Top 100 Greatest Music Albums by Applerill (2022)

You can see my favorite songs of all time at https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2JKJfFLFfZM0jYAnWyuQZb?si=499f66d60e8f49fb

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For years it’s been a tie between this and Pele, with the latter having slightly more rapturous highs and this feeling a teensy bit more consistent. It obviously might seem silly for either of my #1s to not be LITERALLY perfect for me, but Choirgirl more than transcends that through its message: Through Tori examining the trauma of her recent miscarriage, she connects to this universal idea of something dying inside us, simultaneously representing depression and the poisoning of our artistic ideas as the same time. The Pro Tools instrumentals have this liquidy queasy feeling that, while seemingly “dated” to some, represent this feeling of my lost soul like few other sounds in this moment.

And then there are all the messages about religion here. One of my all-time favorite song lyrics is a line from “Northern Lad” that goes “girl you got to know when it’s time to turn the page/when you’re only wet because of the rain”. It communicates so perfectly to me when the world manipulates us through our trauma to embrace conservative thought, an act itself that’s just a sort of supernatural negging.
[First added to this chart: 04/03/2020]
Year of Release:
1998
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Rank Score:
860
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I promise I won’t talk about politics for the entirety of these comments, but I think what makes this one of the most powerful works of art in my life is also its commentary on religion. It’s very clear that this is a very atheist record, but as I hear lines like “it takes a long time, but God dies too/but not before He sticks to you” more and more, I realize that this is really about the pressure of escaping CHRISTIAN atheism, which really is just another word for white supremacy. [First added to this chart: 03/07/2016]
Year of Release:
2000
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Rank Score:
11,900
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Darn, I’m not gonna be able to escape talking about lyrics, will I? I do indeed think these are the most amazing pop-punk riffs and ballad melodies I’ve ever heard, but I think what has made this an eternal companion to my life is how it shows Avril being able to contain her own multitudes. It shows her be rebellious and bratty in ways I love imitating as a trans girl, but also is full of songs that show her deepest joys and regrets. And while some might think that placing these next to each other hurts “consistency”, it does an amazing job of realizing that life is about both. [First added to this chart: 07/28/2019]
Year of Release:
2007
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Rank Score:
351
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I often feel uncomfortable as a trans girl for liking seemingly hyper-masculine music like this, but there’s just something so vital about the way this music connects to shame. And while you can rightfully feel queasy about a group of cis white dudes making edgy Motown jams, the grunge fusion they make has a sexual energy that makes all these messy emotions feel like the biggest things in the world. [First added to this chart: 03/07/2016]
Year of Release:
1993
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Rank Score:
1,352
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Okay, hopefully this will help me avoid being such a hypocrite with these lyrical obsessions. As I’ve become an experimental filmmaker over the past couple years, I’ve found that Feldman really is the Chantal Akerman of music, with the radical stillness capturing something so profound. And in the same ways I’ve seen more Akerman films that those of almost any other directors, this recording has become such a wonderful comfort food to me, where I can’t help but bathe in its space. I guess I should also add that I never listen to this on headphones, not only because I’ve lost too much hearing by playing this sort of stuff on the bus, but also because it’s a sort of music meant to work around the room, not just around your head. [First added to this chart: 03/07/2016]
Year of Release:
2002
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Rank Score:
119
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This is the most beautifully sapphic record I’ve ever heard, and by the time you hear the opening couplet, “You have such a beautiful face/ I’ve been dreaming about it between my legs”, you won’t be able to escape its profound lesbian desire. The lyrics are full of explicit, even seemingly flippant sexuality and crassness, but beyond a very slight tinge of edginess there’s such astounding earnestness. [First added to this chart: 07/14/2020]
Year of Release:
2013
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Rank Score:
113
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If the Afghan Whigs express a much more justifiable guilt and despair, Amy and Ben here have made a masterpiece about the fear and trauma that comes from what we didn’t understand growing up, especially if you grew up in an evangelical family right after 9/11. Actually, I feel like they make a perfect Lennon/McCartney duo, not just for how Amy’s ethereal voice meets the harsh solid riffs, but also because Amy’s atheism and Ben’s Christianity constantly play against each other and make the most amazingly believable kind of doubt and fear. [First added to this chart: 03/07/2016]
Year of Release:
2003
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Rank Score:
1,673
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Much like the Baby Zionov, this comes from a short-lived scene a bunch of RYM trans people started in the mid-2010s called “Davewave”, which mixed jungle with nightcore to make these fun feminine mixes that were meant to make you feel like a girl. At 55 minutes, this is like a 3-course meal to Zionov’s snack, and isn’t quite AS laser-right, but still has some of my favorite cuts I’ve ever heard. [First added to this chart: 04/09/2016]
Year of Release:
2014
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Rank Score:
113
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Obviously treating the prospect of a White woman rewriting the Delta blues mythology as a revolutionary pro-social act is... not air-tight in its logic. But she and FLOOD (I always imagine his mixing board like the water-pack device in Super Mario Sunshine) create such a wide aural canvas that I can’t help but soak in its grandeur as a masterpiece. Every song is filled with gravitas, making you think it’s the perfect closer until the next-track one-ups it in righteous anger and despair. Also, if “Blood Roses” off Boys For Pele is my favorite song to perform drag to, “C’Mon Billy” is definitely my favorite song to strip to. [First added to this chart: 03/07/2016]
Year of Release:
1995
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Rank Score:
3,904
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I’ve been in this state my whole damned life, so of course I’m gonna consider this a masterpiece. The whole album is an amazing journey of different sounds and feelings, but for the past decade I haven’t been able to stop thinking about “John Wayne Gacy Jr.”. The way Sufjan treats himself no better than its serial killer subject made me realize that that’s how every mortal artist should be with their work, to the point where I opened my 2015 documentary album Document with samples from the track. [First added to this chart: 07/14/2020]
Year of Release:
2005
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Rank Score:
25,445
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Total albums: 100. Page 1 of 10

