part 1 of You must listen to the album below you:canon edition by Mercury
- Chart updated: 03/15/2022 17:15
- (Created: 08/26/2021 22:27).
- Chart size: 100 albums.
View the complete list of 52,000 charts on BestEverAlbums.com from The Charts page.
Second time I liked it a lot more. Still hasn't blown me away completely but much closer to that on relisten. The somewhat psychedelic guitar parts in the epic title track were badass, and the lead singer while nothing special, certainly expresses an angry, jaded protagonist quite well. Overall, some really cool post punk, and it made me go ahead and listen to The Cure's Pornography as a result and I like this album much more than Pornography. It also inspired me to listen to athurd post punk album - Metal Box - and I like Metal Box a lot more than Youth of America. So that is a good indication of my thoughts here, better than The Cure, not as good as PiL, all bands are very different and shouldnb't be compared outside of when they released albums, and yet I am comparing them here for no reason.
blah blah blah... I gave this banger a 3.5/5 on RYM and its cool as heck most of the way through. [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
As I said earlier, this is the coolest album ever based on name of Band, name of album, cover art, genre and release date, etc. Like, is there a more badass album in these regards ever? I think not.
Now that I'm actually listening to the album I am really liking it. The arrangements are simple but there are enough cool little details mixed in in the form of ear-catching bass grooves, jangly and gorgeous guitar parts, and there are some change ups i don't expect and crescendos etc that keep the whole album fresh and moving. The vocalist is not really noteworthy, but I find that there are few vocalists I love from this era of punk/post punk. He isn't a detriment and indeed his style seems to be influential on Post Punk revival bands - especially Interpol.
Generally I grow tired quickly of albums that don't have many sharp lines and edges but instead cover up the corners with a general gauzy, echoey "atmosphere" - this is another album which does that. This album does this better than most and the general emphasis on gauzy atmosphere isn't nearly as irksome as it would be in most people's hands. This maybe is what has kept me an arms length from genres such as Shoegaze, dream pop, post punk of this sort, and some other forms of post 1970s rock music - in that I do tend to want clear melodic sounds, i tend to want a clear distinction between the instruments and the vocalists, i like solos damn it! sue me.
Anyway, i digress, this is a style of rock which is draped in atmosphere and yet it works throughout and the epic moments of catharsis really work! I won't say this is now tops in my mind of albums of the era or of postpunk in general. Again, I like the clear lines and somewhat anti-dreaminess of Unknown Pleasures, Metal Box, Chairs Missing, Entertainment!, or Remain In Light much much more. But as far as somber, dreamy, punky rock of the time this is just about as beautifully realized as anything I've heard.
Anyway, maybe somewhere down the line this album will come up in a tournament here on BEA or maybe I'll do a deep dive into post punk or something and I'll listen again, when that day comes maybe I'll appreciate this beautiful album even more. For now I think its superb rock music in a style and atmosphere I don't generally love. I give this a 3.5/5 and I move forth to other things! [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
I have been in a musical state of mind to love this album in the past, a few years ago I am pretty sure I would hear all these awesome details and this seemingly sloppy musical touches mixed with droney introversion and I would have busted an earnut. When I was really in to NMH and Grouper and Johnston. Right now it catches me 1. when I have a headache and a bad fucking mood and 2. I have a strong interest in musical virtuosity and production clarity. This album is the opposite of some recent albums I've been digging such as Steve McQueen and Leviathan - those are musically rich and detailed and immaculately produced pieces of studio wizardry. This is something I could imagine a substantially more talented version of myself making in my bedroom. Which is kind of the point, right?
Lyrically I only heard clearly snippets and it seems a bit up and down but some lines are gorgeous. I'll give the laddie that. He can write some good sad bastard lines.
I am listening to this album for a second time as I write these notes and my attitude is evolving. I am trying to understand why this album which most of the time would be up my alley is leaving me cold. Why is this so adored? What is wrong with me for kinda being meh about it?
I guess it goes right along with what I said for that chameleons album, I tend to want straight lines, angularity, clear melodic themes, some instrumental clarity and virtuosity, some clear poetic statements, stories, structures, etc. I am not in the mood for vagueness and obscurity and drones and rattles and feedbacky explosions, and rhythms which lose themselves, etc. So, while I recognize this is a statement of magnitude within the lo fi and bedroom folk, indie folk scene, It isn't touching me.
