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Denzil Watson


Denzil Watson speaks to former Mansun frontman Paul Draper about his satirical second solo album 'Cult Leader Tactics' which was completed during lockdown.

Philip Parfitt
Philip Parfitt
Spear Of Destiny

In the second part of his in-depth interview with ex-Perfect Disaster frontman Philip Parfitt, Denzil Watson speaks to him about his influences and new solo album, ‘Mental Home Recordings’.
In the first part of a two part interview, former The Perfect Disaster frontman Philip Parfitt speaks to Denzil Watson about his second solo album, 'Mental House Recordings', and his return to music after an absence of many years.
Denzil Watson speaks to Spear of Destiny frontman Kirk Brandon about their classic 1985 third album 'World Service' which is being re-released in a reimagined new version.

Little Man Tate
Luke Haines and Peter Buck
Imperial Wax

Cult indie rockers The Godfathers are currently celebrating their thirty-fifth anniversary with blazing new single ‘I’m Not Your Slave’/‘Wild and Free’. Lead singer Peter Coyne talks to Denzil Watson about his undying thirst for rock n’ roll and future plans.
Recently reformed Sheffield indie rockers Little Man Tate are due to play their first gigs in eleven years in September. Ahead of the two sold out hometown shows, lead singer Jon Windle chats candidly to Denzil Watson about the group’s split and reformation.
British singer-songwriter and author Luke Haines and ex-REM guitarist Peter Buck speak to Denzil Watson about their new collaborative album, 'Beat Poetry for Survivalists'.
Following the death of The Fall’s legendary frontman Mark E. Smith last year the final, longest serving line up to back him have re-grouped to form new outfit Imperial Wax. Denzil Watson talks to them about their acclaimed debut LP 'Gastwerk Saboteurs' and future plans.

Richie Ramone
Ruts DC
Kirk Brandon

Denzil Watson speaks to drummer Richie Ramone about life in the Ramones and his new autobiography, 'I Know Better Now'.
Denzil Watson caught up with legendary bassist and founder member of The Stranglers, Jean-Jacques Burnel, to chat about their current tour, the increasing possibility of a new Stranglers album and the invention of a new word.
To celebrate forty years since the release of 'The Crack' Ruts DC take their seminal debut album on the road in February. Denzil Watson caught up with the band’s gregarious drummer Dave Ruffy to speak about the album and 40th anniversary tour.
Kirk Brandon speaks to Denzil Watson about how he balances his two bands Theatre of Hate and Spear of Destiny as well as acoustic project with cellist Sam Sansbury and 'Tontine', Spear of Destiny's recent album.

Damian O'Neill
Paul Draper
Paul Draper

Denzil Watson talks to Undertones and That Petrol Emotion guitarist Damian O'Neill about his debut solo album 'Resit Revise Reprise', which is being released under the moniker of Damian O’Neill and The Monotones.
Denzil Watson speaks to Stranglers front man Baz Warne about the band's forthcoming UK tour and their durability.
In our second interview with him, former Mansun front man Paul Draper talks with Denzil Watson about touring his debut solo album 'Spooky Action' after a nearly fifteen year absence from the stage and the soon-to-be reissued Mansun back catalogue.
After more than a decade working behind the scenes in the music industry, Mansun frontman Paul Draper has stepped back into the light with his debut album 'Spooky Action'. He speaks to Denzil Watson about the enduring love for Mansun as a cult act, being older and wiser, and the end of his old band.


Denzil Watson pays personal tribute to Cabaret Voltaire frontman Richard H. Kirk, who died unexpectedly in September.

Dave Greenfield
Ten Great Lost Indie Albums
Ten Great Lost Indie Albums
Ten Great Lost Indie Albums

Long-term fan Denzil Watson pays tribute to Stranglers’ keyboard player Dave Greenfield, who died on the 3rd May.
Denzil Watson provides the third and final part and the top three albums in his popular 'Ten Great Lost Indie Albums' series.
In the second part of his three part feature, Denzil Watson continues to reveal his list of ten obscure and lost indie albums.
Denzil Watson takes us on a brilliant journey through 10 lost indie classics, starting here with the first four

Live Reviews

Jesus And Mary Chain
Little Man Tate
Spear Of Destiny

At a concert at the Albert Hall in Manchester featuring classics from their brooding 1987 second album, ‘Darklands',’ Denzil Watson finds The Jesus and Mary Chain rendering a refreshingly subtle and dynamic range.
Denzil Watson watches indie guitar act Little Man Tate make a triumphant return after a twelve year absence across two nights at the Sheffield O2 Arena.
Denzil Watson at Yardbirds in Grimsby watches an emotive performance from Spear of Destiny to celebrate the 35th anniversary of their third album, 'World Service'.

