Obsessions with John Robb
Obsessions | Julian Hoffman and Birdwatching

Obsessions | Julian Hoffman and Birdwatching

February 23, 2021

"We’re in the midst of all kinds of crises ... and I think one way through these great challenges is to encourage a greater degree of kinship between species, between ourselves and the more than human world. I look at species like the Wrens finding a way despite their isolationous tendencies at non-cold periods of the year, that they are finding ways to work together to avert a potential killing crisis which is the cold. In that I see an extraordinary metaphor for what we’re currently facing when it comes to the great environmental crises of the planet - that we tend to live individualistic lives within a capitalist, economic system that encourages individual behaviour and thinking, and yet we really need to find ways of locating the collective and communal admits that if we’re to challenge many of these issues".

Julian Hoffman is a writer living beside the Prespa Lakes in northern Greece. His latest book, Irreplaceable, was published in 2019 and was a Highly Commended Finalist for the Wainwright Prize for Writing on Global Conservation and a Royal Geographical Society 'Book of the Year 2020'. "An urgent and lyrical account of endangered places around the globe and the people fighting to save them"

Find out more at: www.julian-hoffman.com

Obsessions is presented by John Robb and produced by Andrew Paine and Sophie Porter.

Obsessions | James Chapman (MAPS) & Horror Movies

Obsessions | James Chapman (MAPS) & Horror Movies

February 9, 2021

"There's a certain kind of thrill that you get from the Horror genre, that you don't get from every film... I guess I'm always looking for that film... that scares me, which is kind of a strange passion."

James Chapman a.k.a. Maps is a recording artist and producer signed to Mute Records.

His unique brand of multi-layered electronica emerged from years locked away in his bedroom.

He then moved on to build a whole studio in his home in Northamptonshire, affectionately referred to as Maps HQ. His self-taught and exploratory approach to music and composition has been key in creating his own sound.

He is also a keen remixer, and has produced official remixes for such artists as M83, The Killers, Depeche Mode, Moby, Bombay Bicycle Club and Susanne Sundfor.

James has released four studio albums, the most recent being “Colours. Reflect. Time. Loss”.

2020 saw the release of a series of remix EPs. The project, titled ‘Colours. Remixed. Time. Loss.’ unfolded throughout the summer of that year. Each track from the album ‘Colours. Reflect. Time. Loss’ was remixed, and the collection was eventually released as a cassette album on Mute. 

Obsessions | Jez Kerr & Painting

Obsessions | Jez Kerr & Painting

January 26, 2021

Jez Kerr is the bassist & vocalist from A CERTAIN RATIO.

"(I’m) basically on a mission to try and find my painting... I think everyone has got a certain style, you know? And I’m sort of trying to find, you know, the painting that’s… when you look at it you’ll go… oh.. that’s a Jez Kerr. " 

A Certain Ratio are hailed universally as pioneers of what became known as “punk funk” - the band introduced the avant-garde elements of funk, jazz, electronics, tape loops and technology to the pop song, wrapping it in a post punk aesthetic, adding great clothes and the coolest haircuts.

The band's latest album - ACR Loco - was released on Mute in 2020.

Follow Jez on Twitter @jez_kerr to see some of his beautiful paintings.

Follow ACR at www.acrmcr.com

The unedited 'Obsessions' interview with Jez is available on John Robb's You Tube page.

Obsessions is produced by Andrew Paine & Sophie Porter


Obsessions | Luke Turner & Model Aircraft

Obsessions | Luke Turner & Model Aircraft

October 19, 2020

Ep 13 Obsessions | Luke Turner & Model Aircraft

“I find it interesting that the more you get behind the history of these planes, the more you realise the history of the war and the myths of the war are a lot more complicated than we’ve been led to believe.”

Luke Turner is a writer, editor, and curator based in London. He co-founded and edits the influential online music publication The Quietus and regularly writes on music, culture, and place for a variety of magazines, websites, and broadcasters.

His first book, Out Of The Woods, was published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson in 2019. He is currently writing a book on masculinity and sexuality during WW2.

‘Obsessions’ is hosted by John Robb and produced by Sophie Porter & Andrew Paine.

Go to John Robb's Youtube page for the full unedited version of this interview.

Instagram: Luke Turner @luke_a_turner

Twitter: John Robb @johnrobb77

Twitter: Sophie Porter @OtherHalfUK

Twitter: Andrew Paine @ItPainesMe

Obsessions | Dan Chandler & Thai Food

Obsessions | Dan Chandler & Thai Food

October 11, 2020

Ep. 12 Obsessions | Dan Chandler & Thai Food

Dan Chandler is the frontman for the band SEX SWING... comprising members of implicitly trusted yet sonically nefarious outfits Mugstar, Part Chimp, Earth, Dethscalator & Dead Neanderthals.