I have owned this CD for 8 years, Ive seen it on lists for 10 years at least, I have for some reason never really listened to it closely despite having dozens of times when I was close to pushing play. I always felt a little bit withdrawn from its aesthetic. Now that I have jumped in and done some close listening, I can move on. I understand the love for the album. But as of now, its not quite my tempo.
2.5/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
this is the kind of post punk I like, angular, impossible to pin down on first listens, aggressive in new and strange ways, expreirmental, unsettling, and just complete unique! I like the Wipers and the Chameleons, but at the end of the day I thought they were just new spins on punk rock. This album is so different, I question how one genre (post punk) can contain it and other stuff just mentioned.
From the jump with the silly yet a little unsettling "go to sleep" mantra, I knew I was in good transgressive hands. Its rare for me to feel so comfortable about handing over my time and attention to an album on first listen, yet last night when I first listened that is the sensation. The whole album is even better on second listen. I'm sure it will be on 3rd etc listens as well.
I love the lack of traditional rock here. The jazz elements, repetitive trance-inducing Can vibes, the chanting parts, the myriad little sound effects and subtle and not-so-subtle shifts, the unorthodox rhythmic sounds (i'm no musician and can't say what the time signatures are if i'm being honest but at times it felt like it was in strange meters - but the main thing was the SOUNDs themselves like clangs and trashcans. almost reminded me of some of the cool percussive sounds on Swordfishtrombone), the overlapping chants on "shrinkwrap", the fact that BOTH times i listened to the door knocking sound at the beginning "Radio Prague" i took my headphones off briefly cuz I thought it was someone at my door, the actual creepy insanity of that entire song actually is to die for and the way it leads into almost Swans-level of despairing unease in "Makeshift Swahili", the staticy sounds, the whole disorienting anti-mess. It's fabulous. Like, truly fabulous. Its nearly chart worthy already and maybe it will be added sometime.
I'm putting this right alongside Metal Box and Unknown Pleasures as my fave albums to come out of the Post Punk scene - whatever that term means as they are all very different sounding while all expressing extreme agony and anger in very different and brilliant ways.
And, lastly, this was what I needed after kinda being appreciative but not over the moon for Youth of America, and Script of the Bridge and being let down by The Glow Pt 2 (while recognizing its qualities of course). This is a true masterpiece.
4.5/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
Anyway, anti-skit rant suppressed into my belly, I will say the collection of songs here is marvelous. The production is so cool, detailed yet elegant. The low key yet gorgeous music on songs like Return of the G and Aquemini and Da Art of Storytellin' part 1 just make those songs timeless and just as cool today as 22 years (!!) ago. This album is incredibly undated. These songs generally sound just as great today, maybe even more so.
The rapping is always detailed and intricate. I can't say I have done a deep dive into the substance of the words, but the flow and rhythm and sounds of the 2 main rappers are just cool and expertly ride over the beats.
None of the songs outside of "West Savannah" are less than great. Personally not a fan of that one, but its alright i guess.
Rosa Parks is a all time great song. as is the 2 part Da Art of Storytellin' as is Mamacita and Liberation and Synthesizer. Rosa Parks though is my favorite, and that fact alone may indicate my level of discernment on this album - it's the biggest hit and there is something about hearing a song you heard as a kid and getting all squeally and excited. IDK.
Overall, I am not really in a hip hop mood right now. But its clear as day that this is an all time classic, with pristine beats, raps, hooks, and an album flow which is awesome (outside of the skits. fuck).
Okay sorry for how meh this "review" is lol. 3.5/5. thanks for forcing me out of my groove, or set ways of listening these days. [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
Electronic music, especially electronic instrumental music, has very rarely been a whole universe of music that I've been into, interested in or familiar with. In that way, I love that Luigii's chart and this album are choc full of these types of albums that are completely the other side of the musical spectrum from what I tend to perk up to when mentioned.
However, I'll say all the songs with some vocals, even if the vocals are all cut up and inhuman sounding at times, were cool and dreamy and I loved them. The glitchy tracks really bothered me. And the parts within otherwise great songs that started glitching and going crazy were the anti-matter of my enjoyment. Especially track 1. One of my all time worst first impressions to a classic album.
