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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 Thompson Twins - Into The Gap
I want to write a book on the history of miming to music on TV. No, I don't, but I want to read it. I’m often surprised at how early the convention of miming to music on TV was subverted. From Ringo riding an exercise bike instead of drums on ‘I Feel Fine’ to the Faces playing football, it seems to be a wink to the camera that’s way ahead of anything else you would see at the time. The Thompson Twins seemed to be the first band solely designed to extend this joke. As a 12-year-old, I was fascinated by the fact I couldn't hear any of the instruments they were playing. They would stand behind guitars, congas and double basses but all you could hear were Prophet 5s and Emulators. I knew it was done as some kind of statement that I couldn’t fathom. These were artists, like the ones who Tony Hancock meets in The Rebel; proper oddball, hat-wearing pranksters. The backs of all the 12-inch singles from Into The Gap joined together to make a map of an island that was in the shape of the members' heads. The cassette version had an hour of alternative versions and mixes. They were a treasure trove for a geeky obsessed fan; they paid so much attention to detail. I now see their endless mixes and alternate versions of songs as a gateway into dub music; the idea that things could be transformed as much by subtracting things as adding them.