- Where you're from
- Picture of your fine self
- The three records with a statement of why for each one. (you don't have to this)
Belle and Sebastian – If You’re Feeling Sinister
This was a pure early teens curiosity purchase that completely changed the way I thought about music. Already totally bored and disillusioned by the Kerrang / NME outlook on the condition of music alongside my immediate surroundings of dumb West Midlands greebo squallor; If you’re Feeling Sinister hit me from an angle that actually made sense in terms of its position in culture and society. Both thematically and in its sound, it set itself apart. In that sense it always felt like it worked conceptually, and so it cant get tired because it’s correct. It was a bitter and strong-willed little wimp of an album searching for something better, just like me at the time.
Fog – Fog
The first solo album by Andrew Broder – based around the mix of guitar pieces and some of the most strange and ethereal turntablism you’ll ever hear, its a wonderfully baffling album sprinkled with scattered moments of indie pop genius, including a high contender for my favourite song ever; ‘Pneumonia’. This album set a pattern for me being into a string of idiosyncratic solo pop acts; Cass McCombs, Mark Kozelek, Why? Will Oldham, Chad Vangaalen, Destroyer amongst others. The kind of thing thats so different within its realm it always begs the question; “Who ever told you that it was ok to do this like you do?”.
Fugazi – The Argument
The most mature and fully realised in the sterling Fugazi cannon, I guess I see this as an idealistic blueprint of everything a great album or great band should aspire to be. Both thematically and in its construction, it is challenging, tight, interesting, fun, introspective, defying of convention and continually searching for something better. It is a fucking beautiful beast of a record. It is a cultural milestone in terms of its ancestry, the music that it has inspired, and that which it will continue to.
Memphis, TN, USA
My Granddad, around 10-12 years ago gave me hes old record player and big box of records this was on the top of pile so I thought I'd start with it just test the player out, before that point id never really listened to a lot of music. this is were my love metal begin.
Flying Lotus Los Angeles
I just think this record is really unique and untouchable in terms of the texture and the quality of beats that's this guy creates. in a field of of its own
Slayer Reign In Blood
This was one of my first albums I brought recommended to me by one of my old school friends, we used to spend hours just listening to it in owe of how fast the guitar playing was.
At The Drive-In - Relationship Of Command
Man I love this band so much spent so many hour's listening to this and the other albums so damn much through my early teens, I even have a gas-mask tattoo from the early EP "¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo!"
Hell Is For Heroes - The Neon Handshake
This is another album that i spent listening through my teens i love it.. every song! but I'm just so disappointing that their other albums were not on the same level.
Death From Above 1979 - You're A Woman, I'm A Machine
I can remember the first time i heard this record is was extremely excited and it really didn't disappoint. the only disappointing thing is that i never got to see them live...
There's my three.
Joy Division - 'Unknown Pleasures' (Factory, 1979)
From: Walsall Wood, Walsall
1. Manic Street Preaches - This is my truth Tell Me Yours
If there is single handedly the most important album in my collection it would be this. Without it I probably would of never developed a taste in music. It hit me the first time I heard If you Tolerate This Your Children will be next, when that haunting guitar sound just burys its way into your soul. After that the meloncoly of the record soon became the soundtrack to my teenage angst.
2. Soulwax - Much Against Everyones Advice
This has a special place for me as without trying to sound to corny, this album is me. its like the band had a picture of me on there desk and said I'm going to write an album about him. I'm sure thats not the case and its actualy about the bands own expirences but I just relate to this record more than any other. I also urge anyone who hasn't heard it to hear it maybe you'll find a conection there.
3. The Music - The Music
These are one of the best bands going, it's a very special record as it plays every mood, I think its an album that all of my friends loved its something we all share. If you believe that freinds are the most important thing in your life then surely this is an important album. it has everything, every emotion build ups with songs like Too high, Epic songs like the gettaway, or just plain good dancey songs like the people, truly a fantastic record.
Sonic Youth - Dirty
Bought for me by my dad when I was 13 it laid untouched on a shelf for 2 years until some point around 5 years ago I mixed it up with will smiths classic "Will2K" album and instead of hearing his version of rock the casbah I was treated to an onslaught of noise and never looked back.
Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
There have been enough rants about this one.
Sigur Rós - Ágætis byrjun
Simply one of the greatest albums of all time, beautiful, greater guitar use than the first album and the name translates too "An alright start". What more could you want?
