Re: My 20 Favorite Albums of All-Time
I love the lists so far from everybody, so I'll bite. So, so many painful cuts from this... Among the honorable mentions were Wilco's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Yes's Relayer, Roy Buchanan's Second Album, and everything by the White Stripes.
20. John Coltrane- Giant Steps- Just about the epitome of jazz albums. Nobody else sounded this far ahead of the rest of their peers.
19. Akron/Family- S/T II: The Cosmic Birth And Journey of Shinju TNT- This band was the furthest down the rabbit hole I ever got in my musical development. I stopped listening to them for a time as my tastes became more grounded... until they came out with this trip. It's wonderfully exotic and weird.
18. Spoon- A Series of Sneaks- It's hard to pick one just Spoon album to pick here, but I'll go with the one that gets its point across in the least amount of time with the highest concentration of perfect guitar riffs.
17. Pavement- Crooked Rain Crooked Rain- Just a great album, back to front. There's not that much else to it... even the "bad" songs are memorable and entertaining.
16. Otis Redding- Otis Blue- Can you name anybody else with the audacity to cover (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction and own it better than the Stones themselves? I didn't think so.
15. Okkervil River- The Stage Names- There was a period where this was my favorite album during my formative musical years. The songwriting on here is good enough as is; how they managed to make it all sound so good is beyond me.
14. Pink Floyd- Animals- Another one from my earlier teenage years. The overall message feels ham-handed in retrospect, but damn if they didn't make it sound gripping on record.
13. Van Morrison- Astral Weeks- There's so much indescribable beauty here that I can't really do it justice. I love me some Beatles, but if you're looking for the best album of the late 60's, I'd point you here.
12. Tedeschi Trucks Band- Revelator- Who says modern blues ain't as good as the old stuff? I've never found a better album to listen to with the car windows down on a sunny day, and I've gotten more mileage out of it in the past year than any other album save #4.
11. The Black Keys- Rubber Factory- Fits in your CD player like an your best pair of jeans. Whenever I think of Ohio, I think of this album.
10. Band of Horses- Cease to Begin- This album is home for me. Simple as that. It's the pure, distilled sound of growing up in the SC Lowcountry.
9. The Smashing Pumpkins- Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness- One of those albums that holds nothing whatsoever back and gets away with it. The highs on this album are just so high that you can hardly force yourself to care about the lows.
8. R.E.M.- Reckoning- The one album that has never, ever left my car CD changer. There's never been a need to. It's the only album I never, ever get tired of hearing.
7. The Clash- London Calling- Can't touch this one. Iconic and unremittingly awesome from start to finish.
6. Bruce Springsteen- The Wild, The Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle- This is the sound of the youth I wish I had growing up (and that everyone else probably wishes too.) Haven't we all wished at some point that life were really this romantic? Side 2 is easily one of the best halves of Vinyl ever.
5. Fleet Foxes- Helplessness Blues- As close to perfect of an album as I've heard in the past few years. The whole album is filled with mini-masterpieces of lush modern folk.
4. Sam Cooke- Portrait of a Legend- It's cheating to put a greatest hits compilation on here, I know. But it didn't feel quite fair to leave the best vocalist of all time off of here. His music takes you back to a more innocent and earnest time. There's always something on here to cheer you up, no matter your mood.
3. Radiohead- Kid A- I don't care about the musical influence that this album has supposedly had on the world, or any critic's list that puts it at the top. It's just the most truly immersive album ever, and remains incredibly easy to get lost in 12 years later.
2. LCD Soundsystem- Sound of Silver- Start to finish, this album never lets up. All My Friends is just such an amazing song, so its crazy that the rest of the album manages to live up to it and keeps the energy and emotion going before and after that song. I'm not normally an electronic/dance music fan, but I make a big exception here.
1. My Morning Jacket- Z- The first album I ever fell in love with, and it's still fresh to this day. At no point has it not sounded like the best undiscovered album ever. The ethereal vocals, those classic rock-worthy guitar duels, that heartbreaking final song... it's not my most-played album, but it gives me the biggest gut reaction whenever I do.