On today's agenda, new stuff by old bands, new stuff by new bands and old stuff by old bands, stuff from Cuba, stuff from Heckmondwike.
Sparks - Amateur Hour
John: From 1974 and the album 'Kimono My House'. No, me neither. Sparks are Ron, the scary one, and Russell Mael and we'll have another sibling combo later. We have an hour, but we'll try to be a bit more than amateur about it.
Orchestral Manouvres In The Dark - Metroland
John: Now one of the new ones by old ones. We're on very familiar territory here.
Carolyn: Yeah, we are. But then if it works... And that does.
John: From the new album 'English Electric' which is out on April 8.
!!! - Slyd
John: New stuff from another old band. That's !!! - chkchkchk, by common consent - and it's bassy, funky and I flippin' love it.
Carolyn: They're called what?
John: From the album 'Thr!!!er' which is out imminently. Who knows how they're pronouncing that.
Cover Version Corner
Buzzcocks/Nouvelle Vague - Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've)
John: Nouvelle Vague a French outfit who solely do covers in the bossa nova style. We'll probably come back to them in future as they're a rich source of material. That's off the 2006 album 'Bande A Part'. The Buzzcocks, of course, Bolton's finest. That's from 1978.
Tom Tom Club - Downtown Rockers
John: Another old band putting new stuff out, that came out last September off an album of the same name. It's an homage to that whole CBGB's New York scene. They also namecheck Talking Heads - is that a hint of reconciliation?
Lemon Jelly - Ramblin' Man
John: Apropos of nothing other than it's a good record, here, have 7 minutes of Lemon Jelly.
Carolyn: I like some of the stuff with spoken word on. That sounds really.... what's the word?
Carolyn: Yes, I think so.
John: That's from 2002 and the album 'Lost Horizons'. And at one stretch, the letters of the places spells out 'Bagpuss sees all things'. Y'know... Because.
Ghost Capsules - Inside
John: Remember Bomb The Bass?
Carolyn: Bomb DA Bass, surely?
John: Yeah, well it's him, Tim Simenon. Now based in Vienna and working with some musicians he toured with while he was Bomb The Bass.
Carolyn: Da Bass. Bomb Da Bass...
One Degree of Separation
Ry Cooder - The 90 And The 9/Buena Vista Social Club - Hasta Siempre Comandante
John: Ry Cooder, still angry. That's off last year's 'Election Special' album. Back in 1996, he and Nick Gold went to Cuba to record local musicians. The result was a load of musicians playing under the Buena Vista Social Club banner. That track is a paean to Che Guevara.
Tegan and Sara - Closer
John: Well I promised you more siblings. Tegan and Sara are identical twins from Calgary and that's off 'Heartthrob' which came out last month. Big bouncy tunes and a massive '80s vibe which I like.
Carolyn: I could tell by the way you were singing along.
Spectrals - Peppermint
John: Spectrals is 21-year old Louis Jones from Heckmondwike. Big things are expected and this ain't bad. He's certainly got the tunes, with that big old jangly guitar in a Richard Hawley stylee, but I don't think he's found his voice yet.
Carolyn: That'll develop though.
John: Oh yes, and it's a great start. We'll certainly be keeping an eye out.
Swim Deep - The Sea
John: Another new band, a 4-piece from Birmingham. Close your eyes and that could be The Charlatans.
Carolyn: Now you say that... I was wondering who it reminded me of. Another one to look out for in future.
Special bonus website-only feature
Mmoss - War Sux
John: A 10-minute slab of krautrock indulgence from New Hampshire. Just at that length, I don't know when I'm ever going to be able to squeeze it into an hour-long show.
Carolyn: I like most of it, but then at about 7 minutes, I lose it. There's a section that's actually really annoying, which is a shame.
John: Off last year's album 'Only Children'.
Hat-tip to chums Lawrie and Ryan who suggested a few tracks this week.
And here's all that wrapped up in a YouTube playlist.