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Baker's Dozen

God's Own Medicine: Wayne Hussey's Favourite Albums
Ben Graham , October 10th, 2013 08:06

We put in a long-distance call to Brazil to ask The Mission frontman and former Sister Of Mercy about the gems in his record collection


Neil Young - Are You Passionate?
Again you could pick one of half a dozen Neil Young albums, Tonight’s The Night, Harvest, there are loads of great Neil Young albums. But this is a recent find for me, although it came out eleven years ago I only found out about this album late last year. It’s basically an album that he recorded with Booker T And The MGs, who I like as well. And it’s got that whole thing we were talking about before, where it sounds a lot to me like you know, “Right boys, this is the song, these are the chords, let’s record it.” And away they go, and that’s how they record it, and that’s a take. And there’s even times where Neil might start a guitar solo, and he starts in slightly the wrong key and then realises what he’s done and corrects himself, and I love that, I love that kind of potency; that idea that you’re listening to something being played for the first or second time. There’s also one track on this album called ‘Going Home’ that he records with Crazy Horse, and we all like Neil Young with Crazy Horse don’t we, it’s a given really. And that, in the context of the album, is quite jarring because you’ve got the very clipped grooves of Booker T, and then the looseness of Crazy Horse on that one song in the middle of the album. It’s a great album with some great songs on it and I chose this one really because it’s the newest one for me, of Neil Young’s albums, that I’ve really enjoyed.

When the Mission covered ‘Like a Hurricane’ Neil Young was going through a bit of a downturn and his credibility was quite low and his sales were quite low, so it wasn’t like we were doing it to be trendy by any stretch of the imagination. I had a few of his albums from the 70s, one of which had ‘Like A Hurricane’ on [American Stars 'N Bars] and we listened to it and thought oh, that’d be quite a good idea, to do that song. So we took it and made it our own. If it is the case that we introduced some people to Neil Young with that song, then great; somebody like Neil Young deserves to be heard. He’s obviously got a rich history there and a catalogue of fantastic songs and fantastic records. And there’s obviously some dodgy records too that Neil Young’s done, but we’ll forgive him them because he’s made so many good ones. How old is he now? He must be getting on for seventy at least and he’s still prolific, he’s still releasing an album more or less every year, still goes out and plays shows, you know. So credit where it’s due.