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23 Things You Need To Listen To This Year

Podcasts, albums, and audiobooks to zone out to.

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So here's some of the best things to tune out to during the coming storm...

Including my fave podcasts, albums, and audiobooks, plus some recommendations from other BuzzFeed UK writers, too.


1. Lore

Lore is like a campfire story whispered straight in your ear. Episodes in Aaron Mencke’s series last between 20–40 minutes, and each gives fascinating and well-told backstories on a different famous horror legend, from vampires to the doll that inspired Chucky. Pop one on for commutes or walks (as long as you don’t scare too easily!).

Find it on iTunes or listen here.

2. The Smartest Man In The World

If you want to be entertained AND educated, pick up this delightful podcast from comedian Greg Proop. “It’s extremely entertaining, and he always includes a large, topical, in his words ‘boring, preachy’ section (though I’d contest the ‘boring’ assertion) on what’s been ~happening~ in the world,” says Rebecca.

Get it on iTunes, or access it on the web.

3. The Receipts Podcast

The Receipts Podcast

This hilarious and relatable AF podcast digs up the weird dirt we all think and know about relationships and dating. Featuring BuzzFeed UK style and beauty writer Tolani Shoneye, it's the perfect thing to put on while you're getting ready in the morning.

Listen here.

4. The Mental Illness Happy Hour

Maggy listens to this religiously. “It’s both super interesting and informative but also brutally funny. The host, Paul Gilmartin, chats to one guest per episode and gets them to open up about all sorts of things from childhood trauma, to phobias and weird sexual fantasies. The archive is massive but if you go on the site you can start with listener’s favourites from 2011-2015, and from 2016 I recommend Melissa Broder who has an amazing book out called So Sad Today which she discusses in depth.”

Get it on iTunes, or listen on the web.


5. A Stab in the Dark

A Stab in the Dark

This crime podcast will keep you on your toes week to week and host Mark Billingham brings writers from literature, television, and film on each week to talk about all things crime and mystery.

Listen here.

6. Adam Buxton's Podcast

Rebecca says: “Adam Buxton’s podcast has been my aural accompaniment for everything recently. Most of my waking time is spent either drawing or walking around my city, so I’m constantly in search of ear-fodder that don’t get old easily - and this podcast is a treat every time.

“People might be familiar with Buxton from The Adam And Joe Show (in its Channel 4 TV incarnation, or on BBC 6 Music), or from one of his many other endeavours across comedy, film, television, and web. Buxton’s podcast features a rotating list of interesting guests – I particularly love the Louis Theroux episodes, but they’re all great – with whom he has a ‘ramble chat’ about whatever is on their minds. It’s free-flowing and all-engaging, equal parts earnest and hilarious, and is interspersed with Buxton’s catchy jingles. I can’t recommend it enough.”

Listen here.

7. The Singing Bones

Ailbhe recommends this podcast about the origins of fairy tales. “It takes a historical and analytic look at fairy tales, breaking them down by region and theme. And it’s also got a bit of literary theory too. This all sounds very dry, but the music is amazing, and you get to hear excerpts of fairytales from all over the world.”

Get it on iTunes or listen on the web.


8. Awaken, My Love!


Donald Glover’s been blowing up on his excellent show Atlanta this year, but 2016 will still get a healthy helping of Childish Gambino, too. The newest album, “Awaken, My Love!” hit shelves last week and it does not disappoint.

Listen on Spotify.

9. The Last Shadow Puppets' Spotify Sessions


Alex Turner + acoustic sets. Need I say more?

(I will say a little more.) If you’re not familiar with the Arctic Monkeys frontman’s secondary project, you’re missing out on some quality melancholy rock. Add in the acoustic element and you’ve basically got the most intense-yet-chill listening hour of your life. (OK, half-hour, making it the perfect length to enjoy a very vibe-y bath before the water gets cold.)

Check out the session on Spotify Web Player here.

10. For All We Know by Nao


Gena recommends “everyone and their mum listen to NAO’s new album For All We Know. It’s very chill and perfect to listen to at work. Plus she has the voice of an angel.”

I have already followed Gena’s advice, and she’s so, so right. Cannot yet speak for my mum.

Listen on Spotify here.

11. Emotion B-Side tracks by Carly Rae Jepson


Rossalyn says: “Carly Rae Jepson has a series of new bangers on her Emotion: Side B, including the instant WTF classic ‘Store’ (you need to listen to the chorus to see what I mean). ‘First Time’ is a perfect pop song.”

Listen here.


