Tom’s Top Twelve this week is very much the Richard X Tribute Edition. All week I’ve been playing 80s records, to the point of making Isabel complain: I now think this was subconscious preparation for hearing Richard X. Often in comics or science fiction the heroes visit a world where the Roman Empire, or the British Empire, or some other Empire never ended. The Richard X album is like this – on Earth-X the 80s never ended, and there his record is simply a compilation of No.1 hits played, sung and bought by people who are all in our-world fact Richard X.

It’s a very Freaky Trigger sort of an album. In fact it’s the album we would probably make if we made an album. (Since we won’t and can’t we’ll have to compile one instead.) (Watch this space.) Richard X is an unglamorous fellow with a scraggly beard and a love of pop music. He’s old enough to know all the Human League records and young enough to have Javine’s phone number. I like him enormously and might do even if I met him.

The other records on the list are all pop, usually more, occasionally less. If you download any of them you should at least find yourself entertained for four or five minutes. This is all pop ever offers upfront: the strange case of Richard X, who loved pop so much he turned into it, is proof that there are sometimes secret clauses in the deal.