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Baker's Dozen

"You Can't Escape Your Influence" - Mark Lanegan's Favourite Albums
Julian Marszalek , January 26th, 2012 04:35

In one of our best Baker's Dozens yet, Mark Lanegan talks Julian Marszalek through the most played discs in his collection


The Bee Gees Trafalgar

This was one of their first albums where their brilliance hit me. There are a lot of their records that could be here; like Odessa. I’ve said this before but to me they’re like what The Beatles are to other people. I’m really in awe of them; they’re really, really great. Their harmonies are obviously intensely great and not like anybody else and the songs are… look, I’m saying stuff that anybody could say about the things they love but with this record in particular, every single song here I love. Like most of the stuff that I’m drawn to there’s also a certain kind of melancholy that somehow gets inside me and makes me feel as though I’m living in their songs.

I never really liked The Bee Gees because I was never exposed to them outside of their big hits. When that was happening I was listening to a different kind of music but in the 90s I started listening to them. I think [collaborator and one-time Dinosaur Jr bassist] Mike Johnson turned me on to them and by that time I didn’t care who knew what I liked. I have no problem saying that I love The Bee Gees and I wasn’t really aware of their records before the disco era until Mike introduced me to it.

They’re one of the bands that you can get into because of the amount of cover versions out there. They have such a wealth of great songs that can be done in different genres. I heard Al Green do ‘How Can You Mend a Broken Heart’ long before I heard their version and I when I finally heard theirs I was like, ‘Man! I’ve to be on the ball with this shit!’ They’re fantastic songwriters.