Life Is Like A Box Of Records: David John Weaver

Life Is Like A Box Of Records: David John Weaver

Life Is Like A Box Of Records today spends time with Detour co-founder and Creative Scotland Music Development Office – David Weaver.

Please also note the important fact that on April 26th Detour will be putting on one of their infamous Wee Jaunts in Edinburgh! Tickets are for sale at

“It’s taken me a bloody week to think of ten songs. Or in fact, cut this list down to ten songs. How do you sum up your life in ten pieces of music? So I’ve tried to spread it out, in terms of age, and in terms of genre.

Thinking about songs that have made a difference, I think they kind of split down the middle for me. Sometimes, a song just attaches itself to a memory – a soundtrack to a particular time in your life that, whenever you listen to it again, it takes you right back there, evoking the sights, smells and emotions of a time gone by. Equally for me, some songs have proven important because they opened up new music avenues to me – they might not necessarily remind me of a particular time in my life, or have huge emotional significance, but they did lead me down a path of musical discovery that is equally as exciting.

So, because I’m a bit anal, I’ve split the list into these two categories; five tracks that take me back to a place, that are just pure bloody nostalgia, and five tracks that blew my musical mind, taking me down dark alleyways of musical weirdness.


Talking Heads – And She Was

My parents had this cassette in the car. Visiting my Granny on a Sunday in the back of a rusty VW Jetta, feeling car sick – this album would get me through it. There was a scary point a few years ago when I went through a stage and re-bought on CD all of the cassettes my parents had in the car – that was when I realised that a) my folks had a good taste in music, and b) I was now old.

Jimmy Eat World – A Praise Chorus

This album came out when I was about 15, just a silly teenager who had no idea how to deal with emotions or girls or school. This song reminds me of after-school parties, avoiding homework, feeling sad about girls – basically, when everything was simple and amazing, but at the time you thought it was atrociously complicated. What a dork.

Frightened Rabbit – Fast Blood

Generic Frightened Rabbit entry. The soundtrack to a generation of middle class Scottish whiny students eh? Count me in. Bloody wonderful.

Angela & Julia Stone – For You

I like to think of myself as being dead inside, but this song makes me re-evaluate that prognosis. Built for rainy days in the Highlands.

Autre Ne Veut – Ego Free Sex Free

I only heard this album between Christmas and New Year, so it’s a maybe a bit premature that I’ve got it down as a ‘nostalgia’ song. But it’s the best track from an absolutely amazing album; I first heard it in a cramped Ford Focus driving up the side of Loch Ness with some of my favourite human beings on the planet, and it’s been our soundtrack ever since. It’s the sexiest album ever created; it sounds like Prince produced by Rustie. How can that be bad?


Iron Maiden – Phantom Of The Opera

My uncle had lived in our house when I was wee, and left all his tapes when he moved out. Whitesnake, Def Leppard, Marillion – he was some lad. The one I stuck in my tape player, and soundtracked summers of curby and winters of Lego, was Iron Maiden’s first album. I was a six year old metal-head and proud. This is still my favourite Maiden track – to this day I am the absolute king of air guitar to it.

The Prodigy – Firestarter

One of two first singles I bought, along with Oasis, Wonderwall. I was in primary school, give me a break. Anyway – this is the one that really flipped a switch in my brain; the video, Keith’s hair, his snarling attitude – it struck some sort of primal chord with me, and from then on I was into aggressive music through my teens.

DJ Shadow – Stem/Long Stem/Transmission 2

When I was 12, I heard Korn for the first time, and there was no looking back. It led me down a dark road, one that involved Pantera patches, Cradle of Filth hoodies, and unfathomable weights of chains on my belt. Even when I wanted something gentle – Idlewild, The Music, Dogs Die In Hot Cars – there was always guitars involved. But when I heard DJ Shadow for the first time, I was around 17, and I didn’t realise dance music, or electronic music, could be so subtle. I was brought up in a wee Highland town where the only electronic music anyone listened to was the Venga Boys. So, DJ Shadow opened a whole new world of music to me – Aphex Twin, Cut Chemist, Four Tet, Venetian Snares – and I’ve never looked back since.

Meshuggah – Rational Gaze

Around about the same time as I was getting into weird electronica, I was also discovering that heavy music could be just as experimental and intelligent. With metal or hardcore, it’s really difficult to not fall into the traps of the genre, and fire out the same old stale stuff that’s gone before. A few bands manage to be both heavy and push boundaries for a while – Dillinger Escape Plan, Converge, Mastodon – but the band that stands out to me is still Meshuggah. Unrelentingly heavy and dauntingly complex, it took a good while of listening to them to really get it – but it’s incredibly worth it in the end. They’re a band you can air-guitar massive riffs to like they’re Pantera, but also a band that you can go back to a piece of music you’ve listened to 100 times, and still find something new.

Death Grips – Takyon

Probably the most ground-breaking band of the last 5 years. The way they conduct themselves, musically, with the industry, and in their interaction with fans, is always interesting and unique. I could read interviews with them all day – they just want to take the way things are ‘normally done’, and totally fuck with it. I’ve seen them live a couple of times, and it’s an all-out assault on the senses – it doesn’t hinder them that they probably have the best drummer in the world too. It also doesn’t hinder them when they have some absolute total bangers like Takyon – the most up-front aggressive hip-hop song I think I’ve ever heard.”

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