With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

My 2020 On Spotify And Some Deeper Listening Stats! January 17, 2021


I thought I would share some of my Spotify listening habits. Apparently I listened to Spotify for more than 12 days last year, I wish I knew how much time I listened to vinyl, CDs, MP3s, radio and other on line sources too. I discovered 577 new artists, wow! My most listened to song was David Bowie’s version of “Wild Is The Wind” and unsurprisingly Bowie was my most listened to artist once again (996 minutes, nearly 6% of my total Spotify listening time) I was also in the top 0.5% of Bowie listeners. The other artists in my top 5 were Biffy Clyro, the Streets, Ella Fitzgerald and Woke Up Dead. I listened to 1,286 artists. My top decade was the 1970s, again no surprise there. Top genres were Rock, Soul and Dance Rock. Rather fascinatingly my music is more obscure than 80% of UK users, what on earth does that mean? I also found a few rather amusing, to me anyway, graphs and charts to accompany this post!

Since starting on this post I have also discovered a few sites on which you can regularly update your Spotify statistics split between artists and tracks and then last 4 weeks/ current, Last six months and all time within that. My favourites among these sites so far are Favourite Music Guru, Obscurify Music and Stats For Spotify. Have you used any of these or can you recommend others?

In case you’re interested in my warped eclectic taste these are my top artists on Spotify (Current, Medium Term and all time) The top songs follow those lists. Incidentally the Kunts and Jarvis Cocker feaure strongly on the tracks lists simply because I did my bit to get them to be the Christmas number one in the UK these last two years!

Top Artists — Short Term (4 weeks)

  1. The Beatles
  2. Yusuf / Cat Stevens
  3. Eagles
  4. London Symphony Orchestra
  5. Evie Sands
  6. Rumer
  7. Jackson Browne
  8. David Bowie
  9. Bobbie Gentry
  10. Harry Styles

Top Artists — Medium Term (6 months)

  1. David Bowie
  2. Biffy Clyro
  3. Gregory Porter
  4. The Avalanches
  5. John Lennon
  6. Eminem
  7. Stevie Wonder
  8. Stephen EvEns
  9. Ella Fitzgerald
  10. The Beatles

Top Artists — Long Term (years)

  1. David Bowie
  2. Bob Marley & The Wailers
  3. Biffy Clyro
  4. Frank Turner
  5. Bruce Springsteen
  6. Four Tops
  7. Eminem
  8. Johnny Nash
  9. Elton John
  10. The Streets

Top Tracks — Short Term (4 weeks)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Billy the Kid, Ballet Suite: I. The Open Prairie — Aaron Copland, London Symphony Orchestra
  3. True Faith ’94 — New Order
  4. Jamaica Say You Will — Jackson Browne
  5. Everybody Used to Love You — Silverjet
  6. Raison D’Être — Stolen Dead Music
  7. Wear A Mask — Sing Sing Rabbit
  8. Three Points on a Compass — Martin Rossiter
  9. Drag Me to the Light — Miles and the Chain Gang
  10. Alfred – Intro — Eminem

Top Tracks — Medium Term (6 months)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Taking It Slow — Heartsink
  3. Concorde — Gregory Porter
  4. Freakin’ At the Freaker’s Ball — Dr. Hook
  5. Pepper — Butthole Surfers
  6. Career Criminal — Stephen EvEns
  7. Close — The Islas
  8. Belladonna — Spunsugar
  9. Make Us Eat — The Shining Tongues
  10. Smiling — Alanis Morissette

Top Tracks — Long Term (years)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Running the World — Jarvis Cocker
  3. Star Treatment — Arctic Monkeys
  4. (red, white, and blue) Cheerfulness — Perry Farrell
  5. Balance, Not Symmetry — Biffy Clyro
  6. Future Legend – 2016 Remaster — David Bowie
  7. Deep Sea Dreaming — Ocean Flaws
  8. Loser of the Year — Woke Up Dead
  9. Three Points on a Compass — Martin Rossiter
  10. Wild Is the Wind – 2016 Remaster — David Bowie

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AP Tobler – Interview

Filed under: Interview — justwilliam1959 @ 12:58 pm
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Towards the end of last year, I had the honour and pleasure of interviewing a great musical talent from California, AP Tobler. Regular readers will have spotted her on With Just A Hint Of Mayhem before. She gets better with every release and I believe she has a great future in music. If my tech skills had been a little more tech you would have been reading this some weeks ago. But a failure to record properly and then a corrupted audio file for what I did record put a hefty spanner in the works, but I got it sorted and you can now read that interview below.

