THE FRIDAY FIVE – 23.2.2018

1. Muse – Contagion
2. Hookworms – Static Resistance
3. Paramore – Rose Coloured Boy
4. Kylie Minogue – Dancing
5. Tom Grennan – Sober

A lot of gig news this week. Where to start?

George Ezra for CHSQ. Not that surprising after he left Belfast out of his upcoming tour. Might pop along to that.

Reef will be playing their one song at Holywood Rugby Club. Genuinely.

Noel Gallagher is playing Edinburgh Castle in the Summer, but not during the Festival in August, so I won’t be going to that.

Next Thursday, is St David’s Day. So, for all my Welsh readers, here’s a chart for you to celebrate. Stay tuned in three weeks when i’ll be going to see Stereophonics, and then in May when I go to see Manic Street Preachers.


1. Stereophonics – Dakota
2. Donna Lewis – I Love You Always Forever
3. Manic Street Preachers – Motorcycle Emptiness
4. Jem – It’s Amazing
5. Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse Of The Heart


THE FRIDAY FIVE – 16.2.2018

1. Ryan Adams – Baby I Love You
2. Paramore – Rose Coloured Boy
3. Hunna – Flicking Your Hair
4. Franz Ferdinand – Shut Up Kiss Me
5. Tom Grennan – Sober

THE SOUND OF 2017 : 1-25

So, here it is, the Top 25 Songs Of 2017

1. Liam Gallagher – For What It’s Worth
2. Rose Elinor Dougall – Closer
3. The Killers – Run For Cover
4. Paramore – Hard Times
5. Liam Gallagher – Bold
6. U2 – Get Out Of Your Own Way
7. Liam Gallagher – Wall Of Glass
8. The Killers – The Man
9. Rose Elinor Dougall – All At Once
10. Haim – Little Of Your Love
11. Arcade Fire – Everything Now
12. Liam Gallagher – Come Back To Me
13. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – She Taught Me to Fly
14. U2 – You’re The Best Thing About Me
15. Royal Blood – Lights Out
16. Biffy Clyro – Friends and Enemies
17. Tears For Fears – I Love You But I’m Lost
18. Kasabian – You’re In Love With A Psycho
19. Lorde – Green Light
20. Arcade Fire – Creature Comfort
21. Kasabian – Bless This Acid House
22. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – If Love Is The Law
23. Bastille – Basketcase
24. Paloma Faith – Crybaby
25. John Hassell and the April Rainers – Intercity 125

Congratulations to Liam Gallagher, emulating his brother in winning this prize in 2011. Get in touch and I’ll arrange some sort of presentation when you’re in Belfast for Belsonic.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this rundown and discovered some new songs you had never heard before.

If you haven’t heard the winning song yet, here it is.

We’ll end, with the list of previous winners.

The Strumbelles – Spirits
2015 Blossoms – Charlemagne
2014 Jamie T – Zombie
2013 Haim – The Wire
2012 Taylor Swift – We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
2011 Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA …. What a Life
2010 Marina and the Diamonds – Shampain
2009 Little Boots – New In Town
2008 Sons and Daughters – Darling
2007 Feist – 1,2,3,4
2006 Kasabian – Empire


We’ve reached that time of year when we are halfway through the year and it is time to do the Top 50 songs of the year so far.

There’s no scientific formula to it. I just went through The Friday Five, and tried to assemble them into some sort of order.

If you love pointless stats, there are three former “The Sound Of …..” winners in the chart.

Remember, it can all change by the time of the main chart in December.

It could even be a Gallagher brother duopoly.

