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Baker's Dozen

Crime Plays: Writer Ian Rankin On His 13 Favourite Albums
Luke Turner , November 21st, 2012 07:37

Ian Rankin talks to Luke Turner about his life in music, and how he'd like to write novels based on Joy Division and David Bowie albums


The Rolling Stones - Let It Bleed
My sister's boyfriend at the time was a huge Stones fan, so when this came out which would have been, what, '69, he bought it and brought it round and played it on our Dancette, and I thought 'this is rubbish, what are these fiddles, why is it suddenly country, what are these monkeymen he's singing about, and what does it mean 'you can bleed on me'? But there was something about it, and it drilled its way into my subconscious and stayed there. A few years later I bought it on CD, and it blew me away, and I thought 'this is one of the great rock albums of all time'. It was just dripping with all the mayhem of the late 60s, it was the perfect storm of stuff that was happening then. Serial killers like The Boston Strangler, the fact that rock stars had got pretensions and were living in mansions and looking down on the little people, drugs, violence, the Vietnam War, all sorts of great stuff was in there. It's one of the albums I'll never tire of listening to. They were looking around themselves and writing about what they saw, and it was a very interesting time, '68, '69. It's hardly any Stones' fans favourite Stones album, but it is for me. It's a lot better than Exile On Main Street.