Modern Sounds in Country and Western MusicRay Charles
Pretty pleasant overall. Good thing to have in my catalog. Standouts: Bye Bye Love, Worried Mind, I Can't Stop Loving You, Oh, Lonesome Me
Pretty pleasant overall. Good thing to have in my catalog. Standouts: Bye Bye Love, Worried Mind, I Can't Stop Loving You, Oh, Lonesome Me
I liked this more than I expected to. Pretty jammy in a good way. Had no idea I Heard It Through The Grapevine was an 11 minute song.
Overall, pretty good. Never thought I'd be a huge Paul Simon fan and I'm still kind of not, but it was a nice change of pace from what I usually like. Standouts: Duncan, Me and Julio Down by the School Yard, Peace Like a River, Paranoia Blues
Definitely a sucker for this kind of thing. Standouts: Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?, Questions 67 and 68, Liberation Miss me with: Free Form Guitar (I feel like I have a pretty high tolerance for stuff like this, but 7 minutes of it? Come on now.)
I'd definitely heard of this group before (and I obviously knew the song from the Geico commercial), but I'd never actually listened to any of their stuff. Honestly, it's exactly the kind of downtempo electronic music I need when I'm trying to do something that requires me to have music on, but not be distracted. Will definitely revisit this one later. Standouts: So Easy, Eple, Royksopp's Night Out
I loved this album. In the beginning, I thought everything was going to sound like Cars, so I was pleasantly surprised by how varied it felt to me. Solid. Standouts: Metal, Complex, M.E., Tracks, Cars (obviously)
There was some promise, but overall pretty inconsistent for me. I've heard of this band a lot as an influence for some of my favorite bands, and even heard some of their songs covered, but most of the time the album didn't really do it for me. Standouts: Ladytron, If There Is Something, Would You Believe?
Interesting album. Apparently it the group was super popular in the UK and Get it On was their only major US hit. I can only recall one song that isn't in my standouts, but I liked those well enough, so I'll say pretty solid overall. Standouts: Cosmic Dancer, Monolith, Get it On, Life's A Gas
Getting serious LCD Soundsystem vibes from this, they must have been an influence. I don't love the drum machine sound(s) they use here, but you can't argue that it doesn't fit. I've actually heard the Love Tractor version of Neon Lights and I really like that song, so it was pretty fun to have that "wait a second" moment while learning that this is actually the original. Weirdly, I like the cover better. I'm not sure I have any standouts, since the album is just 6 long songs, but overall I liked it.
Wow, I loved this! Fully instrumental is usually my jam for Jazz, and it was super uptempo/fun. Again, I don't really have standouts because the album really kind of blended together for me, but this one will definitely go into the Jazz rotation.
Wow, been meaning to listen to this album forever. Not at all what I'd expected from the name. It's a bit repetitive, but it stayed interesting to me. Definitely into it. Standouts: Movin' on Up, Slip Inside This House, Come Together, Loaded, Damaged
Kinda blown away by the recording quality. It was good but not super memorable to me. Will definitely revisit later, though, when I'm looking for a change of pace! Standouts: I've Got My Mojo Working
Obviously it's Miles Davis, but again, I don't remember most of what I heard. I know I liked it, but this one is gonna take a few more listens for me to fully appreciate I think.
Admittedly, I'm already a big Portishead fan, given my 30 or so listens to Dummy (which I highly recommend, though it's probably already on this list). This one is a bit more experimental and... jittery? Idk how to describe it, just way less chill. I still love it, though. Standouts: Silence, Nylon Smile, The Rip, Deep Water
Oh fuck yeah. I actually saw these guys play an afternoon set at Riot Fest in 2021 and they sounded super tight. Obviously Guitar Hero 3 did a ton of work for them with Cult of Personality, but this is one in particular that I'm super excited to see. I'm such a sucker for a good guitar solo. Anyway, loved it. Surprisingly consistent. Standouts: Cult of Personality (OBVIOUSLY), Middle Man, Desperate People, Open Letter (To a Landlord)
Pretty good hip hop. I like Ice Cube's style, but nothing really jumped out at me after the first few songs. Standouts: The N*gga Ya Love To Hate, AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, Endangered Species (Tales From The Darkside)
I actually think I underrated this album initially given my high expectations after their first two albums that I liked so much. Pretty good upon revisiting, actually. Standouts: The Suburbs, Ready to Start, Modern Man, Sprawl II
It was pretty funky, but a lot of time the lyrics were kind of awkward/clunky. Standouts: Set The House Ablaze, That's Entertainment
Didn’t really know what to expect here. (I expect that to be a theme in general here.) Kind of feels like proto-punk almost. I’m a little surprised by the swagger in the vocals. I’m not crazy about the organs, but the songs were mostly pretty slick. Standouts: No Action, Pump It Up, Little Triggers, You Belong to Me
I'm getting Math Rock meets Pixies vibes from this. Kinda too all over the place for my liking, didn't really feel cohesive. There were parts of it I really enjoyed but for the most part I was underwhelmed. Standouts: Wail
This one wasn’t new to me. Amazing album. I can’t imagine this ever feeling new or like risk taking, but the music is so epic. Standouts: Where the Streets Have No Name, I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, With or Without You, Red Hill Mining Town, One Tree Hill
Ok, so, like, I like that one song that everyone knows (No One Knows; no pun intended) but I honestly thought that I would never like a full album by this band, but I've gotta say: I was pleasantly surprised. The riffs go pretty hard, and even though it seems like Overdrive is a hammer and every song is a nail but it kinda works. It's a solid 3.5 for me, but given that I just gave The Joshua Tree a 4 (honestly probably a mistake), this one has to get the 3. Standouts: Avon, Mexicola, You Can't Quit Me Baby, Spiders and Vinegaroons
I didn't know that New Order has been making albums pretty much nonstop for the last 40 years. This one apparently is in the middle of that period, so it's kinda interesting to see how their style has evolved. Overall, it was fine. Pretty solid 3. Standouts: Love Less, Round & Round, Run
A little too lax for me. Can definitely see that Dan Bejar listened to his fair share of Steely Dan, at least when recording Kaputt. They're good musicians, but there isn't enough going on to keep me interested. Standouts: Peg, I Got The News, Josie