1. Liam Gallagher – Wall Of Glass
2. Rose Elinor Dougall – Closer
3. The Killers – The Man
4. Paramore – Hard Times
5. John Hassell and the April Rainers – Intercity 125
6. Rose Elinor Dougall – All At Once
7. Royal Blood – Lights Out
8. Blondie – Long Time
9. Kasabian – You’re In Love With A Psycho
10. Pale Waves – There’s A Honey
11. George Ezra – Don’t Matter Now
12. Harry Styles – Sign Of The Times
13. Lorde – Green Light
14. Arcade Fire – Everything Now
15. Beth Ditto – Fire
16. Dagny – Wearing Nothing
17. Haim – Want You Back
18. The Kooks – Be Who You Are
19. Haim – Little Of Your Love
20. The XX – On Hold
21. Coldplay – Something Just Like This
22. Amy MacDonald – Dream On
23. Erasure – Love You To The Sky
24. Ed Sheeran – Castle On The Hill
25. Rag n Bone Man – Skin
26. Liam Gallagher – Chinatown
27. The Charlatans – Plastic Machinery
28. James – Sit Down (Game Of Thrones 2017 version)
29. Joy Williams – Ordinary World
30. Liam Gallagher – Bold
31. Muse – Dig Deep
32. Shed Zeppelin – Good Times, Bad Times, Disco Down
33. Barry Manilow – New York State Of Mind
34. Kasabian – Bless This Acid House
35. Robin Bengtsson – I Can’t Go On
36. Black Grape – Pop Voodoo
37. Imagine Dragons – Believer
38. Matt Maltese – As The World Caves In
39. The Courteeners – Don’t Look Back In Anger
40. Maggie Rogers – Alaska
41. Ryan Adams – To Be Without You
42. Miley Cyrus – Malibu
43. Cast – Faith
44. Blossoms – In Da Club/Carelss Whisper
45. Imelda May – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
46. Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus – Don’t Dream It’s Over
47. Rory Lavelle – Poor Pride
48. Rose Elinor Dougall – Hell and Back
49. Amy MacDonald – Automatic
50. Paul Draper – Things People Want

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 5.5.2017

1. The Divine Comedy – Blue Monday
2. Paramore – Told You So
3. Haim – Want You Back
4. Paul Weller – One Tear
5. Marillion – Kayleigh

I hate it when bands I like play Tennent’s Vital. I’d love to go and see Muse but I can’t be bothered to pay money to stand miles away from the stage surrounded by shitebags and smelly tramps while mates of sponsors just waltz in after me and get a better view.

Think i’ll just wait until their next Odyssey gig.

Ryan Adams update. Still looking for a standing ticket for his Ulster Hall gig in September. Face Value.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 28.4.2017

1. Beth Ditto – Fire
2. Hurts – Beautiful Ones
3. The Amazons – Black Magic
4. Paramore – Hard Times
5. Goldfrapp – Systemagic

So, concert news – The Kooks confirmed as supporting Arcade Fire at Belsonic. Not that fussed on Arcade Fire and £45 seems a bit steep just to watch a support act.

Ryan Adams update. Guess what? Still looking for a Standing ticket for his Ulster Hall gig at Face Value.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 21.4.2017

1. Paramore – Hard Times
2. Kasabian – Bless This Acid House
3. Prince – Deliverance
4. Camens – Boys Will Stray
5. Spoon – Hot Thoughts

Today is Robert Smiths’s birthday, and it’s his favourite day of the week. It’s the first time it’s fallen on a Friday since 2006, and won’t happen again until 2023, so he had better enjoy it.

To celebrate, here’s a The Cure Top Five


1. Friday I’m In Love
2. Lullaby
3. Hot Hot Hot
4. Close To Me
5. In Between Days

This Sunday, is St George’s Day, so time to lie back and think of England with some themed playlists for you


1. Wham! – Freedom
2. One Night Only – Say You Don’t Want It
3. George Baker Selection – Little Green Bag
4. George Ezra – Blame It On Me
5. The Beatles – While My Guitar Gently Weeps


1. Pulp – A Little Soul
2. Depeche Mode – Enjoy The Silence
3. Cast – Finetime
4. The Beautiful South – Ole Red Eyes Is Back
5. Duran Duran – Ordinary World

Gig news, Paramore are coming to Belfast. The downside is, i’m already going to see The 1975 that night. If their marketing team had any brains, they could get them to do a gig at the bar of a South Belfast hotel and call it “PARAMORE AT THE PARADOR”

No doubt you all saw May’s big announcement on Tuesday morning. Brian that is, not Theresa. “Queen” are coming to The Odyssey in November. I’m not a big fan of him as a solo artist (apart from What Do You Want From Me?) but Adam Lambert is a capable vocalist and Queen + Adam Lambert looked decent at their BBC New Year’s Eve concert in 2014/2015. However, £74? For £74, i’m expecting Freddie Mercury and John Deacon on stage, and David Bowie to make a guest appearance on Under Pressure.

