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Baker's Dozen

"Where Was My Mind?" Jenny Hval's 'Favourite Albums'
JR Moores , October 28th, 2015 12:02

We asked Jenny Hval to pick her 13 favourite LPs, which she didn't, because she thinks that's a "horrible" task. Fair enough, said JR Moores, so here, instead, are 13 underappreciated records she's hoping you'll go out and enjoy

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Broadcast - Berberian Sound Studio soundtrack
This was another one that was really important for Apocalypse, girl. I'm really sad about not listening to them earlier because I remember I was a big Stereolab fan back in the day and then Broadcast came out and I listened to, like, two seconds of it and I thought: "Well, it's just the same, isn't it? They're unnecessary. Move on." I was so dumb. I caught on much later, when Tender Buttons came out.

I love all of their albums but this one is really interesting, because it is a soundtrack but it is also a film within the film. So there's also a soundtrack for a film that is made inside the film, which creates this dreamy atmosphere where the worlds blur into one another so there's a sort of '70s splatter, Italian-type of sound palate, because that's the film that's being made in the movie, and then there's this dreamworld around it that is the soundtrack to the actual Berberian Sound Studio film. That makes it even more interesting to listen to, I find. I'm not a soundtrack nerd, although I'm becoming one, I guess, because I'm a huge film nerd. This is also really great because it uses spoken word a lot or dialogue from the film that was never made in reality but is made in the film. And I really love that. I love the delicacy of the vocal work and I always really loved the delicacy of Trish Keenan's vocal work, which is no more.

Would you like to move into soundtrack work yourself?

I don't think so. No. But I admire it from afar. It would require working with a film director that I would really understand. I'm not sure if I could. I don't know how people work with soundtracks, whether they have the full freedom to do what they usually do. Maybe I'm just an only child but I like to feel very free when I create stuff and I feel that freedom is very important for my music, or has been so far. So when you have limitations or have to work with other people and work with images, the music is only one part of something and I'm not sure I'm very good at creating something that's just one part of an expression. But maybe I'll feel differently some other time. Or if I work with a super experimental director, but then it would be more of a collaborative thing.


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