We asked our favourite riders what tunes get them in the mood to slap a turn, get creative or simply put a smile on their face.
Music is a very personal thing, different songs do different things to different folks. We hope that some of our favourite riders’ top tunes get your creative juices flowing, or psyche you up to go rally some trails.
This week’s Friday Mixtapes come to you from Enduro World Series’ microphone-wielder, Ric McLaughlin.
You can check out our Wise Words with Ric here.
Let me start by clearly stating that this was not easy. I’m someone who’s lucky enough to get to write a lot about bikes and I generally do so with music blaring in the background, either into my headphones or threatening the windows around me.
Sometimes, I can read back something that I’ve written years ago and make a pretty educated guess as to what I was probably listening to when I wrote it.
All that said then, choosing my top ten tracks was pretty daunting. I listen to a lot of different stuff which includes electronic music and hip-hop but it’s my greatest and first love of rock ’n’ roll music that features most heavily in this list.
Even then, there have been glaring omissions chiefly in the form of David Bowie, Radiohead and Ryan Adams. Likewise, The Verve, Stiff Little Fingers, The Chemical Brothers, Them and The Who didn’t get a shout either.
These all gnaw at me a bit so here, before I change my mind once again, is my top ten:
Scorpio Rising – Death In Vegas
This is may well be the king of all tunes. I’m a big LG fan and I’m fairly certain that this is him at his vocal zenith. Nonsensical lyrics, big plodding bass line – one of my favourite tunes ever. Death In Vegas are criminally underrated too and are well worth a Spotify trawl.
This Charming Man – The Smiths
It was a toss up between this or Panic but I think that this could be Morrissey and Marr at their very best. It’s got that ‘punctured bicycle’ line too so it’s sort of relevant here…
Still Take You Home – Arctic Monkeys
I really like the Monkey’s latest album (Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino) which split opinions but their first album (Whatever People Say I am, That’s What I’m Not) comes pretty close to perfection. This is my favourite track from it and it sums up the whole thing perfectly with it’s combination of observations of early 2000’s youth culture and stabby guitar licks.
Round Are Way – Oasis
This was maybe the toughest choice on here, this track was the B side to Wonderwall and it’s stood the test of time from when I first bought the single to now as my favourite Oasis track. There’s a version of them performing it on The White Room floating around on YouTube where they dive into Up In The Sky at the end which is amazing.
Domino – Van Morrison
It defies logic that a wee round guy from East Belfast should have as much soul as Van the Man does. This is one of those tracks that always gives you a lift no matter what is going on. Long live the Mystic of the East!
Going Down – Freddie King
Freddie King blurs blues and rock better than anyone. I listen to a lot of this when I’m in airports.
Monkey Man – The Rolling Stones
This is a Stones album track (from Let It Bleed) and is probably best known for featuring in Goodfellas (the bit when he’s being followed by the helicopter). I love their sound during this period and this one has a Faces sort of barroom feel to it as well as a lilting Clapton-esque piano on the way out.
Call On Me – The Memphis Recordings – Primal Scream
Richard Cunynghame once told me that he found it impossible to ever fully trust someone who said that they didn’t like Primal Scream and I think that that’s about as good a credo to live by as any I’ve heard. The recently released Memphis Recordings are a remarkably different interpretation of (one of) their seminal albums, Give Out But Never Give Up and this track benefits the most from the added brass/vocals/honky tonk treatment.
Every Country’s Sun – Mogwai
I’ve come to Mogwai late in life but think that it’s their latest album (apparently inspired by the bands disappointment with the dawn of Brexit) which is the best. It all rises to this epic title track. You need to listen to the whole thing to get it’s full aural awesomeness swirling around in your headphones.
I Am The Resurrection – The Stone Roses
The Roses at their very best. This probably more than any other track reminds me of being out with my mates. We’re all dads now and don’t get to do so as much as we’d like to but this song makes me look forward to the next time that we all manage to clear a weekend. Mani’s bass playing in this (the full 8-minute version) is absolutely phenomenal.