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Baker's Dozen

In Other Worlds: Tim Burgess' Favourite Albums
Diva Harris , May 27th, 2020 08:21

Tim Burgess has given us lockdown light relief with his hugely popular album listening parties and now does one of his very own as he guides Diva Harris through his Baker's Dozen


Dexy’s Midnight Runners - Too-Rye-Ay
I remember the first time that I saw them on the TV, saw the gang, and they looked like they really meant everything that they were doing. Then ‘Geno’ got to No. 1, and I remember everybody buying the single, and it just being everywhere. Young Soul Rebels was fantastic, and me and all my friends had it, and we’d all compare thoughts.

And then Too-Rye-Ay came out. To be able to sort of shed, like a snake; shed his skin and then move on to something completely different? No-one had really, to my knowledge, done that ever before. You’d have to have that kind of obsession with clothes, with style, and aesthetic. They live it.

Kevin’s lyrics are just amazing, and his presentation of his lyrics – the singing of them – is beautiful. I’ll always remember the first time I heard the song ‘Old’. John Lydon was all about hating old people, and “you don’t understand this, you’re too old”, and Kevin was talking about how precious old people were. I thought that was just magic. Nothing against John Lydon or anything, but it was just a complete change of headspace. It was like someone walked in and swept up all my thoughts that I had about age, and replaced them with an alternative version.

Kevin Rowland changed how I thought about lots of things… about everything, really. I took this record with me on tour buses, and liked listening to how complex the music was, wanting to be as good as that.

There’s a whisper that Kevin does really well; a whisper that can kind of like pan from side to side. It’s a great effect; actually talking to somebody is the most human thing. He’s a real master of aesthetic and craft and style, and I love him.