than Apple and the record companies take from an equivalent sale on iTunes.

The inestimable Kris Waah is also fan. His excellent Burning World blog is a treasure trove of left field tunes unearthed from the site (and elsewhere). He trawls so we don’t have to, unearthing the likes of Clockwork Era and their “disillusioned post-punk sensibilities that commentate on an imploding society…with vitriol, resentment and anger.” It can only be good.

Read the rest of this entry »

We’ll always have Venice ’till it falls into the sea

I could stay forever hanging out, to quote Allo Darlin, but time is short and there are still at least half a dozen more nominees for 2011’s song-from-each-year-of-my-life, including my favourite folk-, country- and dance-tinged tracks of the year.

But first the aforementioned Allo Darlin’ and a version of a song by Darren Hayman, no stranger to these parts. Like an increasing number of independent artists and labels, All Darlin’ are selling the single through their Bandcamp page, whence they may actually get a fair share of the proceeds. Spotify it ain’t.

Read the rest of this entry »



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.


Hear it on the wire, by receiving email notifications of new posts.


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.