The Ransom Note 100 Of 2016

Art & Culture

Wow, what a year eh. It’s been great guys, really, it has. However, thank f**k that’s over. 

Seriously, what the hell was that? Brexit, Trump, Bowie, Prince and beyond. To be honest it’s all been a bit much at times, a bit like one of those Tuesday night sessions at the pub… You know the one, too many brews and forgot you had a meeting at 9am with the Philippines the next morning?

Yep, that one. 

A lot of good has seen light this year, music is alive and well as ever and clubbing is terrible…. Just kidding, there are many men and women leading the frontline for our culture and we salute you. Yes, that includes you Sadiq, well, sort of. 

Anyway, polls are tedious, dry, dull, boring and well, all the BLOODY same. So, we here at Ransom Note are here to save our day with our definitive list of all things ‘so this year’. In no particular order see below… Thank us later.


The founder of Sports Direct, Mike Ashley, pulling a wad of £50 notes from his pocket…

Because if you want to have the same public appeal as a Ginsters sandwich laying in a Camden gutter at 3am on a Friday night, then you need to commit yourself to it 100%. 

– Jack Needham


Dance Tunnel

It was the best small club in London and it didn’t take the safe route with bookings, underground in a metaphorical and literal sense, it felt like home. A massive loss.

– Miles Simpson


“Kebab Square” in Shoreditch

Deep in the heart of a post-hipster paradise, amidst the artisan coffee bars and ping pong bars you will find an emporium of wonder. Delicious meat, divine shwarma, fresh salad, galant humous, succulent halloumi, crispy falafel and god knows what else. All for around a fiver. For those in the know.. 


Dark Entries Records

How many labels could you name that have released thirty five different records this year? Not many. This in itself is a feat, however, when you look at the quality of what has been distributed and how many of those releases have been widely played the result is quite staggering. Lunapark, Patrick Cowley, Frak, Philippe Chany, Bill Converse, The Pool, Jago, Zwischenfall, Lena Platonos, Cute Heels and more have all appeared on the label across 2016. Quite the list. 


Farr Festival

This year’s edition is going to be hard to beat. This summer saw Ransom Note back hosting a stage in the middle of the Hertfordshite countryside. Ian Mcquaid & Kieran Delaney Forerver aka Gone To A Rave (live) brought the heat before Ian fell off the stage, sprained his ankle . Optimo got upset at a stage manager but played amazing records as ever. Helena Hauff was ace, Young Marco was the excellent Young Marco and Maurice Fulton broke the recorder in a grump. Who knows what 2017 may hold…? More news incoming…


The UB40 documentary, Promises and Lies.

Promises and Lies is still on the BBC iPlayer and I URGE you to watch it. It’s fucking hilarious for many reasons, reasons I’m not going to explain. My favourite bit is when Ali leaves the band and his brother, Duncan, phones him (Ali) to tell him he’s replacing him as the singer. They both re-enact this conversation from their point of view, doing impressions of one another. If, like me, you’re from the West Midlands, you’ll agree that it’s the most Black Country thing you’ll see this year. It’s from 40 minutes in. Ch-check it out…”

“I’m joining the band.”

– Tonka


The Do You Radio Show

The soundtrack to many a hangover, many a Monday morning and many a laugh. Charlie Bones continues to inspire, entertain and simply keep the good people of London town very, very happy. NTS, give that man a holiday! DO YOU CHARLIE!!!!


The Pub

It was somewhat reassuring to learn that our island is kept firmly afloat by the very thing which kills us. By visiting the pub you also fuel the economy of our “Great” nation. Some might say that the UK is now in fact just one giant pub…



The saving grace of pub DJs everywhere. A purveyor of all things purple. Cultural icon and party pioneer. This was the year in which we lost one of the most important musicians of a generation. Long may the funky one live on. No doubt his sound and soul will. 


Curry In A Hurry…

To this day nobody knows the name of the mysterious newsagent, come off license come curry plaza upon Great Eastern Street. This is what lunch dreams are made of, bar the fact that you might spend a good proportion of your following afternoon lost in the bog. For three of your finest pounds you can purchase not one, not two but three curry portions alongside rice and a poppadom. Oh, and it’s bloody fast, the clue is in the name of which we have appointed.


