Continuing our new series asking musicians about the books they're into--new, old, and influential--I recently checked in with the legendary Australian rock band The Church to see what they'd have to say. Their latest CD is Uninvited, Like the Clouds, and you can check out their entire back-catalog here. Knowing that they're heavy readers, with a lot of SF/Fantasy influences in their lyrics and, I should've guessed I'd get some pretty cool and eclectic lists. Steve Kilbey, Marty Wilson-Piper, and Peter Koppes all respond below. (And check out the interesting projects of Tim Powles, their ever-busy drummer, at his Spacejunk Studios.)
Amazon.com: What have you read lately that you really liked?
Steve Kilbey: The Children of Hurin by J.R.R. Tolkien. Old stuff by the master, much better than new stuff by pretenders.
Marty Wilson-Piper: L.P. Hartley's The Hireling. [He has] the great old-fashioned skill of making what seem like inconsequential incidents into captivating reading, and Alain De Botton's The Architecture Of Happiness. Modern tuned-in, turned-on philosopher simplifying the complex universe of ideas and translating them for the man on the street, this man is an intellectual philanthropist!!
Peter Koppes: Fierce Invalids From Hot Climates by Tom Robbins.
Amazon.com: What are a few of your all-time favorite books?
Steve Kilbey: The Gormenghast Trilogy by Mervyn Peake and The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis.
Marty Wilson-Piper: Cervantes' Don Quixote and everything by Camus.
Peter Koppes: A Clockwork Orange and Earthly Powers by Anthony Burgess, Illusions by Richard Bach.
Amazon.com: How has your reading influenced your music?
Steve Kilbey: The literary world cross collateralizes the music world. The two are in constant dialogue.
Marty Wilson-Piper: A lot of great rock 'n' roll works because it is visceral, [but] I like it when it co-habits with intellect.
Peter Koppes: Flights of fancy may have influenced my creativity or maybe just appeals to me in writing as well.