Daughters' Jon Syverson: 5 Albums That Made Me | Revolver

Daughters' Jon Syverson: 5 Albums That Made Me

From Minor Threat to the Melvins, noise-rock drummer shares stories behind records that shaped his life
daughtersreidhaithcock2_1.jpg, Reid Haithcock
photograph by Reid Haithcock

Rhode Island noise rockers Daughters are set to hit the road this Friday (February 16th) in support of last year's mind-blowing comeback album You Won't Get What You Want, the band's first in eight years. (see tour dates and get tickets here.) Gnarly, demented and completely enthralling, the record is a must-listen for anyone who hasn't jammed it already, and a must-repeat-listen for anyone who has. It's an album with the ability to change lives and shape other musicians' creative trajectory. With that in mind, we asked drummer Jon Syverson (pictured above, second from left) to share some of the records that changed his life and made him who he is today.

Nirvana - Nevermind (1991)

Nirvana's Nevermind released in 1991, the year I turned 11. Not sure how I originally got turned onto this band, probably MTV … but I'm glad I did as this record steamrolled my prepubescent ass. This record was a gateway drug for me, through this I quickly found several noise, punk and metal bands I continue to enjoy to this very day. 

Sonic Youth - Sister (1987)

I didn't find this record until about 1992 or 1993 — I would have been 12 or 13. I absorbed every guitar note and drum hit. I was perplexed by the noises they made with their guitars. When I was 13, I received a guitar for my birthday and immediately started to figure out how to make the noises made by Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo. Attempting to play along to this record helped to shape the techniques I still use in songwriting to this very day. 

Melvins - Houdini (1993)

I was 12 or 13 when this record came out — I can remember my friend had this on white cassette. At the time Houdini came out, I was struggling to understand how to create my own music. I had been listening to several different punk, thrash and metal bands for influence. Plenty of bands were grabbing hold of my young impressionable mind, though nothing was actually helping to guide me in creating my own sound. As soon as my friend brought home Houdini, things quickly began to change. It was easy to hear music differently after being exposed to this record. This band could be quiet and loud in the same song. Heavy, noisy and seemingly random, clean and melodic. This was the missing ingredient for my prepubescent musical identity crisis. This band helped me become much more fearless in songwriting. All of a sudden I realized songs could be whatever you wanted them to be. It was OK to be heavy and have melody, you don't need to be "evil" to write metal, you can still be punk without 4/4 drums and power chords, and your songs can be as long or as short as you fucking want. I realized you're the only one in charge of your music, so do whatever you want. 

Black Flag - Everything Went Black (1983)

I was 13 years old when I found this record/band in 1993 — at a local Hot Topic of all places. I can still remember the first play of this record as I realized everything I thought I knew about punk rock was lacking. This band was the real deal, and this record blew my mind. 

Minor Threat - Complete Discography (1989)

I was 14 or 15 when I heard this record in 1995. Minor Threat must have made an immediate impression on me, as I can somehow remember exactly where I was the first time I heard this band. This record immediately got me off any metal or punk music I was listening to at that time. I had to figure out how to play exactly like this. After a few months of banging away in the basement, I finally figured out how to play along to most of their songs, which in turn opened my eyes to the intensity required to actually create such pissed-off and energetic music. It wasn't enough to be a fan of this style of music, you actually needed to be angry, anxious, obnoxious, tough, fearless and faster! No posers!