This Guy…

In times of hardship and struggle we must come together in unity. Celebrate what you love, the rest will follow. At least this topless dude on a train thinks so…


Ruf Dug

Who says nice guys finish last? Ruf Dug is possibly the most humble, down to earth man in music these days. Between releasing some seriously good music he still somehow finds time to play records in arcades and this year saw him put up the Ruf Kutz digital back catalogue on band camp for FREE. What a gentleman…


An erotic novel about… Brexit

When one thinks of sex they tend not to focus on the whirlwind of political turmoil which seems to circle around us. Well, at least we thought not. Apparently this isn’t the case. Each to their own…

– Jack Needham


Everyone’s a celebrity

This may well truly be the year in which we reached rock bottom. The age of the non celebrity is well and truly among us now. Maybe that’s why David Bowie and the likes decided to sack it off. To be honest I’d probably fuck off too if I were them. Katie Price, Gareth Gates and that bloke off Corrie continue to make money from well, pretty much nothing. Let’s not even start on this guy…


Phife Dawg

The tail end of 2016 saw the release of a new album from A Tribe Called Quest, the first in almost twenty years. The record shines a light on the importance the group has played within hip hop across time. Almost twenty years after their last full length studio album the group remain as influential as ever and continue to astound. Unfortunately, despite all of this the record was tainted to a degree by the fact that 2016 saw the loss of founding member Phife Dawg, may he rest in peace. 


Pissing Ally off with Veganism in the office 

How many times did you watch Cowspiracy this year? If the answer was once, then that was probably one too many. By the time you read this you have either caved and eaten a roast dinner or starved to death. Happy 2016… (Ed-in-chief note: Good one Ally) 



To this day nobody has a clue what ‘balearic’ is. They might say that they like it, that they live a ‘balearic’ life or that this is well ‘balearic’. In all honesty, it’s gone too far. Just stop, even balearic people don’t want to be balearic anymore. 



Why buy new music when you can buy ‘new’ old music? This year we even got in on the act. From classic italo house jams to obscure oddities 2016 has delivered on a vast scale. 


Planet Earth 2

God bless the BBC eh? When they aren’t hiring devious sex criminals and what not anyway. This year saw the return of Planet Earth and by heaven’s was it great. David Attenborough may well be the last of the great television icons left. He showed us once again that nature is pretty freakin’ scary. Battered and bloodied penguins, mutated iguanas and the hard facts of life all shot beautifully in an innovative, breathtaking fashion. 


Nicola Sturgeon

Backbone, fierce eyebrows and a Scottish accent. 


Love International

The sun kissed Croatian summer.  Tama Sumo, Francis Inferno Orchestra, Dan Beaumont on a boat. The sandy beaches, crystal blue sea and dancing under the stars at Barbarellas. Oh and inflatables, lots and lots of inflatables. 


Stevie Wonder

This summer one of the last great living legends played a special show in London’s Hyde Park. We were there to capture it as he spoke freely about the black lives matter movement following riots and murder in America and around the world. A true inspiration in a world so often concerned with the artificial. 



Only America could mourn a dead gorilla for almost a year. There was a rumour going around that a portion of the population had voted for the humble beast in the American presidential election. Whether this is true or false we may never know, but we hope it’s true. 

– Cosmo Godfree



The Glaswegian duo are an inspiration. For real, you might be hard pushed to find two better human beings in dance music. We could talk endlessly about their splendour behind the turntables or the vast array of music which they have released. However, this year we think it’s important to draw attention to the positive message they continue to spread. Rave against racism.


Zac Goldsmith loses by-election

Perhaps the one saving grace at the end of a year of politics gone wrong. To a Liberal Democrat of all candidates as well. That somewhat wiped the smug look off of his face. 


The death of the Sainsbury’s meal deal

We’ll fondly remember the £3 Sainsbury’s Meal Deal. Offering diversity, quality, and value, the Meal Deal was a safe bet for anyone who hadn’t sorted their lunch plans. Yet another casualty on the long list of 2016, gone but not forgotten.

