MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 288 : Trent Reznor soundtracks, and How To Destroy Angels 2010-2013. 13 May 2023.
Episode 288 and I natter about my least favourite period of being a Nine Inch Nails fan : 2010-2013. We get Oscar winning scores, How To Destroy Angels, U2 covers, random EP's, a sumptuous epic 3CD of moody moodiness, solo soundtrack LP's and forming a band with your wife.. and none of it seemed to really speak to me and who I was and where I was in my life at the time. I didn't connect to this period at all, and it was kind of odd to grow apart from a band I loved. 13 May 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 287 : The The's "Hanky Panky" and covers albums.. 1995-1998. 05 May 2023
The The's fifth studio LP, "Hanky Panky" was released in February 1995 - and I don't like it. It's a 33 minute set of Hank Williams covers, that felt like a contractual obligation, and I didn't connect with the songs, or the new, conventional instrumentation. The bands contemporaries were starting to fall into inaction, the world had moved in a different direction, and well, I struggled to connect with the material, the lyrics, or the meaning. The best covers albums feel like they are made out of songs written by other people that belong to, or could have been written by, the artist.. which is not how I feel about this one! 05 May 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 286 : Guns N' Roses wilderness years and "Oh My God"1999-2005. 01 May 2023.
Guns N' Roses fell apart bit by bit, and then rebuilt themselves, between 1996 and 2000 with a new lineup, new songs, a brief tour (that fell apart), one new song, a new bass player, a new keyboard dude, two new drummers, four new guitarists, and 27 shows before disappearing back into the wilderness, for a while. I detail specific shows - Vegas, Rio and London - the song "Oh My God", go briefly into detail about some unreleased songs, and a court case. Where there's a hit, there's a writ! 01 May 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 285 : Metallica's "Hardwired... To Self Destruct"+ "S&M2" 2016-2020. 27 April 2023
Metallica's tenth studio album came out on 18th November 2016 : "Hardwired... To Self Destruct", a 12 song slab of accessible, heavy stadium rock that explored the familiar themes of identity, agency, Cthulu, and control in various forms including a whopping box set including several extra tracks and live material, followed up by three limited edition live albums - New York 2016, London 2016 and San Francisco (acoustic) 2018 - lots of touring, and "S&M2" : the 2019 sequel with an orchestra and Metallica screaming it out on stage. 27 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 284 : Manic Street Preachers "Journal For Plague Lovers" 2009-2010. 20 April 2023.
Ep 284 : Manic Street Preachers ninth studio album - "Journal For Plague Lovers" was released in 2009, and saw the band revisiting the unfinished/unused lyrics from former band member Richey Edwards, using art as a way of perhaps resolving some unfinished business. The album focused on a number of themes - religion, morality, control, discipline, self-belief and imposing a structure and an order on a chaotic reality - and how to self-define yourself in a world that often tries to control and define you. It gets deep! 20 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 283 : Flaming Lips "Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots" 20th Anniversary! 16 Apr 2023
Notcast Ep 283 : The Flaming Lips 10th studio album - "Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots" - got a 5LP Anniversary Box Set this week, so I talk about last years 6CD expanded box set, the singles "Do You Realize?", "Yoshimi", "Fight Test", and the "Ego Tripping At The Gates Of Hell" EP, a 5.1 mix on DVD, live shows, radio sessions, concept albums, 7" picture discs, a low budget Science Fiction dystopia, and a split/break-up that happened the week the album was released. IT'S PINK ROCK! 16 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 282 : The Smiths "Hatful Of Hollow" 1984.. 10 April 2023
Yes, it's The Smiths... in an innocent time, long before we got to 2023. "Hatful Of Hollow" (the band's second, or first-and-a-half album), was a bargain value 16 songs for £3.99, with non-LP A-sides, lots of B-sides, and a whole bunch of preferred radio sessions that reshape the debut with more vibrant, urgent performances. This album was a friend when I was a lonely teenager, and I talk about the anxieties of youth, being single, 16, clumsy and shy, growing up where the rain falls down in a humdrum town ... 10 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 281 : David Bowie's "Hours...." + "Live At Glastonbury 2000", 08 April 2023.
Notcast 281! Again, I am talking to my phone about my records. This time it's David Bowie's 1999 album "Hours...", singles "Thursday's Child", "Seven" and "Survive", the five live albums - "VH-1 Storytellers", "BBC 27 June 2000", "Live In Paris 1999", "Live At The Kit Kat 1999", and the "Live At Glastonbury" 2CD/DVD, as well as the numerous songs for the "Omikron : The Nomad Soul" video game, all of which are Bowie looking back over his life as he passed the peak of his 50th birthday and took stock of what was, and what his life has been and could be. I didn't connect with this album at the time, and it's only as I get older I start to see what was really happening. 08 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 280 : Metallica/Lou Reed's "Lulu", "Through The Never" and lots of live albums! 07 April 2023.
Notcast 280! Metallica and Lou Reed released their joint album "Lulu", which is an unforgettable, sometimes horrifying experience, fell flat on their commercial and critical faces, and then hastily backtracked with the "Beyond Magnetic" EP, the "XXX" 7" and thirtieth anniversary concerts, Black Album 20th anniversary tour, the "Through The Never" concert film, and several live albums. This was the first sign of Metallica failing in public view, and trying to style it out. 07 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 279 : Pink Floyd's Early Years + "Piper At The Gates Of Dawn" 1965-1967. 06 April 2023.
