What other podcasts should I listen to?
February 28, 2014 10:27 AM   Subscribe

I listen to podcasts while driving and while cleaning. I currently have 3 on rotation: Welcome to Night Vale, Spilled Milk, and the Metafilter podcast. The latter two I like because I like listening to 2-3 people who get along well chatting conversationally about things I might be interested in, joking, etc. Night Vale I like because it's short enough to listen to in one go and it's a fun set of stories set in a consistent world that I enjoy. Please recommend me some more podcasts I can get on iTunes. Not interested in celebrity gossip, history, dry science, or story podcasts longer than 30 minutes per episode. Especially interested in cooking, parenting, self-improvement, and shows with big archives.
posted by Night_owl to Media & Arts (26 answers total) 85 users marked this as a favorite
Tank Riot?
posted by WidgetAlley at 10:34 AM on February 28, 2014

You might like The Thrilling Adventure Hour. You can download episodes from iTunes or listen online over at The Nerdist.

I really, really like the Sparks Nevada, Marshal on Mars episodes. Most of them clock in at less than 30 minutes. Start from the beginning.
posted by topoisomerase at 10:39 AM on February 28, 2014 [4 favorites]

You might like The Moth. Short stories, told on stage with little-to-no-preparation. Most are very well told.
posted by jquinby at 10:43 AM on February 28, 2014 [6 favorites]

CBC The Spark Awesome technology podcast (with an academic and sociological bent that is also very accessible) from Canadian public radio. Also has 242 episodes to date, and all are very long.
posted by Hawk V at 10:43 AM on February 28, 2014

Best answer: The Bugle podcast. I save this to listen to while doing stuff I don't want to do.
posted by readery at 10:43 AM on February 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

Always Record has good convo's, as does 42 Minutes.
posted by jbenben at 10:45 AM on February 28, 2014

The Moth can be REALLY depressing because it is people telling personal stories. Sometimes the stories are funny, but often the story teller will add some tragic gripping twist halfway through. Every time the story turns horrifying, it felt like getting sucker punched. YMMV.
posted by jbenben at 10:49 AM on February 28, 2014 [4 favorites]

Best answer: Can you say whether you like funny or normal conversations? There are a lot of shows run by comedians that run the gamut from gross to mundane life stuff to deeply philosophical, but that often go for riffing and jokes over anything else. And there are shows by non-comedians that are less funny but more conversational.

Anyway, this is where I recommend Jordan Jesse Go, one of the first "funny people discussing everyday stuff" podcasts, and one of my favorites. Definitely massive archives too.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:50 AM on February 28, 2014 [1 favorite]

I like The Splendid Table for cooking. Enormous archive.
posted by cecic at 11:01 AM on February 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

It runs about an hour and change (I used to have a commute that, coming and going, was also about an hour and change so it worked out nicely) and so may be too long for your tastes, but I like the Nerdist podcast, both the "hostful" (no guests) and guest episodes.

I just found out that Matthew Amster-Burton has another podcast besides Spilled Milk: Closed for Logging, which is him and his co-host who I think is a local comic, plus a guest.

The Bugle is one of the few podcasts I listen to the second it shows up, and not just because it's topical. I think if I was going to point someone to an introductory episode (they've been intermittent lately because John Oliver is busy), it would probably be the one from the week Thatcher died, but the recent one about Sochi was pretty funny.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:02 AM on February 28, 2014

I'm a big fan of many of the Maximum Fun podcasts (My Brother, My Brother, and Me, a comedy advice show; Risk!, storytelling; Judge John Hodgman, judging; Sawbones, humorous medical history) (also the home of the aforementioned Jordan Jesse Go). They fairly recently launched a parenthood podcast called One Bad Mother (now up to episode 46). Note: all of these except Sawbones consistently run around an hour, and all have a conversational/humorous tone within their respective spheres. (Sawbones is 30-40 minutes.)

I listen to some of the Slate gabfests (Political and Double X), and they recently launched a parenthood podcast (Mom and Dad Are Fighting), although I can't vouch for its specific quality.

Nthing Thrilling Adventure Hour, although I'm more of a Beyond Belief-er.

Finally, Pop Culture Happy Hour, assuming your opposition to celebrity gossip is not an opposition to pop culture in general.
posted by pitrified at 11:28 AM on February 28, 2014 [6 favorites]

The slate gabfests are pretty good: political and XX (both mentioned above) and also the culture gabfest. I don't love the parenting one as much but I am not a parent.