But its not like I think its noise, I recognize these are detailed and I'm sure quite virtuosic musical bits... which I would never have any interest in listening to. There's just a disconnect there.
"International" is an interesting kinda all over the place song that I love. The vocals and the beats are just peaceful and that's great.
The actual rock guitar on Chocolate Matter was a nice surprise. Pretty solid song. And the closer is dope as well. My fave song on first listen is "Dsco" because it was poppy and dreamy and catchy and i loved it straight away.
I also don't like long albums with some exceptions. This album is 73 minutes. And even split over 2 listens it was a losing me a bit.
As a kid I loved long albums, as it seemed like more bang for my buck and it felt exciting to delve deeper and deeper into some 70-79 minute CD or 2 CD set. Back then I would save up, buy a CD and put it in my CD player and just play it for 20-30 minutes, pause, go do something else come back and push play and continue the album. I'd do this continually and may only manage to sit my childish ass down to hear the whole album in one sitting 1 out of 10 times. I'm not sure when it changed, but somewhere along the line I started listening to albums almost religiously straight through. To the point where if I stop an album even for 3 minutes and get distracted, I will sometimes start that bish over from track one so I can "hear the whole experience the way the artist intended" or something like that. I think that the fact that I find it perfect to just focus for 30-45 minutes on an album no distractions but find the same thing tougher for something 65 or up is strange. I think either method is fine. But I think I just had a breakthrough/realization as to why I sometimes find an album a chore these days that as a kid I would find a great experience.
Anyway, I digressed big time probably because I don't have anything intelligent to say. I like 50% of this album, LOVE 20% or so, and borderline hate (as of now) 28% (literally all the glitchy parts and breakdowns and super fast buzzing sounds and lazer sounds is what this 28 percent is made up of)... oh and 2%% is sort of unaccounted for.
on rate your music the massive list of genre descriptions for this album are as follows " Glitch Pop, IDM, Shoegaze
Dream Pop, Glitch, Ambient Pop, Noise Pop, Indietronica" And I can say without a doubt that none of those genres interest me one bit. Like no album of this kind or of those genres is on my overall chart I don't think. So the fact that this album was as enjoyable and engaging as it was is impressive and maybe this will be a slight intro drug to this whole new world. needs more blues guitar.
uneducated first listen grade 2.5/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
Station to Station - 9.7/10
Golden Years - 10/10
Word On A Wing - 8.3/10
TVC15 - 10/10
Stay - 9.4/10
Wild Is The Wind - 5.7/10
Basically the first song is a masterpiece (The build up is not my fave, but by 3:20 its reached its fully formed perfection and for 7 minutes it floats at top tier 10/10 quality.) Then Golden Years is just perfect, full stop. At first when I heard it a decade ago i didn't think much of it. But it has blossomed into just a perfect rock song and its like no other song out there. As for the final song on side 1, "Word on the Wind" i saw some people in the RYM comments putting this down as a bit of a snooze...huh? I get saying that about the album closer, but this song is friggin sweet and strangely lovely and sincere and the bass lines are badass. Its a solid goddamn song.
Side 2 starts with yet another perfect rock song that just blows my mind how in step everything is - talkin' "TVC15" of course. And then track 5 - Stay - is similarly badass with its sick groove and cooler than cool guitar and percussion! I fucking love it too.
If not for the silly corny nina simone cover that ends it, this album would be as close to perfect a rock album as I've heard in forever. Yet, despite the last song this IS a special album! I never got into it back in the day when I bought it and spun it a couple times. Now, though, its really turned a corner and may be (as of now) my fave Bowie album! Holy shit!
I listened to a couple times back to back and yeah its hard to explain how smooth, rocking, groovy and sick an album it is. I didn't expect to be so blown away by the session musicians on this! The drummer, guitarist, bass player, all involved somehow turned into one of the best rock bands in the world while recording this in 1976. Even on Wild is the Wind its not their fault its kinda corny and a downer - i lay the blame on the ridiculous and silly song choice and the vocals.
Anyway, yeah, stellar. amazing. glad I finally really appreciated and listened to this closely.
