10 records that changed my life:

(in biographical order)

The Beatles - Sgt.
 Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

The Beatles - Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

The Beatles...the start of it all. This was the first record that I really loved. I used to get it from my parents' record rack and played it on their stereo over and over again.
Until I was 16 The Beatles were my absolutely favourite band and I knew all the lyrics by heart and could play their songs on my keyboard. I still think that their music--especially the late albums--is brilliant.

Madness - One Step Beyond

Some of my classmates had older brothers that listened to Ska and so there was a phase in the 7th grade (when we were 13 or so) when we all started listening to Ska stuff like The Busters, The Toasters and (of course) Madness.
It was one of the first records I bought that was not mainstream 80s music or stuff from my parents' record collection.

Madness - One Step
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Blood
 Sugar Sex Magik

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Blood Sugar Sex Magik

What a band and what an album! The first time that I heard the Chili Peppers was on a radio show that introduced their album "Mother's Milk" when it came out in 1989. I liked the music but forgot about the band again. When two years later this record came out I just loved it, although I didn't like the video for "Under The Bridge" in the beginning because it was sort of über-hyped on MTV. But "Give It Away" was just brilliant: a great video and a great song to jump around to on parties.
For me personally, this record was what "Nevermind" was for many people: it was the start into the 90s (the 80s were definitely over now), it opened the door for crossover (and independent music in general) for me and it was a time where you would drive (a few people already had driving licenses) to parties or clubs and just dance and jump around to "Give It Away", "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and "Killing In The Name Of".

The Cure - Disintegration

This was the start of my goth career (followed by my time as a rivethead) and it has a brilliant story: Together with a couple of good friends from school we were on holidays in Riccione, Italy, where I met my first girl-friend. One day I had a discussion with my best friend Reiner about music and he said, it was a pity, that although I had a good taste in music (basically we both liked Lenny Kravitz and the Chili Peppers etc.) I didn't like the Cure. So I told him he should do a Cure tape for me, but he replied, that this wasn't the time for me to listen to such music (as I was a happy teenager in love :-)). So we agreed that I would get a tape when my girl-friend and I would break up. Three months later, on the 18th of October 1993, I called him and just said: "I need a cure." He understood and said I should come to his place, where I got my first Cure tape. My favourite song at that time was "Homesick": "I forget how to move, when my mouth is this dry, and my eyes are bursting hearts in a blood-stained sky." Aaaaah, just great...

The Cure -
 Lakaien - Forest Enter Exit

Deine Lakaien - Forest Enter Exit

It was just a week after I got the "Disintegration" that I went to my first concert (or more precisely: the first concert where I bought the ticket myself, i.e., if you don't count the concert of the Erste Allgemeine Verunsicherung in 1988 which I still think was great, but somehow...mmmh...different :-)). It was: Deine Lakaien live in the Hunky Dory in Detmold. It was the start of a time where we used to go to goth clubs near my home town Paderborn, namely the PC69 in Bielefeld on fridays or the Hunky Dory on saturdays: dressed in black and dancing the whole night through.
This is the best album by Deine Lakaien and one of the best that emerged from the German Goth/Electro/Dark Wave scene which was at its peak (concerning creativity) at that time.


KMFDM: still one of my favourite bands ever. NIHIL: still one of the best albums (if not the best) ever. It was Friday, the 5th of May 1995, the day before my first Abitur exam. I had studied and rehearsed for weeks, preparing myself for the final exams in school. On this day I just couldn't take it anymore and felt that I had to stop my mind from going round and round the same subjects to be relaxed enough for the exam. So I just got into the car and drove to my favourite music shop looking for some CD as a reward for all the stress of the last weeks and as a motivation for the stress that was still to come. As I had taped two great Industrial albums a few weeks earlier, "II - The Final Option" by Die Krupps and "ANGST" by KMFDM, I was happily surprised to find out that KMFDM had just released a new album and bought it right away. After turning it up real loud on my stereo that afternoon my physics exam on the next day went smoothly.

Aphex Twin - Come
 To Daddy

Aphex Twin - Come To Daddy

It was on a saturday night in the autumn of 1997 when I came home from a club or pub and I didn't want to go to bed yet and switched on the TV and saw the excellent "Come To Daddy" performed by the Aphex Twin Richard D. James and directed by Chris Cunningham. I was hooked immediately and bought the CD a couple of days later. At that time I was writing for two goth fanzines and I was really bored by almost everything that came out in the Electro/EBM/Synth-Pop sector because the bands sounded like the 20th copy of Skinny Puppy or Front 242. So I was waiting for something that could surprise and fascinate me...and this was it! It was the proof that there was still a possiblity to do intelligent, creative and aggressive electronic music.
I used to take it with me into the clubs I went (because the DJs in goth clubs usually didn't have any Aphex Twin) and forced the DJs (mainly by annoying them with my requests) to play it. One DJane asked Stefan and me if we made that song ourselves because we were the only ones that danced and because the music sounded so "cheap and unprofessionel"...gosh!

Robbie Williams - Let Me Entertain You

Oh I used to hate this song when it came out. An important reason for that was that, of course, you just didn't listen to Take That (and thus also not to Robbie Williams) if you wanted to be taken seriously concerning your taste in music. But when I came to Sheffield in the September of 1998 everybody there just loved Robbie Williams and especially this song. You couldn't go to a students' club or party where they wouldn't play it. So I figured out pretty soon that I had two options: either I would be annoyed on almost every party (and worse: I would be the only one to be annoyed while all the others partied like hell) or I could like that song. So I chose to like it and it became (one of) the anthem(s) of our legendary party flat S in Crewe Flats. Our parties there usually got started with "I Will Survive" and Julie and me dancing on the table...after that everybody joined in and "Let Me Entertain You" was always one of the highlights of the night - especially Peter had his best performances during this song.

 Williams - Let Me Entertain You
Manu Chao -

Manu Chao - Clandestino

I first heard this album when my French flatmate Julie put it on after the main party in our flat had stopped and she started a sort of after hour. Bad luck for her, because she had to dance Salsa with Chris, he he ;-) But what I really wanted to say: I liked the first four songs but afterwards I got a bit bored by the songs. But because I liked the first few songs I taped them and when I was back in Germany I kept rewinding the tape just for these four songs. So it was pretty obvious that I had to buy it and I did so when I visited my girl-friend at that time, Paula, in Granada. After I moved together with Stefan I also infected him with the "puta's fever" and "Clandestino" was the CD we played most often in our flat, in particular for Super-Pizza cooking sessions! So this CD really accompanied a great and important time in my life: from legendary party flat S in Sheffield over the great time with Paula to the equally legendary Wilhelmstraße!

Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin 12"

This was one of the records that triggered my obsession with 12" versions of 80s hits and with the Pet Shop Boys in particular. I had started to collect and listen to 80s music excessively when I started doing 80s parties as a DJ in 1997. But in the spring of 2000 Stefan and I started to go to the flea market at the Universität Dortmund regularly and we realized pretty quickly that we could buy a bunch of Special Extended Maximum Disco Dance Remixes of our favourite 80s tunes which are hard to get on CD (if at all) for very little money if you would just take the time to look through the thousands of vinyl records that are being offered on the flea market every week. So a typical great saturday looked like this: cycle to university and buy like 20 records for about 15 EUR--go to the supermarket to get some food for the evening--put on all the great 12" versions while preparing dinner (probably tomatoes and mozarella and Pizza or pancakes). I really miss those weekends. If I get the chance to go to that flea market now it usually results in a ridiculously heavy bag that I can hardly carry from the train station in Vienna to my office...

Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin