Benjamin Howarth - Profiles

John Howard

John Howard - Illusions of Happiness

Returning with the second volume of a three-part autobiography, John Howard takes Ben Howarth and John Clarkson on a compelling guided tour of the fringes of the late-70s, early 80s music industry, while also navigating an increasingly complex personal life in the shadow of the Aids crisis.


Unthanks - Profile

Ben Howarth profiles the Unthanks' extraordinary three CD latest album which combines elements of jazz and modern classical music as well as traditional folk and sets to music the work of several poets.

John Howard

John Howard - Profile

While he waits for a new studio album from rediscovered 70's songwriter John Howard, Ben Howarth enjoys a trilogy of vinyl pressings of his overlooked early work, an ideal companion to the recently-published autobiography.


Miscellaneous - Beatles Gear: All the Fab Four's Instruments from Stage to Studio

Ben Howarth finds Andy Babiuk's book 'Beatles Gear: All the Fab Four's Instruments from Stage to Studio', which provides a history of the Beatles' equipment, to be original and unique

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen - Springsteen: Saint in the City 1949 -1974

Ben Howarth finds much to recommend in a new book about the early years of the young Bruce Springsteen

Jackie Leven

Ben Howarth and his brother Charles pay tribute to Scottish singer-songwriter Jackie Leven, who died in November


Frames - Frames

Ben Howarth examines the early history of Irish rock band the Frames, who have just had their first three albums, 'Another Love Song', 'Fitzcarraldo', and 'Dance the Devil', reissued on CD in expanded editions

Average White Band

Average White Band - Average White Band

Ben Howarth examines the career of 70s funk and soul outfit the Average White Band, who have just had twelve of their albums re-released on four double CD packages

John Martyn

John Martyn - The Man Upstairs

There have been a spate of John Martyn releases and reissues in recent years. Ben Howarth finds him on new DVD 'The Man Upstairs', recorded in 1978 during a high point of his career, to be nevertheless very much worth checking out

Fairport Convention

Fairport Convention - Fairport Convention and Matthews Southern Comfort

Recorded originally for TV, Fairport Convention and the Matthews Southern Comfort Band's new DVD was filmed at a country fair in Maidstone. Ben Howarth finds it an absolutely fascinating and unique period piece


Miscellaneous - Interview

After having spent over nearly a decade at the top with his alternative rock label Jade Tree, co-owner Darren Walters explains to Ben Howarth why other things, like a regular Friday night soccer game,have begun for him to take on increasing meaning


Miscellaneous - Interview

One of independent musics greatest success stories, Deep Elm have developed a reputation over the last five years as a label to be constantly relied upon. Publicist Chuck Daley talks to Ben Howarth about why Deep Elm is far more than an 'emo' label.


Miscellaneous - Profile

Often seen as the world's definitive emo label, Deep Elm have recently released a free sampler, 'This is How I Kill my Tears'. Ben Howarth looks at how much the label has progressed in the seven years since it first formed


Miscellaneous - Interview

Slow Noir is a new label that has been formed by La Nuit Americaine's Christian Govoni, and Pennyblackmusic's John Clarkson and Olga Sladeckova. All three chat to Ben Howarth about Slow Noir's first release, a compilation 'Sunset : False'


Ignition - Interview

Ignition is a Kent-based record label and distribution service , with a self-proclaimed mission "to help hardcore kids get the music they want at affordable prices". Label co-owner and Rydell guitarist Milo talks to Ben Howarth about its first two years


Miscellaneous - Interview

Predominately a dance and electronica label, the British label Iris Light has been releasing records since 1996. Label boss Adam Sykes talks to Ben Howarth about its diverse history


Miscellaneous - Interview with Jason Gibbons

Beautiful Pigeon Records is the new 7” singles project of long-term music fan Jason Gibbons. Jason chose the name for a number of reasons. There was an old Moonshake record called ‘Beautiful Pigeon’ and Jason was a big fan of that. He wanted to keep it s


Miscellaneous - Interview with Jimmy Tassos

In recent months Matinee has become the most popular record label on the Pennyblackmusic site . It is easy to understand why. Whereas many talk of some kind of guitar-pop crisis, Matinee release guitar-pop records that are of a consistently high quality.