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Baker's Dozen

Creation Of Worlds: Bok Bok Discusses 13 Favourite Albums
Rory Gibb , May 20th, 2014 03:40

Ahead of his new EP Your Charizmatic Self, the Night Slugs co-founder meets Rory Gibb to discuss thirteen favourite albums, from pioneering R&B production to grime's sonic brutalism and the blossoming influence of labelmate Jam City


Jam City - Classical Curves

I would like to state that I think it's really nice that people are becoming aware of this album's long term influence. At the time I think it would have dropped, and a few people would gone 'huh?' and a few other people would have gone 'This is brilliant'. I wouldn't ever say it was a grower for me, because I was involved in the making process and I pretty much know it inside out, I feel very close to that project. But I can see how, from the outside, it might take a while to grapple with it. But I'm happy to see his lasting influence.

It's interesting, I can play a whole set of tracks that basically rip off two or three key tracks on Classical Curves. Some of them do it in a good way, some of them do it in a less original way that I don't really like so much. There's some tracks I get that I won't play because they're just too close to it. It's dangerous, because with Jack [Latham, Jam City], he did two things: he referenced a lot with that record - and it is quite a postmodern record - but he also did a lot of his own world creation, and there's a lot of sound design that he's made his own. A lot of that kind of sound design comes from things like the movie Liquid Sky. I know that was a tangible influence on Jack. So it's impossible to say that the ideas on that record are 100% new, but it's more about the way they're put together, and what I really don't like is the surface level reference to it.

I know that Jack is becoming aware of the phenomenon too, and I think he takes it the only way you can really, as flattery. I think it is testament to his genius - and I wouldn't hesitate to call him one, because the way he puts things together, and the way he's able to bring together influences and make them his own, is like no other. So there's a resonance to that record that deserves it.

I also want to say that it did have a huge influence on our camp, too - I think you can hear that in everybody's music since. It's funny, when I first heard his music - he accidentally or purposefully left it on my desktop, who knows - I was freaked out. It was a totally psychedelic experience listening to his first ever demos, 'cause it was like, I feel like I made this! Not in a way to big myself up, but I mean that it had all the ingredients I wanted to put into music, and it was done the way I wanted it to be done. I was flipping out, like 'What! How? How did you get in my head?' I think a lot of us felt like that with Classical Curves too - when he brought those things together the way he did, a lot of us were like 'Yeah!'.

He created this quite vague but quite vivid story around it. Again I think it's testament to his genius, his vision, because I'm sure he probably did have a sense of the exact narrative he wanted to convey. But he way he did it was through these disparate images that would then stack up into an impression of something. That's the way the album works too. There's quite a lot of different ideas on it, that all stack up to create this impression of a world.

Most of the albums we've talked about have been all about world creation, haven't they? An internal logic which makes all the tracks relate to each other. That album's brilliant for that. You know there's the collaboration with Main Attrakionz ['The Nite Life'], and he was always saying, that stands alone, we need to leave this long gap at the end of the CD so it's like a hidden track - he was adamant. I know it's a record I put out, so it's kind of rich me putting it on my list like that. But honestly, I fucking love it. I listen to it all the time now. I think it's crazy that despite the fact that I worked on it to such a deep level, I can still listen to it and enjoy it.