4.5/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
This has one of the most brilliant opening tracks ever, the song "Better Get It In Your Soul" is incredibly badass, soulful, invigorating and just 10/10 every second of the way. The famous second track "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" is also a 10/10 for completely different reasons - its a sould searching, somber, lonesome sound which I adore.
From there Boogie Stop Shuffle is god tier too, so energetic and brilliantly composed. There is not 1 wasted second or less than awesome second on the first 3 tracks. Track 4 Self-Portrait in Three Colours" has a dope name and sound, its beauty maybe didn't captivate me to the same degree as track 2, very different moods really. But its great.
The next 3 tracks are all stellar - Open Letter to Duke, to Bird Calls, to Fables of Faubus is just boom boom boom home run after home run.
The remainder of the album is still 9/10 stuff but just doesn't blow my everloving mind quite to the same degree. But this is really my first listen, this is most likely a grower so I will be revisiting.
Overall I love the bluesy soul of Mingus. He's cool, he's genius, his arrangements are always unique and pristine, but keeps me emotionally attached with a primal soulfulness which is sometimes lost in other classic Hard Bop albums. He is always just as sophistocated and technically amazing as anyone else but he manages to not just excel at the mind blowing technical feats, and he reaches one hand over into the deep down soul and blues that makes me just vibe with this man more than almost any other jazz artist of the era (outside of Miles....and maybe even more than him, its close. lets call it a tie.)
Anyway, this was amazing. 4.5/5 - honestly probably a 5. but just can't say its a rare 5. on 3rd o 4 th listen it may ascend in my noggin' [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
As for the songs, there aren't any bad ones or okay ones, and hell I am listening again and I don't know if there are any songs here that I consider filler. (Maybe "My Baby Left Me" but even that is kind of a cool Sun session Elvis tribute.). It's just a tour-de-force of baller ass fucking classics! Very impressive!
The opener caught me off guard. "Ramble Tamble" seemed like a somewhat typical CCR rocker, then it goes off and becomes this long jam that just kills. "Before You Accuse Me" is a great blues jam/cover so you know I'm on board. Travelin Band and "Ooby Dooby" both are just quick hitting, high energy 50s rock and roll homages that I love. "Up Around The Bend" is just the most badass rock song, the guitar that opens it up is always able to get me hyped.
And of course the hits and the well-known classics here - "Lookin' Out My Back Door", "Run Through The Jungle", "I Heard It Through The Grapevine", "Who'll Stop The Rain" and the closer "Long As I Can See The Light" - are all sublime!
This album doesn't move me emotionally or connect with me on a deep level. But after a couple listens, I appreciate it and its well-rounded brilliance. I think it may be one I come back to on occasion. Maybe I prefer Green River a bit more as of now, but I can't ask more of a rock album than what this offers.
Grade is 4.25/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
1. One of These Days - 9.5/10
2. A Pillow of Winds - 8/10
3. Fearless - 9.3/10
4. San Tropez - 7.5/10
5. Seamus - 7
okay, those were all good songs. Solid album. Wait,... am I forgetting something? Is there another song, maybe a little hidden track? let me see...
Ah yeah there's this little ditty called "Echoes". (8.9/10)
Maybe echoes requires more listens but its 23 plus minutes isn't full to the gills with musical moments I love nor ideas that blow me away. Still got a high grade cuz it is a cool track, cool ambience, cool transitions, when the vocals come in in the final 6-7 minutes its really epic, and I love the guitar on it. As far as I understand this track was a turning point for the band in the direction of the woozy, cerebral sound that came to define them and make them total legends with their next 3 albums. And I respect that historical significance and its all good.
Still the folk rock badassness of "Fearless" is where it's at, along with the absolutely dope bass heavy rocker that kicks off the album. A Few other good not great tracks with nice melodies, and this is a really nice album. I'd give it a 85/100 on our scale and 3.5/5 on RYM scale (I know mathematically those two numbers dont go together, 85 = 4.25. but I have a weird thing and leave me alone.)
Overall I think the main good thing this album is remind me with a new experience what I like about Pink Floyd. I very rarely find a time to come back to DSoTM and WYWH despite them being some of my top 50-70 albums in the 1970s. And so maybe I'll revisit them and Animals soon to see how this famous and revered band took this seed from Meddle and expanded it over the next half decade or so.
3.75/5 [First added to this chart: 03/15/2022]
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