In 2019 I was mostly listening to…

Mustard Plug. Or so says Last.fm, which has counted up all the tracks I scrobbled over the course of the past year in order to tell me what I like.

It will probably come as no surprise to anyone that I have been mainly listening to Ska, Rock and Ska Punk and that the band I have listened to more than any other was the aforementioned Mustard Plug.

The album I have listened to most was Life Sucks… Let’s Dance! from Reel Big Fish but the track I have spent most time listening to was Box from the incomparably awesome album, Evildoers Beware.

And here it is

Call Me

I was going to start this post by claiming that a Rockabilly band with a name like The Hillbilly Moon Explosion must be Italian. It’s a good thing I checked, because it turns out that while the singer, Emanuela Hutter, is half Italian (the other half being Swiss), the rest of the band comes from elsewhere in Europe.

Their song, Call Me is a cover of the Blondie song of the same name, and is really rather good.

The Safety Dance

The Safety Dance was released by Canadian band Men Without Hats back in 1982. According to Last.fm:

The writer/lead singer, Ivan Doroschuk, has explained that “The Safety Dance” is a protest against bouncers prohibiting dancers from pogoing to 1980s new wave music in clubs when disco was dying and new wave was up and coming. New wave dancing, especially pogoing, was different from disco dancing, because it was done individually instead of with partners and involved holding the torso rigid and thrashing about. To uninformed bystanders this could look dangerous, especially if pogoers accidentally bounced into one another (the more deliberately violent evolution of pogoing is slamdancing). The bouncers did not like pogoing so they would tell pogoers to stop or be kicked out of the club. Thus, the song is a protest and a call for freedom of expression.

The song’s video is well worth seeing, not least for the rather anachronistic medieval stylings, but I have to admit that I am rather taken by the more recent version recorded by and the marvellously named Danish band, The Asteroids Galaxy Tour.