Maybe this had appeal in 1997, but for the life of me, I cannot see it. It's pretty shallow pop. I don't know much about Williams and I've never heard of Take That, but this album (what I could actually hear of it given that half of it isn't actually on Spotify) mostly seemed like a guy trying to find his voice on his own with mixed results. Stylistically, it's literally all over the place, and none of it feels genuine. Angels has almost 400 million plays on Spotify, but I've literally never heard that song in my life. Maybe he just didn't make the jump across the pond? Standouts: Old Before I Die, I guess
Overall pretty solid. Probably bordering on a little too repetitive for me. Not quite chill enough to stay in the background, but not varied enough to warrant listening to it on it's own merits, so it occupies this kinda weird space for me. Solid 3 I guess. Standouts: Block Rockin' Beats, Elektrobank, Piku, Lost In The K Hole, Where Do I Begin, The Private Psychedelic Reel
Wow, gotta say, this album surprised me. I have to admit that when I read on this guy's wikipedia that he thought he paved the way for James Blunt to popular, my expectations couldn't have been lower. I guess because I hadn't actually heard of him (though, I definitely knew Babylon), I didn't really have any of the preconceived notions that tend to make me predisposed to not liking something before I've heard it. Another solid 3. Standouts: Please Forgive Me, Babylon, White Ladder, Sail Away
This might be the opposite of what I listened to yesterday. I had to look up what IDM is. I can't believe anything/anyone would self-identify that way. Who can dance to this? The rhythm is so jilted and angular. There were definitely parts of it that were cool and parts of it to like, but honestly it feels more academic than anything else. There's definitely a time and place for this, but I don't think I know when or where that is. Standouts: Dracula Mountain, Crown of Storms, Longstockings, Duel in the Deep
Frankly another one I didn't really expect to like. Emmylou has a nice voice, and the songs are quite pleasant. Can definitely see this having been an influence on a lot of the modern folk-ish stuff that I listened to a lot in college/immediately after/still occasionally today. Surprised how many songs I added to my playlists/my standouts. Standouts: I Don't Wanna Talk About It Now, Red Dirt Girl, Bang the Drum Slowly, J'ai fait tout, One Big Love, Boy from Tupelo
A classic foundational album for so much of the music that I love. Standouts: I Against I, House of Suffering, Re-Ignition, Let Me Help, Sacred Love, Return To Heaven
Another Guitar Hero (2?) classic! Reminds me a lot of The Wall (which it preceded by nearly a decade). Very theatrical. Into it. I wonder though: was Alice Cooper fringe in the 70s? Did only weirdos like him? Seems like maybe he was among the vanguard to be, like, a "freak" for lack of a better term. Standouts: Hello Hooray, Billion Dollar Babies, No More Mr. Nice Guy, I Love the Dead
I really wanted to not like this album. I'd heard that Aaron Dessner and Justin Vernon were getting involved, and I couldn't help but roll my eyes. That being said, I actually kind of dug it. Still too early for me to say that it's remarkable or anything, but I definitely didn't hate it. For sure it sounded like a lot of these could have been songs by The National, though. Standouts: champagne problems, gold rush, 'tis the damn season, coney island, long story short, evermore
My first thought when I saw this was: "who?" I listen to a lot of music, and as annoying as it sounds, I like to think that a lot of what I know isn't mainstream, and I've literally never heard of this band or album. This list has kind of surprised me with how out of left field some of the albums have come. I kind of can't tell what the impetus for that is. Are they pet albums of the curators? Are they just critical darlings? This album doesn't really feel like the latter. Don't get me wrong, I actually really liked it; it's a solid 3.5 (gonna round down), but the presence of this album on this list kinda defies reason, in my mind. Standouts: Negative Space, Static Resistance, Ullswater
Never actually listened to a full Dylan album before. Not sure this was the one to start with, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Fairly dark, too, which I don't mind. I feel like my review for this album is more lacking than a seasoned Dylan fan because I'm sure this album is different in some way that I don't see without the context of the rest of his catalog. Standouts: Love Sick, Dirt Road Blues, Not Dark Yet, Cold Irons Bound
Gonna be honest, I just don't like Reggae. I'm sure it has some importance, but I just don't find it to be interesting music. This is only like album 35 for me, so I'm still trying to suss out what my criteria actually is with regards to influence vs. personal preference. If I go with the former, I'm probably giving all of the popular shit I don't like a 3 and that seems like a stupid way to rate things. Sorry, Reggae. It's just that literally every song sounds the same to me. Standouts: Slavery Days, The Invasion, Old Marcus Garvey
Again, another very popular and seminal (tangential?) act that I never gave the time of day to because I felt like I'd missed the boat. Very good hip-hop, I see why Wu-Tang and their offshoots remain popular to this day. Cerebral enough to be interesting, not crass to a cliche degree as to be off-putting. Standouts: Duel of the Iron Mic, Gold, 4th Chamber, Shadowboxin', Investigative Reports, B.I.B.L.E
A masterpiece. One of the easiest 5 star ratings of my LIFE. The full cover of this album is hanging on the wall in my home. I don't even need to listen to it again to know what I want to say. One of the best openers of all time? Born to Run maybe the single best pop song ever written? I defy you to listen to that opening snare roll into the first riff and not get goosebumps. Backstreets is criminally underrated, as if that was somehow even possible for this guy. Even the "filler" songs like Night and She's the One are better than 99% of songs ever written and I will die on that fucking hill. (For what it's worth, I kind of consider Meeting Across the River to be an intro for Jungleland.) Taking no questions. Standouts: Thunder Road, Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out, Night, Backstreets, Born to Run, She's the One, Meeting Across the River, Jungleland
Honestly, it was fine. Definitely buoyed by a few songs but overall pretty repetitive. If this album came out in 2022, I'd probably have hated it. Cool cover but mostly boring music. Standouts: Genesis, Stress, Waters of Nazareth, One Minute to Midnight
Been meaning to listen to more of The Afghan Whigs ever since Miles Iz Ded showed up on my discover weekly once. At some later point, I'd seen them labeled as Grunge, though I'm not sure I agree with that. They were a Sub-Pop band and so I'd always thought they were from the PNW, but it turns out they're a Cincy based band. Not sure why that matters. Solid 3. Standouts: Gentleman, Debonair, When We Two Parted, My Curse
