Entering the world of podcasting with Steven Wilson & Tim Bowness

Learn how we helped build ‘The Album Years’ into a top 10 music podcast
Written by Rob Skarin
Published on March 26, 2024

In March 2020, during the UK’s pandemic lockdown, Steven Wilson and his partner in the band No-Man, Tim Bowness began to think about starting a podcast. Launched in May 2020, The Album Years features Steven and Tim discussing (and bickering!) about their favourite music released during the “golden album years”, which they reckon to be from around 1965 to the end of the millennium.

We were brought on board by Steven and Tim to manage the podcast’s online promotion and distribution strategy. We were aided by some excellent branding materials produced by Hajo Mueller, which depicted Steven and Tim as hand drawn cartoon characters!

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On each episode, Steven and Tim pick a year and go in depth about albums released in that year. The podcast covers everything from mainstream/popular albums to obscure rarities and underrated records! Due to the amount of albums discussed, we decided to create accompanying per-episode music playlists on Spotify and Apple Music, so listeners of the podcast could easily find the music talked about on the show.

To distribute the show, we made use of Anchor (now Spotify for Podcasters) to publish the show to the multitude of podcast platforms worldwide. The show found it’s biggest audience on Apple Podcasts, where it quickly ascended to the top 10 in the music podcast charts. To date, the show has stayed consistently in the top 20! Initially, due to Steven and Tim’s time constraints working on other projects, episodes of the show were released sporadically, sometimes months apart. This changed in late 2023 when we worked alongside Universal Music and Spotify’s Megaphone platform to move the podcast to a new home, where it would be given a weekly release schedule.

Into 2024, activity around the podcast ramped up further with the decision to transition the audio only podcast into a video podcast. This involved a whole new workflow for producing the show, in which we took over editing responsibilities from Steven and Tim. The first filmed episode of the show, Episode 38: 2000 (Part 1) was launched in March 2024. Filmed in Steven’s home recording studio, we utilised a multi camera filming set up aided by a Blackmagic ATEM Mini Pro ISO, which allowed us to dynamically switch between camera feeds and create a rough edit of the show as we were recording! This aided us in the editing process by providing us with a DaVinci Resolve project file for the show that we could start editing straight away with synced up footage. The podcast audio itself was recorded through Steven’s studio interface and Steven applied vocal treatments on the raw audio for us to edit with.


In addition to the filmed episodes, we also launched a mini-website for the podcast at This website collates all the info about the show but also takes advantage of our advanced email marketing system CS Mail, which allows visitors to sign up to The Album Years mailing list, which automatically notifies listeners when new episodes drop each week.

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Promoting each episode of the show effectively requires us to manage posting on multiple social channels simultaneously, create custom email templates and make custom audio playlists on Spotify & Apple Music. In addition we also edit short, shareable clips of the show for use on Instagram, TikTok, X etc and longer clips that are shared as standalone videos on the YouTube channel, alongside the full episodes. These standalone clips usually focus on a specific album or topic.

The Album Years was the first time we had the opportunity to be involved in the world of podcasting and over the course of the show, we learned so much about the process of creating and effectively promoting a successful podcast. If you haven’t already, listen to The Album Years here!