– Charlie Barton


Adrian Sherwood

Where do you start with the On-U Sound maestro in 2016? A new ‘Sherwood At The Controls’ compilation. Another raft of reissues from the label, including seminal post-punk madness from Missing Brazilians and dubby weirdness from African Head Charge. And then his live sets – even at Rough Trade for Record Store Day – were exemplary. Best of all, aside from the African Headcharge live outing at the 100 Club, where he manned the mixing desk, were his Sherwood At The Controls nights at Jazz Cafe, each a live dub extravaganza with him marshaling the madness. 

– Tim Murray


Sam Allardyce

We aren’t quite sure what’s better, the fact that Sam Allardyce got caught for being a numpty on camera or the fact that in said picture he appears to be drinking what can only be assumed is a PINT of wine? 

– Charlie Barton


The Greasy Strangler 

“It’s got grease in it and it’s got a strangler…” Director Jim Hosking’s description of his feature lengthy directorial debut tells you all you need to know about this bizarre comedy horror outing. The phrase comedy horror, however, doesn’t do enough justice to this thoroughly original tale of a father and son and some of their more intriguing activities, nor does a description of the plot doesn’t do it justice. It also boasts plenty of disco action, a score by Fuck Buttons’ Andrew Hung, and a slew of ready-made catchphrases (I got a wealth of texts calling me a “bullshit artist” after one mate watched it, never mind the “hootie tootie disco cutie” chant). Still waiting for that Greasy hat though…

– Tim Murray


Young Marco

This was the year that Marco made the big time. From a man who once cleared our dancefloor at Farr festival – it was the middle of the afternoon and some trendy ass bollocks was probably on, on the other stage – to playing with Larry Heard in Australia, we always knew you had it in you. Gawd bless you Marco!


Equiknoxxx – Bird Sound Power 

Don’t try and pretend you’ve aways been into Equiknoxx, and prefer the early stuff. All rough, dancehall tracks, topped off with weird noises and the bird sounds of the title, it sounds like nothing else you’ll have heard, it’s as forward thinking as digital dancehall first sounded when it landed from a JA spaceship in the 1980s. In a year when Demdike Stare have excelled, both on their own album and with their DDS imprint (the Micachu 12 was a belter), this is still their crowning achievement.

– Tim Murray


The start of the global Kangaroo apocalypse 2K17

We always suspected the monkeys and the robots but the truth was in front of our eyes the whole time. 

– Jack Needham


Alan Clarke Dissent And Disruption at the BBC 

Golden age of television my arse – while you were all gushing over Stranger Things, the ever-marvellous BFI’s video arm released a lavish boxset that aimed to give British television and film director Alan Clarke the status as one of Britain’s finest auteurs he so richly deserves. This mammoth box encompasses all his work for the BBC. Aside from the much viewed Scum, which was pulled as too shocking after he made it for the Beeb, forcing him to remake it as a feature, these have rarely been seen since their transmission. Elephant alone, long available in the US but hardly aired, makes it almost worth the hefty admission price. But if the £100 or so is a bit steep, you could always just fork out for a copy of Penda’s Fen, another rarely seen Clarke masterpiece given a solus release from the BFI too – it falls into the category that could most readily be described as “Wicker Man shit”

– Tim Murray


Fake News

Russia has been at it for years. However, several high profile cases of ‘false news’ surfaced in the USA and UK in 2016. Anyone for pizza?


Mhairi Black

In a year when ‘fake news’ became news, in some kind of disturbing real life visual feedback, it was life affirming to see a young Scottish MP so full of informed heat, working class anger and hard earnt education. Any chance we can make her the Prime Minister before the year ends, just so we can feel better as the bells’ chime and Jools gets his Hootenanny on the go. 

– Andrew Thompson


Höga Nord Rekords

The Swedish record label has amassed a reputation for oddball electronics. Based out of Göteborg they have released an array of music from local talent alongside those with a more familiar face. The likes of Vox Low, Tentakel, Timothy Fairplay, Dark Strands and more all featured in 2016. 


