Upon hearing that The Revenge‘s debut LP, Love that Will Not Die, is due to drop on 30th March via his own Roar Groove imprint, it was important to incorporate this milestone for the Glaswegian producer in the theme of his Stamp The Wax mix. In fact, since we began asking artists to curate playlists for us, they’ve come in all shapes and sizes, but this is the first that has really emphasised the importance of the look and feel of a record, as well as the sound.
Listen to the playlist below, as The Revenge – who also goes by the name of 6th Borough Project alongside Craig Smith – explains why these five records triggered certain elements which were key to the conception of his album, from AC/DC to DJ Shadow to Daft Punk.
AC/DC – Back in Black (Atlantic)
The design of this album was always in my head from being a kid and rifling through my mum and dad’s records. The idea of a logo and simple text on the front and back gave it a classic feel, whilst still being dynamic. I’ve kept to the same design aesthetic for all of my label’s releases, with the ‘ROAR’ text remaining the same throughout so I didn’t want to alter that. I decided to use a diecut sticker on the front to indicate the album title so that it would age differently than the sleeve. I like to play around with design, so the CD version of the album is different, but the tracklisting remains unchanged for both formats. I felt this was important too so that the flow was the same from format to format.
Deep Purple – Last Concert in Japan (Warner Music)
I loved the look of this album with the smoke and the band on stage. My live show is still developing, but it’s exciting as there are so many elements to bring together for a performance. Before I started work on my album, I’d changed my working methods closer to how I used to make music back when I was a teenager, just jamming with the equipment a lot more. It was important to capture that feeling on the record in some way. I hope to do a live album next year after there are a few more performances under the belt, and I can choose one that represents the show best.
DJ Shadow – Endtroducing (Mo Wax)
This album was such a journey for me as a teenager. The flow was something to aspire to. I had been listening to a lot of hip hop around that time, but this really took the instrumental aspects and threaded them into a narrative more like a movie. I loved the attention to detail on all the Mo Wax stuff… the music, the artwork, the packaging. There was an aesthetic that separated it from the competition and cultivated a deeper interest in the whole story of the record.
Various – We Are Reasonable People (Warp Records)
This was the first Warp Records release I bought. I was experimenting with more left-field electronic stuff around 1998/1999 and had just started buying hardware. The music was this mad palette of sounds that were unlike anything I’d heard. The Designer’s Republic created this slick but twisted aesthetic for a lot of the Warp stuff that also drew me in. Apart from having passion for the music they released, Steve Beckett and Rob Mitchell were also aware of the business once the music is done, you still need to get it out there and get paid for it. Warp were ahead of the game with that in many respects, setting up their own digital distribution at a time when the majors were trying to stem the tide of digital music for instance. Having a vision and working closely with people you trust to make that a reality is vital to me, and seeing how Warp developed over the years is certainly an inspiration.
Daft Punk – Homework (Virgin / Soma Records)
I got a chance to work for Soma Records for work experience when I was at college after moving to Glasgow around 2001. They were a massively influential label for me, not just because of the Daft Punk connection, but because they were a globally recognised independent dance label that was based in Scotland. The seeds of ‘Homework’ were sewn on Soma, and Virgin released the album. The album passed me by initially, and I only got into it after buying a lot of Thomas Bangalter’s solo stuff, but the fact that they controlled their own identity as well as the music was fascinating to me. In an age where dance records were selling by the bucket load and artists were signing up to stupid contracts, Daft Punk set their own terms from the music through to the delivery of the final product.