Notcast 279 : A Notcast is for life, not just for Christmas, and I guess by committing to doing the first Pink Floyd, I've just added about 20 extra instalments to this... I talk about Pink Floyd's Early Years, the 1965 EP, early singles "Arnold Layne", "See Emily Play" and "Apples And Oranges", debut LP "Piper At The Gates Of Dawn", the 1997 mono CD, the 2007 expanded edition, the 2016 Early Years box set, live shows, unofficial releases, Syd Barrett, bad 00's movies, the genius of individuality, and loads of other stuff. 06 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 278 : Depeche Mode's "Spirit" 2015-2018. 02 April 2023
Episode 278 : Depeche Mode released their fourteenth album "Spirit" in 2017, and it was their most political, socially conscious album yet. It's a good, not great, album, that's not to everyone's tastes : and I talk through the album, Martin Gore's 2015 "MG" LP (and "Europa Hymn" 12"), solo Dave Gahan, singles "Where's The Revolution?", "Going Backwards" and "Cover Me", one of my favourite Depeche songs ever, live shows, and the 2018 "Spirits In The Forest" / "Live Spirits" album and film. 02 April 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 277 : U2's "Songs Of Surrender" ... 30 March 2023
Episode 277! U2's latest album is a divisive, enormous, 40 song, 166 minute box set of acoustic reimaginings and reinventions of their past, going from their first single to their most recent studio album. I talk about history and identity, and how these songs help me address my anxieties and worries. 30 March 2023
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 276 : The Wedding Present's "24 Songs", 2020-2023. 18 March 2023.
Notcast 276! 2020-2023 was/is a busy time to be a Wedding Present fan : With 12 singles, 6 extra 7"s, a limited remix 12", two 'Locked Down And Stripped Back' LP's, some radio session albums, a James Bond charity release, the 30th anniversary "Seamonsters" tour, and the "24 Songs" project, the band were busy, even though - like everyone else - they couldn't tour or meet in person for 16 months. The new lineup, and 2022's 12 singles, one a month, revisited 1992's "Hit Parade" with a distinctly modern approach and some of the best songs they have written... yet. And there's almost definitely more to come! 18 March 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 275 : Flaming Lips "Zaireeka!" / "The Soft Bulletin" 1...
Notcast 275! The Flaming Lips recorded two albums at the same time in 1997-1999, released their frankly weird 4CD "Zaireeka" (a quad album which required 4CD's to play in sync to fully experience) in 1997, and their sublime, gorgeous "The Soft Bulletin" in 1999 - which is one of my favourite albums. There were 2 singles, a limited bootleg album distributed to the fanbase as a CDR, an expanded 5.1 DVD edition with unreleased extra songs, and later coloured vinyl editions of the albums. Let's go in! 15 March 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 274 : Underworld's "Barbara, Barbara...", solo LPs +more. 11 March 2013.
Notcast Ep 274 : I talk about Underworld's tenth studio album - 2016's "Barbara, Barbara, We Face A Shining Future....", solo LP's by Karl Hyde ("Edgeland", "Someday World", "High Life", "Fatherland") and Rick Smith ("Trance : soundtrack"), anniversary tours, box sets, singles, weird tracks, live shows, and more! 11 March 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 273 : Nine Inch Nails "Ghosts" + "The Slip", 2008-2009. 05 March 2023.
Notcast Ep 273 : 2008 was a furiously busy time for Nine Inch Nails, releasing two unexpected studio albums - March's "Ghosts I-IV" double album (an experimental instrumental double album of threatening ambience), and May's "The Slip" (a fully formed, strong 10 song cycle exploring power, control, and identity), as well as touring, an aborted concert film, and continuing touring into 2009 before the band came to an end. For a while at least! "The Slip" is one of my favourite NIN albums, and I go deep into the record, its imagery, and its identity. With detours around epilepsy, power, and the changing lives of the band, and its fans. 05 March 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 272 : Metallica's "Death Magnetic", live shows, box sets and more! 02 March 2023
Notcast Ep 272 : 2008 saw the release of Metallica's ninth studio album "Death Magnetic", and the period 2008-2010 birthed three singles, 5 live albums, 6 live DVD's/Blu Rays, fan club releases and live shows, a documentary, an unusual box set, and some innovative packaging. This was a busy period and it is one of my favourite Metallica albums. 02 March 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 271 : David Bowie's "Earthling" and lots of live albums 1997-98. 26 February 2023.
February 1997 saw Bowie's 21st (or 23rd-ish) album, "Earthling" released just before the Britpop bubble burst, one of my favourite Bowie LP's that showed that growing old didn't have to mean going boring, a set of songs that addressed the notion of British identity in exile, and how we self-identify who we are, the early days of the Internet, a guest appearance by a cat, a minor accident, B-sides, A-sides, live albums, birthday parties, and much, much more! 26 February 2023.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 270 : Unhappy 39th Birthday to "The Smiths"... 20 February 2023.
On 20th February 1984, The Smiths released their debut album "The Smiths". It really doesn't seem like that long ago! I talk about the band, growing up in rainy England in the 80's, Smithdom, the world of Smiths sleeves and their universe, singles "Hand In Glove", "This Charming Man" and "What Difference Does It Make?", chloroform, the importance of a bassline, and the album as a refutation of then typical masculinity, desolate hillsides, Whitesnake, and more. Or less! 20 February 1984.
MARK'S NOTCAST Ep 269 : The Best Break Up Songs Of All Time? 17 Feb 2023.
Another request, this time from someone I know In Actual Real Life (!!). As it's Valentine's week, I thought I'd celebrate the crass commercialisation of love with a talk through my favourite/best break up songs of all time. Some of these you may not know. Get in loser, we're going crying! 17 February 2023.