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Baker's Dozen

Beautiful Artefacts: Jon Spencer's Favourite Albums
Julian Marszalek , September 25th, 2012 11:41

The Blues Explosion frontman whittles down his favourite albums to a mean 13


Einsturzende Neubauten - Halber Mensch
There were a lot of bands that would make a lot of noise by banging metal on metal. There was Neubauten, Tools You Can Trust, SPK and even Depeche Mode for a while and it sort of became this fashion. I think that Neubauten were the most clever; a really amazing band.

With these early records and the really strange sounds, I don’t know what they’re singing about as I don’t speak German but from what I can understand Blixa is a very good writer and a very good lyricist. It’s very dramatic music and it’s very romantic as well and that’s become more and more apparent over the years.

This record represents a turning point. This band was totally about chaos and destruction and collapse in the beginning and here the pop sensibility and the romance began to emerge. This record is a turning point and it represents a good balance. You’d had the noise and the chaos and with this one you get nicer elements in it. There are songs that function more like traditional and very moving pop songs. And I think they were doing it with Adrian Sherwood and taking influence from Lee Hazlewood. Things were opening up and it helps this record a lot. It’s more composed and more controlled and things are more in service to the songs on the album.

A totally amazing band who took no prisoners who really pushed themselves physically in the extreme. They punished themselves.