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Baker's Dozen

Central To Process: Justin Broadrick's Favourite Albums
Kate Hennessy , October 16th, 2014 15:08

In a piece originally commissioned by The Bug's Kevin Martin, Justin Broadrick follows the release of Godflesh's new album A World Lit Only By Fire by taking a new spin on the Baker's Dozen format and talking Kate Hennessy through his current listening favourites


Disorder - Distortion To Deafness
Gnarly, shambolic piece of UK punk from 1981. I've had a love affair with their first two EPs, I got them when they came out. I didn't like their records after that, they sounded a bit too … fun? But those first two records are really screwed up and it was my intro to punk and to music being extremely chaotic and shambolic. I was very much a punk rock kid and the way they used feedback and noise I found intriguing because no punk band before had exploited noise in that fashion. It wasn't intentional or like they were listening to power electronics or any of that shit... as far as I'm aware they weren't.

They are an example of Bristol punk rock from that time, a lot of that movement was fuelled up on too much booze and glue - that was Britain. That's where the crust punk scene was born, bands like Disorder and Amebix and Chaos UK. There was griminess to that scene I loved, I love Amebix, they sounded like Crass playing Killing Joke which was a wonderful proposition to me as a kid. There was something captured in those first two records - they sound utterly nihilistic. They can barely play, it's the opposite of being technically gifted. It obviously captures a period too.

Massappeal? Yeah, I had a couple of things on tape in the mid-80s by Massappeal. Mostly because I was into tape trading culture. With Napalm Death, literally no band escaped us. There was a lot of Australian stuff I was into, I was obsessed with Cosmic Psychos in the late 80s, and one of my big, big loves, who I still love, was The Scientists. Untouchable. Not a month goes by when I don't talk about The Scientists. I say, "You know The Birthday Party of course?" and I go from there.

My shed, as opposed to being full of gardening equipment, is full of bin liners with dusty old cassettes from the 80s so I'd have it there. I can see it now, a tape with Massappeal on it, and "AUS" in brackets. When I was in Napalm Death and obsessed with hardcore punk, we were obsessed with the international culture, so it was even more exciting to us if it was like, "This is Massappeal from Australia and they play thrash"; that was more exciting than, "This is thrash from down the road". It was like, "This is cosmopolitan, this is exciting, fucking thrash there too!" We'd read about it in Maximumrocknroll, there'd be a scene report from every country and we'd pore over it. A new hardcore band in the outer Himalayas who play for three people who sound like fucking early Flipper? We'd go: "wow". We had a vested interest in the most obscure hardcore bands out there.