‘Five Albums That Made Me’ is a weekly series written by TCOS’ favourite artists discussing five albums that have shaped their sound, musical outlook and career. There’s no limit on genre or passion – just a firsthand insight into the artists’ influences. This week we’re joined by Moscow-based artist Kate NV. After forming the post-punk group Glintshake in 2012, she has embarked on an illustrious solo career that’s dabbled in electronica, art-rock and experimental pop. Her 2020 album ‘Room For The Moon’ was ranked 42nd on Pitchfork’s albums of the year list. Listen to her track ‘Plans’ while you read below…
Philharmony – Haruomi Hosono
This was one of my main inspirations for so many years. It actually showed me that you can do whatever you want because it’s your album, and you are the one who’s setting the rules.
It sounds so obvious, but sometimes you think that if you make a pop album you can’t do weird tracks in between. At least I used to think so, and this album sort of opened me the door to the rest of the 1980s Japanese world.
Songs From The Big Chair – Tears For Fears
I love everything about this album. It’s been with me for so many years and it’s aged so well (we sort of aged together, though I’m younger). Every time I come back to it I discover something new, a new layer that was not apparent to me earlier.
It’s deep on so many levels, brilliantly written and performed. Melodies packed together with hooks in catchy arrangements.
Chip ‘n Dale 2 – Original Soundtrack
I’ve recently decided to refresh my memories regarding this game and accidentally realised why I love repetitive patterns and loops so much. I grew up playing games with my little brother and we loved Chip ‘n Dale 2. All the melodies are simple and funny but effectively catchy and you never get bored, even if it’s playing in the background for hours.
It’s actually so hard to make a short loop with a very clear idea and catchy melody but at the same time making sure it doesn’t annoy anyone. The perfect loop. If you find this soundtrack on Youtube you will be amazed how short they are.
Future Days – Can
This is my favourite Can album, probably because of the track ‘Bel Air’ which is the last one on the record. It’s influenced me a lot, especially in realising that improvised moments could be very gentle and inventive but still very catchy and pop-oriented.
Utakata No Hibi – Mariah
I accidentally found this album in a music blog a long, long time ago when there was either no Google Translate or I didn’t know how to use it. Everything on that page was in Japanese and I had no idea what was written, so i randomly downloaded 5 albums just because i loved the covers.
It turned out that four of them were unlistenable and the 5th one was a real gem. I remember that feeling when i pressed play and immediately felt something magical. This music was jaw-dropping for me. I thought that if one day I could be able to do something at least 20% as magical as this music then i can consider myself successful. The funniest thing that I will never be able to tell if I managed or not!
Thanks so much to Kate for taking part and truly reflecting that Five Albums That Made Me has no stylistic limits!