Million Dead - Song to Ruin (Xtra Mile Recordings/Integrity Records, 2003)
Tender Forever - The Soft And The Hardcore (K Records, 2005)
That contradiction you always cary inside yourself. That secret dualism; twee and punk; punk and twee; the aggression but always the insecurity. The Soft and the Hardcore. The raw intimacy and delicate power in Melanie Valera's confessional electronica. The nervousness which filled me listening to the album for the first time in that unfamiliar bedroom. The overproof rum and the doubts dispersed as the songs blurred into one. The stolen kiss I'll never forget though I can't quite remember which song accompanied it. The infinite possibilities exploding at once, "the magic of crashing stars" and you were the space in which I floated; listening to the lyrics, looking in your eyes and learning to love again, willed on by the gentle voice and fragile keys.
I`m born in Italy but in the last 3 years I`m living in London.
Those are my special album that really changed my life.
Nirvana - In Utero.
My cousin gave to me this album in 1996. Before this I was listening to Queen, Pink Floyd, Genesis, REM, G`N`R, and every shit that my Parents use to listening. This album really open a real world of new/old music weird comix weird everything...
Tre Allegri Ragazzi Morti - Intervento A Vivo.
This is an Italian dream punk rock indie cult band that still rocking. I saw them live in 1997 and was love at the first song. They mix sort of punk pop like Pixes surfer rosa stuff. Great lyrics art and mood. I still love them and everything they are doing. My first girlfriend story is mixed with this album and also my last girlfriend is mixed with their last album "La Rivoluzione Sessuale".
Pixies - Surfer Rosa
I never hear of them before watching Fight Club and you know Where is My Mind.... I went to my favorite music shop and I bought. I still love this album and I dont really like the others that Black and company made after.. no even the breeders are good like this amazing monumental pop punk vocabulary.
1) Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! -- DEVO
I dont remember the first time I heard Devo, or how I even got into them, but it pretty much snowballed into an obsession, very quickly. Not one track on this album is bad. I think their simple complexity, matching outfits and fascinating inspirations are what ultimately shaped my love for them, which has now taken over my record collection, last.fm lists and life in general. I am Devo.
2) World of Echo -- Arthur Russell
The first Arthur Russell track I heard I remember vividly because it still haunts me to this day. I was sixteen and an older friend sent me All Boy/All Girl. I was completely in awe and delved further, loving everything I heard. Arthur Russell was a genius.
3) I'm Dragging A Dead Deer Up A Hill -- Grouper
This is a recent one, but definately a life changer. The way the album ebbs and flows from track to track leaves you drowning in wonderful ethereal splendour. I listen to this frequently, especially when I am drawing.
James ,22, Colchester
Godspeed You Black Emperor - F# A# ~
A friend lent me this album just prior to the summer of 2006, and every night for 2 solid months, I put it on to lull me into sleep. The record completely hypnotised me and still does. It's the first record that I've really loved, and as I was a late starter into this music malarkey, it was also the first record that got me properly into music.
Queen - Greatest HitsWay back when I was a wee nipper of about 9 or 10, my family and I were travelling to Wales on holiday, and I asked my Dad to put something on, and so he put on Queen's Greatest Hits. It really opened my eyes to the fact that there was music beyond the crap that we all listen to in the charts,that music can be fun, thought-provoking, ecstatic and sad all at the same time. Queen still hold a place in my heart, and it all started with an old cassette found in the car.Lizzy Mercier Descloux - Mambo NassauIt was a toss-up between this and a couple of others, but Mambo Nassau wins out because it is so purely infectious that it can brighten the saddest of days. I only discovered Lizzy during the course of 2009 and haven't stopped listening to her since; it is a shame that she is not widely recognised. A record that always reminds me that no matter how bad things are, there will always be a light at the end of the tunnel.----------------------------------------------------------------------Lee GoodmanBirminghamKATE BUSH - LIONHEART
I don’t recall how this found its way onto my musical radar. I remember my dad loving ’Wuthering Heights’ and, to me at the tender age of seven and a bit, Kate Bush was just some bug-eyed kooky dancer type (like a member of Hot Gossip with O Levels) who never seemed to wear a bra. I guess my dad admired her purely as an artist although I’ll never really know for sure. The single ’Wow’, complete with that John Carpenter keyboard arpeggio, comes from this album too. Foolishly, in my later adolescent years, I’d always imagined the song was inspired by a phenomenal orgasm Bush had once experienced, but no. Reading the lyrics now, it seems to be part of the whole Rock Opera thing than ran through the entire album. It was 1978 and, despite what aging punks will tell you, this kind of thing was still all the rage. One of her best ever recorded tracks (in my opinion) is on this album too: ‘Don’t Put Your Foot on the Heartbrake‘. Not a classic by a long stretch but it does something that no other Kate Bush track has done before or since: it fucking rocks. Now, to my young mind, this howling banshee of a track was mind-blowing. The spooky piano is back again for the verses and Bush sings like a demented Fraggle during the choruses. The last chorus where she loses the plot completely and screams “Oh Come On!!‘ is Pure Fucking Bliss.