AP states that her biggest influence is without any doubt or hesitation Dave Grohl! She loves the Foo Fighters and Nirvana. Multi-instrumentalist AP started off playing drums and I can spot the influence at times. She plays a few instruments (drums obviously, guitar, a little piano, some ukulele, bass guitar) and next on her list to master is the banjo. She has also dabbled successfully with Harp. She has always wanted to play saxophone although she doesn’t believe she would be very good at it, but I think time will tell. On top of all that, just like Mr Grohl, AP seems like a really decent human being. Some years ago, AP attended a Jazz Camp at which one of the featured artists was Donny McCaslin the saxophonist who featured on David Bowie’s final album ‘Blackstar’. AP got to play with him, she took the congas and played off against him in a true jazz style. She believes that if she wasn’t trying to make a name for herself as a musician, she would probably be involved somehow in music production. I reckon music must be in her blood. Given how confident AP sounds when I listen to her music, she told me that one thing she is most proud of in her music career to date is having the courage to start singing. I am sure that I am not the only one who feels glad that she did pluck up the courage! While all her releases so far have been singles, she hopes to put an EP together sometime, I am looking forward to that already. Especially if there is going to be a physical release. Her local music scene, certainly before Covid was quite vibrant with a lot of singer songwriters, a lot of alt.acoustic troubadours with a pop sensibility. She would like to see a bigger metal scene develop but says that the musicians and fans are a great community.

An Arnold Palmer, which is iced tea with lemonade is AP’s drink of choice and her favourite confectionery item is a Mounds bar, which is a chocolate covered coconut bar, which sounds like what we call a Bounty Bar in the UK. She is not a big fan of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. If there was ever an AP Tobler chat show and AP could choose any guests at all, alive or dead, her first show would have Dave Grohl, John Bonham, Prince, and her Mom. Sounds like a great choice to me, I would certainly watch it. The three top things that AP could not live without are music, Mexican food, and forests. Music would definitely be in my list. I asked her to describe herself in three words and she chose hilarious, stubborn and creative. When I asked her one of my throwaway questions, who is the richest Tony Stark (a.k.a. Ironman) or Bruce Wayne (a.k.a. Batman) her first response was that it was difficult. She eventually plumped for Tony Stark as she like him better and hoped that he was richer than Batman.

AP has written some great songs, “Post Mortem” was her last single of 2020 and her new track “Mercury Twin” has just hit the streets. We spoke about what drives her to write songs and she said sometimes it her anxiety and depression. That is a classic case of turning the lows into highs and the bad into good, right? What does AP think are the best and worst things about the music industry today? The best is how easy it is to find music, especially new music. The worst thing is that the industry is still very dominated by white men. Sadly, I think the latter will take years to change. When I interviewed her AP had Soa Dreams, Weezer and Thundercat on heavy rotation. In fact, thanks to her I discovered and started listening to Soa Dreams. Like many of us during this dreadful time AP is really looking forward to the return of live music in a post COVID-19 world. That includes both playing shows and going to shows. How about ending on AP’s favourite joke? OK then let’s do it. There is a Spanish speaking Magician, and he is on to his final trick, he says “uno dos” and then POOF! He disappeared without a tres! Say it loud, you’ll love it.

COMING SOON! Watch out for a review of AP’s new single “Mercury Twin” on WJAHOM!

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With Just A Hint Of Mayhem – Singles Round-Up 2021 Part 1 January 16, 2021


Welcome to our first singles round up of 2021, this time I am once again joined by a guest co-reviewer. This time it is the turn of one of the newer members of the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Team, Paul Bamlett. Paul is a self confessed music nut, so he fits in well over here at Mayhem Towers. We kick off this years singles round up series with eight cracking tunes from eight supremely talented artists and bands which found their way into the world during the last few months. Elkyn and Millie Manders and the Shut Up are the only ones to have featured here at WJAHOM before, but I am confident that all eight will be back again sometime. We have artists from all over the UK; Norwich, London, North East England, Leeds, York, Sheffield and Manchester

“Panic” – Millie Manders and the Shut Up

Paul – This is great, they don’t sound like anyone else. Danceable and very current given the powerful message. This song is the perfect package topped off with Millie’s excellent voice. A very, very impressive song and performance.

