Thursday, March 11, 2004

Screw it! I'm not waiting til Tuesday to post my latest list.

Okay, this could change in five years, but probably not much--the only albums that risk getting bumped are the ones currently occupying spots eight through ten. So without further ado...

My All-Time Top-10 Favorite Albums

10. Central Reservation - Beth Orton
This is my favorite Beth Orton album (Trailer Park is a close second). It's one of those CDs I can play continuously for an entire day and not get sick of. Best tracks: Central Reservation (both versions), Sweetest Decline, Stolen Car.

9. The Joshua Tree - U2
I tried to resist picking this one as my favorite U2 offering, mostly because everyone seems to pick it as their favorite. But when I mentally ran though the track listings of Achtung Baby and The Unforgettable Fire (my two runners-up), I had to admit--this one kicks ass. Best tracks: Where the Streets Have No Name, I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For, Red Hill Mining Town, Trip Through Your Wires.

8. On My Way, Don't Know Where I'm Goin' - Paul Simon
Is it lame to have a "best of" compilation on my list? I don't give a crap. This is the only Paul Simon that has all my favorites. And the title is cool, too (although I wanted to pick There Goes Rhymin' Simon, another cool title, but it doesn't have much on it that I really like besides Kodachrome). Best tracks: Mother and Child Reunion, Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard, Late In the Evening, Graceland, Slip Slidin' Away. (I can't listen to that last one too much though, because it makes me sad. Yes, I am a sensitive soul).

7. The Best of Blondie - Blondie (duh)
Yeah, another best of. Sue me. This is the only Blondie album that has the version of Rapture with the cool intro. (Even Auto American, the album that Rapture originally appeared on, doesn't have the cool intro version. Not the copy I own, anyway). But I digress. This one rocks. Best Tracks: All of them! Okay, I never liked (I'm Always Touched By Your) Presence Dear. But everything else is stellar.

6. Footsteps In The Dark - Cat Stevens
Okay, this is also a best of. But it's the only Cat Stevens release I've been able to locate that has all the Harold and Maude songs (there was never an official soundtrack album for the movie). Best tracks: The Wind, On the Road To Find Out, Father and Son, The Hurt, Trouble.

5. Rubber Soul - The Beatles
I'm a pretty big Beatles fan. Not a Beatlemaniac, but close. This album is from my favorite Beatles era, after I Wanna Hold Your Hand but before Strawberry Fields. Best tracks: Drive My Car, You Won't See Me, Michelle, I'm Looking Through You, In My Life. (And in case you're wondering, my favorite Beatle is Paul).

4. Blood On the Tracks - Bob Dylan
Not much to say about this one, except that it's the greatest Dylan album ever. The overall tone is pretty melancholy; I think I read that he was going through a divorce during the recording. Best tracks: Tangled Up In Blue, If You See Her Say Hello, Shelter From the Storm, You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go.

3. whitechocolatespaceegg - Liz Phair
This is the album that turned me on Ms. Liz and her music. This one's more melodic than her first two, and the arrangements and lyrics are kick-ass. Best tracks: Perfect World, Polyester Bride, Johnny Feelgood, Go On Ahead, What Makes You Happy, Headache, Fantasize---hell, the whole damn thing rocks.

2. Temple of Low Men - Crowded House & Every Picture Tells A Story - Rod Stewart (tie)
Okay, I had to make it a tie because I just couldn't decide between the two, and I didn't want to bump any of the others. To this day, I can't believe how little success Crowded House had in the U.S. (compared their native New Zealand). Maybe I should move down there, where music like this is more appreciated. Anyhoo, this album is considered the darkest and most contemplative of their works, which makes it all the better (good thing Prozac wasn't as widely used in may have made it a different album entirely). And as for Rod, c'mon--this one is definitely his greatest. Best tracks (Temple): I Feel Posessed, When You Come, Into Temptation, Never Be the Same, Better Be Home Soon. Best tracks (Picture): Reason To Believe, Every Picture Tells A Story, Mandolin Wind, Maggie May.

1. Rio - Duran Duran
Was there any doubt that they'd be number one? And choosing among their albums was a difficult task. Notorious is my alternate number one choice, but since that one was the "pared-down" DD, and Rio features The Original Fab Five in all their glory, I had to go with that one. Best tracks: New Religion, The Chauffer, Save A Prayer, Hold Back the Rain, Rio.

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