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Baker's Dozen

Parallel Worlds: Peter Strickland's Favourite Albums
Colm McAuliffe , June 3rd, 2014 13:03

On the occasion of the Berberian Sound Studio and Katalin Varga director releasing Wasp Boutique, a collaboration between Art-Errorist and Zsolt Sőrés, on his record label, and with a new feature film on the way, he sits down with Colm McAuliffe to talk 13 formative favourites


My Bloody Valentine - Isn't Anything
I only got into them when Loveless came out. I was working in the record department of WHSmith in Reading in late 1991. The album was in stock and I put it on, which caused immediate grimacing from the duty manager, but surprisingly the staff just about tolerated it up until 'To Here Knows When', by which point I was ordered to put Lisa Stansfield on instead. I absolutely fell in love with it and it was the first step into a new world for me. They played live at Reading University the same month and the whole thing blew my mind beyond belief. I bought Isn't Anything the following Monday and that became the album that I would listen to obsessively. It starts innocuously enough, but by the end of the first side, you feel as if those guitars have excavated to the earth's core when 'All I Need' comes on. The band sound as if they're victims to their own tidal wave of guitars. 'No More Sorry' is my favourite track. It has a potent mood that is different from anything I've heard. That track is like a secret room you enter for the time it's on. I can't think of many bands who can play those conjuring tricks on a listener. I got into noise through My Bloody Valentine and though I have a lot of respect for people like Masami Akita [Merzbow], I went to one noise concert too many. If there is no counter to the noise then it does lose something. The framing of noise within a pop context is what made bands such as My Bloody Valentine so radical and exciting. To hear 'You Made Me Realise' at the age of 18 and back in the early 90s was life-changing. I saw them play in Budapest last year and they blew my mind again.