Monday, April 09, 2007

Top albums of the last twenty years

Thanks PB for the inspiration for my latest list. This is in my estimation the top twenty albums/CD’s of the last twenty years. This music is what binds our society together, especially if cranked up to a righteous volume. So step closer to enlightenment my children.

20. Portishead-Dummy (1994)-a trippy jaunt down a psychedelic road describes the seminal recording by a largely underrated band.
19. Miles Davis-Doo Bop (1992)-produced and released posthumously following Miles’ death in 1991 Doo Bop fuses smooth and frenetic jazz with cool hip hop flavor. This album is a shining example of rap/jazz fusion
18. De La Soul-3 Feet High And Rising (1989)-This strange yet catchy album stretches between the absurd and sublime. De La Soul, along with Public Enemy, were pioneering masters of sampling and sound bytes.
17. Chevelle-Wonder What’s Next (2002)-this CD went largely unnoticed outside alternative and metal circles. Too bad because this is a great record.
16. The Strokes-Is This It (2001)-this album was on Rolling Stone magazine’s top 500 albums of all time. That’s high praise indeed.
15. The Fray-How To Save A Life (2005)-hailing from Denver The Fray's debut CD was the most downloaded album on iTunes in 2006. Fans got a taste with the release of the hit single Cable Car in 2005 but it would be over a year before the LP was made available. Believe me, it was well worth the wait.
14. Red Hot Chili Peppers-Blood Sugar Sex Magik (1992)-what can you say about one of the most commercially successful albums of the 90’s? Not much except to say that their mixing of funk, blues, hard rock, and metal is flawless
13. Faith No More-The Real Thing (1989)-More than any act of the last twenty years Faith No More is vastly underrated, especially when one considers the fact this group was the first and most influential rock/rap/funk group of all time.
12. Socialburn-Where Are You (2003)-at first this CD sounds like a blatant Nirvana rip off but once you explore the whole CD what unwinds is a sound more inspired by acoustic bluesiness and striking grinding guitar riffs. A truly underrated effort.
11. Jane’s Addiction-Ritual De Lo Habitual (1990)-this album was a sonic upheaval to those fortunate enough to brave the waters of RDLH. From the foot stomping Been Caught Steeling to the melodic dirge/riot of Three Days, Jane’s Addiction leaves it all at the table, stripped bare for your enjoyment.
10. The Samples (1989)-this gorgeous soundscape by Boulder’s own The Samples was a mainstay on college campuses nation wide. This is an absolutely beautiful recording.
9. George S. Clinton-Greatest Funkin’ Hits (1996)-the only compilation on the list is a must for any purveyors of 70’s funk music. The Godfather of funk is and was a hugely influential artist. Plus this cat is unreal live.
8. A Perfect Circle-Mer De Moms (2000)-this CD features one amazing song after another. The tone of the songs skips from the smoothness of 3 Libras & Orestas to the fervent and in you face Judith. This CD runs the gamut of emotion with seamless brilliance.
7. Rage Against The Machine -RATM (1992)-Zac De La Roca is the driving force behind this fiercely angry and antagonistic CD. Every song has great beat and De La Roca’s vocals are perfect.
6. Tie Ministry-Psalm 69 (1992)-anyone who’s ever seen Al Jourgenson & Co. live will tell you nobody thunders on stage at the start of a set like Ministry. Psalm 69 was the apex of this band’s commercial and critical success with hits like Jesus Built My Hot Rod and Psalm 69. Nine Inch Nails-Pretty Hate Machine (1989)-Trent Reznor is the creative genius behind unbelievably strong album. He played all the instruments and mixed it as well as belting out the vocals. This album is as mesmerizing as it is innovatively brilliant.
5. Sublime (1996)-the most enigmatic band of the 90’s Sublime blazed a trail through the sky with one of the most imitated sounds of their era until their lead singer died an untimely death.. Only Nirvana was more idolized and mimicked.
4. tie Pearl Jam-Ten (1990)-seemingly everyone’s CD collection includes this once in a generation type album. On the Lollapalooza 2 tour Pearl Jam was not a known entity and played second fiddle to the Chili Peppers, Ice Cube, and Ministry. Then came Jeremy, then this record shot through the stratosphere. Nirvana-Nevermind (1991)-quite possibly one of the most influential albums in music history, Nevermind stood as an anthem for the under thirty crowd. The tortured soul that was Kurt Cobain was immediately dubbed this generation’s John Lennon. While that contention is far fetched there’s no doubting the shudder the music world felt upon Nirvana’s arrival and all-too-soon departure.
3. N.W.A.-Straight Outta Compton (1988)-next to the old school Sugar Hill Gang and Run D.M.C., N.W.A. is the most influential rap group ever. This album is a scathing indictment of life in the rough American inner city and is the zenith of gangster rap, a term literally invented to describe this groundbreaking record.
2. Metallica-The Black Album (1991) And Justice For All (1988)-I couldn’t decide between these two CD’s so I included them both. No band on earth plays with the raw furry of Metallica. Seeing these guys live is akin to a religious experience.
1. The Killers-Hot Fuss (2004)-quite simply the best alternative album since Nirvana’s Nevermind and Pearl Jam’s Ten and maybe, just maybe, the best alternative record ever. There is not a bad song on this CD. Hot Fuss is the current gold standard by which all alternative and rock records are judged.