6 new podcasts to listen to this week

These are our top podcast picks.

Yolanthe Fawehinmi
Thursday 18 April 2024 16:24 BST
Edurne Pasaban from Spain is one of the women featured in BBC Sounds four-part podcast Amazing Sport Stories: Chasing Mountains (Edurne Pasaban/PA)
Edurne Pasaban from Spain is one of the women featured in BBC Sounds four-part podcast Amazing Sport Stories: Chasing Mountains (Edurne Pasaban/PA)

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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas

Editor

Are you interested in hearing more about American football and mountaineering? Or maybe just friends talking about the latest pop culture trends? Either way, there’s a podcast you’d enjoy listening to this week.

1. Hype And Then Some

Streaming platform: All streaming platforms and YouTube

Genre: Fashion

When Kesi, MBT and Tobi started Hype And Then Some – formally known as Don’t Believe The Hype – in February 2020, they wanted to talk about fashion, culture and everything in between.

Now on episode 148, the fortnightly podcast has continued to grow, and recently announced a £100 giveaway and have veered into the world of fashion themselves with their new chic midnight blue ‘And Then Some’ hoodies.

The co-hosts kicked things off with a segment called Tables Trainers, Trainers Tables, where they went through their latest footwear purchases, including the Maison Margiela tabi boots in calf leather – which Kesi admits take her out of her comfort zone – the triple black Salomon XT-6 trainers and the Reebok classic Maison Margiela tabi trainers.

They then went on to speak about Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs’ raids, and what it’s going to take to hold the American rapper accountable. The ongoing row over royalties between TikTok and Universal Music Group (UMG), accepting cookies on the internet, the evolution of technology, the recent rap battle between J Cole and Kendrick Lamar and so much more was discussed.

Sometimes on podcasts with multiple hosts, it’s easy for everyone to just agree with each other, but I enjoyed listening to everyone fight for their corner, “stand on business” and refuse to become a victim to the hype.

(By Yolanthé Fawehinmi)

2. Amazing Sport Stories: Chasing Mountains

Streaming platform: All streaming platforms

Genre: Sport

Yes, the new BBC Sounds four-part podcast Amazing Sport Stories: Chasing Mountains is all about mountaineering, but it’s also about what makes us human, including mental health.

Hosted by journalist Joanna Jolly and rock climber Kathy Karlo, the series follows the stories of five mountaineers, Edurne Pasaban from Spain, Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner from Austria, and Nives Meroi from Italy, and South Korean climbers Oh Eun-sun and Go Mi-young, who are trying to become the first women to reach the summits of the 14 highest mountains in the world.

“I’m tired, I’m really tired,” said Pasaban, while she was climbing K2 – the second-highest mountain on Earth, after Mount Everest – which has earned the nickname of the “Savage Mountain”.

The listening experience of Amazing Sport Stories: Chasing Mountains is intentional, immersive and inspiring. As a listener, you are compelled to root for them all.

(By Yolanthé Fawehinmi)

3. The Competition

Streaming platform: Wondery+, Amazon Music and wide on April 29

Genre: Sport

Maybe it’s all the American movies we watched growing up, but there’s something undeniably fascinating about US teen culture – especially when it comes to the intense focus on social status. So Wondery and Pineapple Street Studios’ new miniseries, The Competition, is instantly compelling.

Hosted by award-winning producer Shima Oliaee, it takes us behind-the-scenes at the Distinguished Young Women (DYW) contest – a lucrative scholarship programme that sees 50 teenage girls from different US states travel to Alabama to compete for a huge cash prize and future career-boosting kudos.

Of course, there’s pageantry. The girls have to prove their physical fitness, perform, as well as being academically excellent over-achievers. Stakes are high and so is the pressure – as Oliaee remembers from her own time as a contestant 20 years ago.

She’d thought the competition “was going to change my life”, especially as a first-generation Iranian-American with “big dreams” but without the family money to fund them. But she lost – a tough blow at the time. When she’s invited back as a judge, the memories come flooding back.

Oliaee accepts the invite on condition that she can make a podcast. The Competition follows seven contestants through their journeys, shining light on their personal motivations and fears, as well as the unevenness of the playing field where their family demographics and financial backgrounds are concerned.

(By Abi Jackson)

4. Baldy and The Big Fella

Streaming platform: All streaming platforms

Genre: Sport

With the help of uplifting music, jingles, sound bites, chemistry and great diction from two friends from Teeside, Baldy (Mark) – who has followed the sport for 40 years – and The Big Fella (Chris) – who is a newbie – it almost felt like I was listening to a long-standing sports radio show.

But in reality, Baldy and The Big Fella only started recording their podcast last year in October, and have had guests on the podcast including the UK operations manager of the Jacksonville Jaguars, and met the commissioner of the NFL, Roger Goodell, Sky Sports presenter Neil Reynolds, and NFL legend Maurice Jones Drew among many others.

In this week’s episode, the co-hosts speak about fantasy football with Matt Cullen (JTT Cup), answer some questions from curious listeners, and updates about previous guests, including Gathering of Strangers and The Darlington Steam.

Baldy and The Big Fella is an enjoyable and insightful listen for anyone who is into American football or is new to the game.

(By Yolanthé Fawehinmi)

Spotlight on…

5. True Talks With The Thorpes

Streaming platform: All streaming platforms

Genre: Personal stories

Full-time content creators Tara and Adrian Thorpe, who have gained thousands of followers across Instagram, TikTok and YouTube since the coronavirus lockdown, now have a podcast called True Talk With The Thorpes.

In their eighth episode, they are joined by their pastors Courtney and Frances Lowe, and speak about the evolution of their relationship – they have been together for 20 years and married for 10 – and their Christian faith.

They discussed Tara’s past alcoholism, and why they were close to getting a divorce – Tara prayed for her husband Adrian to cheat – bitterness, and what eventually saved their marriage.

Laced with humour, the vulnerability shared in this podcast was unmatched and a beautiful display of the power of love, faith and redemption. It also showed how complex relationships can be at times and why asking for help may be the next best step.

(By Yolanthé Fawehinmi)

6. Orange Country

Streaming platform: All streaming platforms and YouTube

Genre: Comedy

Orange Country is back for a second season with songwriter Shane McAnally and beloved reality star Gina Kirschenheiter.

They waste no time and get right into the recent shenanigans happening in the latest season of The Real Housewives of Orange County – if you aren’t a huge fan, this episode may not be for you – and dive in deep about what alliances surprised them the most.

They also spoke about the Beverley Hills Housewives, Bravo Housewives, how the franchise has become a “phenomenon empire” over the years and why people are still “uppity” about it and refuse to watch.

Kirschenheiter, who has been on The Real Housewives of Orange County, admitted that the last six years she was on the reality show were transformative for her.

“I’ve never felt taken advantage of and saw it as an opportunity,” she said. It was “therapeutic” and “cathartic” for her.

(By Yolanthé Fawehinmi)

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