Under the Influence: School of Seven Bells
Benjamin Curtis, one half of New York dream pop duo School of Seven Bells and part-time guitarist for Michael Rother's Hallogallo, recommends a handful of his all-time favourite records
1. Joy Division – Closer (1980)
Chances are if I have to explain this to you at all, we probably don't have a lot to talk about.
2. Cannibal Ox – The Cold Vein (2001)
The Sgt. Pepper's of hip hop? Maybe the Loveless of hip hop? It's all melted and brainy and banging at the same time.
3. Fever Ray – Fever Ray (2009)
This one has been in heavy rotation since the second it came out, and it's not stopping soon. Her voice in the bridge of Dry and Dusty gives me chills every time.
4. The Cure – Disintegration (1989)
This one's been on the list for a while. Has pop music ever been more epic or dark? I actually have to keep this off of my iPhone because it's hard for me to listen to other things when it's on there.
5. Gas – Nah Und Fern (2008)
Is picking a box set cheating? Too late. Picked it. It's amazing to listen to in bed. Whatever it is you choose to do in there.
6. Joni Mitchell – Blue (1971)
This record feels like a friend. If I'm ever far from home and missing somebody, Joni's perspective always makes me feel a little bit better.
7. Neu! – Neu! (1972)
What a classic. I wish Hallogallo was twice as long. Some of my proudest moments as a guitarist have been sharing the stage with Michael Rother. I love that guy.
8. Spiritualized – Lazer Guided Melodies (1992)
This one goes way back too. It's hard to explain why I chose this over his other records, but it's probably certain memories I have made while listening to it. It's so grand and romantic and pathetic all at the same time. Perfect.
9. Kraftwerk – Computer World (1981)
So hard to choose which one, but there's no question Kraftwerk gets a spot on the list. So groovy and not at all groovy at the same time. The sound of this record blows my mind every time I hear it.
10. Brian Eno & Harold Budd – Ambient II: The Plateaux of Mirror (1980)
OK, so this record is peacefulness encapsulated. We all need a little of that in our lives, right? I've found the perfect moment for this record is as the plane is taking off. Put your ear buds behind your ear so they can't see that you're wearing them, and drift away.