Luke Cage

Although it received some criticism for its cheesiness and slow pace, the Luke Cage series still remained one of the most exciting things to happen this year. It made Netflix crash for goodness sake.

– Lee Fairweather


Birdman Interview on The Breakfast Club

Coming in at number ‘tree’, the best 2 two minutes and twenty six seconds of 2016 belonged to Birdman and his now notorious Breakfast Club. Rife with hilarious quotes and tension, Birdman decided to address the regular hosts before the actual interview took place by telling them to ‘put some respek on his name’ and by the end of his rant, nobody was quite sure if Birdman was finished or done. 

– Lee Fairweather


The Little Portuguese Lad Brought Hugs To The World Before We Knew We Needed Them

In a year when we all needed someone else to wipe our tears and hold our hearts, it was joyful to see a small foreign kid in another country show us how there is more than bad men and pestilence. Even if they are the wrong (shirt) colour and speak all foreign like.

– Andrew Thompson



Hands up who learnt a new word this year then? The talk of the town… for about a month. Adam Curtis returned from the murky depths of the BBC archives once again and was met with the usual cynical criticism and petty jibes of those who have never tried to make a documentary or film themselves. 



This year the government finally managed to pass an act limiting what people are allowed to watch other people doing in the bedroom. Parliament had to talk about “fisting” and “squirting”. All pretty funny stuff really…



Disco Halal remain fierce as ever and Moscoman is the friendly talisman and gatekeeper. A good friend of Ransom Note and one of the most interesting musicians on the circuit at present. The introduction of his new live set towards the tail end of 2016 being a particular highlight. 



This global collective is inspiring more women to DJ with meet ups and workshops around the globe to help them get involved.

– Gemma Lacey


Old school wrestling pages on Facebook

This year, I’ve become addicted to the WWF Stars of the 80s & 90s Old School Wrestling / WWE WCW Figures & Games page on Facebook. It’s a snappy name, isn’t it? ISN’T IT? It’s a simple page: they post dozens of videos of old school WWF every day, and I spend a lot of fucking time watching them and reminiscing about the days when watching the Ultimate Warrior Gorilla Press a jobber, “The Model” Rick Martel Boston Crab a jobber, Sergeant Slaughter Camel Clutch a jobber and Hulk Hogan waving an American flag down the aisle was all I lived for.

Do you remember when life was simple?

– Tonka


Tonka’s Pub Quiz

There have only been two this year (I’m not counting Farm Festival), but Tonka’s Pub Quiz is already the best pub quiz on the Leyton pub quiz circuit. Leyton is an absolute fucking shithole, you can tell because the McDonald’s there plays classical music, but it’s got the best pub in London there, Pepper’s Ghost. Pepper’s Ghost is a diamond in the shit, and the crowing jewel in what is obviously an up-and-coming area for hateful, young creatives. Pepper’s Ghost plays host to Tonka’s Pub Quiz, and we’ll be back at the end of January, I think.

It’s a fucking hassle organising a pub quiz, I’ll see how I feel after Christmas – and if I can get some wedge for doing it.

– Tonka


Wolf Muller

How many musicians do you know who have brought what many people believe to be a didgeridoo into dance music…. It’s a bold move but one which has been executed to precision. Jan Schulte has incorporated the Jewish harp into many of his productions across the last two years and in recent months has collaborated alongside Cass. and Young Marco. 


The best pub in London… maybe

There is little left to be said about this fine establishment which has not already been spoken. Situated within ten seconds of the Ransom Note offices for a reason. A pub cat, welcoming bar staff, a workers sensibility and a warm heart, Thanks for this year guys.


Danny Dyer

Lad, geezer, bloke, banter, hard, lush, pints… To be honest this is arguably around ninety percent of Danny Dyer’s vocaubulary and we love him for it. Why else would you bother learning any other words really? His personality shone through gloriously in his edition of “Who Do You Think You Are?” when upon entering a grand hall he discussed the capabilities of the space for throwing a rave. Top LAD. 


Music From Memory

With what Abel Nagengast, Jamie Tiller and Tako Reyenga unearthed and released this year courtesy of their MFM label, the separation between old and new, retrospective and current, years gone by and the year that’s just left us feels like a moot point, especially when you consider the substance of what the label brought into the world. Often it felt like the usual erosions and markings of time didn’t apply to MFM’s roster anyhow.

