Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My writing soundtrack.

This post was inspired by something similar over on D.J.Kirkby's delightful blog, so this idea is far from original, but the music listened to while trying to be creative is a topic that comes up often in writing circles, so I thought I may as well stick my oar in.

I have been playing in bands and putting on shows since I was about fourteen years old, and music is so a part of my soul that I think my perspective is slightly skewed from the accepted norm.  For many years what music represented (and how creative it was) seemed so much more important to me than how good a tune was, which I now realise is a bit silly really - a good tune is a good tune regardless, any further analysis (especially ethical) only detracts from ones enjoyment.

That being said, I have been writing about music for about ten years now, and my deep entrenchment in the alternative/ underground/ punk(ish) music scene (through publishing my own zine, and writing for others) can't be ignored as a contributing factor in my tastes.

Enough of that guff, on with the music!
Rather than dissecting this very small selection of the music I listen to whilst writing (maybe in a Nick Hornby style) I'm going to let the music speak for itself, and hope that maybe you discover something new here that you go on to investigate further.  Scratching below the surface of commercial music to discover the remarkable gems that lay beneath is a truly wonderful thing.

I listen to a lot of instrumental music while I'm writing, I find the lyrics in some of the more politicised music I listen to just too damned distracting.  The harsh truth is that a lot of the music I listen to while writing sits in the background, I like the company, but not the influence!

I have tried to make this selection as varied as possible, so if there's something you don't like (and please do give these tracks a chance) then don't run away, try the next track!

One final point - just because I've described my tastes in music as 'alternative' don't assume that means they'll be noisy and/ heavy or punky!

I love the swing and swoop of this band, it's epic but endearing.

Happy Music!

I'm not afraid to admit the majesty in some tracks by MONO has brought be close to tears before.

Okay, so this one does get a little bit heavy...

Hopefully if you've made it this far into proceedings then you're overcome any fear you may have had of heavy guitars, Pelican create some really beautiful music.

And this last choice is a bit cheeky because it's a band I play in! The video was made for us in Hungary.


  1. The Red Sparowes remind me of some Pink Floyd tracks and perfect for writing.

    Slacker is just fab!

    MONO is very relaxing...is the photo background moving ever so slightly in the video is that just my eyes playing tricks on me?

    Malko is good party music but I couldn;t write to it.

    Pelican sounds discordant to me but my N1S loves music like this.

    These are end times is vibrant and very energising to listen to. I'm hooked and want to hear more.

  2. No matter what my mood is The Slackers can always cheer me up!

    I believe the 'These Are End Times' album can be bought from the label here http://theseareendtimes.bandcamp.com/
    (this is the first band I've ever been in that I'm not managing myself!)

    Thanks for you comments.

  3. Going to look now. Why are you not managing it? Ever considered 'managing' authors?

  4. Every band has someone within the band who naturally takes charge of making sure things happen, and in my current band (These Are End Times) for the first time that person isn't me. It's also the first band I've been in that has had national airplay, so someone else must be doing a really good job!

    I can barely manage myself as a writer, I'd rather not impose my anarchy on any other writers :)