Oh fuck yes. Inject it directly into my veins. I've only ever really listened to The Queen is Dead and The Smiths, but I absolutely love those albums. This album started off really strong for me and kind of slowed down towards the end, but I'm glad to have finally listened to it all the way through. Standouts: A Rush and a Push and the Land is Ours, I Started Something I Couldn't Finish, Death of a Disco Dancer, Girlfriend in a Coma, Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before
Interesting album. Sounded like Radiohead at various points. I don't really know enough about Bowie to understand his eras, but I remember when this album came out how coincidental it was with his death, and how that kind of hung over it. I liked it and will go back for sure. Standouts: Blackstar, Lazarus, Sue (Or In a Season of Crime)
Good album. Still not on Spotify because NY still cares about the Joe Rogan thing. Honestly the orchestral bits were a bit too much, but most of the sound I'm very about. Standouts: Out on the Weekend, Heart of Gold, Are You Ready for the Country?, The Needle and the Damage Done
Literally have never heard of this band in my life. It was pretty fun, but the rapping part is a bit much. Can definitely see myself using this as focus music down the road. It was hard to find standouts because the music is pretty repetitive, but some stuff definitely stuck out a bit among the tracks. Standouts: Move Any Mountain, Make It Mine, 666 Edit
Wasn't sure what to expect, but I liked it. Maddy brought up the good point that "I do feel like I should be lying on a massage table and this is playing softly through the speakers," which I think is mostly a good thing because, given the title, the album does a good job at evoking a certain kind of scenery. Limited application for this music in my life, but it was definitely enjoyable, and nice to get out of the western music sphere for a day! Standouts: Nomads in the Valley, The Prophet in the Mountain
It was fine, but honestly, kinda boring. I listen to a lot of music that's downtempo, and even I had trouble getting through this one. Some standout moments for sure, but mostly kinda unmemorable. I have a feeling that even the songs I saved I'll end up skipping on playlists down the line. Standouts: Stolen Car, Couldn't Cause Me Harm, Pass in Time, Stars All Seem to Weep, Love Like Laughter
Pretty good. I should probably listen to it again though because I don't remember much other than "I enjoyed it." Also, no standouts since I can't remember any of the individual songs.
Oh, my god. I was so interested to see where this went. The album starts off with Sure Shot which sounds like it could have been on an A Tribe Called Quest album, and then Tough Guy immediately after that just sounds like a punk-ish romp to me. Album stays hip-hop through the next few songs until Sabotage which, honestly, I don't really consider hip-hop at all (I'm sure most don't). From that point forward, I'm not even sure I can really describe where it went. I didn't really know what to expect, and I was still surprised. Almost feel weird rating this one at all. Standouts: Sure Shot, Root Down, Sabotage, Get It Together, Flute Loop, Heart Attack Man
Honestly, pretty meh. Son of a Preacher Man is obviously a heater, but the rest of the album is pretty boring. Also, Dusty Springfield is English, which makes the whole act/theme seem pretty disingenuous. Probably won't revisit too much. Standouts: Son of a Preacher Man, I Don't Want to Hear It Anymore, The Windmills of Your Mind
Started off and ended kinda strong, but the whole middle was kinda meh. Just not for me I guess. Standouts: Victoria, She's Bought a Hat Like Princess Maria, Arthur
Probably not my first choice for albums by The Doors. That being said, I'm into it, given that I'd been indoctrinated from a young age. The highs are all-timers, but the lows are kind of monotonous and otherwise uninteresting. I love how they've worked the organ into it, and while I can't really imagine putting this record on to just listen to it as a standalone activity, it still actually feels kind of cohesive. Standouts: Break On Through (To the Other Side), Light My Fire, Back Door Man, The End
I think I just don't like Steely Dan that much. Given how much I like Reelin' in the Years, I really expected to like other Steely Dan more than I actually do. I can't really explain why, I'm just not that into it. Standouts: Rikki Don't Lose That Number, Any Major Dude Will Tell You, Parker's Band
Not bad. Enjoyable listen on the whole. I don't really remember too much about it, though. Standouts: Suite: Judy Blue Eyes, Wooden Ships, Helplessly Hoping, Do for the Others
I don't know. It all sounded like pretty straightforward blues music, like down to the chord progressions. Given how late this album came out and how late it was in Waters' career, I doubt this was novel at this point. It was a fine listen, but nothing really stuck out to me. Standouts: Mannish Boy, Bus Driver, I Can't Be Satisfied
Honestly, at times I found this borderline unlistenable. Around the World is not good enough to carry this album, especially at a whopping 74 minutes in length. I expected to like this, but I struggled to get through it over a period of several days to the point where it completely stymied my progress on this journey. I'd really just like to move on at this point. Standouts: Around the World, I guess?
Way more listenable than I expected, if not a little repetitive. Also, somehow (and surprisingly) more listenable than Daft Punk's Homework. Standouts: Apache, Let There Be Drums, Bongolia, Wipeout
One of the most popular reviews on this site is an absolutely savage flaying of this album (which was very funny to read, I should add). That being said, I really expected to hate this. I didn't. It wasn't remarkable, but there were parts of it that I actually really enjoyed. Wonder why that guy hates Cheap Trick so much (outside of all of the stuff he says in the review, I guess). Standouts: Hello There, I Want You To Want Me, Goodnight
Whoa, I've never heard of this band before, actually? I've definitely heard Alright (though I can't remember where and it's really bothering me). That being said, this album really surprised me, and I ended up liking it a lot. Solid 3.5, but I'm gonna round up to a 4. Standouts: Caught By the Fuzz, Mansize Rooster, Alright, Lose It, She's So Loose, Time
This album has 9 songs and I saved 6 of them. Standouts: Like a Rolling Stone, Tombstone Blues, From a Buick 6, Highway 61 Revisited, Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues, Desolation Row
Kinda spooky, I can see why they wanted the music for The Exorcist. Overall, a very strange album. Parts of it were very cool but ultimately in my view it wasn't enough to justify 45 minutes. Standouts: There are literally 2 tracks on this album.
