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Baker's Dozen

Master Blaster: Kevin Richard Martin's Baker's Dozen
Jennifer Lucy Allan , August 19th, 2021 09:37

The artist also known as The Bug talks to Jennifer Lucy Allan about the records that changed his life, from anxious encounters with African Head Charge in Weymouth to being blasted by Swans at the ICA


Public Image Ltd – Metal Box (Second Edition)

I didn't have a very happy childhood, but I very clearly remember seeing PiL do 'Death Disco' on Top Of The Pops. As a young teenager, money was hard to come by, and I didn't live in a hub of culture, I lived in Weymouth, pre-internet, so Top Of The Pops was a lifeline, as was John Peel. You'd be hoping there'd be one good song on Top Of The Pops, and PiL just crunched me.

I heard Metal Box at such an impressionable age, I wasn't even sure I liked it. It took me a long time to just get my head around the sheer caustic nature of it sonically and lyrically, but it spoke to me. There was a feeling of hatefulness at the world. It's an incredible fusion of rhythm and noise, and the lyrical content remains mysterious to me. At that age it was like transmissions from another planet. Metal Box and that post-punk thing – whether Joy Division, Killing Joke, Public Image – they all led by the bass and they were very DIY, with a collision of styles. Collision, friction, all the things I love. Punk changed me. It got me to question everything and gave me some sense of why I was disillusioned with life and my position in it, but it was post-punk that made me want to make music.