Under the Influence: Melvins' Buzz Osborne

Melvins frontman Buzz Osborne takes to his hammock, engages the caps lock and lifts the lid on his desert island discs

Feature by Dave Kerr | 27 Oct 2009

1. The Stooges – Fun House
Certainly their best if not THE best rock'n'roll record ever recorded, period. Nothing comes close. It's pure, well thought out thug music. An animalistic, crude and savage terror trip whose beauty will never be matched. People who don't get the importance of this album or of The Stooges' total musical dominance are just plain stupid. I saw them live in 2005 and they were really fucking amazing. The Rolling Stones at their absolute zenith couldn't even lick the balls of these guys.

2. David Bowie – Station to Station
I love that Bowie STARTS this record with the 10 minute long Station to Station. It's a great song and a gutsy album opener AND you also have TVC15 which is one of his best songs ever. It's hard to pick a favorite Bowie record. Every album from The Man Who Sold the World to Scary Monsters is fundamentally worthy.

3. Sex Pistols – Never Mind the Bollocks
None of my teenage friends in the seventies could stand Rotten's voice. To me this was a perfect extension of the heavy metal I was already listening to, and The Pistols' 'no redeeming social value whatsoever' stance completely appealed to my developing juvenal delinquent brain. It made sense to me, still does. There IS an obvious and direct connection from Jerry Lee Lewis, Jim Morrison, Iggy Pop through to Johnny Rotten and we're STILL waiting for the next one. I'd say it was Chuck D but he's never even heard of these guys.

4. Brainiac – Electroshock for President
I LOVE this record. The opening track mix just slays me every time I hear it. It's hard to imagine what would have happened to these guys if the singer Tim Taylor hadn't been killed just after this was released. Tragic.

5. The Gun Club – Fire of Love
Out of all the "old school" L.A. punk rock records this is the one I listen to the most. It still sounds fresh and new. I BELIEVE them, even if it is total bullshit.

6. Throbbing Gristle – Heathen Earth
Load up on coffee, turn out all the lights and crank this up full bore.

7. The Latin Playboys – Dose
It's records like this that make me WANT to make my own music. It's cool and smart and thrilling. It's severely modern. Why didn't this sell billions? Most people who buy records are stupid I guess.

8. Butthole Surfers – Psychic... Powerless... Another Mans Sac
Paul Leary told me the key to his guitar playing was to keep it stupid. If this excellent record is him keeping it stupid then I wonder what they would be like if he really busted his ass? I think this is their best record. It's beautiful yet perfectly psychotic. It's great driving music.

9. ZZ Top – Tres Hombres
A perfect record. Everything I love about these guys is here in living "Texas" colour. ZZ Top maintains a groove that just kills me. The genius is in the delivery. Total attitude.

10. Cream – Wheels of Fire
Three monsters at the peak of their creativity. What most people don't get is that this was Jack Bruce's band and Clapton didn't mean shit. Well, he did but I just can't forgive Eric for that "I Shot the Sheriff" crap he put out later.

Melvins 'remix' album Chicken Switch is out now via Ipecac.