This is what I'm talkin' about. Easy 5. Crazy to me that after hearing Losing My Edge for the first time, I was totally off James Murphy as an artist, but then I heard All My Friends and I've been a fan ever since. Standouts: Get Innoucuous!, Time to Get Away, North American Scum, All My Friends, Us V Them, Watch the Tapes, New York, I Love You but You're Bringing Me Down
Idk, it was pretty whatever. I'm sure it was of its time, but (oddly), this kind of music just doesn't appeal to me. Standouts: Queer, Only Happy When It Rains, Not My Idea, Vow, My Lover's Box
A bit long, but definitely better than I remember it being the first few times I tried to listen to it. And, I mean, the chart record kinda speaks for itself. Standouts: Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe, Backseat Freestyle, Money Trees, m.A.A.d city
The mixing is kind of nice, and some of the riffs are very cool, but I simply cannot get past 2 things: the length of this album, and how terrible the lyrics are. I feel like at this point (1973), this was just kind of an unexplored space (no pun intended) and so, like, "a vaguely dystopian album about space" was a novel enough concept on its own, but man, does this feel trite now. These guys are kind of contemporaries with Rush and man, would I rather listen to a Rush album right now. Skipping standouts because none of the tracks really did anything to differentiate themselves from any of the other tracks. Rating: 2 (maybe 1?)
Wow, Stankonia and good kid, m.A.A.d city in the same week?! I don't love southern rap, but the hits on this album are hiiiiits. Even Ms. Jackson, which I used to hate as a kid hits different today. Standouts: So Fresh, So Clean, Ms. Jackson, B.O.B., Humble Mumble
Had some grooves for sure, but not really my jam. Skipping standouts again because this album was just 4 long songs.
I'm a sucker for a good rock opera and I've been trying to get into Bowie for a while now. Didn't disappoint. Standouts: Five Years, Moonage Daydream, Starman, Ziggy Stardust, Suffragette City
Didn't even need to listen to this one, but I did anyway. Personally I have more of an affinity for the Roger Waters albums/songs, but this is another all-timer and another super easy 5. A record on constant rotation when I first started listening to music (what boy didn't have a protracted classic rock phase) and no surprise that I still love it now as much as I did then. Also, Time > Money, please don't @ me. Standouts: The Whole Fuckin' Album, God Damn
Honestly, it was fine. As is the theme, I liked it more than I expected to (which isn’t saying much in this case). Eventually her voice/delivery wore a little thin. Standouts: The Fairest of the Seasons, These Days, I’ll Keep it with Mine
Actually very into this. Wish it existed on Spotify so I could actually save some of the songs. Couldn't do standouts because the recording I used wasn't broken up into tracks, but trust me, I liked it.
I listened to this in the car, so I didn't really get a chance to pick standouts, but they're kind of obvious in this context. The album starts out super strong, but there's just too much time in between heaters for this to be a 5 in my eyes.
I thought I'd like this more, I'm just not that into the chamber pop-y style of having strings in nearly every song. Also, the vocals were pretty low in the mix for most of the songs which made it especially hard to hear the songs while driving. I've heard The State I'm In a lot and I really love that song, but most of the rest of the album didn't really jump out at first blush. Standouts: The State I'm In, Electronic Renaissance, I Could Be Dreaming
I actually didn't know The Fugees were really mostly traditional hip hop. (I'd been judging mostly off of Killing Me Softly and Ready or Not.) Overall, a fine album. I was never really a huge fan of the popular songs off of this but they're still good. Standouts: Ready or Not, Zealots, Killing Me Softly With His Song, Cowboys, No Woman, No Cry
Very cool, but definitely seemed to drag a bit. I will probably revisit, but it's lower on my priority list than some of the other stuff. Standouts: Skipping again because this album was kind of "an experience."
I can get behind this, just a little on the long side. Also, it's kind of just a weird time piece. The lyrics are a bit strange at times when viewed through a modern lens, but that stuff tends not to bother me that much, it's just something I noticed. Also, I loved all of the Busta Rhymes parts. Standouts: Hit 'Em wit da Hee, The Rain, Gettaway
I always thought NiN would be a band that I'd absolutely hate. I'd always see people wearing NiN shirts and feel this aversion to it/them deep in my bones. Over the years, I've kind of softened that position (because it's stupid), so I definitely went into this with a more open mind than I would have 10 years ago. I didn't love it, but it definitely had its moments. Standouts: Piggy, March of the Pigs, Closer, Ruiner, Hurt
Kind of hard to rate a Christmas album. It was nice and obviously well timed.
Man, I love Tribe. Never really listened to this record, but it definitely makes sense as a precursor to The Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders, which I've listened to a ton. Great record. Standouts: Push it Along, After Hours, Footprints, Can I Kick It?