For food related podcasts, I like the splendid table (already mentioned), the BBC food programme, and NPR does a food one that is a collection of food-related tidbits from their news shows. It's short and sweet. KCRW out of LA also does a food podcast. None of these fit the "people sitting around talking about things" format though--they feel like more traditional radio shows.
posted by quaking fajita at 11:50 AM on February 28, 2014

I really like 99% Invisible which is always under 30 minutes (usually around 15) and focuses on one specific design topic per episode. Design might sound boring, but they've had all kinds of interesting episodes about (for example) the blue and white "wheelchair" symbol, the race to build the highest sky-scrapper in New York City, how magazine covers are designed, and so on. I use this as a nice space filler, when I've finished one podcast, but still have time to kill (a little bit more time to clean or walk the dog, or whatever).

I also like The Truth. Their tagline is "movies for your ears." It's well produced radio-play type stories, which are usually between 15 and 20 minutes long.

You might be interested in We're Alive: A Zombie Podcast which is about a small group of survivors. Up to 128 episodes so far. Usually around 30 minutes, but some of the earlier episodes are longer.

You might also like Wormwood. A weird supernatural mystery with fantastic characters.
posted by OrangeDisk at 12:13 PM on February 28, 2014

The Dinner Party Downloadis pretty conversational and a lot of fun.
posted by SLC Mom at 1:01 PM on February 28, 2014

I think Read it and Weep would be perfect for you. It's three guys and a guest disscusing and making fun of a bad book, movie, or t.v. show. (That's a direct link to their site but they're also on iTunes.) Hands-down my favorite podcast.
posted by blue_and_bronze at 2:25 PM on February 28, 2014

You might also like Unfictional. It's a story podcast produced by KCRW. Episodes are under 30 minutes.
posted by topoisomerase at 3:10 PM on February 28, 2014

I'm very fond of the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast, which started off as a survey of Lovecraft's writing but is now exploring weird fiction more generally. It might be worth a try even if you don't like Lovecraft or scary stories, as it fits the "two friends chatting" descriptor extremely well.
posted by howfar at 4:40 PM on February 28, 2014

vinyl cafe is similar to Night Vale with a consistent world told through multiple stories, most of them quite sweet and very Canadian.
posted by saucysault at 5:13 PM on February 28, 2014

Couldn't completely tell whether you wanted to limit the question to all podcasts under 30 mins or just story ones, and non-story can go over. If you want everything under 30, might want to just skip over my comment and go on to the next one...

Back To Work is nominally a self-improvement podcast that kinda wanders all over the place. Tends to run about an hour and half per installment but it's entertaining and does actually usually provide some helpful thoughts.

The Alton Browncast is sometimes cooking-related, but can often get into TV production or whatever he's into at the moment. Still usually worth a listen. Times out between a half hour and an hour.
posted by neilbert at 5:22 PM on February 28, 2014

How Stuff Works podcasts are pretty good, IME. I especially like Stuff You Should Know and Stuff to Blow Your Mind.
posted by kathrynm at 5:46 PM on February 28, 2014

Nth-ing Thrilling Adventure Hour. It is awesome.

You might try the various podcasts at Relic Radio. They're Old Time Radio shows, grouped by genre, so each podcast will have a mix of shows that are all vaguely similar. I can personally vouch for The Horror and Strange Tales being a lot of fun (I haven't listened to the others) - if you like the weirdness of Night Vale, you might like those.

PS - Quiet, Please is the best Old Time Radio horror show, IMHO, and is played frequently on both of the above podcasts. Well worth checking out.
posted by darchildre at 7:19 PM on February 28, 2014

The BBC has Cook the Perfect…, Food Programme, and The Kitchen Cabinet.

If you're interested in mindfulness through a Zen Buddhism orientation, Open Air with Cheri Huber has twelve years of weekly shows in the archives.
posted by Lexica at 7:54 PM on February 28, 2014

Listening to smart, funny people talk to each other about various, even random, things is my favorite type of podcast. I adore Answer Me This. Perhaps you will, too.
posted by thebrokedown at 8:50 PM on February 28, 2014 [4 favorites]

How about Story Corps? Their podcast is available via iTunes, and the episodes are usually between 5 and 10 minutes long.
posted by amf at 3:18 AM on March 1, 2014

You Look Nice Today is worth a listen: three smart, funny guys bullshitting in a way that reminds me of Metafilter at its snarkiest. Though they have slowed to a crawl in making it, there's a pretty good archive of episodes, and it's on iTunes.
posted by tomboko at 4:47 AM on March 1, 2014 [1 favorite]

Late to the party, but if you listen to You Look Nice Today and like it, there's also Roderick on the Line, which is still active. I also like Throwing Shade (feminism, gay issues, lots of silliness and vulgarity) and How Was Your Week with Julie Klausner (funny, personal, lots of pop culture talk. Julie talks for awhile then interviews various comedians and other creative types).
posted by aka burlap at 5:47 PM on March 2, 2014

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