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

True crime, immersive fiction and boybands in space

Welcome back to Earworms, our weekly feature bringing you the most interesting podcast recommendations from the people with their fingers on the pulse. This week's list includes immersive fiction, incisive interviews and boybands in space, among others.

We're also rounding up some of this week's new podcast releases, with mental wellness, mysterious true crime documentaries, and explorations of belonging and identity in modern Britain.

What’s in the industry’s ears?

Bernard Achampong - Co-founder, Unedited

I'm getting back into immersive audio (after a season of docs and interviews). The Prophesy from Audible is one of those titles where casting, story, and sound design work well together. It's clever without being too literal. If you liked Messiah on Netflix, you might like this, too.

Jack Howson, Head of audio, Peanut and Crumb

Believe it or not, in 2022 I lived in four different places in London… primarily because of the chaos that is the London rental market. So I’ve been relishing Michael Walker’s new series Crash Course, a broad and in-depth study of the housing crisis in this country. Walker is a brilliant communicator, and he’s doing the Lord's work by amplifying the voices of tenants and campaigners.

Simon Hunter - Planning director, Zenith 

I’ve been listening to On with Kara Swisher – Kara is a talk podcast superstar but her most recent show On is something that really has appealed to me, in that it covers topics and areas that are in the zeitgeist but delivered a compelling way thanks to her questioning style and interesting guests that make this a must listen.

Francesca Turauskis - Digital editor, PodBible

I find it interesting to note trends in new shows, and recently it seems like we have a few of note focusing on one of two topics: space and the Soviet Union. Right this second, I’m listening to a podcast that falls into both those categories. The iHeartPodcasts/Kaleidoscope show The Last Soviet is about the only cosmonaut on the Mir space station when the Soviet Union fell. Lance Bass from N*SYNC is (surprisingly) the perfect narrator for the story and I’m obsessed with the fact that he is a trained cosmonaut himself!

Chloe Straw - Managing director, AudioUK

I currently spend a lot of my listening time listening to The News Agents which is produced by Persephonica. I love the presenters’ ability to use words to paint a really clear picture of where they are and what is happening, transporting you to be there alongside them. 

Freshly Dropped

Cover Up: Ministry of Secrets

Digging into the mysterious disappearance of wartime secret agent Lionel Crabb, Cover Up: Ministry of Secretsdeals with cover-ups, spycraft, royal involvement and secret files that won’t be unlocked for more than thirty years. Hosted by writer and historian Giles Milton and produced by Somethin' Else, the series launched on 1 March, with new episodes weekly.

I am. I have

The tenth series of Happiful Magazine's mental health podcast launched this week, starting off with an interview with Sunday Times bestselling author Vex King. The podcast digs into the factors that influence our mental health, and how we can take steps to improve it if necessary. The first episode of season 10 launched 28 February, with new episodes weekly.

Murder In The North

Hit Scandinavian true crime podcast Murder In The North has this week officially launched in the English language, after shooting to the top of the charts in Finland, Poland and the Netherlands. The podcast debuted in English on 28 February, and each week looks at some of the most shocking cases to hit the Nordics.

Where's Home Really?

Hosted by writer and restaurant critic Jimi Famurewa, Where's Home Really? examines the elements that define how we think about ourselves and our heritage. The first episode was released on Thursday 2 March, and features comedian Stephen K. Amos as the guest.

Switchblade Sisters Social Club

A new true crime podcast coming from the Good Wives Network, Switchblade Sisters Social Club sees sisters Dee Safieh & Randa Safieh-Angeles delving into cases that touch on all of their worst fears. The show launched 2 March.