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Baker's Dozen

The Old Country: Steve Von Till’s Baker’s Dozen
John Doran , December 16th, 2020 10:06

The long-serving Neurosis guitarist and singer shares his deep dive favourites; 13 albums which have shaped the way he looks at music and informed his writing and solo work as Harvestman and Steve Von Till


Skullflower - Obsidian Shaking Codex
I feel like Obsidian Shaking Codex is the apex of the heavy guitar drone period for Skullflower. This is where their music had a pulse and a groove that you could latch onto; through which you could disappear. This is the kind of thing that later on would be done by bands like Earth or Sunn O))) - particularly the track ‘Diamond Bullet’, where you've got that vocal sample and the way the guitar is basically producing one ringing note at this slowed-down krautrock pace, and that is bending in and out of the drone. I've ripped that idea off countless times for Neurosis riffs. Even though it’s as simple as just one guy bending a guitar note, for some reason it becomes super compelling in that hypnotic repetitive context. It's an all-time big influence, this album. This is how I discovered drone. I had heard drone in music from other cultures, but here we were in the modern counterculture, and they were bringing a trance-like mysticism to electric guitar music. Deeply affecting.