Ever since BBC Four had a night of programming dedicated to Depeche Mode, i’m been rediscovering how brilliant they are. There’ll be a Belfast gig this year, date to be announced, so I might pop along to see them.

Ryan Adams update. Still looking for a ticket for his Ulster Hall gig.


1. John Hassell and the April Rainers – Intercity 125
2. Pale Waves – There’s A Honey
3. Ryan Adams – Streets Of Philidelphia
4. Blossoms – In Da Club/Carelss Whisper
5. Ray Davies – Rock N Roll Cowboys

In gig news this week, it’s all about people not coming to Belfast. The Kooks are already on a Greatest Hits tour which bypasses Belfast, but now they’ve announced a European tour with Blossoms as support. It would be brilliant if that line-up came to Belfast. That said, i’m going to see Blossoms on Wednesday night as a headliner, having already seen them support Paul Weller. Regular readers will know I think Blossoms are brilliant.

Erasure have announced a new album and tour for May which has no Belfast gig. I’m staring expectantly towards the organisers of Belfast Pride. Outdoor show, Custom House Square. You know it makes sense. Go on go on go on go on. That’s just me hoping and wishing rather than any inside info by the way.

Shed Seven are back with their first album since 2001 and are touring in December. It gets better, they have Cast as support. Guess what? No Belfast gig. Seeing as Cast have been to Belfast the last two years, i’m hoping John Power has a word in Rick Witter’s ear and rectifies this.

Ryan Adams is coming to Belfast in September. Unfortunately, it had sold out by the lunchtime of the day it went on sale. So, if you know anybody selling a spare standing ticket, get in touch.

On Monday lunchtime, I chanced my arm by going to the Venue Box Office during my final ten minutes of lunch. I was third in line, and manage to spend all ten minutes queuing. The person at the front couldn’t make their mind about about what seats they wanted for whatever show they were booking for, then proceeded to pay with a credit card that wouldn’t work.

The next person had a complaint about tickets they had recently purchased and were referred to Ticketmaster but then proceeded to argue that the problem had to be dealt with by the Venue Box Office Staff.

Seriously, how the fuck do people get out of the house and be so fucking stupid?

Also announced in the past week was the line-up for Party At The Palace in August at Linlithgow Palace. If you’re wondering where that is, it’s near Edinburgh.

Regular readers will know I go to Edinburgh every August. Very tempted to make this the weekend I head over.


1. Lightning Seeds – All I Want
2. Razorlight – America
3. Ash – Oh Yeah
4. Amy MacDonald – This Is The Life
5. Kaiser Chiefs – Oh My God

Finally, I spotted an article wondering whatever happened to the mythical and mystical place in music history called 3 Alveston Place. 90s kids will know what i’m talking about. You can read the article here.

This Wednesday, is International Richard Herring Being A Sneering Dick On Twitter Day. Or, if you prefer, International Women’s Day.

If it’s just another day to you, or if you’re doing something to commemorate it, enjoy yourself. Except if you’re planning on sitting in front of the computer screaming “IT’S NOVEMBER 19TH!!!!” all day. You’re a bit of a weirdo and you need help.

