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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


Reason Nine: People Lie About What they Actually Listen To.
When I started to draft the abandoned Baker's Dozen list, my list leaned noticeably towards the esoteric UK industrial records that were on heavy rotation during my formative years: Nurse With Wound, Coil and Throbbing Gristle are my holy trinity, and I've spent decades listening to their work, collecting their recordings and writing about them. Records by these folks would certainly appear on any 'List Of Favourite Records' that I would ever think of compiling. No-brainer. You know who wouldn't be on that list? Beck. Nope. No way. But if I look on various computers and check the number of plays that iTunes tracks, I seem to have a weirdly repetitious love for an awful lot of songs by… Beck. I do not think of myself as "Drew Daniel, noted Beck fan". I have nothing in particular against the dude (I met him backstage at a Björk show in L.A. years ago and he was really nice), but he's not someone who comes to mind for me when put on the spot about my taste. Yet iTunes is trying to tell me that Beck really is one of my favourite artists, a claim that my mind recoils against, and starts making excuses about, fingers in my ears, chanting Beherit lyrics, frantically brandishing my Sonny Sharrock tapes and Swimming behaviour Of The Human Infant LP in hopes of salvaging weirdo hipster cred. Why do I sound so defensive and shitty here? And what might that defensive throat-clearing suggest about the failure of 'Favourite Recording' lists to line up with our actual habits of listening?