K_N Studio Playlist 06

March 2019

February was another month of taking action on new ideas. Brave or stupid, I found myself signing up for Tough Mudder! This might not seem like a big deal to some folks, and that’s fair enough, but those who know me well wouldn’t exactly describe me as the naturally active / outdoors type! It’s not that I’m unfit or incapable of getting muddy, I’m just better know for watching movies and wearing pressed shirts! I do enjoy a bit of exercise on occasion, but it’s never been a priority to do it regularly. That is all about to change..

To be honest, I did burst out laughing at the initial invitation to participate! My old mentality and preconceived “limits” shining through. But with my new found energy and mindset I said Y E S ! So over the next three months I will be training and preparing myself for the 10 mile run through a variety of V E R Y muddy obstacles! I spent the first few weekends of February training with good friends in the picturesque woodlands in Dalgety Bay, and I must say there is a sadistic satisfaction that comes from working out in the mud, breathing in the cold fresh air, and making use of whatever nature has to offer as equipment (so far we’ve put hills, trees, and the ‘stairs of life’ to good use!).

To kick things off this month we have an epic cover of the hip hop classic ‘Microphone Fiend’ (Track 1). This song is the opener of ‘Renegades’ a cover album featuring a variety of tracks that have been given the ‘Rage Against the Machine’ treatment, and it’s one of my absolute favourites.

Next up we have ‘Animal Style’ (track 2) from Biffy Clyro. This song opens with one of my favourite lyrics “I didn’t want the captains role, but I’ll steer us over highs and lows”. It resonates with me because I think a lot of freelancers and business owners don’t necessarily plan to be self employed. Many are led by circumstance, be it a rejection of societies ‘brules’ (my new favourite word!), or a relentless inner vision of how things could and should be. I may not have planned on being the captain, but you better believe I’m taking us somewhere incredible.

As we fade out of Simon’s ‘ooh ooh oohs’ we chime into the happy piano of ‘School Spirit’ by Kanye West (Track 3). It’s taken from his smash debut ‘College Dropout’ which took years of perseverance to overcome the many barriers in his way. It’s funny how happy Kanye’s early sound is in comparison to more recent work. It supports the theory that the journey to success is often more fulfilling than the prize at the end.

We continue our un-education with ‘Back to School Again’ by the Four Tops (Track 4). This song is taken from the movie soundtrack of the less famous (but equally over-sexualised!) ‘Grease 2'. The sequal is basically the exact plot of the original, except with motorcycles instead of cars! I was obsessed with these movies when I was a little boy, regularily watching the VHS copies that my big Sister has taped off the telly (nice parenting guys!).

Now that we’re in the mood for overtly sexual dancing, lets boogie quickly over to ‘Staylin’ Alive’ (Track 5) by the Bee Gees. I also discovered this song from a VHS taped off the telly, but not in the movie you’re thinking of. I first watched ‘Airplane!’ from the (then) wine-red carpet of my Mum’s livingroom floor. I was absolutely obsessed with the bar scene which parodies ‘Saturday Night Fever’. They pull off some serious gravity defying dance moves while navigating through a full on bar brawl.

Out of the fog and into the blue, ‘Smooth Sailing’ (Track 6) by Queens of the Stone Age continues the hip thrusting vibe, bringing us down to a more chilled tempo. Something in Josh Homme changed when this album came out having a huge impact on his live performances. I’ve seen QOTSA many times, and on their last tour I noticed a new energy, captivating the audience on a whole other level. It’s as if he’s channeling Elvis Presley when on stage. I wonder what it was that influenced the new found confidence?

‘Moving to Blackwater’ (Track 7) is an old favourite from Reuben’s debut album. Despite the distinctly 2004 “emo” sound, this song and it’s lyrics are timeless. When I was a teenager I painted the words on my bedroom wall (how very emo!) and I continued adding other songs until I ran out of space (my poor Mum had to get in a professional decorator once I moved out!).

Let’s pretend the short string section at the end is a great transition into T H E pop song from that year ‘Toxic’ (track 8) by Britney. As a child of the MTV era, I must have watched the music video about a thousand times. It makes absolutely no sense and probably coast a bomb to make but It’s undeniably infectious and Britney at her peak. If you don’t like this song you’re lying to yourself, it is literally the perfect pop song. Just admit it. It’s OK.

Next up, we’ve got ‘Nice for what’ (track 9) by Drake. There’s something utterly addictive about this song, and although Drake’s recent stuff stinks to high heaven, he sure can get in my head with a catchy hook. The sample used feels odly familiar despite not recognising the original song.

We finish up with ‘Propaganda’ (track 10) from Muse’s latest album. I’m in love with this acoustic cut which makes the horn section more prominent, adding a deeper level of drama. It seems a fitting end to the last 6 months of playlists, given this all started with a Muse song from the same album. Hearing the catchy guitar riff for ‘Pressure’ sparked the idea to make a playlist in the first place, and here I am 6 months later, still making them, and still rambling on between tracks! I can’t wait to see what ends up on the next 6.

As always, you can access the playlists on Apple Music and /or Spotify by clicking the links.

Enjoy em, hate em, laugh at them, whatever you do check back next month for another 10 studio favourites.

Happy Listening


( Also… if you missed it, check out last months Playlist below! )