The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

Shields Against The World: Mat Osman's Baker's Dozen
Luke Turner , May 10th, 2023 08:40

From growing up on The Carpenters to reconnecting with music in his "wilderness years" Suede bassist turned novelist Mat Osman takes Luke Turner through his Baker's Dozen of favourite recordings


The Flirtations – ‘Nothing But A Heartache’

Whenever I say you can't pick the best record of all time, it can't be done, then I think about this recording and think maybe you can. When Suede split I was really cynical about the music industry and I didn't want to have any part of it. I worked in offices, which I hated, but it was a period where suddenly music started meaning more to me than it had for quite a few years. I had got really caught up in that 90s competitive thing of being in a band where you're thinking about chart positions and sales figures, what music can get you. But in those years when I was in the wilderness, suddenly music became all the things that it had been to me when I was a teenager, a shield against the world. I can remember going to these crappy temp jobs and playing this track. It was like a thousand espressos before you walk into the lion's den and always makes me feel ten feet tall. It’s that weird mix of joy and sadness that are marbled together in a way that you can't really do in any other form apart from music.