At Home & on the Road with Public Service Broadcasting


Written by James Ratcliffe
17 Thursday 17th July 2014

We caught up with them ahead of their headline performance at Farmfest this August, and asked for the tracks they enjoy playing out and listening to at home...


At Home / 5 tracks I’m listening to...

Late In The Evening - Paul Simon / I don’t know why but I’ve really re-discovered this lately - the percussion on it is amazing and it never fails to put a smile on my face.

Rosanna - Toto / Speaking of putting a smile on my face, I am definitely at least slightly obsessed with this song after hearing it in a restaurant the other day. It’s got everything! And it makes me very happy.

Restless Fugitive - Willy Mason / I finally got around to buying his most recent album, which came out last year, and this is an absolute masterclass. Subtle, powerful and with a fantastic groove behind it all. It reminds me of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot-era Wilco.

Klapp Klapp - Little Dragon / This is the kind of bassline Thom Yorke wishes he could write. It’s monstrous. I’d love to hear it on a massive system - it sounds enormous even on my little hi-fi speakers. Incredible song and a great band.

The Next Jet To Leave Moscow - Manic Street Preachers / We were lucky enough to support the Manics on a few dates in May, as well as last year. They played a few songs off the new album but not this one, which I discovered when I bought it last week. It’s got a great wistful feel to it - I love the guitar and keys parts, and the progression is really nice.

On The Road / Tracks we play out...

Spitfire - This is probably the best known of our songs so it’s always a good one to get going - nothing really beats the thrill of hearing people cheering at the start of one of your songs! And it’s nice and fast and energetic too so it’s a good one for festivals.

Night Mail - I enjoy playing this because it feels quite different in a number of ways to the album version, having a longer intro and outro as well as a bit more room for improvising. I think it’s important to keep an element of improvisation in a set, especially one so reliant on technology as ours.

Elfstedentocht Part 2 - This is one of the danciest songs we’ve done to date, and I like the obtuseness of it - the prospect of playing a song about an ice skating marathon, in Dutch, to UK festival crowds strikes me as oddly appealing. It tends to get people swaying in a bit of a groove, which is always nice to see.

ROYGBIV - Another lively number and one with plenty of room for improvisation (also called ‘mistakes’!), this is a nice sunny song for the great outdoors and a bit of sunshine (fingers crossed).

Everest - We close with this, so it seems appropriate to finish with it here, too. It’s a big triumphant moment in the set (‘they’ve finally finished! Oh thank the lord!’) and we sometimes bring horns along for it too, which makes it into a really special song to play. I find it probably the most personal out of all of our songs.

You can catch them at Farmfest in less than two weeks.

Local outfit Shapes are also offering a £15 discount through this link!


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