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Baker's Dozen

Survival Songs: John Grant's Baker's Dozen
Barnaby Smith , September 8th, 2021 09:05

John Grant takes tQ through the 13 albums that have defined his life and guided him through tough times, from the beauty of Fad Gadget to the joy of Bernard Fevre, via Ennio Morricone, Kate Bush and more


Kate Bush – The Dreaming

There’s a track on this album that I only have to think about and I’m in a different world: ‘Night of the Swallow’. It is my hope that you will put on some headphones, walk outside and look at your surroundings and listen to this song. Look at the houses and walk down the street. I think you’re going to be mesmerised. She’s one of the greats, and I can barely say anything about her. What the fuck can you say about Kate Bush? Hounds of Love was another survival record for me, which I listened to non-stop in my last year of high school. I discovered The Dreaming after Hounds of Love, which was the gateway drug for many of us because it had such commercial success. So I went backwards to The Dreaming, which is another masterpiece. It has ‘Houdini’ on it, which is sort of the story of the album cover, with Houdini passing the key to her with a kiss. That song is a masterpiece. ‘Sat in Your Lap’ is on there, and ‘There Goes A Tenner’ – I had no idea what that meant, by the way. I didn’t know British slang back then. At the end of ‘Get Out of My House’ she gets into some screaming, which I was a little alarmed about at first.

And the title track alludes to The Dreaming, as in the Indigenous Australian mythology

I didn’t know that. Holy shit that’s so interesting, that blows my mind. I had no idea she went all the way down there with her lyrics. Why isn’t there a 33 1/3 on The Dreaming? I guess because I haven’t written it yet.