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Dead Good Tunes – Kevin Sampson’s The Killing Pool playlist

Do you regularly read a book and listen to music at the same time?

If so, you’ll love our ‘Dead Good Tunes’ features. We’ve asked crime and thriller authors to provide soundtracks to their books and then we publish the playlist for you.

This month it’s the turn of Kevin Sampson, who’s provided us with a soundtrack to his new novel The Killing Pool. These tunes are eclectic, mellow, edgy and perfectly fit with the main character in Sampson’s novel DCI McCartney.

Kevin explains why:

Even though DCI Billy McCartney is neither an alcoholic nor a divorcee, he is a classic loner. Comfortable with his own company, Mac has arrived at a state of grace where his ‘thing’ is Americana, Alt Country, folk old and new and a bit of bluegrass. But Mac is also weak for classic melancholia in whatever form that takes. He’s moved to tears by Puccini, Erik Satie, Glen Campbell; he loves Shelby Lynne and Morrissey (though not The Smiths). He’ll have crushes on individual tracks by artists as diverse as Sufjan Stevens and Interpol, then never play them again – ever.

It was not ever thus. In his 50s now, McCartney was selected for his first proper drug surveillance job on the basis of his familiarity with the 1990 club scene. He staked out an up-and-coming dealer from his base at Liverpool’s Quadrant Park to Full Circle in Berkshire all the way to Amnesia, Space and the Ku in Ibiza, never once looking or sounding out of place. He could walk into a club and tell you if it was DJ Harvey, Alfredo or Danny Rampling playing. McCartney is a complex, conflicted dude whose music really is the soundtrack to his life and, as such, much of that music offers up clues to the person Mac is; the man he has become.

There might be relics of the old McCartney on this playlist; he’s a sucker, still, for anything with the potential to take him to another place. But if you were to ask Mac, today, for songs that are key in his life, he’d give you some of these:

The Unthanks – Starless
Calexico – Black Heart
Low – Weight of Water
Morrissey – Seasick Yet Still Docked
Patti Scialfa – Town Called Heartbreak
Furnace Mountain – Wandering Aengus
The Decemberists – The Tain
Antony & The Johnsons – Hope There’s Someone
Glen Campbell – Turn Around, Look At Me
Shelby Lynne – Leavin’
Interpol – All Of The Ways
Sufjan Stevens – Impossible Soul
Deer Tick – Goodbye Dear Friend

Listen Here: DCI McCartney’s Playlist
Want to learn more about The Killing Pool: watch the trailer


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