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Desert Island Discs: 

Nathan Asher

Which albums would you take to a desert island?

Nathan Asher plays guitar and fronts politically tinged rockers Nathan Asher and The Infantry. When the topic is broached to him, Asher eyes me suspiciously, asking, "Who put me on this desert island? I have a feeling that anti-Semitism factors into it." Well, who put him there's a state secret, but my guess is it has more to do with his passion for Springsteen.

1 Bob Dylan--Blonde on Blonde. "Dylan does everything at once. He captures the feel of a band and a songwriter playing on a knife's edge. The whole thing seems like it's about to tear apart at any second, yet holds together. The poetry of this album is what originally made me want to start writing."

2 Bruce Springsteen--The Wild, the Innocent and the E-Street Shuffle. "After a crap day waiting tables, the vitality of this album fuels my body and soul. A romantic album, it pulls back the veil on commonplace people and things and makes them seem powerful. Unlike almost all albums today, nothing is ironic about this album. There are some people who think songs like 'Incident on 57th Street' are cheesy because they reach for too much and express too much hope. These people would probably die very quickly on a desert island."

3 Radiohead--OK Computer. "OK? It's great!"

4 U2--The Unforgettable Fire and Salt 'n' Pepa--A Salt with a Deadly Peppa. "I was looking through my CDs, and I realized that I had both of these in the same case. The Unforgettable Fire is cold and clean--reminiscent of shafts of white light. The songs are hard-driving and subtle at the same time. Since Salt 'n' Pepa happened to be in the same case, I was all like, 'Damn, I'll bring that too. What if I meet some island ladies and they want to know I can get nasty AND respect their needs as career-oriented women?'"

5 Dan Brown--The Da Vinci Code. "I'm on the island, and a tugboat comes by filled with indie rockers. They want to let me on board, but after seeing the CDs that I have with me, they decide that I'm too mainstream. When I reveal the Springsteen they become openly hostile. I try to convince them that I have a burned copy of Funeral, and a couple of really rare Belle & Sebastian 45s at home. It's a no-go, so I reach into my bag and pull out ... The Da Vinci Code! I know it's a book, but no one has ever heard of it. I just can't stop talking about it. You will all LOVE it! Someday, I promise, it will be the biggest news story since the ongoing genocide in Sudan. The indie rockers like the secret ending, and agree to tow me back to Raleigh behind the boat."

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