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1000 albums

November 20th, 2007 · Posted by Skuds in Music · 4 Comments · Music

They are at it again.  Its another list. Another pointless list.  Another pointless and arbitrary list with no apparent purpose other than to stir up controversy and generate lots of comments on their blog.  Worst of all, it is as irresistible as it is pointless.  Of course, it is the Guardian's 1000 albums you must hear before you die.

I am trying not to rise to the bait, although I am happy to see the best album in the world ever is not over looked (Entertainment! by Gang of Four) and that Manu Chao is in there with Clandestino. Also a pile of forgotten things which tempt me into looking for them to download: DAF, Frampton Comes Alive, Betty Boo and Hello.  Hello must be totally lacking in any sort of credibility, but I rather liked them.

There is a good selection of reggae with Culture, Burning Spear, Black Uhuru, the Congos, Dr Almantado and Eek-a-mouse in there (but no Jimmy Cliff) and a good range of Doctors – Dr Dre, Dr Alimantado, Dr John and Dr Octagon – but no Dr Feelgood. Still… at least there was no Dr Hook either.

Dr Feelgood's Essex neighbours Eddie and the Hot Rods, Kursaal Flyers and Erasure are also missing.  I think the Guardian doesn't like Essex much! 

But despite all that, and the total absence of Crowded House, I am not rising to the bait. I doubt if even all the writers who contributed will agree with the list so why should I?

I am actually wondering whether I have ever heard 1000 albums anyway.  I suppose I have, when I think back to listening to everyone else's albums at school but it can't be much more than that.  Since leaving college it became quite rare to listen to a whole album without having bought it myself, apart from the months I spent living with my dad and going through his collection.

So I would be in no position to offer an alternative list of 1000 without resorting to stuff I hae heard of but never actually heard.  I would offer up ten to go towards such a list though – ten albums which I have in the past played to people to show them something different:

  1. Entertainment! by Gang of Four (obviously)
  2. Elastica by Elastica
  3. Clandestino by Manu Chao
  4. Firin' in Fouta by Baaba Maal
  5. Aye by Angelique Kidjo
  6. A Trick of the Tail (SACD version) by Genesis
  7. Tubeway Army by Tubeway Army
  8. Communication by Karl Bartos
  9. Rodrigo y Gabriela
  10. Two Bad DJ by Clint Eastwood and General Saint

I don't think we do enough sharing of music as adults.  Until the Internet came along the practice had almost died out, but without friends and colleagues lending me albums I would never have got into Primus or discovered the classic Greensleeves Dancehall Anthems compilation or even heard of Joachim Witt and Extrabreit.  

This latest list may well be a load of balls, but as a result I may well seek out The Chills or Harmonia and find that I like them.  Someone else may discover Amadou & Mariam.   For that I can overlook the fact that Elmer Food Beat have been inexplicably left off the list.


4 Comments so far ↓

  • Andrew Brown

    Got to love a list.

    Anyway The Chills are definitely worth checking out if you like indie pop.

  • jams o donnell

    They were pretty good, I liked “Look for the good in others” and “wet blanket” I saw them 20 years ago supporting the Hoodoo Gurus

  • Skuds

    I’m still put out that there is no Primus, no Ojos de Brujo, no Ozomatli, no Apache Indian, no Black Grape, Eagles of Death Metal, Gogol Bordello, Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Green Day, Faithless or Les Negresses Vertes.

    And what about Jean-Michel Jarre? Mike Oldfield? Electric Light Orchestra?

    Also why list Mastodon but not Megadeth?

    They better have Yes in the final part! 🙂

  • jams o donnell

    No Robyn Hitchcock, Soft Boys or Husker Du either. Yes? No! At least they listed the Space Ritual