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Baker's Dozen

Another Wardrobe In My Head: Karl Hyde’s Favourite Albums
Joe Clay , April 25th, 2013 09:07

Following the release of his first solo album, Edgeland, the Underworld singer picks out the jewels of his record collection


David Bowie – Low
Me and Rick were living in a terraced house in Splott in Cardiff, near Tiger Bay. That’s where we formed our first band, Freur. We were making dub electronics and listening to dub reggae and Kraftwerk’s Computer World and Bowie’s Low. What blew us away was Brian’s (Eno) analogue electronic sound – that kind of degraded sound that he was making – and the fact that this great icon, a hugely famous singer and frontman, had chosen not to sing for half an album. What guts and courage that seemed to take. Years later you read that it ended up like that because he wasn’t around and that Brian experimented in his absence. But it takes great foresight and courage for David to come back and hear that and say, "yep, that’s the album." And not to think that because he’s a singer he has to blast away over the top of it. So that became a part of the blueprint for Underworld – that the singer doesn’t have to be the dominant force. He can play a supporting role. That Berlin period – the three Bowie albums and the Iggy Pop record – deepened the mythology of what I love about Berlin. The idea of going to a place and locking yourself away and making quite an extreme record in a different environment.

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