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Baker's Dozen

Unresolved And Discordant: Pearson Sound's Favourite Albums
Lauren Martin , March 12th, 2015 16:59

With his debut album released this week, the Hessle Audio producer talks Lauren Martin through his top 13 formative records ahead of his appearance at the Bloc weekender


Burial - Untrue
I remember people saying that the first time Kode9 dropped 'Archangel' at FWD>>, people couldn't believe what they were hearing. I also remember it being quite a controversial record, too: 'Ugh, what is this new direction? This isn't dubstep!' I don't think many people played in it a club, but that's why Untrue was one of the bigger successes to come out of the dubstep scene. Because it wasn't reliant on having a massive soundsystem to come across how it was intended. People could listen to it in their bedrooms, or on the train, in headphones, and have it 'make sense'.

The way the vocals function on Untrue really interested me, too. Pitching up, pitching down, making men sound like women, or this ambiguous, non-gendered other, vice versa - it was something I hadn't really come across before then. Taking tiny snippets of someone's voice and turning it into - not a hook necessarily, but a rearranging of words and sounds in order to skew the meaning, or mood. Burial will often use a sound only once in the track, but that once will sound incredible.

In 'Shell Of Light', there's a tiny vocal that comes in about 2-and-a-half minutes in, and a lot of producers would just rinse how good that vocal is and put it in a dozen times, but Burial had this knack of finding an ideal but shocking place for it that makes you yearn to hear it again and again. But, you can't. You have to listen to the whole track again. Burial is about that patience I was talking about: the patience to go back to tracks and albums over and over, as full stories.

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