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Baker's Dozen

Worlds To Walk Into: Darren Hayman's Favourite Albums
Luke Turner , May 13th, 2020 08:55

As he releases a beautifully reflective album on the fall-out from a broken love, Darren Hayman takes us through 13 favourite albums, from Miles Davis collaborating with John Coltrane via Cliff Richard, the kids from Fame, Liz Phair, Nic Jones, ELO and The Damned.


The Velvet Underground - Live at Max's Kansas City
Any Velvets album can be the best Velvets album. Any Velvets album can be the best album by anyone. You can't make a wrong choice. Max’s Kansas City is today's winner because it has the best story. It has multiple stories. It's a play. It's not an album. Layered narratives are fighting for your attention. First, there’s the stories in Lou’s songs: wastrels, vagabonds and dealers. Second, there’s the story of this being the Velvet’s last gig with Lou. He’s tired and listless between the songs; he knows it’s over. “This is a song about, ooh when you've done something so sad, and you wake up the next day, and you remember it. Not to sound grim or anything. Just once in a while, you have one of those days. I seem to have them nearly every day.” There’s the story of the band itself at this point – no Cale, no Nico, no Tucker. They don’t sound like the Velvets anymore. New drummer Billy Yule sounds like he’s never heard Mo Tucker and never intends to. Then there’s this strange story in the foreground. The show is an official bootleg recorded by Brigid Polk who is sitting next to Jim Carroll. They sound like they’re having a terrible night and he is an arse. He makes her get him Pernod from the downstairs bar and talks over the band about songs he doesn’t know. It’s all perfect because nothing is remotely perfect. I go out on this lousy date with Brigid and Jim over and over again.