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Baker's Dozen

Summer 13: Malcolm Middleton's Favourite Albums
Nicola Meighan , July 13th, 2016 08:42

Following the release of his sixth album, Summer Of '13, and before Arab Strap play their anniversary gigs later this year, the musician talks Nicola Meighan through the records that have had the biggest effect on him


Matt Baldwin – Night in the Triangle
I love his music, and I don't this want to sound disrespectful at all, but it made me think I should lighten up and loosen up a bit about my guitar playing. It made me want to try and write without being too heavy, without a big finale and stuff. It made me want to try less hard to make an impressive song. I wanted to sit back. But I couldn't quite do that. It was like when I started doing Human Don't Be Angry. It was all supposed to be on these loop pedals, but then I started doing chorus bits, and working with Paul [Savage of The Delgados/Chemikal Underground] and Paul took the drums, and it all kind of changed.

But Matt Baldwin was the initial impetus behind me wanting to just sit down with a guitar and do something a bit more obtuse. That definitely woke me up a bit. When I played stuff, I wouldn't go to my normal chord shapes or resolve melodies the same way. I would try and make it discordant. I'm not a great guitar player, I still don't know what all the notes are going to do when my finger goes to them, but it made me loosen up a bit, almost in a jazz way – which I don't know anything about. It was that idea that I couldn't go to a wrong note. Because that note will lead to the next one. And it might sound amazing.