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Baker's Dozen

Dawn To Dusk: Richard Dawson's Favourite Albums
Jennifer Lucy Allan , October 14th, 2019 08:45

Tales of the oddest record shop on Tyneside and much more as Richard Dawson guides Jennifer Lucy Allan through an unsurprisingly diverse selection of records in this week's Baker's Dozen


Circle - Miljard​
This is an ambient album by an often spandex-clad shape shifting Finnish rock group. Have you picked this for Circle or for the ambience?

I've got a holy trinity of music, which is Eliane Radigue, Sun Ra and Circle. I could happily lose everything else and I think I'd be ok. 

That's three artists who or are, or were, extremely productive as well. 

Ha, ha, yeah it's a practical choice. I feel a lot of kinship with them - this music which is both very ancient and futuristic all at once. How they approach things, as ego-less and as conduits, it's really interesting. I was really close to suggesting Katapult, which is a really incredible mixture of heavy metal riffs and handheld percussion, with similar shakers to the Solomon Islands record, and these odd galloping sounds. Like Sun Ra, Circle's albums complement each other – even though each one is highly distinctive they all have a similar energy.

Have you ever seen Circle live?

The first time I took a friend to see them when they supported Acid Mothers Temple at the Cumberland Arms in Byker, and I was such a knobhead that I stood at the bar and talked during their set. I didn't know who they were, but I had this sense it sounded amazing. I was with someone I was vaguely trying to impress, and they weren't really into it, so I was letting them lead me astray a bit. 

Is listing them here an attempt to redeem yourself for talking through that set?   

[Cackles] Yeah, I think it might be too late for that? I missed seeing them a few times then I'd been in touch with Janne [Westerlund] the guitarist, who really liked the Peasant album, and when somebody showed me that he'd tweeted about it, I found his tweet and with zero cool tweeted back 'Oh my God, we love Circle!!!' So we ended up being in touch and exchanging records, and I did a little backing vocals on his second solo album. 

We've just begun working together. We started exchanging some ideas and I went over there in June. We built it around this festival they had called Sideways festival in Helsinki Hockey Arena, and I thought that maybe we might sing one new song together, but it became quite clear over the first few hours that they were aiming to do the whole set together, so that's what happened two days later. We'd practiced like crazy and we did this whole set, three new songs and then I played on some of their old ones from Terminal. It was amaaaazing, I was like a little kid living out his fantasies. 

Did you wear spandex?

No, thank God they've moved on from their spandex days. They did make me wear a black turtleneck top though.