The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

Raw Takes: Richard Fearless's Favourite Tracks
Joe Clay , May 25th, 2016 08:24

Before the release of their sixth album this week and appearance at Atonal in Berlin this August, the Death In Vegas head honcho, producer and DJ scours the fruits of his record-collecting history and picks 13 tracks that have informed Transmission for Joe Clay


Roedelius – 'Sonnengeflecht'
The geographical location of his studios has affected his work so much. The Black Forest, Italy... he's always pretty much worked in nature. My love for Harmonia came from 'Watussi', hearing that track. Then I went back and listened to Cluster and all those other bands and realised that it was all about those amazing melodies. A couple of years ago I got given the amazing job of putting a compilation together for the label Bureau B. I got access to their archive, and I was given this box set of all of Roedelius's work. It was all his melodic sketchbooks. Apparently, when he was working with Harmonia, he always had his own studio off to the side. He'd go off and put these finger exercises down. It was compiled in Tape Archive 1973 - 1978, which Bureau B put out. It's all the audio sketches Roedelius did over that period, his private recordings; it's unbelievable. There's a beautiful version of 'Watussi', where he's doing that main melody line with a drum beat. It sounds like Suicide.

'Sonnengeflecht' is like two songs. There's this slightly irritating top line going on, but underneath it there's this brilliant dance track. I can shut the other bit off and just lock into that other part. There was a three-day event last year on his career in Berlin. I played for a few hours and I ended up picking the more dance-orientated stuff. I managed to get a whole set together that was danceable, which is amazing really because so much of it is like chamber music. Roedelius is one of the biggest melodic inspirations on my career, especially because I can't really play a keyboard to save my life.