Pretty good guitar driven blues-y stuff. Not much stuck out to me but I will definitely revisit when I'm in need of less in your face music. Standouts: The Healer
Not bad, actually. Pretty interesting hip hop. And honestly, her lyric work is pretty good. Standouts: Dance for Me, Ladies First
I started off really not into this. I still didn't save much, but the album definitely rebounded for me into and through the back half. Still not really my thing, but I came around to it a bit more than I thought I would have after the first few songs. Standouts: Cherry, In My Bed
It's fine. Pretty straightforward. We Are Family is obviously a classic, but not really too much going on outside of that worth mentioning. Standouts: We Are Family
At the time of this writing, a lot has been going on with Kanye. Obviously a troubled dude, and even as someone who's pretty good at "separating the art from the artist," even I've had trouble compartmentalizing. That being said, I'm gonna leave that aside for the purposes of my review. I think few would argue against this album being Kanye at his absolute peak, and given his run up to this point, what a lofty peak it was. There's not really a weak song on this entire album, and it was one of the few that upon first or second listen, you could kind of just tell that it would be important and enduring (ya know, unless Kanye can somehow further torch his legacy/reputation). Really truly a masterpiece. Standouts: The Entire Fuckin Thing, Honestly
I don't really like Billy Joel. I don't know if I understand how someone can categorically dislike Billy Joel, but there's a reasonable level of dislike that I can understand. I'm not a huge fan of his and there are certain songs I find unlistenable and annoying, but damn, the man can write a pop song. That much is undeniable, at least to me. This album feels like a Greatest Hits, and honestly I was surprised how many songs I recognized by sound but not by name. Very solid. Standouts: Movin' Out, The Stranger, Vienna
Not at all what I expected. Thankfully not too avant garde as to make it unlistenable. Not bad. Standouts: (We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang, Play To Win, Let's All Make A Bomb
Pitchfork kinda took a dump on this album. Apparently this is a folksier style for this artist, and they're usually known for clubbier pop (I've heard the name but couldn't really place it. I think maybe I recognize it from a FIFA soundtrack? If so, the clubby bit makes sense). Anyway, I didn't think it was all that bad. I ended up saving 4 songs which is more than I usually leave an album remembering. It was pretty pleasant but had a few songs that built really nicely. Standouts: Little Bird, Happiness, A&E, Caravan Girl
Simple, straightforward punk music. I'm a sucker for this kind of thing and tend to give points for music that I think had an outsized impact on the medium, which I don't think can really be argued here, despite the fact that I always thought the Sex Pistols mythos was annoying, and I thought the music was bad. That being said, I'm definitely enjoying it way more this time around. I also spent some time reading through Sid Vicious' wikipedia, and damn, very sad story. I had NO idea he died that young. Standouts: Bodies, Liar, God Save the Queen, Anarchy in the UK, New York
Interesting at times, kinda boring most of the other times. Given the era where this came out, it was clear that people were still trying to figure out what pop music was supposed to be, and I notice a lot of "homages" to different styles/regions of music throughout, but it feels kind of like it lacks substance. Also, apparently this album has neither Clapton NOR Page and that feels like kind of a rip-off. Standouts: Lost Women, The Nazz are Blue, Jeff's Boogie, What Do You Want
Who doesn't love Lovefool? The Cardigans actually have a pretty interesting history. They formed in Sweden and didn't really think they were going to be successul, from what I read. And like a lot of Swedish musicians who write pop music, the instrumentalists were death metal fans. Also, DEFINITELY not a one-hit wonder. Standouts: Your New Cuckoo, Been It, Never Recover, Step On Me, Lovefool, Choke
Let's Get It On is a good song, but honestly, this just isn't my kinda thing. Standouts: Let's Get It On
I listened to this 15 years ago when I was trying to be cool and I didn't like it. I listened to it again yesterday, caring slightly less about being cool, and I liked it more. Maybe there's a lesson there. Also, I used to not really understand how Joy Division became New Order and after this album, that transition makes a lot more sense. Standouts: Isolation, A Means to an End, Twenty Four Hours, Decades
You'd think that my Atlantic coastal roots and my usually contrarian nature would have me totally out on Van Morrison generally and Into The Mystic specifically, but the song still just does it for me. Surprised and happy that there are a few great songs around it, too. I'm not ashamed to admit that I like Van Morrison. Standouts: And It Stoned Me, Moondance, Into The Mystic, Glad Tidings
I'm into prog usually, but this one was kinda just average to me. Roundabout is a banger, but the album kinda dragged for most of it. Standouts: Roundabout, Long Distance Runaround
Fun at times, but overall not for me. Standouts: Love And Hope, Saturday Night
Very pleasant. Not sure if this is what Sinatra is like all the time, but I loved how subtle and non-demanding this was. Excellent. Standouts: The Girl From Ipanema
Didn't feel like there was a chance I didn't like this one. Mudhoney are mainstays of a scene that I've always had an affinity for. Oh, and if you haven't read Our Band Could Be Your Life and you're even remotely interested in American underground and/or DIY music, go buy it and read it immediately. Standouts: Let It Slide, Something So Clear, Broken Hands, Shoot The Moon
Very surprised by how much play this album has. Started off pretty strong but kinda petered out in my opinion. Still, great guitar work all the way through. Solid record. Standouts: Down to the Waterline, Sultans of Swing, Wild West End, Lions
Interesting. I think I like it more than This Year's Model? It felt weirdly more punk rock given the shorter songs and the more in your face riffs. Standouts: No Dancing, Sneaky Feelings, Mystery Dance, I'm Not Angry
Not bad. I actually didn't think I would like this, but it's a nice mix of chill and engaging. Probably a little too subdued for me to revisit with any regularity, but I'm still a sucker for a good guitar solo. Standouts: That Lady Pts 1&2, Listen to the Music, Summer Breeze Pts. 1 & 2
I don't like Roxy Music. That was at least the thought I had when I saw this album yesterday. I still don't really like Roxy Music, but this is a step in the right direction. Standouts: Do The Strand, Grey Lagoon
Not bad, honestly. Pretty straightforward classic rock stuff. Standouts: Take It Easy, Witchy Woman, Take the Devil, Earlybird
Whoa, not sure I knew about this album? I don't feel it often gets mentioned in discussions about The Cure's discography. I dug it. Felt less obviously introspective and plodding than other Cure stuff I've listened to. Standouts: Play for Today, In Your House, A Forest
