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Baker's Dozen

Ultimate Sad Boys: Fred Macpherson's Baker's Dozen
Patrick Clarke , January 19th, 2022 09:42

Spector's Fred Macpherson takes Patrick Clarke on a rollercoaster Baker's Dozen, taking in the similarities between Frank Sinatra and Drake, a love-hate relationship with Nick Cave, his friendship with David Tibet and more


The Walkmen – You And Me

Everyone knows ‘The Rat’ by The Walkmen. To me that’s the defining recording of the indie era. That was the song that always would be the centrepiece of any night out for me at the time. There was this line, the defining line, “When I used to go out, I would know everyone that I saw / Now I go out alone, if I go out at all”. The album, Bows + Arrows, despite having that song on, I don’t think is a great album, but The Walkmen remained one of my favourite indie bands, and Hamilton Leithauser was a great vocalist. You can tell he was Sinatra influenced, in his solo stuff there’s a lot of ‘Who me? The guy in the three piece suit?’ I think You & Me is their best album. It’s probably my best indie rock guitar album, The Strokes aside, of that era. It’s the one I listened to the most and probably got a lot of lyrical influence from in terms of finding new ways of saying slightly morose things. I interviewed The Walkmen once when I was working on MTV2. They’d just played The Scala, maybe not quite sold it out, and it was an amazing gig but I remember there being no excitement about it. I only realised years later that they’re one of those bands that suddenly years later everyone would say they were their favourite band, but at the time they were always a few names down the bill, never quite selling out the big venue. The ‘always the bridesmaid, never the bride’ type bands are the ones I associate with the most, and that album is their best work.