Doves Andy Williams

Photo credit: John Shard

Doves are finally back in our lives with one of the albums of the year, which hit the number one spot and brought them back into the limelight after over a decade in hiatus. Wayne AF Carey delves into the mind of drummer Andy Williams who reveals his top ten formative albums in no particular order…

The Velvet Underground: The Velvet Underground

“I’ve been obsessed with The Velvets since i was 14. Bizarrely I got into them through the band Jesus and Mary Chain, talking about them in interviews. This includes some of my many favourite Velvets songs: What Goes On, Candy Says and Pale Blue Eyes. I will be playing The Velvets till the day I die!

*when my youngest girl was born, I managed to convince my wife to name her middle name after Nico, but not too sure if our daughter is going to thank me for this when’s she’s older and learns more about Nico’s pastimes!”

The Meters: Rejuvenation

“Aside from this album, I love The Meters singles especially Cissy Strut and Cardova. They contain some of the best grooves ever laid down. What a drummer Ziggy Modeliste was! Uncomplicated, but groovy as hell. Amazing raw deep production from Allen Toussaint too, easy to see why they’re one of the most sampled bands ever. This album is one I return to; it reminds me of one very happy summer.”

Van Morrison: Astral Weeks

“This album just doesn’t date and its over 50 years old. I always return to this album, for me he has one of the most emotive voices ever. I like how hard it is to categorise this record. I’m not actually that keen on most of his later albums. The more bluesy stuff. What i really love is 1970’s Van at his most mystical, spiritual and loose. (If you’re a fan of this album check out Veeden Fleece too).”

The Fall: Bend Sinister

“Along with Kraftwerk, The Fall is one of the bands I’ve seen most live over my life (always with my friend Brian). The Fall never became crap! Obviously, all fans have got their favourite Fall album but this is the first album i bought by them, Mark E was so ridiculously prolific over the years. So many fine songs, but on here its R.O.D and US 80’s -90’s. I still get hairs on the back of my neck standing up when the galloping drums and ‘cowboy guitars’ start in R.O.D.

*side note my best friend ended up with Mark E’s false teeth, still got them. That’s another story.”

The Who: Quadrophenia

“Rites of passage for me this album and I know it’s the same for Jimi and Jez. As teens we got right into the second wave of mod in the 1980’s and this album nailed that mood. It’s such a big and exciting record.”

Prince: Parade
“What more is left to say about Prince? I could have picked many other albums especially from this era, but again this was the first one I really connected with. I love the production on this. The record also includes ‘Sometimes It Snows In April”, one of my many favourite songs by him. I saw him live at Maine Road in 1989 and the next (and last) time, 24 years later, at Manchester Academy. Both times were intense.”

Talk Talk: Spirit of Eden

“A very formative record in terms of us finding our direction with Doves. We started listening to this record in our Sub Sub days (we sampled it on Spaceface too) on the come down after being out clubbing. It’s such a real, spiritual record and still sounds like nothing else.”

The Smiths: Strangeways Here We Come

“The Smiths are definitely a huge influence on our band. Jez and I were obsessed with them growing up. One summer weekend in 1986, Factory Records put on a festival at GMEX called The Festival Of The 10th Summer (it was meant to celebrate ten years since the Sex Pistols gig at The Free Trade Hall) it had New Order, The Smiths, The Fall and A Certain Ratio all on the same bill – you can’t fuck with that line-up, eh? The very next night we saw The Smiths at Salford University’s Maxwell Hall, which remains one of best gigs I have ever been to. We were 16-years old and that weekend cemented what it was we really wanted to do. ie; to try and avoid getting a proper job at all costs. One memory of The Smiths gig is I had no socks on for whatever reason, and I lost a shoe in the chaos of the crowd. I had to walk all the way home after, barefoot on one foot and walking in something suspect too on the way home. I was not in the least bit bothered.”

Love: Forever Changes

“Amazing songs, sweeping strings and some pretty crazy lyrics too.”

Leonard Cohen: Best Of

“All the dance floor hits! I love Leonard Cohen, a true poet. Lyrically, he wrote about the potential darkness of the human condition so eloquently, but he was also a master of humour/wit too which is such a hard trick to pull off. I suppose Nick cave is one of the very few artists who now manages to pull that one off so effortlessly. So many beautiful songs on here: So Long Marianne, Suzanne, Last Year’s Man etc. I’m so glad i got see him eventually at The Opera House in Manchester in 2008.”

Website / Buy album here

Words by Wayne Carey, Reviews Editor for Louder Than War. His author profile is here

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