Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

This Is My Music: Dean Wareham’s Favourite Albums

April Clare Welsh gets a rundown of the former Galaxie 500 frontman's all-time top 13 LPs before he comes to the UK to tour in support of his debut solo album next week

Forming in Boston in 1987, Galaxie 500’s triptych of albums, Today (1988), On Fire (1989) and This Is Our Music (1990) were all chiseled from a palpably higher altitude than the boulders of the late-80s college rock scene they were loosely part of. With Dean Wareham’s quivering upper register and torpid, widescreen guitar drenched in reverb, unraveling like dreamscapes in slow motion, the band – Wareham, drummer Damon Krukowski and bassist Naomi Yang – were dubbed ‘slowcore’ but hold a timeless place in the indie canon.

After Galaxie 500 split up in 1991, Wareham tuned his winsome channel into other frequencies, most notably Luna – with whom he released seven albums – and later, as part of Dean & Britta (with wife Britta Phillips). March marked his solo foray with Wareham’s full-length self-titled LP on Sonic Cathedral, following last year’s mini-album Emancipated Hearts.

Having turned their imagination to a number of songs over the years – Jonathan Richman’s ‘Don’t Let Our Youth Go To Waste’, The Beatles’ ‘Rain’, Joy Division’s ‘Ceremony’ and Yoko Ono’s ‘Listen, The Snow Is Falling’, to name but a few – it’s fair to say Galaxie 500 have always been partial to a cover or two. And for anyone familiar with their repertoire, some of Dean Wareham’s Baker’s Dozen choices – Spacemen 3 and The Modern Lovers for instance – can certainly be mapped to their sound. We chatted to Dean over a (pleasantly protracted) Skype call…

Dean Wareham is out now via Sonic Cathedral. Wareham is currently on tour in Europe, playing El Lokal in Zurich, Switzerland, tomorrow, May 13, and beginning the UK leg at the Exchange in Bristol on May 20; head here for full details. Click on his image below to begin scrolling through Dean’s choices

First Record

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