Alexis Dubus



The rules are simple(ish): they can’t repeat an album, and to just make it that little bit more interesting they have to use the same track number from another album. For example, Track 1 could be the opening track of the incredible Stone Roses’ debut ‘I Wanna Be Adored’. Track 2 could be Blur’s ‘Song 2′ – you get the idea? – basically their fave track 1,2,3 etc from 10 different albums

This month’s Fantasy Album has been curated by Alexis Dubus. Alexis is an award winning comedian, actor who has been performing for over twenty years and has written numerous Edinburgh Fringe shows; including the award winning ‘Cars and Girls‘ as himself and ‘Gallic Symbol‘ as Marcel Lucont . Alexis has also appeared in ‘Red Dwarf‘ and ‘Derek‘ and is the host of the podcast ‘Spirit of the Fringe‘.

1. Kate Bush – ‘Running Up That Hill

Narrowly beating Pet Shop Boys’ “Being Boring,” I went for a big old dramatic opener here, from possibly my favourite album of all time, “The Hounds Of Love.” This was the first pop song that made my little brain explode and it really hasn’t lost any of its power in the following 3 and a half decades. I feel old now.

2. Underworld – ‘Banstyle / Sappys Curry’

Underworld are on a different plain to any other dance act, live and on record (although I could have added any number of tracks from DJ Shadow’s Endtroducing on here). Karl Hyde’s  stream-of-consciousness lyrics weave perfectly into the pulsing rhythms and this song is an example of what they do best – contorting a track into something else midway through, rotating your mind several degrees as they do so.

3. Gene – Where Are They Now?

Once an indie kid, always an indie kid, with many fond, sweaty nights at Aylesbury Civic Centre. Crispin Hunt of The Longpigs once had 20p off me to use the payphone. I feel even older now. Anyway, I think Gene, like Mansun, The Bluetones and the aforementioned Longpigs deserve much more of a mention in the annals of that genre, all of whom had wit, flair and melodrama in bucketloads, with Gene possibly winning in the melodramatic stakes. This still sounds great.

4.Scott Walker – ‘The Amorous Humphrey Plugg’

Speaking of melodrama… While his cover of Jacky, also from Scott 2, is one of my favourite songs of all time, this track (an original) is its lesser-known sibling and probably the standout number – the production values, that soaring voice and the florid lyrics adding up to one hell of a song

5. Womack & Womack – ‘Teardrops’

I’d choose the single version over the album version, but either way this sends me right back, mostly to the edge of dancefloors as a pre-teen. I don’t know whether anyone’s still making melancholic groove like this, but I’d be surprised if anyone’s managed to top this.

6. Pulp – ‘Sheffield: Sex City’

I must have come pretty close to playing my cassette of Pulp’s “Intro” to death on rainy lunchtime walks to Aylesbury’s Oven Ready Records, especially this grimy throbbing 8-and-a-half minuter, with Jarvis’ yelps and the “where are you? / I’m here”s ringing from ear to ear. The ringleader of the indie outsider brigade, Jarvis was definitely a huge influence, especially with regard to chronicling the uniquely brilliant awfulness of everyday British life.

7. Jens Lekman – The World Moves On

What appeals to me even more than a British indie outsider? A Scandinavian indie outsider. I think my love of Norway’s Kings Of Convenience led me to this man, whose least well-received album “I Know What Love Isn’t” is my favourite (see also The Divine Comedy’s “Regeneration”), and this beautiful track, the album’s centrepiece, is a magnificently melancholic tale of love lost in a strange land. “You don’t get over a broken heart / you just learn to carry it gracefully.” Pow!

8. Guillemots – ‘We’re Here’

More melodrama! But of the overridingly positive kind. “The world is our dancefloor now….

9.Prince – ‘Purple Rain’

Remember when karaoke was thought to be a passing fad? Well my mate Leo treated it as such, rarely unable to pass a pub that offered it, in case it stopped being a thing, specifically to belt out this number (often resplendent in leather jacket). While the original could never entertain me as much as his numerous cover versions, this is still an absolute gem. Leo managed to nab some tickets for him at the O2 and his restraint to not straddle his seat and go full-volume for that song was admirable.

