People Club photo by Anna Wyszomierska

LUCKY 7 is the feature where we ask artists to name their 6 favourite songs by others, and a lucky 7th song of their own…today it’s a Berlin based ex-pat indie pop collective who bring together a diaspora of musical influences and a plethora of political invective. Fittingly called People Club they tie together the bittersweetness of Joan As Policewoman with the slick playing of the Spinners, and it’s a heady and edifyingly smooth mix. They formed when things were hot, sticky and normal in the summer of 2018 in Berlin, meeting over the sometimes unseemly pages of craigslist, for this is the modern day equivalent of a card in a record shop window. Guitarist, the brilliantly named Saxon Gable (reminiscent of The Seeds’ Sky Saxon) put in an ad for like-minded peeps and strangely enough none of the band that assembled were German, but had all ended up there recently, or were headed there soon, answering a clarion call to be an oasis of indie in a beautiful but brutalist concrete desert.

Saxon and bassist Ray Sonder were from Sydney, Australia, keyboardist Pete Costello from the people’s republic of Yorkshire, drummer Drew Deal a North Island New Zealander and finally singer Sarah Martin hailed from Boston but had left NYC disillusioned with the increasingly hostile politics. Enamoured in particular with the socially conscious lyrics of Marvin Gaye and Gil Scott Heron, they came together, after writing forty or so songs with a debut 12″ called “Lonesome/Better” picked up some good airplay, and decent backers and were all ready to slay in their subtly beautiful way until you know what happened. It hasn’t stymied their resolve or work ethic, and they’ve hunkered down, carried on their prolific writing including an album called “Kill Scott” and more recently the song “Lay Down Your Weapons” detailing police brutality.

People Club have now got an entrancing second single called “Francine” taken from a forthcoming EP called “Take Me Home” (out in May).

With such a ready made identity drawn together from five very different backgrounds, we were keen to see what influences they’d come up with for the Lucky 7 and it’s a beguiling mix, so let’s crack on shall we?

People Club “Francine” artwork

1. Julia Jacklin – Don’t Know How To Keep Loving You

We are very fond of this song. It’s so simple and raw. Everything ties in together perfectly, and the sentiment of the song is hammered home effortlessly. It’s been in our playlist since 2019, and it’s not going anywhere. This song will always sound fresh, it’s a future classic.

2. Donny Hathaway – Song for You

This song is a one-off, the lyrics and melody are flawless and truly transcendental. Somehow it seemed to have touched Donny in a way we can only imagine. His vocal delivery is so excruciatingly intense. Listening to this song makes you forget that anything exists. You can hear his pain, his joy, his journey. One of the best.

3. Kate Bush – Running up that Hill (A Deal With God) 

We’re big Kate Bush fans and this song is a fantastic introduction to a wonderfully complex and nuanced artist. The opener to her magnum opus ‘Hounds Of Love’, it at once invades your personal space. It’s just really powerful and assertive, and challenges so many stereotypes of what a British female solo artist was in 1985 when it was released. Kate is a true pioneer and we all have something to learn from her.

4. Andrew Bird – Bloodless

The lyrics to this song only truly sink in after 100+ listens. Trust us, we should know. ‘And the poems they explode like bombs, The gentry Is drinking Moet Chandon, Bloodless for now.’ So catchy too. What a legend.

5. Prince – Erotic City

This is an ultra deep cut from the Minnesota master, oozing with sexuality and groove. It’s the B-side to his 1984 release ‘Let’s go Crazy’, and it hits so hard. Prince explained that he recorded the tune after seeing Parliament-Funkadelic in LA in 1983. Check the lyrics and the sped-up and slowed down vocal trickery. Top drawer.

6. SAULT – Wildfires

If you haven’t listened to SAULT already, go do it now. Words cannot do justice. Just listen to this track and the rest of their discography and prepare to be a different person.

7. Tiflis Transit – Bazon’s Song

Tiflis Transit are a special treasure for those in the know. This song is amongst their best, it somehow unites the feeling of the great outdoors and expansion with an almost smothering intimacy. Really magical stuff. Born out of Wuppertal / Berlin, two of our favourite cities (the latter where we all live too!)

Normally, the “Lucky 7th” song would be one of their own but I’ll let them get away with this transgression of the rules on this occasion as this People Club are my kind of people.

The song “Francine” tackles topics of addiction and lovelessness and the video tells the story of being your own worst enemy…and rather than “Running Up That Hill” it does include some great running on the spot choreo….


Check out the details for their forthcoming releases at the link below: