The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

Stir My Teenage Soul: Karl 'Regis' O'Connor's Favourite LPs
Luke Turner , July 1st, 2020 08:47

Karl O'Connor guides Luke Turner through the 13 teenage hits that made him Regis, with tales of smelling like a badger on the mail train to Brum and what happens when you get a member of Einstürzende Neubauten the wrong gravel on the way


Marc & The Mambas - ’Untitled’
I've chosen three records connected with Marc Almond and Soft Cell and to be perfectly honest I could have filled all 13. I don't know what it is about what he did to a whole generation of people. I didn't feel different to anyone else, I loved football and got on with that type of crowd, but the thing I loved about Soft Cell, and Marc Almond in particular on this album, is that I felt they were inhabiting a world that I really wanted to be part of. It seemed exciting, dangerous, Marc Almond was showing me the way with a lot of things. This record was actually a Christmas present my mom bought from WH Smiths in Haylesowen. It was so different from his work with Soft Cell, it was the right side of psychedelic but still had this great pop sensibility and fitted so well with how he was singing at the time. Even though I had no idea what drugs were I could tell that the people who made this record were on drugs. I kind of liked that. The people he had with him were fantastic, Anni Hogan who was a very unorthodox, amazing piano player and they worked so well together to make this fantastic wonderful mess. Matt Johnson from The The provided this really great psychedelic twang. The cover of 'Caroline Says' introduced me to Lou Reed, it's so stark and brilliant. With a lot of Marc Almond cover versions when I heard the originals afterwards I was slightly let down. I'd never heard of Scott Walker, Syd Barrett before Marc Almond, so from going home for Christmas and then coming back in the New Year this whole new world opened up to me - I had this new taste in music and left my school mates behind and had new friends, music friends. I just love this record because you've got an artist in a struggle with himself and against pop, trying to show what he really was in some way. You couldn't make up someone like Marc Almond, especially if you wanted to sell records.