Although Suso Sáiz’s ‘Odisea’ ‎seemed to edge furtively into new age and balearic territory his work didn’t sound confined by association, instead airing qualities which spoke of something undisturbed and undiminished. With Michal Turtle’s ‘Phantoms of Dreamland’ the aqueous, entranced jazz and eccentric DIY electronics of a neglected pioneer from Croydon felt just as relevant while their last major release of the year – Roberto Musci’s ‘Tower of Silence’ – sounded as expansive and questing as the itinerant travels that informed many of the recordings which make up the collection. Between them, the likes of Workdub and Becker / Stegmann / Zeumer fitted in seamlessly within that constellation whilst Dip In The Pool and The System sounded like gleaming pop relics for a disco where Haruomi Hosono could be conceivably blared out alongside a more cosmically inclined Hall & Oates obscurity.

Their releases all came from particular personalities but they all served to form a coherent and pure identity that maintained and in many ways surpassed the revelatory highlights they brought into being last year (Gigi Masin and Vito Ricci were particularly special) It almost felt as if MFM’s 2016 releases were pre-destined for what they’ve convincingly established as a haven for remote visionaries.

– Tim Wilson


Ben Affleck reflects on his decisions

Ben thought that finally he would finaly be taken seriously, alas, “Batman VS Superman” didn’t end up having the weight or pathos he had hoped it would. Cheer up mate, you were still better than Val Kilmer (just).

– Malcolm Fernandes


Squid Hats

The ultimate multi purpose fancy dress costume with a twist. Perfect for any occasion: boat parties, halloween and general day to day usage when you feel like looking like a squid…

– Matt Wickings


Rubadub Records

An institution in its own right who continue to provide sound advice and educate the masses, including distribution of our very first forays into becoming a record labels. Much love and respect!  


David Bowie

The year in which we lost quite possibly the most influential artist of a generation. The starman has returned to the skies leaving behind a legacy which few can contest, we even have a small shrine in our office for goodness sake.


MMA – The UKIP Edition

As if this clown of buffoons couldn’t stoop any lower. Having seen countless videos of Ukranian parliamentary brawls UKIP decided that it was time to introduce more chaos to the British political system than is already present. 


Ivan Smagghe

It wouldn’t be right to leave our new staff writer off the list. This year Ivan visited the Ransom Note offices and loved it so much that he didn’t want to leave. What can we say? What a barrel of laughs we are?
Catch up with his writing HERE



“It’s dead good and we left.” 

– Miles Simpson


The Breakbeat Revival

This one had been coming for a while. However, this was the year in which the notorious sound of rave returned to ‘mad trendy’ record bags the world over. From Fett Burger to Luca Lozano, Kasra V to Bicep, the sound is back. We welcome the leaders of the new school.


Joey Barton – (N.B. not sanctioned by R$N mgmt)

A walking contradiction and a man who doesn’t like to stand still. This year we saw Joey Barton return with bragging rights as he joined Scottish football team Rangers. However, after a short lived season in which he himself declared he was the best player in the country he has now left and returned down South facing a misconduct charge. Perhaps 2017 will be better?


Life and Death on the New York Dance Floor, 1980-1983

An inspired insight into the evolution of nightlife in New York City which cites the rise and fall of club culture across the city. Hip hop, disco and beyond alongside a sprawling urban landscape in which drugs and AIDS were rife. Tim Lawrence reflects in a captivating read. 


The brick

The idiots are winning. 



You know when everyone goes on about something but what they say about it doesn’t sound appealing at all? That’s what the Atlanta show was like for me but I finally decided to watch it and it was everything and then some. Funny, sad, surreal with a Twin Peaks feel, Atlanta will be discussed for years to come. It also had one of the best performances of the year courtesy of Brian Tyree Henry as Alfred ‘Paper Boi’ Miles.