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Top 100 Greatest Music Albums composition

Decade Albums %


1930s 0 0%
1940s 0 0%
1950s 1 1%
1960s 3 3%
1970s 12 12%
1980s 9 9%
1990s 16 16%
2000s 33 33%
2010s 22 22%
2020s 4 4%
Country Albums %


United States 59 59%
United Kingdom 13 13%
Mixed Nationality 8 8%
Germany 4 4%
Japan 4 4%
Canada 4 4%
Tanzania 2 2%
Show all
Compilation? Albums %
No 94 94%
Yes 6 6%
Live? Albums %
No 94 94%
Yes 6 6%
Soundtrack? Albums %
No 99 99%
Yes 1 1%

Top 100 Greatest Music Albums chart changes

Biggest climbers
Climber Up 17 from 62nd to 45th
Sheik Yerbouti
by Frank Zappa
Climber Up 7 from 66th to 59th
Otis Blue / Otis Redding Sings Soul
by Otis Redding
Climber Up 5 from 47th to 42nd
United States Live
by Laurie Anderson

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Top 100 Greatest Music Albums ratings

Average Rating: 
85/100 (from 51 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution Average Rating = (n ÷ (n + m)) × av + (m ÷ (n + m)) × AV
where:
av = trimmed mean average rating an item has currently received.
n = number of ratings an item has currently received.
m = minimum number of ratings required for an item to appear in a 'top-rated' chart (currently 10).
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50/100
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08/12/2022 22:57 Larcx13  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 1,00685/100
 
50/100
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08/09/2022 15:54 bwoodlan  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 1482/100
 
85/100
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07/30/2022 12:38 Xxnu99etxX  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 14091/100
  
90/100
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06/29/2022 06:57 seb7  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 10191/100
  
100/100
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06/20/2022 01:04 Anti  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 36187/100

Rating metrics: Outliers can be removed when calculating a mean average to dampen the effects of ratings outside the normal distribution. This figure is provided as the trimmed mean. A high standard deviation can be legitimate, but can sometimes indicate 'gaming' is occurring. Consider a simplified example* of an item receiving ratings of 100, 50, & 0. The mean average rating would be 50. However, ratings of 55, 50 & 45 could also result in the same average. The second average might be more trusted because there is more consensus around a particular rating (a lower deviation).
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This chart has a Bayesian average rating of 84.6/100, a mean average of 82.5/100, and a trimmed mean (excluding outliers) of 84.4/100. The standard deviation for this chart is 20.7.

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Top 100 Greatest Music Albums comments

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Rating:  
90/100
From 06/29/2022 06:58
Its truly an interesting chart. do I consider some of your picks straight-up not that good? i guess so. In any case, keep on listening and loving music and being you!
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 11/09/2021 10:58
I have mixed feelings about charts like this. Yes they are very useful for flagging up overlooked albums that may be worth looking at, albums that are not widely known. These charts usually get a high score from other users for being different and interesting. But should they appear on a Greatest Albums list and count towards the greatest overall chart? The prime (but obviously not only) objective of this site is to identify the greatest albums ever recorded (I believe) and boring as it may seem 'Greatest Charts' without any conventional choices should be regarded with caution. I love charts such as this, but they should be titled something like 'Greatest albums you should listen to because I think they're great'. But I'm very aware that many users only look at the Top 100 Greatest charts, so the only way to get noticed is to create them as 'Top 100 Greatest' charts. A quandary.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +2 votes (2 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 11/09/2021 03:08
What a weird and eccentric chart. I mean that as the highest compliment, I think more charts should strive for this rather than regurgitating canon picks. I like that you've got some really corny pop in there right up alongside artsy stuff - you're right, life should have both! Great work, I'll be checking some of these albums out!
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 11/08/2021 20:07
goddamn the effort.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 07/02/2021 00:27
Morton Feldman just barely edging out Avril Lavigne in the top 10 is the best postmodern provocation I've ever seen around here.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 01/07/2021 23:52
loads of great music (and some uh less great music imho) but more than that just consistently the most perplexing chat on BEA. at a certain point I just have to respect the audacity of it all. 2 hours of fart sounds? punk af
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 12/23/2020 06:11
Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others is also probs my favorite Smiths track.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 09/05/2020 21:17
I'd love to read your words and thoughts of these albums. But man, I hope you know how inspirational it is for you to dare showing off your controversial picks (like Soulja Boy being the highest ranked rapper) - big respect your way!
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 07/16/2020 23:21
WTF 100/100. It's unique, it's all that matters.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
Rating:  
70/100
From 07/16/2020 17:25
I have no idea how to feel about this.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)

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Best Ever Artists
1. The Beatles
2. Radiohead
3. Pink Floyd
4. David Bowie
5. Bob Dylan
6. Led Zeppelin
7. The Rolling Stones
8. Arcade Fire
9. The Velvet Underground
10. Nirvana (US)
11. Kendrick Lamar
12. The Smiths
13. Neil Young
14. Miles Davis
15. The Beach Boys
16. Kanye West
17. Pixies
18. Jimi Hendrix
19. Bruce Springsteen
20. R.E.M.
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