AEW’s Darby Allin: The 10 songs that changed my life

Is Darby Allin the most punk rock wrestler of all time? We’d argue the case. From a grubby, part-corpse-painted aesthetic that could’ve sprung out from beneath the stage at some nightmarish dive bar, to an in-ring style with all the reckless abandon of a stagedive or circle-pit, and a message built on straight-edge self-belief, he’s a fascinating outsider in a world of musclemen. By his own admission it all comes from a fascination with the history and ethos of alternative sound.

“I didn’t really get inspired by wrestlers growing up,” he grins during a trip to the capital to hype up the August Bank Holiday mega showcase All In London at Wembley Stadium. “They never really spoke to me. I was more inspired by skateboarding musicians. I listen to music literally all day – when I’m cooking, when I’m showering, when I’m working out. The only real time that I switch it off is when I’m meditating. Music has definitely given me confidence to do the stuff I’ve done!”

There’s plenty more to tick off between now and August, too. On March 3 he’ll be tagging with wrasslin’ legend Sting for The Icon’s final match against The Young Bucks at AEW Revolution in Greensboro, North Carolina. Then in April he’ll be taking on the biggest, deadliest challenge of his life as he heads out to attempt a months-long ascent of the mighty, 8,849-metre Mount Everest.

“I’ll definitely be back in time for All In,” his eyes sparkle in a (dare)devilish smile, “…unless I die!”