on the record
WITH DAVEY HAVOK AND HUNTER BURGAN OF AFI
Davey Havok: Duran Duran – self-titled. It was from Tower Records and it wasn’t an album, it was a cassette. The first album I asked for was an AC/ DC album which was Back In Black. The year it came out I got it from the House Of Guitars. Hunter Burgan: One of the first records I got was Billy Joel – An Innocent Man. It was one of the first records that I wanted when I was old enough to realise I could have a record. Havok: For me that would be the Minor Threat singles collection, which isn’t truly an album, but it was at that moment that I realised there were people that share the same artistic beliefs as well as the same political beliefs and they call themselves “straight edge”. Hearing that album, I realised that was what I was and I was a part of that movement. It changed my life forever. Burgan: Looking back I’d say Jane’s Addiction – Nothing’s Shocking because when I got that record I realised the bass can do something cool and now that’s such an important part of my life. I don’t know if I would have realised that the same way without that record. Havok: So many remind me of my early, early childhood. One of them would be “Science Fiction/ Double Feature”, the show tune from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. I used to listen to my mom’s records and I would pick them by album cover. If the album cover fascinated me, I’d put it on. Of course she wouldn’t let me see it when I was that young, which was good parenting, and I’d have to go and see it without her knowing when I was a pre-teen. The whole show reminds me of being a kid and is a huge part of my youth. Burgan: The song “Bo Diddley” by Bo Diddley, which I hadn’t actually heard in a long time, but we
What was the f irst album or single you ever bought with your own money? What one album changed your life more than any other? What is one album or song that reminds you of your childhood?
did a tour a couple of years ago and it was in the house music every night and that was the first song that when I was old enough to reach the buttons on the jukebox – this is younger than three years old – when we still lived in Long Beach, I would pick that song every time. Havok: You know what I used to listen to all the time at that age? I had a 45 of “Rubber Biscuit”. The Blues Brothers recorded a 7”, and they had a song called “Rubber Biscuit”. All the scat sounds appealed to a child.
What is your favourite album from your school years?
Havok: I used to listen to Press The Eject And Give Me The Tape by Bauhaus all the time. That was a great record. There’s so many that we used to listen to over and over and over Burgan: High school I was burning through hundreds of records. Havok: Black Flag, Disintegration by the Cure, Violator by Depeche Mode, Two Things At Once by Descendents.
What album instantly puts you in a good mood?
Havok: You know what, listening to Sister of Mercy – Floodland is actually ironically somewhat euphoric for me as I associate it with the clubs and dancing, which is really escapist. Hearing the bass line of “Lucretia My Reflection” start always raises my skin, always to this day and takes me out of the moment I am in and into several different moments of my past, all of which I have positive associations with, so that’s one for me. Burgan: Jawbreaker – Chesterfield King 10”. So rad! Havok: I listen to a lot of noise. I spend a lot of time listening to noise and I suppose any Converter record that I listen to would be considered obscure. Burgan: Ken Nordine – Word Jazz. It’s just talking; it’s word jazz. It’s totally obscure.
What is one obscure album in your collection that everyone should know about? What do you consider to be the most embarrassing album in your collection?
Burgan: I’m not embarrassed by this at all but others might find it embarrassing, but the Milli Vanilli record. I love it. I saw them play live and it’s a great studio record, but it’s a pop record for ‘89 or whenever that came out and it was well done.
What is the best album to listen to on a Sunday morning?
Havok: I never know what day it is. Burgan: Commodores – “Easy”. I heard that the last Sunday before we left and it’s been stuck in my head every day since then. I don’t mean for it to be there, but it’s a good song.
What one album do you wish you had performed on?
Havok: Gosh, I just went to see Failure, I’m not really answering the question – I wouldn’t care to perform on the song necessarily – but having written some of those lyrics, listening to “The Nurse Who Loves Me”, those lyrics are so flawless and so well written, so is the melody with its minimal atonal moments. Watching it live last week, I had this moment with my friend Ben who is in Dear Boy, we just turned to each other and had a “I wish I wrote it, how did you write that? It’s so perfect” moment. Burgan: Any records I love so much I don’t want to be a part of.
What’s one album or song you want played at your funeral?
Havok: “Starships” by Nicki Minaj. Burgan: “We Build This City” by Starship. Havok: Perfect. Maybe we will die together. Havok: It was the new Crystal Method and I thought it was great. They’ve added modern sounds to their signature sound. It’s clearly Crystal Method, which is great, but it’s not dated and I love it.
What is the last album you bought and what did you think of it?