Midnight Album Feature: Boards of Canada – The Campfire Headphase


Every Friday night at 9pm I do a show called Nite Life on KEXP. In the midnight hour I choose one of the world’s greatest albums and bring you tracks and stories from that. Last Friday’s Midnight Album Feature is Scottish duo Boards of Canada’s 2005 release The Campfire Headphase.

Boards of Canada are brothers Michael Sandison and Marcus Eoin who started playing together as a band in the mid-80s, when they were still teenagers. When they first got started they put out a 12″ vinyl EP and sent it to an electronica label called Skam. A day after the label got the recording they signed Boards of Canada.

One of the main reasons I love this record is because… I’m afraid of driving. I was in a really bad car accident about four years ago. Some 20 year-old kid in an SUV rear-ended my car while I was stopped at a light. I spent the next 3 years recovering. Every single time I get in a car I fear for my life. I do it anyway, and do okay with it, except on really long road trips. The freeway really scares me. People zooming in and out. Big trucks… So, I use this album as a calming mechanism. If I have this record on while I’m driving, then everything is all hazy and beautiful and good. So, I would recommend this record if there’s any situation where you need calming. There’s something very grounding about it.

Facing your fears is one of the most important things you can do in life. This year I tried stand up comedy, fell in love with a musician, and asserted my independence by getting into a car every day. I think fear is usually anticipation, and once you jump into the water, you do what you gotta do. This Boards of Canada video shows how it feels to face your fear….

This is one of the great headphone albums of all time, an instant meditation. – Boards of Canada and their excellent album The Campfire Headphase.

Join me this Friday night for Nite Life at 9pm and the Midnight Album Feature at 12 am. This week we’ll focus on post-punk masters of gloom, Bauhaus and their 1982 masterpiece The Sky’s Gone Out.

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  1. Posted December 5, 2007 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    I love love love this album. Some said it wasn’t quite as good as Music Has the Right or Geogaddi. I disagree. Dayvan Cowboy alone makes it as good as anything BoC has ever released.

  2. Posted December 5, 2007 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    I love this album! great choice. and good story

  3. Tyler
    Posted December 11, 2007 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    This is definitely not as good as MHTRTC or Geogaddi. I’m sorry, but that is fact, and my word is law. It’s too poppy at times, and Dayvan Cowboy is incredibly overrated. I still love the album in its entirety though.

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