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Baker's Dozen

“Yes It’s F*cking Political!”: Skin's Favourite Albums
Louise Brown , March 13th, 2019 10:52

Skunk Anansie vocalist Skin guides Louise Brown through 13 favourite records, from Holst to Nina Simone, Everything But The Girl, Sepultura and Amy Winehouse


Afrika Bambaataa And The Soulsonic Force – Planet Rock
For me, this was something that was completely new. I had never heard anything like it. It was really early electronica, and it was black, but it was a different sound. And it was so simple. 'Planet Rock' is one of my all-time favourite tunes. I remember when I heard that when I was a kid and we were like "man, what is that?". It was a new sound for us, a mixture of so many things; disco, hip hop, rap, electronica. We knew Kraftwerk and there's a lot of German electronic influences in that record, but that opened up so many different things for me. These black guys, from The Bronx, did that. It just opened up our heads. He was, for me personally, a different kind of black person from the people that you grew up with. Those dreadlocks all different colours. It gave me a different perspective on what black means and my black identity. I didn't have to conform to what people thought would be black. It was electronic music and hip hop but he twisted it.

I discovered electronic music at college. We did the driving around fields looking for raves thing. That was the start of acid house. I remember the first time I heard house music, I was at this party and there was this music playing and there was about 50 people going mad dancing in the middle. And after about an hour I turned to my friends and I said it felt like he'd been playing one song for an hour. It was just four to the floor and these kids were going mad. I'd been a DJ at college, put just mixing The Cure into James Brown and suddenly there was this music that was just one beat. I'm going to be really honest about how I finally got it. Now, I hope my mom never reads this but I went to Heaven  and someone came along and put something in my mouth. I swallowed it and about half an hour later I was completely off my face. I was like 'Oh my God, I get it now'.

At various times in history, drugs and music have really gone along in harmony. To be honest, I didn't really become a pill head because I always had other things I had to do. I wasn't and am still not a big druggie. If it's just every night, the same people, then it's just nasty and it's just no fucking fun. But that was that, that was when techno and house music got me.