"If you're a Thai Restaurant in this country, you can kind of get away with not using the real ingredients as most people don't know what they're eating... they are like... it's a bit spicy, it's a bit hot, it's a bit unusual, its got coconut milk in it. They're happy... and I think for the restaurant to make something truly authentic or real would be really expensive and wouldn't really be that popular... some of the dishes might put a few people off. I was cooking a soup the other day that had ants eggs in it... that's not something that would go down well on the high street."

'Obsessions' is hosted by John Robb and produced by Sophie Porter & Andrew Paine.

For the full unedited version of Dan's interview, go to John Robb's youtube page and subscribe.

Obsessions | Sandie Shaw & Buddhism

Obsessions | Sandie Shaw & Buddhism

October 5, 2020

Obsessions | Sandie Shaw & Buddhism

Sandie Shaw, MBE, is an English singer. She had her first number 1 single in 1964 at the age of 17, with ‘Always Something There To Remind Me.’

Famous for her barefoot performances, she had more than 20 Top 40 hits and more number 1 hits than any female artist in the 1960’s, including the Eurovision Song Contest winner, ‘Puppet On A String’.

Sandie retired from the stage in 2013 and works as a qualified psychotherapist.

'Obsessions' is hosted by John Robb and produced by Sophie Porter and Andrew Paine.

The full unedited version of this interview can be see on John Robb’s Youtube page.

Obsessions | David Stubbs & British Comedy

Obsessions | David Stubbs & British Comedy

September 27, 2020

Obsessions | David Stubbs & British Comedy

“British Comedy at the moment is representing life as actually lived, by the people actually living it and what that means... is a more naturalistic approach… people talking like they actually do, not some sort of hack sit-com writers idea of the way people talk. This is what you notice from clips of the 60’s and 70’s… more and more, you just think… no one talks like that…”

David Stubbs is a journalist and author whose work covers music, TV, film, sport, comedy, and cultural commentary. He has written for, among others, NME, The Wire, The Guardian, The Sunday Times, New Humanist, Uncut, The Quietus, When Saturday Comes and The Daily Mash.

He was formerly staff writer at Melody Maker between 1987 and 1998, where he divided his time between extolling the virtues of avant-rock and electronic music and writing the comedy section, Talk Talk Talk, creating the Mr Agreeable character. He also wrote scripts for Alan Davies and Bill Bailey at this time.

He is the author of numerous books, including Fear Of Music: Why People Get Rothko But Don’t Get Stockhausen (Zero, 2010), The Prince Charles Letters (Aurum, 2011) and Future Days: Krautrock And The Building Of Modern Germany (Faber, 2014). Mars By 1980, his wide-ranging study of the history of electronic music, is his latest book and is published by Faber.

Obsessions is presented by John Robb and produced by Andrew Paine & Sophie Porter.

The full unedited version of this interview can be see on John Robb’s Youtube page.


Obsessions | Benjamin Zephaniah & Tai Chi

Obsessions | Benjamin Zephaniah & Tai Chi

September 21, 2020

Ep. 9 | Benjamin Zephaniah & Tai Chi


Benjamin Zephaniah describes himself as a… poet, writer, lyricist, musician and naughty boy.


“Tai Chi is an internal martial art… in other words… you get your power from within and not from without.”


All good martial art should be about how you conduct yourself in life. You should be relaxed… if you can change something for the better, you do it… if you can’t, you got to accept it.”


Obsessions is presented by John Robb and produced & edited by Andrew Paine & Sophie Porter.


To watch the full unedited version if this interview go to John Robb’s youtube page.

Obsessions | Ian Rankin & Crosswords

Obsessions | Ian Rankin & Crosswords

September 4, 2020

Ep. 8 Obsessions | Ian Rankin & Crosswords


Ian Rankin is a Scottish crime writer, best known for his Inspector Rebus novels.

“It takes me back to that first love of language I had… sitting as a kid with a quick crossword and a little dictionary, flicking through the dictionary to see if you can find the word you’re looking for found me lots of words I didn’t know the meanings for and that increases your vocabulary and that helps you as a writer and its part of that I’m still drawn towards… for their beauty and the secret structure thats hidden within them.”

A new Rebus novel ‘A Song For The Dark Times’ will be published in October 2020.

Obsessions is presented by John Robb and produced by Sophie Porter & Andrew Paine.

Subscribe to John Robb's youtube page to see the full unedited interview.

Obsessions | Frances McKee & Astrology

Obsessions | Frances McKee & Astrology

August 27, 2020

Obsessions | Frances McKee & Astrology

Frances McKee is a Scottish singer / songwriter best known for her work with the band, The Vaselines.

Frances is also a Senior Iyengar Yoga Teacher and runs her own studio at The Yoga Extension based in Glasgow.


“There are people who just know that there is something beyond the concrete, and I’m one of those people”

Obsessions is hosted by John Robb and produced by Sophie Porter and Andrew Paine.


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