Rob Lowe

Graphic Artist

Rob is mainly a graphic artist but he also illustrates quite a bit, designs typefaces and even writes now and then, sometimes getting a bit political. His work is mainly about how we perceive things and try to make sense of the world. He does this using simple geometry that can turn into something quite complex. Words often appear in Rob’s work. Rob has exhibited and worked for people all over the world including Japan, New York and Belgium so far this year. If you are ever in Leeds train station Rob has a 14m mural sitting above the tracks, adding a bit of colour.

What role does music play in your day-to-day life as a creative?

I have loved music for as long as I can remember. It is central to my life and I still get excited when I hear an amazing new track or see a live band (I main see small gigs). I can’t imagine life without it. I could have picked so many different tracks for this mix.

Tell us about your mix:

Some of these songs are ones I have loved for a very long time, others are quite new but they are all songs that I will be listening to forever.

Here’s a bit of info about each track…

1_Richard Dawson – Weaver: I’m a big fan on Richard Dawson, when the preview of his new album (Peasant) came out the addition of extra singers and musicians created a new sound that was as thrilling as him on his own. I know this track is going to become one of my favourites.

2_Sacred Harp Singers – King of Peace: There is something about the heart felt, ramshackled nature of this singing that fills me with joy. It’s something that I enjoy in most of the music I love.

3_Robert Wyatt – CP Jeebies: Robert is a hero of mine, he has produced so much amazing music and stayed true to himself.

4_Bill Callahan – Day: I first saw Bill (then Smog) over twenty years ago and he’s been someone I’ve listened to and seen ever since. The album this song is off was much more upbeat than his previous ones – something to do with dating Joanna Newsom I think – but the lyrics betray the bouncing melody: “Some would ask, what are we to do with a world that crumbles to the touch?

A world that spins and dies where it stands, like trying ain’t enough?”

5_ The Chap – Dror Frangi: The Chap are an amazing live band and just as good on record. They have a humour in their songs which I think sometimes can be taken for novelty but the songs are amazingly well crafted. This one is a corker.

6_ The Blow – Parantheses: Their are a few Blow tracks which I always play this being one of them. They are so catchy and well produced. I don’t know why they weren’t huge when this came out. Also, this must be the only song named after brackets.

7_The Field Mice – Emma’s House: This is quite nostalgic for me but I still listen to it all the time. This takes me back to a time when my hair (when I had hair!) was a mop top and the Sarah 7-inch single was everything.

8_Kraftwerk – Tanzmusik: This is an amazing track which it’s quite hard to get hold of as it has never been officially digitised presumably because they are not happy with it. I’m not a huge Kraftwerk fan but I love this track, probably for all the reasons they don’t.

9_Low – Breaker: I’ve seen Low every year for ages now and they are one of my favourite bands. I could pick any number of tracks but this one reminds me of playing it on an amazing sound system whilst on holiday in Thailand. The production is really strange with all the vocals in one channel.

10_The Sea Urchins – Please Rain Fall: Another dip into my indie pop past. The Sea Urchins made some wonderful songs and at such a young age, they were on 16 when they first started recording.

11_ Supreme Dicks – The Arabian Song: These are another one of my favourite bands and such an odd bunch. I saw them live about 18 years ago and again recently when they had there catalogue of music realised by Jagjaguwar and the brilliant Upset the Rhythm put a gig on. They were still as all over the place as when I first saw them but they always just hold it together in the best way.

12_ David Thomas Broughton – Ain’t Got No Sole: David Thomas Broughton is another great live artist. He lived in North Korea for a while, I’m not sure what that says. There is a film about him that I appear in for a second whilst watching him play at the End of the Road festival. I love the lyrics and the delivery of them in this song.

13_ Danielson – Did I Step On Your Trumpet: A lot of my choices are bands that are brilliant live and Danielson are as well, although they don’t play often. There is so much going on here it’s quite a complex song but it still retains a lightness of touch.

14_ The USA Is A Monster – Okeepa Ceremony: Ok I’m repeating myself now but the USA Is A Monster were one of the best live bands EVER. They were much heavier live but so tight. They ended up calling it a day as they just couldn’t get enough people to buy their records but they should have been big, they were better than most of the music around at the time.

15_ Mahjongg – Jamdek: Another band that should have had a big following but only had a handful of people coming to see them live.

16_Smog – Song: Ok, so this is the second Bill song but it’s different to Day. There is a little bit of Captain Beefheart (Bat Chain Puller era) in there and a general sassiness that is addictive.

17_Theoretical Girls – Theoretical Girls (Live): I could have easily have ended with the second track from Glen Branca’s Lesson No.1 ep but instead I thought I go for this track of his No-Wave band. The energy here is immense.

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Like Trying Aint Enough

  1. Richard Dawson – Weaver
  2. Sacred Harp Singers – King of Peace
  3. Robert Wyatt – CP Jeebies
  4. Bill Callahan – Day
  5. The Chap – Dror Frangi
  6. The Blow – Parantheses
  7. The Field Mice – Emma’s House
  8. Kraftwerk – Tanzmusik
  9. Low – Breaker
  10. The Sea Urchins – Please Rain Fall
  11. Supreme Dicks – The Arabian Song
  12. David Thomas Broughton – Ain’t Got No Sole
  13. Danielson – Did I Step On Your Trumpet
  14. The USA Is A Monster – Okeepa Ceremony
  15. Mahjongg – Jamdek
  16. Smog – Song
  17. Theoretical Girls – Theoretical Girls (Live)