Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: British jam sessioneers Gnod
Gnod are a Manchester based collective of sonic freaknicks that peddle in the realm of sprawling, drugged-out space-rock. They’ve been likened to a heavier version of Sun Ra’s Arkestra via Acid Mother’s Temple, and their musical voyages both on and off wax have become storied affairs. Since 2007, they’ve had a slew of micro label releases on cassette, vinyl and CD-R on labels such as Not Not Fun, Blackest Rainbow, White Hills Music and Sloow Tapes, as well as a few self-releases. Last year saw them reunite with White Hills for a 2nd collaboration aptly titled Gnod Drop Out With White Hills II. Their most recent release is a split LP with A Middle Sex on the Blackest Rainbow label.
1. Shit & Shine - Cunts With Roses
Rhys (Notorious Hi-Fi Killers/ Drumcunt) gave us all a copy of this on CD-R when Gnod supported the Hi-Fi Killers in 2007 (it was actually the 1st ever Gnod gig) and we weren’t prepared for the sheer brutality of what we heard — it certainly left its mark on the Gnod psyche. This record is a good representation of $&$, relentless brutality without a care for the listener’s eardrums. When we put this on, it either sends people running for cover or moving closer to the speakers for more. Separates the wheat from the chaff. Then the dark brews come out…and we can’t remember the rest.
2. Sunburned Hand Of The Man - Jaybird
This album was doing the rounds just before the formation of Gnod. It opened our minds to what was possible in an improvised situation, a live jam. It’s pretty random improv music but builds towards a groove, stays there a bit, chills a bit, maybe hits another groove or maybe someone takes it somewhere else. Sunburned as a band had an influence on the creation of Gnod, being a collective rather than a band with fixed members. Creating jams on a theme rather than having songs with a fixed set of bars, notes, whatever. Jaybird gave us a lot of good ideas at the right time.
3. Tony Conrad & Faust - Outside The Dream Syndicate
This is a Gnod tour van favorite and always makes an appearance on long drives through Germany. The repetitiveness of that kick/ snare/ kick/ snare on the first track left a lasting impression on us. It taught us that if you have the right fundamentals in place, you only need a little to go a long journey.
4. The 13th Floor Elevators - The Psychedelic Sounds of The 13th Floor Elevators
Perhaps the first psych-rock record? (This was) pre-synths too, so Tommy Hall used a jug to make oscillations. Amazing simple but effective bass parts. Some of the best guitar lines ever. One heck of a hard-hitting drummer. Roky’s screaming vocals. A masterpiece! Nuff said.
5. Grimetapes - Slew Dem Vol.1
A bit of grime is good for the mind… Hit Grimetapes.com and get downloading! There’s loads of really heavy sessions on there. It’s British, it’s heavy, it’s dark and it makes you feel like you’re made of steel.
6. Butthole Surfers - Locust Abortion Technician and/or Psychic Powerless Another Mans Sac
Butthole Surfers are in inspiration to weirdos everywhere. Can’t decide which of these two is best. Locust Abortion Tech has the mighty “Sweat Loaf” on there but Psychic Powerless… has “Dum Dum” on it which goes dum der didly dum der didly dum, etc. Why God…. why??
7. The Fall - Our own compilation
There are far too many great Fall tracks to mention, but it’s hard when it comes to choosing the best Fall album. Who Made The Nazis, Wings, Fiery Jack, Hip Priest, Rowche Rumble, Tempo House, Rebellious Jukebox, Smile, etc., etc. There is no one Fall album that is the best. Even the best versions of the best tracks are not usually the same album version. The Peel Sessions and live tracks usually have the most energy.
8. This Heat - Deceit
So many good individual tracks on this album and they all work together as a whole, making the album sound kind of like a concept album. It feels like it has come back in time to us after the nuclear holocaust. One of this country’s best ever bands. A model of a band that plays interesting, organic, original music. Vital.
9. Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath
An important record in the eyes of many. Can you imagine a world without Black Sabbath? If you ever see a car with Black Sabbath on the side, get in that mofo and drive it. I guarantee you won’t regret it!
10. Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band - Safe As MilkOh yeah! EEEEEEELLLLLECTTTTIIIIIIIICCIIIIIIITTTTTTTYYYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! So many good moments on this album. You can play it to death, come back to it a few weeks later and it still sounds fresh. It’s also by far the most danceable of all Beefheart’s records and probably the only Beefheart album you can get away with putting on at a party, but I suppose that all depends on the type of party.
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