Various Artists - Drivin' with Johnnie Walker

With the exception of the specialist shows like Peel, Lamacq and Westwood Radio1 is a cultural waste ground as much out of touch with what's happening on the streets as your local H.A.P.P.Y radio station. Its always been the case of the lowest common denominator winning through but its come to the point where I'm scared to even switch the radio on for fear of hearing another faceless throwaway dance tune or at its worst the extremely visible bland sounds of Dido or Nickelback. With Radio 1 on the slide partially due to its playlist policy and equally due to the likes of Sara Cox and Chris Moyles it seems like the forever unfashionable Radio 2 has stepped up for the people who simply want to slip on a smoking jacket, pair of slippers and relax to the same playlist they can watch each day on VH1.

Stretching back to Booker T and The MG's in 1962 with "Green Onions" through to 2002 with the Reel & Soul Associations "Warm And Tender Love" its an album with very few surprises an essentially an album for those who fancy themselves as Jeremy Clarkson drivin through the country in a Mondeo with lots of thrust, a little kickback plenty of horse power and all the while being soundtracked by Toploader, Deacon Blue and Lonestar. Myself I prefer a little nosebleed techno to soundtrack joyriding at the weekend but each to their own I guess.

Hidden amongst the seamless blandness are a few gems such as The Beach Boys "Sloop John B", New Radicals "You Get What You Give" and The Farms "All Together Now"...but ultimately any self respecting music fan should have these in their music collection and it seems just too much trawling through Dido, Eagle Eye Cherry and countless other depressingly irritating MOR tunes to find them.

Alex McCann

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