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Baker's Dozen

Funk Soul Brother: Alexis Taylor Of Hot Chip's Favourite Albums
Dom Smith , July 17th, 2014 12:58

With his second solo album Await Barbarians released last month and a run of summer festival sets upcoming, the Hot Chip and About Group man gives Dom Smith his favourite album rundown


Stevie Wonder - Music Of My Mind
It's the first record produced by Stevie Wonder, and one where he plays everything himself. The contract he signed with Motown meant that he would be in complete control. There may be other albums by him where he's more consistent. Or maybe they're more classic. But it's the approach to that record, and the sound that I love. 'Love Having You Around' is one of my favourite Stevie Wonder songs. The whole record has this funkiness to it, and his drumming is unlike any other drummer I've heard. He speeds up and slows down on the track. On 'Love Having You… he's just really grooving, because he's playing music with himself. It's not done to a click track. That kind of movement and the grooves are the things I like most in the music - that's something I think about a lot when making music as well, I'm always trying to get away from using a click track. It can be much more exciting to have things constantly speeding up and slowing down. There's just something about people doing records on their own that I really like. I remember when I heard this for the first time, and it was so distorted, and maybe there was a vocoder being used. The first time I put it in, I was thinking that maybe they'd put the wrong CD in the box - maybe a Jeff Beck one, something more bluesy! I really liked that in itself. Stevie's experimenting! There's a real playfulness about this, that I try to have in the music-making that I do! It's having the confidence to play around and being aware that you might stumble on to something.