Bill – A planet saving anthem that is also in possession of a brilliant earworm of a chorus. A wonderful underlay of perfectly played guitar and the use of voice clips is interesting and adds to the gravity of the message. A heavy sound full of passion, especially Millie’s vocals. This is a song that proves Millie Manders and the Shut Up are much broader than ska punk. Like Paul I bloody love Millie’s voice!

“Raison D’etre” – Stolen Dead Music

Bill – Hard, heavy, bluesy and very, very long. Vocals at times reminiscent of Kings Of Leon. Great hooks and riffs and a very 70s rock guitar breakdown at the end.

Paul – Very interesting, a very good song, a touch on Nirvana at times. Why such a long instrumental break? That said this sounds like it will be a great song played live.

“Little Cheryl” – Not Now Norman

Paul – A real old fashioned sound with an incredibly strong chorus. Good double tracking of guitars and some excellent snappy riffs.

Bill – Reminiscent of the Go-Go’s at their peak. A good pop hook and melody, a kind of subdued power pop. Taylor Mitchell has a great voice and at times the guitar underlays the tune in a Johnny Marr kind of way. I want to hear more from this lot. A great band name in my opinion, too.

“We Eat The Buffalo” – Radio Aftermath

Bill – Immense riffs coupled with a great rock vocal. Are there two drummers on this, or has John Bonham been resurrected? This is very punky metal which I think will be ace in a live environment.

Paul – This reminds me of the Misfits or the Damned or maybe early Metallica. Great vocals are definitely in the same vein as early recordings by Dave Vanian and James Hetfield. This is a great song

“Drag Me To The Light” – Miles and the Chain Gang

Paul – Some Joe Strummer style on the vocals. The horns and Dexy’s style brass were a great addition to the track. I felt that the guitar sound reminded me of A Certain Ration or Talking Heads. One of my favorites from this batch.

Bill – Nicely British with a touch of ska, while the harmonies add an almost US West Coast vibe. Funky, choppy Billy Whizz guitar and fantastic production.

“Everybody Used To Love You” – Silverjet

Bill – Tumultuous opening riffage with a classic 70s rock vocal style. I love the guitar solo and the drumming. It feels a bit post punk but heavier and will probably be awesome live.

Paul – A great opening riff with some Kiss style in there. Maybe they should have used that same riff for the chorus. Hats off to them they sound like a great band and I get the feeling that they know how to strut their stuff like Motley Crue or Hanoi Rocks.

“Message From God” – M30

Paul – Great tune, the drums come in perfectly. There were a few moments where the backing vocals made me think of the Arctic Monkeys. I like this one!

Bill – Organ intro was like some kind of religious horror film theme. Very different and understated instrumentation. A very British vocal, none of that affected American style here! I also love the backing vocals on the chorus. One of my favourites of this round up.

“If Only It Was Alright Now” – Elkyn

Bill – A soft chilled acoustic guitar track at the start which builds into a spectacular peak with a sound that emulates bells ringing. Great harmonies too

Paul – Ambient, folky and very original. I like the track but I would like to hear it in a much more basic “unplugged” style without the drums.

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The WJAHOM Interview Podcast – Delilah Bon! January 14, 2021

Filed under: Interview,Podcast — justwilliam1959 @ 11:14 pm
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Towards the end of last year I had a great blast interviewing the fabulously talented Delilah Bon the (not so) secret identity of Lauren Tate. Music fans will also know her as singer with Hands Off Gretel. Delilah will have a first album out in 2021. What I learned from interviewing Delilah/ Lauren is that she is not only a talented artist but also a passionate, funny and caring human being. Click here to take a listen to the interview on Spotify (apologies for a few seconds of silence at the start) and afterwards check out some of Delilah Bon’s ace singles in the videos below. Including a fabulous rap based version of John Lennon’s “Imagine”. Then click here to avail yourself of some rather spiffing Delilah Bon merch!

