Experimental Music Love

January 15, 2008

101 Albums You Really Should Own: Part Four

Filed under: Album Reviews,Features — by Free Edinburgh Podcast @ 8:56 pm

Echo and the Bunnymen – Ocean Rain (1984)

Liverpools other greats, and something far darker than anything The Beatles ever conjured up. Will Sergeant’s guitar ripples to spine tingling effect over 9 songs that show off an intelligence and insight that often lacked in mid 80s British pop music. Choice cut – The Killing Moon.

 

Eels – Electro-shock Blues (1998)

1998 was a most wonderful year in American alternative music. Not only did Jeff Mangum come up with the official greatest album ever that is ‘In the Aeroplance Over the Sea’, but Mark Oliver Everett came up with something that nearly matched that stunning work in terms of emotional impact, and pure pain and heartache in song. Inspired by the many dreadful incidents in E’s life at the time, this does take you down to the murky, tear filled depths of E’s head as it was. Yet no album has shown a greater hope before or since, with the glorious proclamations found in the second half of this most personal biography the most uplifting statements heard on record. Choice cut – Last Stop: This Town.

Elliott Smith – Either/Or (1997)

However he may have died, Elliott Smith was an American singer/songwriter with untold impact and influence. His fragile tone may not be for everyone, but for many, its the main reason why this album just works. So understated yet so believable. Choice cut – Ballad of Big Nothing.

Elvis Presley – Elvis Presley (1956)

The most important artist pop music has had, and this, his debut, is probably his most complere full length effort, with not a moments lapse in the showing off Elvis as the most wonderful and charismatic frontman in the history of rock ‘n’ roll. Choice cut – Blue Suede Shoes.

The Fall – This Nation’s Saving Grace (1988 CD re-release)

Mark E. Smith’s legendary bark is complimented by the wail of Brix Smithas the legendary Manchester outfit create their most celebrated work. Lyrics combine the mundane with the bizarre as what seems like a mess on first appearances becomes one of the most well thought out, complex albums rock music has to offer. Choice cut – Couldn’t Get Ahead.

The Flaming Lips – The Soft Bulletin (1999)

Though its impossible for The Flaming Lips to recreate the sheer joy of their spectacular stage show on record, this is the closest the band have come to transfering that energy and enthusiasm into something you can pop onto your iPod. Their first attempt at a broader, commercial record didn’t see them lose anything of the eclectic, experimental wonder that filled previous work, only refining it into something more palatable and even more likely to fall in love with these lips. Choice cut – Race for the Prize.

Gang of Four – Entertainment (1979)

Political statements were made and riotous post punk was heard. Exhilirting if you’re in the mood. Still so poignant if you’re not. Choice cut – Ether.

Genius/GZA – Liquid Swords (1995)

As with his great work Wu-Tang, GZA developed a remarkably accessible and clever hip-hop album that far ascended above typical ideals of the genre. Unsettling and menacing with its minimalist beats and samples from asian cinema, this ranks among the very best hip hop has to offer. Choice cut – 4th Chamber.

Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven (2000)

An inspirational record that show the most majestic orchestration merge with the most sinister and throught provoking vocal samples. Four songs over two CDs may not be many people’s idea of what constitutes a great album, but everything in this wall of sound belongs, and makes for a heart racing listen. Choice cut – The opening of ‘Storm’, entitled ‘Flight’.

Green Day – Dookie (1994)

Before they became they hypocritical monsters of their own success that they are nowadays, Green Day once stood for something worthwhile. And that was creating fun pop punk you can’t help but spack out to. Brilliant collection of 3 minute wonders of the genre. Choice cut – Basketcase (natch).

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