12. Tropical Gypsy by Molotov Jukebox

Pause for Effect

Rebecca says: “Like their previous two albums, it’s an absolute banger of Spanish, Balkan, and swing-influenced, genre-defying fun, led by Natalia Tena’s gorgeous accordion and vocals. It will have you packing up your tent and heading for the nearest festival, or at the very least, having a dance underneath a sun you’ll have no trouble conjuring in your imagination thanks to the album’s canopy of tropical sounds.”

Listen on Spotify.

13. Young as the Morning, Old as the Sea by Passenger

Black Crow Records

This chill and charming new album from Passenger was the perfect soundtrack for the transition from summer to autumn (but honestly I love it year round!). With tracks both moody and chipper, but never overbearing, it’s perfect for a lazy morning lie in.

Listen on Spotify.

14. A Seat at the Table by Solange

Saint Records/Columbia

“I would like to wholeheartedly recommend Solange’s new album, A Seat At The Table, a chill, relaxing listen that’s perfect for work productivity and will change your life,” says Gena.

Listen on Spotify.

15. All Into by Dama Scout

Dama Scout

Rebecca says: “I cannot highly enough recommend the track ‘All In Too’. It’s the second release from Glasgow/London trio Dama Scout, following their debut ‘Forget It’s Good’, which caught the attention of new music blogs and influential UK broadcaster BBC Introducing & Amazing Radio.

“All In Too” is a jagged mix of krautrock and noise-pop. Citing influences from Deerhoof to The Beatles, Autolux and Meshuggah, pulsating verses and dreamy vocals are interspersed with atonal fuzzy sections and a frenzied free-time bridge full of sludgy guitars and drum fills. The lyrics cut a delicate line between themes of fear and togetherness, reflected by its varied instrumentation and moments of calm and chaos."

Listen here.


16. Springtime Carnivore

Autumn Tone

You might recognise Greta Morgan (Salpeter) as the former vocalist/pianist of naughties indie bands The Hush Sound and Gold Motel. In 2014, she moved on to her newest project, Springtime Carnivore, releasing a sophomore record last week. Like 2014’s self-titled album before it, Midnight Room is dreamy AF, and heavy with Morgan’s gorgeous lyrics and emotional melodies. It’s a perfect autumn weekend album in my book, and here’s hoping there will be more where that came from (but also that The Hush Sound would just reunite already, jfc).

Listen on Spotify.

17. The Sellout


The winner of this year's Man Booker Prize is a brilliant satire in which his unnamed narrator tries to reinstate slavery and segregation on modern Los Angeles. Equal parts outrageous and unflinchingly observant, it will make you laugh and it will make you think.

Get the audiobook here.

18. Peggy and Me by Miranda Hart


Written and recorded by comedian Miranda Hart, this sweet and predictably hilarious ode to the Hart's dog is sure to put a smile on your face, even if you're tuning in during a sweaty, cramped commute.

Get the audiobook here.


19. The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood


This delightful audiobook version of Harriet Reuter Hapgood’s smart and beautiful debut is perfect end-of-summer listening. Read by Katy Sobey, it follows Gottie, a teen grieving her grandfather and her first heartbreak in one go, with a surprisingly heavy yet interesting amount of physics and time travel involved.

Get the audiobook here here.

20. The Power by Naomi Alderman


Alderman is an award-winning novelist, creator of the hit fitness app Zombies Run, and a recent mentee of Margaret Atwood, so trust me when I say her newest book, The Power, should be on the top of your reading list. Set in a future some time after women have developed killer (literally) powers, Alderman’s book follows in Atwood’s tradition of speculative feminist literature and is as entertaining as it is thought-provoking.

Get the audiobook here.

21. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo


The follow-up to last year’s Six of Crows, set in the same universe as the Grisha trilogy, this fantasy heist novel is a pacy, action-packed thriller that will most definitely leave you going: WHAT DO YOU MEAN THIS WON’T BE A TRILOGY?

Get the audiobook here.

22. One by Sarah Crossan


This lovely book won both the Carnegie Medal and the YA Prize, among other awards this year. Crossan’s book is a well-researched, heartfelt, and seriously devourable story about conjoined twin sisters Tippi and Grace, written in poems.

I get that this sounds like a weird mix of things, but the result is amazing, and the fact that it’s written in poems actually makes it a really stunning book to listen too – and it's not too long! Perfect for swallowing a whole book on a lazy Sunday afternoon, or in short bursts on your commute.

Get the audiobook here.

23. Knights of the Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden


KOTBD, read by the author, will please fans of Harry Potter and The Chronicles of Narnia. It’s the first in a captivating series that follows Denizen Hardwick, reluctant hero extraordinaire, who finds himself drawn into a century-old group of warriors tasked with keeping humanity safe from a nightmarish world just a breath apart from our own. It’s a fun and enthralling romp through fantasy tropes, perfect for holiday reading.

Get the audiobook here.