The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

13 Reasons Why I Can't Pick My 13 Favourite Records, By Drew Daniel
The Quietus , September 25th, 2014 06:41

When we asked Drew Daniel of Matmos and The Soft Pink Truth for his Baker's Dozen, he refused - and with good reasons. Thirteen of them, to be precise. Here Daniel presents them in an essay titled A Rant Against The Quantification Of Aesthetics. All photographs courtesy of Drew Daniel

A few weeks ago, I was asked to write a Baker's Dozen for the Quietus, a breezy exercise in which I would pick my 13 favourite recordings, write a short paragraph about each one and, voila, the job would be done. I've done plenty of things like that in the past, so why not once more? I started to do it, mentally flicking through some records that have mattered to me, typing out some names. Then I just stopped. I couldn't go on. My mind kept rejecting the assignment, spitting it out like a mouthful of rotten food. It felt wrong to contribute to the mountain of spurious listicles that our online music culture now gorges upon. It felt wrong to play favourites about something as complicated as my feelings about music, to single out a virtuous few, to imply that these 13 recordings were somehow the "best". Best at what? To what end? I asked if I could write about my cranky refusal to do this and was told that that would be okay. So, with that in mind, here are 13 reasons why I cannot pick my 13 favourite records.

Why Do The Heathen Rage? is out now on Thrill Jockey. Click on his image below to begin scrolling through Drew's reasons