– Lee Fairweather


Shit Ally Says

Apparently our editor says some funny things. (ed-in-chief note; it’s more a case of you can’t believe someone would actually say this sort of thing in this day and age) As a result the office decided to build him his own Twitter page in which statements can be posted with little context. Care to look into the mind of the man who holds Ransom Note together? See HERE


When Brexit got real…

When they started messing with the Toblerone we realised just how bad things were about to get. 


DJ Harvey’s gimp mask

There is little left to be said about this….


“Who what what what where, like where, what where, who, what, where, where, what, what….”

Grime reached new levels of audacity in 2016. Whilst Skepta tours the globe playing sell out shows a new generation emerges with bars for days. I wonder if he’s worked out where he is going yet?


Up To Date Festival – Pozdro Techno

Being randomly connected on Facebook earlier in the year by a friend of a friend of friend of a friend… would turn into a trip to Bialystock on the outer reaches of Poland and the Belarus border. It would also mean we discovered the incredible Up To Date Festival and an extended Polish family by year close.  Set amongst palaces, opera houses and underneath the stands of the local football team the festival was a splendour of ambient explorations, off-kilter techno and hip hop. They even have their own clothing line Pozdro Techno. Make the trip in 2017.


The Egypt Air Hijack

In a bizarre turn of events an aeroplane was hijacked by a man said to be angry about a personal situation. The worst was feared as the alarm bells of terror rang coarsely in the air. However, it turns out that up in the sky there was quite simply a misunderstanding. The passengers were in fact not in danger as one man from Aberdeen demonstrated.


Exploding telephones

Surely when building a phone the very first thing you might wish to assess is its safety… Well, apparently not. In 2016 Samsung threw caution to the wind and released the ‘Note 7’: a groundbreaking new product which was all set to challenge the iphone. The scene was set and all was looking good until one blew up, then another, then another, then Cee Lo Green’s…


UN appoints first LGBT expert

About freakin’ time eh? Following the tragic Orlando nightclub shooting the United Nations appointed its first independent advisor on issues, concerns and developments amidst the queer community. Vitit Muntarbhorn, an international law professor, stood up. Good man. 


Suncut Records

This year saw the launch of Suncut Records, a new label operating out of London. In recent months the label has released music which was perhaps assumed lost amidst the passage of time. Across the year the label has released a pair of seven inch records from Gloria Barnes and Africano respectively. The label also continues to soundtrack the Ransom Note office with a fortnightly edition of soul, funk, jazz and all between on NTS.



Louis Theroux returned with a bang this year as he attempted to learn more about the mysterious world of Scientology. Little was learnt and it all seems bonkers as ever. 


David Mancuso

An unsung hero who’s influence on the dance music community is difficult to rival. Sadly this was the year we lost the man who introduced us to ‘The Loft’  in 1970. Love Saves The Day…



In the year where feelings meant more than facts, the Oxford English Dictionary declared “post-truth” as its word of 2016.

An adjective defined as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief,” Basically if you say enough emotional shit enough times people believe it over the actual fact. 2017 is going to be interesting. 


Leonard Cohen

Heartfelt, relatable and poignant. In a year of great loss it is with some sadness that we said goodbye to a man of beautiful words. A poet, a musician and the soundtrack to many a solitary moment. 


Katie Hopkins sausage…

The wicked witch of the south struck again. In May this year she stated that she would run naked through London with a halal sausage up her bum if Sadiq Khan became mayor of London. Of course he won and we are yet to see any sort of public display, quite the coward. 


This idiot

In all honesty we aren’t even going to name him. Who knows whether we will even be alive this time next year? Let’s see…


Ransom Note Records

Possibly the most ridiculous thing R$N has ever done in its shambolic history is let Ian Mcquaid convince us to bet Ally’s wages on 300 pieces of black plastic for an unknown Italian acid banger in the vague hope we wouldn’t lose it all. Thankfully we didn’t, Ally got his monthly Irn Bru and we gained a new family member in the form of Bawrut. Number 2 finally came out this month, this time with added House Hunting and a reissue of Boyd Jarvis’ amazing proto-house classic The Music Got Me. More to come in 2017! 

Ransom Note Records Bandcamp



Japan’s toilet evolution

The latest introduction to Japan’s prolific bathroom scene comes in the form of toilet paper for your smartphone. According to research smartphones carry five times the amount of germs commonly found on a toilet seat. Gross.


