Thursday, August 21, 2008

John Peel's Record Box

... I will move off Peel related posts soon, but the discovery of these old shows has had me listening to Peel almost constantly. I was digging around in the mp3's that made up Peel's record box - for those unfamiliar, Peel had a box of 7"s separate from his collection with a hundred or so 7"s which he deemed extra special for whatever reason. The box kind of summed the man up really - from the obscure (XL Capris), to the well known (White Stripes) to his obvious choices (Undertones) and the downright wierd (Bill Oddie)!. As a mix aseries of mixtapes its an amazing listen. There are torrents out there with all these tracks on. But for now - here's a few of my own favorites to whet your appetite.

The first is one of the more obvious choices - the Undertones, not Teenage Kicks which everyone has heard but one of the b-side tracks from that EP:
Undertones - Emergency Cases

Next up, the totally obscure Mike Spenser & The Cannibals murdering the Standells
Mike Spenser & The Cannibals - Good Guys

Peel always championed reggae on Radio One, against a lot of popular opinion. This Upsetter's tune finds them at their best with a boss rocksteady number:
Upsetters - Key Card

Over time, the big man slipped in a bunch of obscure stuff... a few of these turned up in his box. XL Capris were a punk band from Sydney Australia, along the lines of Razar and News - very obscure and collectable amongst the Killed By Death crowd, this track is both collectable and ripping...
XL Capris - My City Of Sydney

Easily one of my favorite 60's psych bands are the Misunderstood. After reading an in depth history in Ugly Things magazine I was hooked. When Peel moved to Riverside California to DJ on the radio, the Misunderstood were one of the bands he really championed, even persuading them to move to London to further their careers. Unfortunately due to singer Rick Brown draft dodging to Thailand and becoming a monk (that's a whole other story) they never really got the recognition they deserved. Check out this barnburner from their Riverside days....
Misunderstood - I Can Take You To The Sun

Peel was always a fan of Mod revival, playing all of the Chords 7"s and of course the Jam who had a few sessions on his show. It is odd that those bands don't appear in his box, instead he has the Quads. A pretty obscure band, whose 'There Must Be Thousands" 7" is seldom heard, easy to get and is a total ripper
Quads - There Must Be Thousands

What makes the box so intriguing is that in amongst the obscurities and must-haves he had records like by Bill Odie and even Status Quo (not surprising to anyone who saw the man DJ). This actually sounds pretty good.
Status Quo - Down Down

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