I expected this to be a lot worse given how panned it was from a critics' perspective. It wasn't terrible, it was just way to fuckin' long. I get it, it's just a live setlist, but still, calling a 133 minute live performance "must listen" is a bit of a stretch, but honestly, the performance was pretty cool/novel and Metallica sounds pretty tight live (this was recorded around 2000). If anything, this made me want to see them in a normal context. Unsurprisingly, all the Metallica songs I already liked were the standouts for me. That being said, every song on this album is like 9 minutes long so I'll probably avoid putting them on any of my playlists. Standouts: Master of Puppets, Fuel, Wherever I May Rome, One
Probably the Elvis Costello album I've liked the most of the 3 I've seen so far. Would be a 3.5 if I could do it. Standouts: Beyond Belief, Man Out Of Time, ...And In Every Home, Boy With A Problem, You Little Fool
Starts off very strong, kinda trails off by the end. Rush was never really a full album band for me. This is another 3.5 that I have to round down to a 3. Also, I think Limelight is an overrated song. Standouts: Tom Sawyer, Red Barchetta, YYZ
Based on my distaste for Roxy Music thusfar, I didn't think I was going to like this at all, but I ended up being pleasantly surprised. I definitely can see myself revisiting this one at some future date. It had a unique je ne sais quoi. Standouts: No One Receiving, King's Lead Hat, Here He Comes, By This River
Absolute bangers, back to front. Some of my favorite guitar work ever. Life changing stuff. I love this album so much. Standouts: Cherub Rock, Today, Hummer, Soma, Geek U.S.A., Mayonaise, Silverfuck
Certainly more muted than other entries in Van Morrison's catalogue. Astral Weeks doesn't really have that Into The Mystic on Moondance or Domino on Domino-style song, but the album as a whole was fairly relaxing, which I definitely needed yesterday. Standouts: Astral Weeks, Sweet Thing
I saw "Britpop" as a descriptor for this album and immediately thought "ugh, no more Britpop, please." As is often the case, I ended up being pleasantly surprised. Standouts: Show Girl, American Guitars
Another album that I did not need to listen to to know what I was going to rate it. The density of bangers on this album is astounding. Kind of annoying that there are 11 songs on it, though. (I should really look up why it's called Ten.) Among the first in a movement that's very special to me, and full of tracks that I regularly belt at karaoke. I contemplated giving it a 4, but that felt wrong. Also, I still remember the first time I saw the unedited video for Jeremy when I was a kid (maybe post-Columbine? I can't remember for sure) and it kinda scared the shit out of me, and thinking back to that now, it's kind of wild that that video came out in 1991. Standouts: Once, Even Flow, Alive, Black, Jeremy
Wow, this album actually rules. Pretty consistently solid. I expected it to be pretty top-heavy but there were many tracks on it that I liked. Standouts: Money Changes Everything, Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Time After Time, She Bop, All Through the Night
Whoa, ok. I know it's cool to make fun of Coldplay, but I was actually kind of blown away by this album. Many hits that stood the test of time, flanked by songs that didn't feel like filler (as songs on albums that are top-heavy often do). I'm sure the rest of their albums still suck ass, though. Standouts: In My Place, God Put a Smile upon Your Face, The Scientist, Clocks, Green Eyes
Started out incredibly strong, but most of the middle/end of the album is pretty boring. Weirdly sounds like Gary Numan. Honestly they should just stick to straightforward pop/rock. They're so good at it! Album's gotta be a 4 on the strength of the high notes, though. Standouts: Good Times Roll, My Best Friend's Girl, Just What I Needed, Don't Cha Stop, All Mixed Up
I know I say this a lot, but I thought I would hate this, given that I never really liked Smack My Bitch Up. There's definitely a time and place for this kind of thing, though. No standouts since most of the songs blended together.
What a strange album. Exists in some weird space between pop and rock with some orchestral elements thrown in. Not really sure what I listened to there. Standouts: Summer's Cauldron, The Meeting Place, Earn Enough For Us, Sacrificial Bonfire, Dear God
Legendary stuff. Big fan of Johnny Cash, and he seemed like a genuinely funny guy. Standouts: Folsom Prison Blues, Send a Picture of Mother
Pretty great pop music. Definitely a very satisfying listen. Exactly what I expect from the swedes. Tempted to give this a 4 on the back of Dancing Queen alone, but I'm not sure it's there for me. Standouts: When I Kissed The Teacher, Dancing Queen, That's Me, Tiger, Fernando
I don't know, started off kinda strong, and I'm into this kind of 2 or 3 chord punk, but it was just kinda boring. The bangers carry this one to a 3. Standouts: Blitzkrieg Bop, Beat on the Brat
It was fine. Kinda boring, though. No standouts.
Someone in the other reviews called this a time piece, and that's absolutely true. The 90s bleed through in every aspect of this record from production to arrangement to sentiment. Amazing album. Standouts: You Oughta Know, Hand in My Pocket, Forgiven, You Learn, Ironic
Not bad. Possibly a little too avant garde for my tastes. Standouts: Melody
I don't like Bob Marley. Stir it Up is a fine song. I don't know.
My favorite Queen album! This one holds a lot of nostalgia value for me. It's honestly better than I remember. Though, I find it funny that Wikipedia has "Heavy Metal" listed under the genres for it. Standouts: Death On Two Legs, Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon, You're My Best Friend, Seaside Rondezvous, Bohemian Rhapsody
Not bad, kinda getting a Feelies/early 80's rock vibe from this. A few standouts, but otherwise pretty run of the mill stuff. Standouts: There Goes Norman, Under the Boardwalk, Wednesday Week
Whoa, this album surprised me a LOT. I was definitely put off by the length going in, but it turned out to be a highly enjoyable listen. I think if I were in a worse mood, I would have found this to be kind of derivative, but something about it felt fresh and novel enough to be enjoyable. Standouts: Bitter Sweet Symphony, The Rolling People, The Drugs Don't Work, Catching the Butterfly
Actually not bad. Had no idea what to expect. Saw the album cover and the name and thought I was in for a disaster, but it wasn't what I thought it'd be. Seems like it's adjacent to the Madchester Stone Roses/Primal Scream thing, but lesser known. It definitely fits in that area, but doesn't have the same heft as either of those bands. Standouts: Kinky Afro, Bob's Yer Uncle, Step On
Pretty solid. Never really thought I liked Depeche Mode that much since the ranges it occupies are usually pretty bland to me, but I can see why they've held relevance for so long. Standouts: Never Let Me Down Again, Strangelove, Sacred, Behind the Wheel
Started off really well, but the bit kinda wore thin by the middle of the album. The choruses are definitely catchy and the arrangements complicated, and I can definitely see myself giving this one another look down the road, but the middle of the album is entirely unmemorable to me. Standouts: The Bones of You, Mirrorball, Weather to Fly, One Day Like This
It's Miles fuckin' Davis. No standouts since the album is an experience.