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With Just A Hint Of Mayhem 2020 Round Up January 4, 2021

Filed under: News,Observation,Trivia — justwilliam1959 @ 11:23 pm
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Personally I find lists of top ten albums, singles etc. for a given year quite subjective so I have decided not to do that for 2020. But I thought that you might be interested in what has been happening on the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem blog page in 2020. The site had more than 30,000 views for the year for the first time since 2016. December hits were 6,449 which is the highest monthly total since May 2015. There were views from 148 different countries. More than 300 people follow us directly from WordPress, the Facebook Page now has 818 followers and we are close to 1,400 followers on Twitter. A total of 2,523. Thank you to each and every one of you. Stick with us in 2021 and beyond, share all our links (you will find them below) and tell all your friends to come and say hi!

We made a total of 164 posts, and wrote 66,693 words that is more than 400 words per post. The most popular post published in 2020 was written by one of our newer contributors Tom Ray and related to Jeffrey Lewis, click here to read it. The most popular post from previous years was viewed a lot this year and it was “We Make Out In Your Mustang To Radiohead” from 2011, click here to read that one.

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Play It Again Mayhem – “Haitian Divorce” – Steely Dan December 31, 2020


This is the sixth song in the Play It Again Mayhem series which began earlier this year. Check out the earlier posts by clicking here (Betty Wright), here (Elton John), here (Roxy Music)  here (The O’Jays) and here John Miles. This one is another from the 70s, and it is from Steely Dan. This was the third single released from the band’s 1976 album ‘The Royal Scam’. It never appeared on the US charts but reached number 17 in the UK. The song is “Haitian Divorce” which takes it’s title and much of the story told in the lyrics from the easy divorces available in Haiti to foreigners, particularly Americans. It was so simple that it only needed one partner to be there and the divorce could be finalised in a matter of hours.

The song tells the story of a woman who goes to Haiti to get a divorce, she has a brief fling with a Haitian man, fails to get the divorce and nine months later gives birth to a half Haitian baby. The mention of Papa in the lyrics is interpreted in two ways. Firstly as her father telling her to go back and get the divorce, and secondly as the voice of Haitian ruler at the time, Papa Doc Duvalier, who encouraged divorce tourism. The song was written by Donald Fagen and Walter Becker. It was Becker who used a Talk Box on the song over Dean Park’s guitar. Perhaps the most famous proponent of the Talk Box was Peter Frampton on ‘Frampton Comes Alive’. Enjoy the song, I love the jazzy, laid back reggae feel of the track, Why not sing along too? The lyrics are copied below. Please not that the second video is by a rather good Steely Dan tribute band, Steely Damned II

Lyrics
Babs and Clean Willie were in love they said
So in love the preacher’s face turned red
Soon everybody knew the thing was dead
He shouts, she bites, they wrangle through the night
She go crazy
Got to make a getaway
Papa say
Oh – no hesitation
No tears and no hearts breakin’
No remorse
Oh – congratulations
This is your Haitian Divorce
She takes the taxi to the good hotel
Bon marche as far as she can tell
She drinks the zombie from the cocoa shell
She feels alright, she get it on tonight
Mister driver
Take me where the music play
Papa say
Oh – no hesitation
No tears and no hearts breakin’
No remorse
Oh – congratulations
This is your Haitian Divorce
At the Grotto
In the greasy chair
Sits the Charlie with the lotion and the kinky hair
When she smiled, she said it all
The band was hot so
They danced the famous Merengue
Now we dolly back
Now we fade to black
Tearful reunion in the USA
Day by day those memories fade away
Some babies grow in a peculiar way
It changed, it grew, and everybody knew
Semi-mojo
Who’s this kinky so-and-so?
Papa go
Oh – no hesitation
No tears and no hearts breakin’
No remorse
Oh – congratulations
This is your Haitian Divorce

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Never Mind The Queen’s Speech, This Is The Mayhem Message! December 24, 2020

Filed under: Christmas,Christmas Message — justwilliam1959 @ 3:01 pm
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After the success of the Christmas messages from bands on the site I thought, why not do one myself, so I did! This is my message to the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem supporters and all those you love and care for. Take a look and feel free to comment! I have added a few of my favourite Christmas tunes below my video 🙂

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The 12 Days Of, Mostly, Punky Christmas – Day 12

Filed under: Christmas — justwilliam1959 @ 11:48 am
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Wow, Christmas Eve already, the bearded weirdo arrives on his sleigh tonight led by living venison with an inflamed nose! I wanted to end the 12 Days Of, Mostly, Punky Christmas, with a song that I love by a band that back in the day were the best by far! The Ramones with “Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want to Fight Tonight)”, the video is rather good too 🙂

Happy Christmas to each and every one of you, thank you for sticking with this blog and let’s hope 2021 is so much better, it couldn’t be worse could it?