This blog will be commemorating it in the only way it knows, by having a series of charts of songs by and about women


1. Rose Elinor Dougall – Stellular
2. Kylie Minogue – I Believe In You
3. Madonna – Rain
4. Taylor Swift – Ours
5. Laura Branigan – Self Control


1. Girls Aloud – Biology
2. Eternal – I Wanna Be The Only One
3. Bananarama – Cruel Summer
4. The Saturdays – Up
5. All Saints – Pure Shores


1. Chvrches – Lies
2. Paramore – That’s What You Get
3. Blondie – Heart Of Glass
4. Echosmith – Cool Kids
5. The Pretenders – I’ll Stand By You


1. The Beatles – Dear Prudence
2. Bastille – Laura Palmer
3. Cosmic Rough Riders – Melanie
4. Glasvegas – Geraldine
5. Britney Spears – If You Seek Amy


1. Oasis – She Is Love
2. James – She’s A Star
3. U2 – Hallelujah Here She Comes
4. The Kooks – She Moves In Her Own Way
5. Shed Seven – She Left Me On Friday


1. Tori Amos – Cornflake Girl
2. Kate Bush – Rubberband Girl
3. Ash – Girl From Mars
4. Alicia Keys – Girl On Fire
5. Simple Minds – Chelsea Girl

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 3.7.2015

1. James Bay – When We Were On Fire
2. The Staves – Teeth White
3. Olly Murs – Beautiful To Me
4. Friendly Fires – Jump In The Pool
5. Duran Duran – Pressure Off

And now, the first of two national celebrations. Wednesday was Canada. So, for my Canadian readers, here’s a chart for you.


1. Tegan and Sara – Closer
2. Nelly Furtado – Do It Again
3. Barenaked Ladies – One Week
4. Celine Dion – It’s All Coming Back To Me Now
5. Appleton – Fantasy

And for their Southern neighbours, it’s Independence Day tomorrow. So, here’s a chart for you.


1. REM – The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite
2. Buffalo Tom – Going Underground
3. Madonna – Rain
4. Paramore – That’s What You Get
5. The Cars – My Best Friend’s Girl

And to finish, i’m going to see James in Edinburgh in August. Fifth time in a fifth different town (after Sheffield, Glasgow, Belfast and Bray) and i’m very excited about it.

It’s part of a Festival called Magners Summer Nights, a series of outdoor concerts in Glasgow and Edinburgh in August. If you’re going to it, here’s some songs to get you in the mood.


1. James – She’s A Star
2. Echo and the Bunnymen – Nothing Lasts Forever
3. The Waterboys – The Whole Of The Moon
4. The Flaming Lips – Fight Test
5. Ben Folds – Battle Of Who Could Care Less

THE SOUND OF 2013 : 76-100

So, it’s time of year, looking back at the year which is coming to an end.

As is traditional on this blog, i’ll be looking back at the 100 best songs of the year over the next 4 weeks.

Before we do so, time to look at the previous winners. There’s no physical prize on offer, just the smug satisfaction that I think you’ve done the best song of the year.

Previous winners

2012 Taylor Swift – We Are Never Getting Back Together
2011 Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – AKA …… What A Life
2010 Marina and the Diamonds – Shampain
2009 Little Boots – New In Town
2008 Sons and Daughters – Darling
2007 Feist – 1, 2, 3, 4
2006 Kasabian – Empire

So, without any further hesitattion, time to start with 75-10 of The Sound Of 2013

76. Nonono – Pumpkin Blood
77. Aviici – You Make Me
78. Nina Nesbitt – Don’t Stop
79. Paramore – Still Into You
80. Rizzle Kicks – Let’s Skip To The Good bit
81. Pink ft Nate Reuss – Just Give Me A Reason
82. Manic Street Preachers – Anthem For A Lost Cause
83. Margaret Berger – I Feed You My Love
84. Rizzle Kicks – Lost Generation
85. Robin Thicke ft Pharrell Williams – Blurred Lines
86. Dizzee Rascal ft Robbie Williams – Goin Crazy
87. Pink ft Lily Allen – True Love
88. Tom Odell – Another Love
89. Miles Kane – Don’t Forget Who You Are
90. Beady Eye – Second Bite Of The Apple
91. Chvrches – Gun
92. We Are Scientists – Return The Favor
93. Lana Del Ray – Summertime Sadness (remix)
94. Arctic Monkeys – Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?
95. Little Mix – Move
96. The Wanted – We Own The Night
97. Arlissa – Sticks And Stones
98. Bridget Mendler – Ready Or Not
99. Biffy Clyro – Black Chandelier
100. VV Brown – The Apple