Main F**king Event: Adrian Flanagan Of The ERC's Favourite LPs
, February 13th, 2014 08:36
In the week of release for their second album, one of The Eccentronic Research Council's musical maestros writes us an "autobiographical chronological" journey through his life in listening
Much like The Eccentronic Research Council's new album, Magpie Billy & The Egg That Yolked (A Study Of The Northern Ape In Love), Adrian Flanagan's Baker's Dozen choices make for a story. It's one that's annotated by vividly-rendered details of his biography, running alongside frequently eye-wateringly funny recollections and a few sharply-barbed lashings of the deserving. This is clearly the voice that pens the words spoken by The ERC's frequent collaborator, actor Maxine Peake, lacing Flanagan and bandmate Dean Honer's tracks - melodic, sinewy and gothic-tinged electro pop; a circus ring-mastered by a pair of analog synth-clutching, tatty lab coat-wearing men with an air of faintly wicked scientists about them - with the two-part tale of a dead motorcycle enthusiast and the couple that move into his house.
It's a wide-ranging list, too, taking in Elvis Presley's debut, a 1985 compilation of pop songs by professional wrestlers, the Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls soundtrack and ending on one of the Quietus' favourite albums of last year, as befits Flanagan's own varied discography. Before forming The ERC with Honer, and releasing their debut album, 1612 Underture, exploring the history of the Pendle witch trials in Lancashire, in 2012, Flanagan put out 7"s with Phil Oakey, Ray Dorset of Mungo Jerry and Denise Johnson under his solo project guise, Kings Have Long Arms. He's stood in as guitarist for The Fall - "my youth training scheme in rock & roll" - and has released 'Meat Is Awful', a track recorded with The Smiths' Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce, split singles with The Flying Lizards and fellow Sheffield man and Cabaret Voltaire founder Richard H Kirk and 'Are You One?' as The Chanteuse And The Crippled Claw, with Candie Payne, the video for which featured Peake dressed as a rabbit ("paid her in rock-a-billy records", adds Flanagan).
"I wanted my Bakers Dozen to have a kind of autobiographical chronological feel too it," he says, "rather than just going for my absolute favourite records, I wanted to pull out key records that shaped me, that opened doors to whole worlds of other music. Ultimately I wanted people to come away feeling they've found out something about me, where I've come from to where I am... Otherwise it's just a list of records by someone that most people know nothing about; if you don't want to make love to me by the end, I've failed [laughs]."
Magpie Billy & The Egg That Yolked (A Study Of The Northern Ape In Love) is out now via Desolate Spools - get hold of it via The ERC's Bandcamp and read Flanagan telling the Quietus about the album here; click on his image below to begin scrolling through Adrian's choices