And, speaking of howling like a dog with its nutsack trapped in a garden gate, this brings us neatly onto choice number two:
PIXIES - SURFER ROSA
I tuned into these guys about the same time Nirvana got big (1991, so that makes me 20). I’d always heard the name being dropped but considered them to be too knowingly cool - a hipster band , if you will - to really take seriously. Anyway, ’Nevermind’ had hit pay dirt and was about to unwittingly ruin alternative music for the next decade, and I wanted something with the same level of guttural frenzy and oblique desperation that I enjoyed about that album. I was reading Kerrang magazine (it was my sister’s) and it had a feature about Kurt Cobain’s favourite albums. ‘Surfer Rosa’ was somewhere in there and so I picked it up, figuring it was as good a place as any to start. My first impression of ‘Surfer Rosa’ was how much Steve Albini’s production sucked. I mean, it was so dry and boxy and completely lacking in dynamics. And where was the bottom end? I almost gave up during the first three tracks but then ‘Broken Face’ came on and it was the most fucked up pop song I’d ever heard. I knew I was in love. ‘Surfer Rosa’ taught me that production counts for nothing without songs or ideas and without it, I’d never have listened to bands like Guided By Voices, Pavement, Times New Viking, Lovvers or Jay Reatard. To this day, I still think Albini is an utter cock as a producer (just for what he did to PJ Harvey‘s second album), but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Third choice goes strangely out of sync, in that it’s an old album by an old band, and it’s actually a ‘Best Of’ rather than a studio album. What the heck - I’m big enough to take it. I’ll include this as it was my first purchase by this band and it set me on an entirely different path with regards to what we like to call “Punk Rock”. Album number three is:
MAGAZINE - RAYS & HAIL: 1978-1981
Somewhere around 2002 (which now makes me 31), these guys popped onto my radar. I think there was a lot of talk at the time about a Post Punk revival. Bands like The Rapture and Radio 4 must’ve had Gang Of Four’s legal team on the phone constantly and we’d already seen Elastica’s wholesale lifting of Wire’s ’Three Girl Rhumba’ and the Fall’s ’How I Wrote ‘Elastic Man’’ during the previous decade, so it was inevitable really. Magazine, however, seemed to remain a mystery. Never receiving the same lip service or being name-checked as an influence, despite going some of the way to inventing what would become the Post Punk and New Wave sound. I think this is in part due to Howard Devoto’s complete rejection of the so-called Punk aesthetic that led him to quit the Buzzcocks immediately after recording the ‘Spiral Scratch EP’ in 1977. Like Morrissey who followed him, Devoto was a man of words. He saw through the lie of Punk and wanted better, both lyrically and musically, and wasn’t afraid to say so. This album captures pretty much the cream of Magazine’s output during their four album lifespan. If you haven’t heard ’A Song From Under The Floorboards’ or ’Shot By Both Sides’ or ’Definitive Gaze’ then you really haven’t been paying attention. Stay behind and write “Silent Alarm is Just an Okay Album” 100 times on the blackboard. My advice to fans of Bloc Party, Editors and the whole 00’s glut of (lazy) angular post-punk revivalists is to listen here and see how it’s done. That’s what I did and I haven’t had to buy a single Maccabees album since.
As an aside, I think the only British band to ever pay decent homage to Magazine were one of my 90’s favourites, the Auteurs, and, bizarrely enough, they never got their dues either. They were, incidentally, produced by Steve Albini three albums in, which ties this whole thing up rather neatly.Luke Scott Dumper (Unsigned singer songwriter type)
jon fruciante- shadows collide with people
bloc party - silent alarm
biffyclyro- any album
Babar Luck (used to be in King Prawn now solo super interesting bloke)
cant answer that question too many too choose from it belittles it dissrespects what music means to me. it is more then three it is many and many many and that is why i am the way i am. many things and forms and styles . from jazz to the blues to trance dance to reggae to the roots to the eropeans claassical to the afrikan and folk classickals all over the wqorld.. to the hipp hopp to the hope for all the anciant love songs its all love and it is not as well. study all styles. be the master of none.
i do go on.
i answer the way i can
peace and good luck.