Some really good riffage, but mostly kind of boring otherwise. Standouts: Waitin' for the Bus, Beer Drinkers & Hell Raisers, La Grange
This is very much my speed. Will definitely try to get more into Leonard Cohen soon. Standouts: Suzanne, So Long, Marianne, Hey, That's No Way to Say Goodbye
Yup, still good. Standouts: Good Times Bad Times, Babe I'm Gonna Leave You, Dazed and Confused, Your Time Is Gonna Come, Communication Breakdown
I've heard a lot about this album, and honestly it's probably a victim of my expectations for it. It was solid, and I listened to it twice to ensure I was giving it a fair shake, but it felt kind of wanting for more heft. I have a feeling the more I listen to it, the more I'll come around on it, but it's not quite a 5 for me yet. Standouts: 6'1", Help Me Mary, Never Said, Fuck and Run, Flower
Whoa, this album was cool as hell. Really dug it. It wasn't obtrusive at all, but it was consistently pretty engaging. Will definitely listen again. Standouts: Water From A Vine Leaf, Into The Paradise, Harry Flowers, Best Friend, Paranoia
Upon seeing this album, my first thought was "there is too much Roxy Music on this list." I think this is the 3rd Roxy Music album I've encountered in 134 total generated albums. From the jump, this one felt different. It could be that it's more traditional/accessible pop, or it could be that by their 4th album, they really hit their stride. In either case, I'm happy to be proven wrong and having taken a step towards conversion to a fan. Thoroughly enjoyed this one. Standouts: The Thrill Of It All, All I Want Is You, Out Of The Blue, A Really Good Time, Prairie Rose
Pretty pleasant overall. Good thing to have in my catalog. Standouts: Bye Bye Love, Worried Mind, I Can't Stop Loving You, Oh, Lonesome Me
The most accessible album of theirs I've tried to listen to so far. There's a chapter on them in one of my favorite books ever (Our Band Could Be Your Life by Michael Azzerad) and I've really wanted to get into them since I read it, but neither Zen Arcade or New Day Rising did it for me. I had a similar experience with Pavement where I didn't like Slanted and Enchanted, but I ended up getting into it when I tried it again after Brighten the Corners hooked me. I have a feeling I'll have a similar experience here. This is a double album, but it doesn't feel as long as either of the aforementioned two, and the bridges of these songs all stuck out to me. Will definitely revisit. Standouts: Charity, Chastity, Prudence, Hope, Standing in the Rain, Back from Somewhere, Ice Cold Ice, She's a Woman (And Now He Is a Man)
Solid Rage Against the Machine stuff. Not really much else to say here, other than I'm surprised this band ended up so mainstream given the subject matter, but the guitar work is obviously incredible. Standouts: Bombtrack, Killing in the Name, Bullet In the Head, Wake Up
I'm sure this inspired a lot of music I like, but it didn't feel super substantial. It's possible that it's lost some gravitas due to the fact that I'd never heard of this band before, but otherwise it was just fine, if not underwhelming. Standouts: One Chord Wonders, Great British Mistake
My Instagram handle is phillmatic19. Enough said. Standouts: N.Y. State of Mind, Life's a Bitch, The World Is Yours, Halftime, Memory Lane (Sittin' in da Park), Represent
I remember kinda hating this band in college. This record started off pretty strong but kinda lost me in the middle until the end. Happy to be wrong here, though. Standouts: Halfway Home, Shout Me Out,
This album started off fine but there were some songs in the middle that I hated so much that I had to skip them. Honestly, pretty unremarkable, even with the top end of this album being pretty strong. Meh. Standouts: Around The Way Girl, Eat Em Up L Chill, Mama Said Knock You Out
Idk, just wasn't really for me. It was cool music, but it kinda meandered too much and wasn't really ever all that engaging to begin with. Not a great fit. No standouts since I listened to this last week and honestly couldn't recall a single song.
This is a super important album to me. I listened to it for the first time my freshman year of college and it was during that formative period where your musical horizons tend to expand in lockstep with your social horizons. It's one of those albums that I distinctly remember the first time I really heard it, and it will always be one of the most complete albums of all time in my opinion. I will always get a little bit of a chill when I hear the opening chords of Neighborhood #1. I don't need to listen to it again, but I'm going to anyway, because it's a fucking masterpiece. Standouts: Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels), Neighborhood #2 (Laika), Une Annee Sans Lumiere, Crown of Love, Wake Up, Rebellion (Lies)
Album is very top heavy. Starts out fairly promising, and Walk of Life is an absolute heater, but it runs out of gas pretty quickly. Brothers In Arms has almost 250 million streams on Spotify as of this writing, but I can't really understand why, as I found it to be pretty boring. Surprisingly, I found the s/t to be far more engaging. Standouts: So Far Away, Walk of Life, The Man's Too Strong.
Outside of the high notes, it was fine. The Beach Boys are probably just a little too anodyne for me. That being said, the highs are really great songs that I can't help but love anyway. Standouts: Wouldn't It Be Nice, I'm Waiting For The Day, Sloop John B, God Only Knows
Wow, that was fun. Love the timing too, as it's 80 degrees in NYC and I'm wearing a floral pattern shirt. Standouts: El Cayuco, Mambo Gozon, Varsity Drag
After glancing at the track list and seeing nothing I recognized, I thought I wouldn't love this one. Happy to say I was very wrong. This is a Clash I didn't know for sure existed, but I assume had to at some point. Very enjoyable listen. Standouts: Janie Jones, I'm so Bored with the U.S.A., Police & Thieves
I kinda felt as though there was a weirdly high amount of 90s British Rock (of a few different stripes) on this list, and most of it has been a miss for me. Maybe it was a function of my lowered expectations, but I actually ended up enjoying this album. Not sure I'll ever revisit, but I think I'll enjoy it when the songs I saved come up on shuffle. Standouts: God! Show Me Magic, Something 4 The Weekend, Bad Behaviour
Whoa. This album was incredible. I ended up saving 5 of the 8 songs. I knew This Is the Day (from the incredible Sex Education soundtrack) and it wasn't wholly representative of the rest of the tracks (though not entirely unrepresentative either), but this one really breezed by. Standouts: This Is the Day, The Sinking Feeling, Uncertain Smile, Giant, Perfect
Was tempted to give this album a 5/5 just because it's Radiohead, but honestly, it's always been one of their weaker albums in my mind. It's still very good, and it's kind of astonishing that (I think) it's mostly just B-sides from the absolute wellspring that was the Kid A sessions, but I don't really revisit it too often, and there's probably a reason for that. Standouts: Packt Like Sardines In a Crushd Tin Box, Pyramid Song, You And Whose Army? I Might Be Wrong