10. Prefab Sprout – ‘All The World Loves Lovers’

Few singer-songwriters can wring so much emotion out of a rhyming couplet like Paddy McAloon and, while this probably isn’t my favourite Prefab Sprout song, it’s up there, from the extraordinary album “Jordan: The Comeback” which my Dad would quite rightly have on constant rotation on long car trips.

11.Simon & Garfunkel – ‘A Hazy Shade Of Winter’

2-and-a-quarter minutes of folk-pop perfection, also part of Pa’s in-car repertoire.

12. The Divine Comedy – ‘Tonight We Fly’

The perfect end to so many nights of jumping up and down, largely thanks to comedian and DJ Andrew McLelland out in Melbourne. When I started playing shows out in Australia it was a pure joy to bond with so many acts out there who shared a love for indie music and oddball British comedy.

13. Eels – ‘Losing Streak’

Now we’re into ambitiously-long album territory and this is from Eel’s finest, the double-album “Blinking Lights And Other Revelations,” an insanely upbeat record given its backstory. Mark Everett’s “Things The Grandchildren Should Know” is well worth a read to fill you in.”

14. Tori Amos – ‘Taxi Ride’

Knowing I was into Kate Bush, my Dad brought back “Little Earthquakes” from a trip to the States, and I was blown away once again. Got to see her at the Palladium in 1994 (Divine Comedy as support act, complete with 7-piece band). I’ve not loved a whole album of hers as much as that first one, but “Scarlet’s Walk” came close, and I still love this mysterious melodic number.

15. Tom Waits – ‘Come On Up To The House’

Sad to say, “Mule Variations” was the first non-compilation Tom Waits album I bought, then had to seriously work my way back. But I still think this is my favourite of his, and what a soaring beast of a track this is.”

16. The Smiths – ‘Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want’

Maybe the epitome of Morrissey and Marr’s collaborative efforts, both jangly and jaded at the same time. “Hatful Of Hollow” cassette was another one played to near-breaking-point.”

17. Half Man Half Biscuit – ‘All I Want For Christmas Is A Dukla Prague Away Kit’

For a pick-me-up I could pretty much shuffle to any song from Half Man Half Biscuit’s illustrious 36-year career and it would do the job. It pains me to say it, but the genius of Nigel Blackwell might only be truly lauded when he’s gone. Often written off as a novelty band, but their longevity and lyrical genius says otherwise.”

18. Chris Morris – ‘Club News’

An absolute comedy idol, and again the forger of many a friendship over the years. While lunch hours in sixth form were often reserved for a select few listening to tapes of his original Radio 1 shows, many a night was spent at university with a new select few listening to Minidiscs of the sublime “Blue Jam.”

19. David Bowie – ‘Strangers When We Meet’

“The preceding “1.” in the title of Bowie’s Outside album was always frustrating. While I wish he’d more in the series, it kind of adds to the album’s mystique. After the dystopian oddness of the previous 18 tracks, the inclusion of this, a reworking of a track from his “Buddha Of Suburbia” soundtrack, is equally mysterious but ends proceedings beautifully. It also gave me carte blanche to break the rules and make my fantasy album 19 tracks long. R.I.P. great man.”

Fans of this feature may have noticed that Alexis has somewhat pushed the boundaries of the usual ten track album. We have given him an two day ban for curating any more music. Hope this teaches him a lesson and acts as a warning to future guests to not mess with the global powers of RGM.

Hope you enjoyed his album, a great mix of artists and makes total sense that a comedian would enjoy the narrative styles of Pulp, Divine Comedy and Halh Man Half Biscuit.

Please check out Alexis’ Marcel Lucont show ‘No. Dix‘ ‘is available on Vimeo On Demand until Aug 27th.

You can also support him on : https://ko-fi.com/alexisdubus and for any future news check out his website here

Check out a taster of Marcel Lucont below: