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Baker's Dozen

Friends Of Mine: Rachel Aggs' Favourite Music
Stephanie Phillips , February 24th, 2021 10:14

Rachel Aggs takes Stephanie Phillips through the albums that made her the musician she is today, from Smokey Robinson to Robyn, Mahotella Queens to Sleater-Kinney. Portrait photo by Stephanie Gibson


Arthur Russell – Another Thought
After I sent this to you I realised that this album is really hard to listen to because it's annoyingly out of print. I don't know why and I wish someone would tell me why because it's my favourite Arthur Russell record. A lot of people would put Arthur Russell on their list if they had to make a list like this, but I still think that he is so unique, and there is nobody that makes music that sounds like him. I just remember hearing it and becoming completely obsessed with it because, similarly to The Raincoats, he has a way of singing and making music that's like hearing it inside of your head. It's hard to explain. He has something definitely folk inspired because of the sound of the cello. Also, he has a very zen way of writing songs – I guess when I was younger I had never really heard songs that didn't have a verse chorus verse.

He almost wrote meditations rather than songs. His music moves me really deeply and I've never stopped listening to this record. It never sounds old to me. Songs like 'This is How We Walk on the Moon' and 'Losing My Taste For The Night Life' are really beautiful. It's really unclassifiable music, it's got a real purity to it that transcends all genres. I would love to make something that sounds anything like what he does because I think it's perfect. It's such a shame he died young because I would love to have known what he went on to do because he was definitely on another level. He tuned into some real cosmic frequencies.