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Baker's Dozen

"The Spirit": Mike Watt Of The Missingmen's Favourite Albums
John Calvert , March 6th, 2014 10:13

Currently in the middle of a European tour, the Minutemen, Dos and Firehose founder pares down his record collection to give John Calvert his thirteen all-time top LPs


Pere Ubu - The Modern Dance
They were one of the first US punk bands. One of the first we heard, anyway. Now, 'cause they were from Cleveland we only got to see them in L.A. once, at the Whisky in '78 on The Modern Dance tour; but that gig was huge for us. Live they were really strange, man. Everything about them was anti-cliche, so it was everything we'd been looking for. You've got Tony Maimone with his afro, [Allen] Ravenstine had a big old beard, Tom Herman, wearing glasses and this weird fuckin' security guard shirt. At the time Dave Thomas wore this black suit on stage, and at the gig he was using this hammer and railroad spike 'cause he didn't have a cowbell! This was an early "econo" idea, we thought. And then they had this crazy synthesiser with no keyboard: just a table with knobs. It was insane! 

Then there were the singles, man: 'Heart Of Darkness', 'Cloud 149'… their music had so much dimension. Tom Herman [guitarist] liked the treble-y sound, Maimone's bass playing... it was all really influential on us. Plus, they had a big man playing frontman, which D. Boon loved.