Jason from Failures' Union (alt country punk one of my tips for next year)
Although it's a rather common answer, it's the truth. This record came out when I was in 7th grade. At that time I have never been exposed to anything punk, and only knew music that was on the radio and some metal. It just opened my eyes to a new world, and seeing these guys play made me feel like you didn't have to be this crazy rockstar to make music. They are the reason I picked up an instrument.-REM: Green.
REM was the first band that I ever latched onto and thought of as something I loved. I had other bands albums, but they were just for passive listening. REM was something special to me, and I felt like those songs were my own. They continue to be my favorite band of all time.-The Cure: Disintegration.
When I was younger my dad had a copy of The Cure's "Mixed Up" album for some unknown reason. I ended up obtaining it, and I became a fan of the band. Shortly after that I bought the Disintegration cassette, and my mind was blown. It contains 12 of the worlds most perfect moody pop songs. It exposed me to the darker side of music and has affected my musical tastes since.
Aspen Sails (Folk duo another tip for next year)
Death Cab for Cutie - Transatlantanticism
Bill Callahan - Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle
Modest Mouse - Good News For People Who Love Bad News
I don't think that we feel a record had ever inspired or changed our lives in a particularly resonant way, and that this idea works within its negative. A record should be inspired and changed through life and not the other way around.
I think that this is the reason we love these three records, there is a life and warmth to be found within each one. A depth is present within them and this allows you to explore and find out new traits to their personalities the more time you spend with them.
hope this helps,
keep in touch
Liam O'Kane (unsigned ska solo dude)
King Prawn - Surrender to the Blender
Bedouin Soundclash - Root Fire
Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros - Global a go go
Jim from Baddies (will be huge this year)
Nirvana - Nevermind
Depeche Mode - Violator
Kerbdog - On the Turn-----------------------------------
Kay Stanley, 23, Wolverhampton
Lemuria – The First Collection The first time I heard this band was live, Andrew put them on while I was at university in Falmouth at Miss Peapods, a café surrounded by water and boats that serves Skinners lager. I remember they were just ridiculously good and I instantly fell in love with them, I also remember getting in without paying, and watching Andrew standing by the PA singing all the words. Before and after we started going out I would hang out in his bedroom a lot listening to his records, and this was always a favourite .I have seen them live a few times since, but the best was while I was in Florida at Fest 8 last October. They played on the Saturday afternoon with a tonne of other awesome bands all at the same venue. Me and Andrew got really drunk and it was my favourite day of the trip. We also celebrated our year anniversary while we were there- so it was pretty special.My favourite track on the album is ‘In a World of Ghosts’, because me and my best friend Wil used to play it every week when we were students at a night we put on in dingey little club. Noone ever danced to it, noone ever came to our night, but it was a lot of fun.
New Found Glory – Sticks and Stones This was the first CD I bought with the first pay check I received from working at a supermarket when I was at school. I actually remember standing in Wolverhampton HMV with it in my hands. It marks the change between waiting for birthday and Christmas to have CD’s bought for me, to me choosing for myself what I wanted to listen too. For about a year I would use some of the £126 I made (which incidentally is more than I make now) to buy music, which was sometimes good and sometimes very poor! I used to love buying the Fat Wreck compilations they put out, and the Punk’O’Rama CD’s to find new bands, and going to the Drive-Thru tour shows at the Academy.It also makes me believe for a split second that Wolverhampton isn’t all that shit. When I’m in Planet and I hear the start of “My friends over you”, my friends fill the dancefloor and everyone is shouting every word and jumping in the air- it’s worth the warm Red Stripe, wrecked shoes and putting up with the pretentious pricks that reside in that place recently. Hearing that song, and a handful of others in that place make me feel 18 again, so much has happened since, yet I’m still here all the same.
65 Days Of Static – One Time For All Time I used to listen to this record a lot when I was in my final year of Uni. Last summer I got to see them live for the first time. It was at Supersonic Festival while I was sharing a little shop in the Custard Factory with Mouldy Loaf. We kept the shop open the whole weekend, drank lots of Polish beers and basically had a great time! On the last day Wil came along and we closed the shop so we could all watch. It was the only full set I saw that weekend and they were completely amazing. I guess it was a sort of mile stone, I’d graduated the summer before with no idea what the fuck I was going to do with my life and now I was running my own business, with my own shop, it was awesome.