Favourite Albums

That Petrol Emotion

In our 'Re: View' series, in which our writers examine albums from the past,Denzil Watson reflects upon the Stranglers' 1978 third album, 'Black and White'
Oedipussy was the solo project of Phil Parfitt, the frontman with Velvet Underground wannabies, ther Perfect Disaster. Denzil Watson comes across an album "truly worthy of the title of Greatest lost LP of all time" in the shape of their only album, 'Divan
Every now and again a band comes along that refashions the very fabric that rock'n'roll's rich tapestry is made from. And, as is the way, it is more often than not that it is these innovatory forces t



Fat White Family

Denzil Watson in celebration of our forthcoming 20th anniversary looks back over his time with Pennyblackmusic by reflecting upon some of the bands he has interviewed or reviewed during his eighteen years writing for us.
In 'Ten Songs That Made Me Love...' Denzil Watson selects ten songs from the Fat White Family, the band that broke his boredom with new music

Joy Division
That Petrol Emotion
Joe Strummer

Denzil Watson in 'Ten Songs That Made Me Love...' writes about his favourite songs by Joy Division
In our 'Gig of Our Lifetime' column, Denzil Watson writes of attending a gig with Californian/Irish alt. rockers That Petrol Emotion at the legendary Town and Country Club in London
In the latest in our 'Soundtrack to Our Lives' series, in which writers describe the personal impact on their lives, Denzil Watson writes about Joy Division's second and last studio album, 'Closer'
Long term Clash fan Denzil Watson looks back and reflects upon on the extraordinary life and the untimely death of Joe Strummer



Denzil Watson photographs the Stranglers at a show at the Sheffield Academy on their latest tour in which they performed their seminal 'Black and White' album in its entirety


Philip Parfitt
Faerground Accidents
Everlasting Yeah
Betari's Box

Melancholic but gently beautiful and ultimately life-affirming second solo album from former The Perfect Disaster frontman Philip Parfitt
Long-awaited debut album from Sheffield's psychotic popsters Faerground Accidents, but, which following in the footsteps of the Cure, Suede and Pulp and showing that alternative music can still be original, boundary-pushing and dangerous, proves very much worth the wait
Fantastic debut album from the Everlasting Yeah, which formed out of the ashes of That Petrol Emotion will definitely appeal to fans of that group
Strong five-song debut EP from Sheffield/Oxford-based electro-pop three-piece, Betari’s Box

Luke Haines
Galileo 7
Dan Sartain

Potentially terrible but dryly witty and enjoyable concept record from ex-Auteurs and Black Box Recorder front man Luke Haines, which tells of three animals named after Sham 69's Jimmy Pursey, Nick Lowe and Gene Vincent
Raw and explosive sixth album from always impressive punk-metal act, Goldblade
Fantastic psychedelic garage rock on debut album from Galileo 7, the new band of Allan Corckford of the Prisoners and the Solarflares
Energetic-sounding rock 'n' roll on first album in four years from Alabama-born multi-instrumentalist, Dan Sartain

Chris Olley
Little Man Tate
Arctic Monkeys

Stripped down and surprisingly accessible first album under his own name from formerfrotnman with abrasive Nottingham-based drone rockers, Six by Sven
Stunning second album and return to form from Sheffield-based group Little Man Tate, who, after a succession of disasters, and despite inevitable Arctic Monkeys comparisons, have returned with a record that owes more to the classic Britpop of Pulp
Engaging and appealing high octane punk on fifth album from dependable Manchester-based outfit, Goldblade
Engaging second album of Northern cynicism from Sheffield group the Arctic Monkeys, which succesfully surpasses all of its massive hype

Little Man Tate
Silent League
Inch Blue

Impressive return to form on first release in over 20 years from reformed avant-garde punks the Cravats, which finds them collaborating with Paul Hartnoll who was formerly with Orbital
Infectious and witty indie guitar pop from delightfully unpretentious Sheffield band Little Man Tate
Promising debut single from New York indie act the Silent Age, whose frontman and pianist Justin Russo also provided the keyboards on Mercury Rev's 'Deserter's Songs'
Nostalgia-friendly Bunnymen and Chameleons-inspired EP from London-based four piece Inch Blue, which sadly brings little new to the field

Culture Industry
Mint Chicks
Luke Haines And The Auteurs

Substandard avant garde art punk from London-based four piece, who include PilL, Joy Division and the Velvet Underground amongst their influences
"Messy, badly recorded, shouty punk-pop " on new 7' from Antipodean noise oiks the Mint Chicks, who last year toured Australia with the White Stripes
"Quite stunning" 'Best of' compilation, which finds English maverick genius Luke Haines re-recording some of the songs from his 90's band the Auteurs with the aid of a seven piece string section, and also throwing in three new songs for good measure.
Far-from-pretty, butspectacular post-punk rock from the much acclaimed Wire, returning with their first new studio album in ten years

Richard Hawley
Waco Brothers
New Christs

Excellent collection of "emotion tinged ballads of love...courtesy of Sheffield's very own 'northern' Sinatra", former Longpigs man Richard Hawley
Sixth album of country-punk from Chicago-based British ex-pats, the Waco Brothers, which makes "a venerable effort to breath new life into the old C&W blue print"
Eclectic, and unfortunately probable final offering from Australian "Stooges-influenced neo-psychedelic garage rock" group, the New Christs
"Contemporary and eclectic" and remarkably "self-assured debut" from the much acclaimed the Coral

Pennyblackmusic Regular Contributors