Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

4. Killing JokeWhat’s THIS For…!

I met a bunch of people at a gig when I was 16. They were these blokes who were into the South London skateboarding scene. I remember going along to the Southbank, and I’m not a skateboarder myself, but I would go along and hang out. They were probably a little bit older than me, maybe about 19-21, but it was brilliant because they were just such a disparate group. Two of them worked at the Ministry Of Defence. There was a guy called Bricky because he was from Brixton who was basically a dope dealer. They would put Killing Joke on a ghetto blaster and I got into it because I’d never heard anything like it. It’s just drums, just pounding, pounding drums and mad rhythms. When I think of that crowd, I think it is really unusual music for you lot to be listening to.

What’s interesting about Killing Joke is that I was never massively into them. I just played this album a lot because it was new to me to have an album that is completely built around rhythm and sounds like heavy industry. When I listened to What’s THIS For…! there was something slightly terrifying about it. It’s a bit like being sort of pursued through some apocalyptic landscape by unseen threats. This is a sort of album that if a parent walked into a 14-year-old child’s room and heard them listening to this, they would start calling social services. I actually found the aggressiveness quite liberating. It was more thrilling than threatening.

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