Earworms: What the industry’s been listening to this week

A new podcast about real-life alien encounters, plus recommendations from Spotify, AdLarge, Content is Queen and more

This week is full of exciting new launches to binge-listen to from a nostalgic Nickelodeon rewatch show sure to bring you back to childhood to an even more bizarre podcast by Global featuring real-life encounter stories with extraterrestrial beings.

We also have new voices featured for our industry-picked podcast recommendations including ones from Content is Queen, AdLarge, Spotify, that have shared their favourite podcasts that they have been listening to this week. 

What’s in the industry’s ears?

Imriel Morgan - Founder and CEO, Content is Queen

I've been listening to a few things, but the show that's captured my attention most recently is If Books Could Kill. I saw this on the Pocket Casts discovery page. The bubblegum-coloured artwork caught my eye. I'm always on the hunt for a good book podcast with a twist, and If Books Could Kill doesn't disappoint. Michael Hobbes and Peter Shamshiri look at airport bestsellers and hilariously dissect and critique how bad they are for humanity. The takedown of Malcolm Gladwells Outliers and Freakonomics was delightfully savage.

Ilwira Marciszek - Senior VP and head of revenue operations and digital sales, AdLarge

I have been listening to Mina AF hosted by HGTV's Mina Starsiak Hawk. It's not a podcast about home design, although that's what Mina is known for. Mina brings her unfiltered, badass female energy to the conversations and everyday issues she tackles on the show. Listening to her show feels like I just grabbed drinks and caught up with my BFF.

Rak Patel - Head of sales EMEA, Spotify

I’m a loyal fan of Talk of the Devils by The Athletic as it gives me everything I need for my United news and analysis. I find it’s a particularly fun and easy listen when I’m on the road. I’ve also recently gotten into Parenting Hell. I’m a father of four so I can definitely relate to Rob & Josh’s stories - they're hilarious to listen to and definitely make me feel better about my own parenting woes!

Kate Scott-Dawkins - Global director for business intelligence, GroupM

The two podcasts that I’ve been listening to most recently are Bloomberg Surveillance and Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me. Bloomberg does a good job at keeping listeners in the news flow, and providing varied perspectives on what’s happening in the economy, and Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me is one of my all time favourites - hilarious and topical. I've really enjoyed the fresh slate of panellists they've added in recent years.

Jessie Sampson - Communications manager, IAB UK

I’m a big fan of Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness. The best ones are where he’s chatting to an academic about something like the history of rubbish collection in the US (way more interesting than it sounds), cultural diversity in the ancient Mediterranean, or a day in the life of a coral reef. The latest episode is on the history of Valentine’s Day with an expert in Georgian courtship – who knew that people also used to send cards to their enemies on Valentine's Day containing spiteful sonnets!

Freshly dropped

These are some of our picks for the most interesting new podcasts (and podcast series) launching this week, including a range of genres and styles.


A new Podmasters podcast with journalism legend Michael Crick, former founding member of the Channel 4 news team and former political editor of BBC News’ current affairs programme Newsnight. The series, titled Mugshots, will see Crick profiling key figures making headlines in the news and how they made an impact in society. The first episode debuted 13 February and new episodes will continue to come out weekly.

Ned's Declassified Podcast Survival Guide!

A nostalgic throw-back series featuring some of the original cast of the 2004 Nickelodeon series Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. The podcast is hosted by Devon Werkheiser, Lindsey Shaw, and Daniel Curtis Lee relive their acting days as they rewatch episodes of the series as well as invite some special guests who can relate to their experiences as well. First episode premiered on 15 February and will continue to be released weekly. 

Marc Summers Unwraps

Former host of Nickelodeon's Double Dare and Unwrapped host on the Food Network, Marc Summers has now decided to enter the world of podcasting with his new Believe Limited series - Marc Summers Unwraps. Each episode, the television presenter sits down with big names across the entertainment industry to “unwrap” the success stories behind their careers. First episode debuted 13 February and features actor and theatre star Anthony Ramos as the first guest. 

Alien Kidnap Club

For a bit of a more bizarre listen this weekend, Global has just launched a new podcast that explores UFOs, extraterrestrial beings, and questioning if this is the right time to start taking aliens seriously. The six-part series titled Alien Kidnap Club features Radio X presenter Johnny Vaughan in conversation with people who have experienced first-hand accounts of visits by extra-terrestrial beings. All episodes are already available to listen to on Global Player and will be coming out every Wednesday on all other platforms. 

The Flipside with Paris Lees

Series 2 of the successful science and story-telling, The Flipside with Paris Lees, premiered this week on BBC Sounds. Each episode, the award-winning journalist explores two stories that feel opposing and explores themes of envy, persuasion, procrastination, climate activism, and more with expert opinions and observations from psychologists on how they affect human behaviour.