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Baker's Dozen

Magical Experiences: James Holden's Favourite Albums
Rory Gibb , June 5th, 2014 15:08

Following last year's feral The Inheritors album, Border Community label head James Holden is about to take his newly developed live show on tour, including to Field Day and Sonar Barcelona. Rory Gibb catches up with him to discuss thirteen favourite and formative albums, improvisation and atheist spirituality


Suicide - Suicide

I got given it. It was quite a long time ago, when I was much less far into my catching-up-with-the-past work. I did a remix of Depeche Mode and played at an aftershow for them, and the payment for that was a little trip around the Mute warehouse picking up things I was interested in. I was super curious and grabbed that one, and it was the first thing I put on when I got home. That was a well paid gig [laughs], to get that record from that. It blew my mind. Straight away, mind blown. Then the live recordings, that '23 Minutes Over Brussels' live recording, that just blew my mind a second time. I think I listened to that record continuously that summer, driving 'round London with the windows down and 'Frankie Teardrop' on full volume.

Again, that record's got all these things in it that I like. It's like its own world, it's completely unique, and no-one can copy it or infringe on that territory without it obviously being a knock-off. They really claimed their [space]. Even though it's just 'we're going to play rock & roll on an organ and make it a bit political', it's not massive laborious work to come up with that idea, but it's enough - it was world changing, their contribution. They've got so much swagger. I saw them supporting Iggy Pop and I felt like leaving as soon as Iggy walked onstage. I just thought, you can't compete with that, no way. They [Suicide] made it like that, it's not me being cynical about Iggy, it's Alan Vega with a fag hanging out of his mouth, just oozing whatever it is, amazing. It's captured on the record. It's quite hard [for a record] to feel real, the microphone doesn't capture everything, but that record really has got it.