The Ikea sleepover series

Kids have been camping out overnight in Ikea stores across the world. In fact this has become such a regular occurence that an official warning has since been released by the company. Amazing.



Real clowns got angry at ‘fake’ clowns who dressed up to scare people. For real.



Kind hearted purveyors of baked goods and snacks are here for us in times of trouble. 


Lord Of The Isles – In Waves

Neil McDonald released his debut LP on ESP Institute. A standout album which incorporated the charm of nature, electronic intrigue and ambient warmth. A delicious assortment of music. 


Driverless cars

The robot age approaches as companies begin to produce cars which run without human assistance. The pub lift soon cometh. 


The green swimming pool

The Olympics were held in Rio earlier this year and in all honesty they were kind of boring. However, there was a lot of chitter chatter about a blue swimming pool turning green. All seems a bit fungi to us…



Rush Hour’s frontman is truly beginning to receive the recognition he deserves as a disc jockey. In between running the shop and managing what has become a global institution he has found time to travel the world amongst friends. 


Sonar Festival

The Spanish staple of the festival calendar delivered again this year reinforcing its reputation as one of the most cutting edge events in electronic music and technology. Ally’s first time involved throwing up in the toilet of a one roomed appt we shared. 


Andrew Weatherall debut’s on Google Street View

A rare appearance of the man, the myth, the legend out in the wild on Kingsland Road.


The Snoopers Charter

Wait, was this not supposed to be a best of 2016 list? It feels a lot like 1984 to us…


The Shoreditch Falafel Stall

Quite possibly the friendliest food retailer you will find in East London. Based outside Shoreditch High Street Station these guys serve up delicious veggie goods to those from far and wide. Come rain or shine, they smile on. Well worth a visit…


Record Sales

Whilst some might complain that this is a bad thing for the music industry we must take solace in the fact that people are returning to wax. This year saw vinyl overtake digital sales for the very first time. Whilst this might mean that someone has just decided to repress Elvis for the billionth time it also means that there is hope for your local record store. 


Star Wars

The return of the franchise has brought overwhelming joy to some and groans to others. There’s even one bloke in our office who claims he hasn’t ever seen any of them…. This has been rather tainted by the untimely loss of the great Carrie Fisher yet Star Wars lives on…


Ironic DJ names…

For decades disc jockey’s have been experimenting with the concept of an alter ego or alias. However, this year saw some take it to new heights as they began to embody the damn right random. Ross From Friends, DJ Boring and DJ Seinfeld are to name a few…


George Michael

Whilst a conflicted character who struggled with addiction and mental health issues George Michael demonstrated the stunning capabilities of human kindness and spirit. His tragic death on Christmas day has since sparked an outpuring of warmth from around the world. His voice of reason and activism for LGBT rights will not be forgotten. 


The Google Dinosaur Game

We work for an online music magazine. Hence when the internet decides to crash *cough blame Virgin* there is little left to distract ourselves. Luckily Google have been here for us to save the day on one too many occasions. 


Trevor Jackson

Our friend Trevor finally managed to navigate his way through a sprawling back catalogue to bring us the music that matters. This year saw the release of previously unheard music from his infamous Playgroup project. It was pretty special. 


Gary Lineker’s Pants

It says a lot about this year that this has largely been forgotten. 



Ebay sold a Pokemon Go related product every twelve seconds during the summer when the craze began with a bang. The new virtual reality infused video game captured our imaginations for a couple of months… before we all got bored. Thank heavens for that. 


Helena Hauff

Arguably one of the most inspired selectors on the circuit this year. We watched her mesmerize with driving techno amidst the darkened woods of the English countryside at Farr Festival with bags of style.



The year of flying objects. Watch out for the Ransom Note edition next year as we continue to persuade the boss that it’s an office essential. 


The Office

A humble thank you to all whom have graced our abode across the past year. From clients to friends, writers to strangers, repair men to musicians and even to the bloke who stole our Editor’s bag and only nicked the tangerines. Good luck to one and all for 2017!


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