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A Christmas Message From Avalanche Party December 23, 2020

Filed under: Christmas,Christmas Message — justwilliam1959 @ 11:24 pm
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How do you fancy another Christmas message? You do? How about one from probably my favourite band in the world right now? OK then Jordan from Avalanche Party has a message for you below, especially if you’re a jazz fan! 😉

After you have taken a look at the message click here to visit the Avalanche Party website and go to the merch tab where you’ll find some great T-shirts and CD and vinyl copies of their album, but surely you already own the album, right? If not get clicking!

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Avalanche Party – The Crescent, York – Friday 18th December 2020


Thanks to Covid this is only the third gig I have been to since March 14th, well that is if I count the Receivers set outside Vinyl Eddie’s for Record Store Day Drop 1 in August, and frankly I do count that one!. The second was an outdoor socially distanced show at the Centre for Early Music in York, Elkyn and Fawn played that one in September. But this is the first socially distanced indoor gig I have been to and huge praise and respect to Joe, Chris, Harkirit and all the staff who worked that night. It felt safe, drinks delivered direct to your table. Sure the rules on not singing, shouting and dancing were a bit weird, but it meant we were at a real gig at last. Special thanks and respect to the security guy who had to eject two people for blatant disregard of the rules. Even in these times some people are just dickheads!

Anyway on to the show, Avalanche Party are probably my favourite band in the world right now and 2020 should have been huge for them off the back of the release of their stunning debut album, ’24 Carat Diamond Trephine’ last year. But Covid and the ensuing shitstorm of a year has laid all the best plans to waste. I have seen Avalanche Party more than anyone except for Frank Turner and David Bowie so obviously I had high hopes for this show. I knew we wouldn’t get the usual raucous, sweaty, passionate, punky performance that we have come to expect, but I still had high hopes for the night.

They opened their first set with “Bugzy” with Jordan on keys and vocals, Jared on saxophone, playing in a very Bowie style and Harry from the Black Lagoons on acoustic guitar. This was followed by a magnificent electronic noisefest run through ace single “I’m So Wet”. “Johnny Dream” was like an outtake from ‘Lodger’ period Bowie. Some awesome bass runs from Joe on this one. Jared’s sax was also very Bowiesque too. Kane the drummer finally arrived for “Praise”, an older song, but one that remains epic and anthemic. Hot on the heels of praise was “Money” another true Avalanche Party anthem, and it seemed even more soulful and anthemic in this setting. It was turning into a wonderful Avalanche Party oldies fest as they closed the first set with “Let’s Get Together”, which makes me think that they have always had a bit of glam rock in them.

Perhaps the highlight of the second set were two cover versions, the Beatles “Tomorrow Never Knows” and a stunning take on the gospel classic “Wade In The Water” that one gave me goosebumps. “Howl” is a stupendous song and perhaps the bands finest single to date, it was great to hear it in such a stripped back form. Jordan sang a couple of songs solo on stage with only his keyboard to accompany him, one of these was “Rebel Forever” I think. Those two songs really showcased what a fantastically versatile vocalist he is, the bloke oozes soul and passion. “Every Last Drop” featured Harry from the Black Lagoons on violin and Jordan joked that this was Harry’s GCSE violin exam. Next was another great almost doo wop style cover of “It’s A Sin” by Canadian artist Tonetta, check him out he is bloody good. The band out did the Flying Pickets and the Housemartins for their classy acapella skills on this number. They closed with a barnstorming, consider it was a stripped back show, take on yet another classic, “Solid Gold”

This is a band who improve every time you see them. They are still on an upward trend and a long way from reaching their peak. They proved tonight that they can perform in any environment and if this type of show is the future of gigs for the foreseeable future then Avalanche Party have it nailed. A true joy to experience, even my wife, who has never seen them before, and to be fair this is not her usual taste in music, absolutely loved it!

All the photos were taken on my cheap Chinese phone, with the exception of the set list which was taken by Avalanche Party’s Joe Bell!

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