Isolation Radio (Part 5): The Lockdown Playlist


© Israa Ali | Unsplash

Despite it only being week five of isolation radio, the world has changed enormously since we started the playlist. Adjusting to the “new-normal” presents periods of reflection of how far we have come through the current situation.

This morning I purchased my first take-out coffee since March and it felt good. Friends in other countries have also been sharing the novelty of once mundane activities like going to the gym, getting a haircut and the return to work.

We still have a long journey ahead of us but for many the light is appearing at the end of the tunnel and there’s optimism in the air.

1. Cage The Elephant – Cigarette Daydreams

This song used to be part of the soundtrack to my commute. It’s steady, mellow rhythm pretty much sums up the vibe on the London Underground at 8am on a Monday.Now it speaks to me of a normality, which in essence feels like a daydream.

Cage The Elephants have a unique talent of taking rock influences from the 1960’s right up until the ‘90’s with everything in between and blending them seamlessly. Cigarette Daydreams is easily the best of their acoustic back catalogue, harnessing lead singer Matt Schultz raspy vocals against a low-key guitar and piano melody.

2. Casey Lowry – Trampoline

Casey Lowry is set to become a guitar strumming indie-pop poster boy for the masses. He’s spent the last few years touring alongside Milky Chance and Conor Maynard as well as having his own headline European tour and releasing his debut EP Nervous.

Lowry oozes a natural charisma and his live performances are just genuinely happy affairs. His music screams to be played in the sunshine and his debut single, Trampoline encapsulates this best. Lowry has taken the indie-pop rulebook and followed it step-by-step to craft Trampoline, which oozes nostalgia for festivals, day-drinking, skinny jeans and a teenage innocence.

3. The Interrupters – She’s Kerosene

I fell in love with The Interrupters at last year’s Slam Dunk Festival. Part of the much-maligned genre of ska punk, they are not only a treat to watch live but also have a consistently good back catalogue.

She’s Kerosene showcases their ruthless, musical energy, lead Singer Aimee Allen has a rasping anger to her voice that’s thrown over the top of some snappy guitar riffs. I dare anyone to sit still whilst listening to it.

4. Reclaim Vienna – Cool With It

Listening to Reclaim Vienna is a bit like watching a movie set in the ‘80’s with a soundtrack of obscure bands from the time. Of course they weren’t old enough to be making music in this period, they just love an 80’s synth. Think a cooler New Order.

Cool With It features the aforementioned synths against a thick bassline which lead singer Jonathan Steen croons some sweet, lyrical melodies over the top. This is indie nightclub music – a cross between shoegaze dancing and all out joy.

5. The Slow Readers Club – All I Hear

Reclaim Vienna cite the Slow Readers Club as a heavy modern influence on their music and the two go hand-in-hand well so it felt right that they should both be on this week’s list.

With four albums under their belt, All I Hear was the first single from their latest album (The Joy of the Release). Musically sitting somewhere between Editors, White Lies and the Bravery, their previous albums didn’t throw up the killer single to propel the band into the mainstream. However All I Hear is a nice little synth-pop banger, which could easily transition to a larger stage.

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Indie is not a genre

Indie is not a genre