Not sure what I expected from this. I've heard a lot about Nick Cave but never actually heard the music. It was interesting. Kinda big in a way that I didn't expect. Very theatrical and complex. It was a little long (I love a double album, but still). Overall, I'm into it. Standouts: Get Ready for Love, Messiah Ward, There She Goes, My Beautiful World, Easy Money
Full of classics. The high points are bangers, the mid points, are, well, mid. Kind of surprised they were actually able to catch lightning in a bottle 3 times on a single album. Never listened to any of their other albums (specifically that double album, of which the name is eluding me), so it's hard to do a relative comparison. Honestly a 4 just on the strength and reach of its hits, with some nice surprises tucked in between. Standouts: Welcome To The Jungle, Nightrain, Paradise City, Think About You, Sweet Child O' Mine
Was tempted to give this album a 5 on impact alone, but it's still a little too rough around the edges and inconsistent to garner the perfect rating. But man oh man, is there a lot to say about this one. I've mentioned it before, but I listened to it because of the chapter about Black Flag in Our Band Could Be Your Life by Michael Azzerad (imo a must-read for any music fan), and it didn't really resonate at the time, but it definitely FELT like something that I could understand the influence and importance of, especially given Black Flag's reputation and how popular their iconography became, along with the legend of Henry Rollins. Anyway, this album is incredibly important as a harbinger for the production of American music, and I have no issue proclaiming that many, MANY bands that I love today simply would not exist if it weren't for Black Flag. EDIT: changed my mind, it's a 5. Standouts: Rise Above, Six Pack, TV Party, Thirsty and Miserable, Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie, Depression, Damaged II
I don't know. There were some fine songs on this album. Sunshine of Your Love is obviously a great song, but even so, I found myself liking it less when I thought about it again 30 or so minutes into this album. Honestly, I just felt fortunate that the album is only 37ish minutes in length because given the time, it could have been way longer. Standouts: Strange Brew, Sunshine Of Your Love, Tales Of Brave Ulysses, Outside Woman Blues
Whoa. That was amazing. Am I a Neil Young fan now?? Standouts: Tonight's the Night, Speakin' Out, World on a String, Borrowed Tune, Come on Baby Let's Go Downtown, Mellow My Mind, Albuquerque
This album meanders (takes its time?), but in a way I enjoyed most of the time. The melodies/progressions were actually pretty uniformly pleasant. Nothing immediately jumped out as a banger, but this doesn't seem to be the album for that anyway. It's pretty long at ~52 minutes, but the strings are nice and give me Pink Moon vibes. My only prior experience with Beck was Odelay, and this is super different, stylistically. Overall, I liked it a lot. Standouts: The Golden Age, Guess I'm Doing Fine, Lonesome Tears, It's All In Your Mind, Already Dead, Sunday Sun
It starts with one. HAHA anyway, I'm 33 now. I was 10 when this album came out. In the End was a cultural phenomenon and felt new and totally fresh and interesting (which is funny, because, in retrospect it was basically just nu-metal with rapping and that's not really all that novel). In any case, this album is actually kinda perfect. The lyrics are kind of repetitive/melodramatic/shallow, but I can't overstate the nostalgia factor. If I were more courageous, I'd give this the full 5, but I'm just still a bit too ashamed about liking Linkin Park. Standouts: One Step Closer, With You, Crawling, Runaway, In the End, A Place for My Head
I know it's become cliche by this point, but I actually enjoyed this album more than I expected to. In a way, it feels kind of out of its time, like an album I'd put on if I were looking for a more pleasant Jazz album with good vocals. Janelle Monae is a name I've heard a lot, but couldn't pick out of a lineup, so it's good to finally have this context. Solid album, if not a bit long. Standouts: Locked Inside, Cold War, Neon Valley Street, Say You'll Go
Maybe best described as "Nico, but better." Never heard of this artist before, but I dug it. Lyrically dense and interesting. Melodies not too sparse or too complex. Standouts: Down To Zero, Water With The Wine, People, Like Fire
I really didn't want to listen to this one. Started off super weird with the hard-R n-word kind of liberally used. (I get it's satire/from the perspective of a character but it still felt weird.) A few songs definitely stuck out to me, but I lost interest about halfway through. Something about Randy Newman makes me not want to dig much deeper in his catalogue, but honestly, this could have been worse. Standouts: Marie, Mr. President (Have Pity on the Working Man), Guilty
Pretty solid ol Rock music. Honestly not totally my wheelhouse, but it can be pleasant under the right circumstances. Standouts: A Girl Like You, Sueno, I Don't Love You Anymore
Pretty great jazz. A little more melodic than I'm used to for this kind of thing, which I liked.
Alright, fine. I was avoiding this album for a while, but it was actually totally fine. I'd say even enjoyable under the right circumstances. Some of the melodies were really nice and the vocals were consistently pleasant. I might have just unfairly lumped Norah Jones in with Michelle Branch and that ilk. In any case, I at least made it over the Norah Jones Hump. Standouts: Don't Know Why, Cold Cold Heart, Turn Me On, Nightingale
Great album. Common People has always been a banger and is unsurprisingly the best track on the album, but I was impressed by the stylistic range. Standouts: Pencil Skirt, Common People, Disco 2000, Monday Morning
I'm not sure why, but this album felt like a punishment. 63 minutes is far too long. Mostly watered down and plodding overuse of samples. Porcelain is a fine song, but that's about the only bright spot for me. Whenever I could hear the actual lyrics, I hated them. I'm sure there's an audience for this, but I'm not in it. Eminem tried to warn me, but I set out on this journey with the mission to keep an open mind and to not skip any album no matter how much I thought I would hate it going in, and this is one of those days that I regret making that promise to myself. South Side fucking sucked ass. That was a single? Jesus christ. Also, for the one or two people that may read this review and take umbrage with it: I have no problem with his methods (sampling) or supposed "sell out" status, it's just that I think this is an inoffensive, anodyne piece of crap that is at it's worst facile and at it's best just fuckin' boring. Standouts: Porcelain
Pretty straightforward. Most of the music is about having sex. Fairly bereft of known songs. Kinda got tiring towards the end. At least it was easy to listen to, though. I'm stuck between a 2 and a 3 but Moby has me feeling slightly less charitable that I'd maybe normally be. Standouts: Highway to Hell, Touch Too Much, Beating Around the Bush