Moddi Unsongs, Kodi, and Catherine Rayner

Moddi Unsongs


Moddi, or Pål Moddi Knutsen, is a Norwegian folk musician whose latest project is an album of previously-banned covers, Unsongs.

Admittedly, few of them are familiar to me, but I recognise Kate Bush’s Army Dreamersbanned from BBC radio during the first Gulf War – and Pussy Riot’s Punk Prayer.

Moddi’s voice is endearingly awkward, reminding me of Björk or, especially during Open LetterDolores O’Riordan. I really like June Fourth 1989: From the Shattered Pieces of a Stone it Begins, Army Dreamers, and The Shaman and the Thief.


I recently upgraded my home internet connection – previously I was only able to receive a paltry 1MB download speed – and the first thing I did was buy a device on which I could install Kodi.

Kodi® (formerly known as XBMC™) is an award-winning free and open source (GPL) software media center for playing videos, music, pictures, games, and more.

I’tim-and-eric-mind-blownm really not sure how it’s legal – it’s something to do with the fact that nothing is ever downloaded to your device – but it allows you to stream essentially any TV show or Movie at any time. Mind blown.

So far, I’ve watched a bunch of shows and Movies: Harley and the Davidsons (made-for-TV bobbins), Hail, Caesar! (very good), and Westworld (OMG!! AMAZING!!!11); and I’m planning to get rid of my Sky TV dish.

Catherine Rayner


My 3yo daughter has a copy of The Bear Who Shared. I can’t say I’m a fan of the story, but the illustrations are beautiful. It’s both written and illustrated by Rayner and I’ve since found out that she has won awards for her artwork.

She has quite a few kids books out, and if they’re anything like the one I’ve read, I’d recommend taking a look at the art, rather than the story.

Dots & Co, Dara O’Briain’s Go 8-Bit, and 10 American Presidents

Here’s another attempt at pulling together a few things I’ve been enjoying recently.

Dots & Co – the sequel to Dots, and Two Dots – is a third instalment of the incredibly addictive mobile game. A glorified version of Connect Four, it’s beautiful, beautifully simple, and I’m already several hours deep into it.

On a similar theme, Dara O’Briain’s Go 8-Bit is a new show produced for UK TV Channel Dave.

Starting life as a rather more raucous-looking Edinburgh Fringe Festival show, regular gamers Steve McNeil and Sam Pamphilon are joined by reliable hosts Ellie Gibson and O’Briain. Throughout, audiences can watch minor celebrities play classic games such as Sensible Soccer, Street Fighter II Turbo, and Chuckie Egg.

A bit like GamesMaster for those of us who have still not grown up.

I’d initially leaped upon 10 American Presidents, thinking it was another Dan Carlin podcast (If you’re a history fan, go listen to Hardcore History) but he’s actually only the first of many guest hosts, each of whom tell us the story of their favourite US President.

Carlin does Nixon in episode 1, and tells a gripping story, as always. Mike Duncan is someone who is new to me, though, and his episode on George Washington is really interesting, especially for someone who is still reading Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton biography.