Greatest Album of All Time

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by AustinIllini, Aug 7, 2013.

  1. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, USA
    Most tend to argue Sgt. Peppers, Revolver, Dark Side of the Moon, maybe Led Zeppelin 4?

    What are your desert island albums? (Say 5 of them)

    Beatles - Revolver
    Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon
    Red Hot Chili Peppers - Blood Sugar Sex Magic
    Led Zeppelin II
    Arcade Fire - Funeral
  2. wordsworth macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2011
    Pink Floyd – Dark Side Of The Moon
    Terry Reid – Seed Of Memory
    Ozark Mountain Daredevils – It'll Shine When It Shines
    Genesis – Foxtrot
    Kate Bush – Aerial

    Not sure if this would be my top five next year, next month or even next week but they're all great records.
  3. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Is there an assumed time limit to the title "Greatest Album of All Time?"

    In other words, do you mean the 20th century, or 21st century, or merely music since rock music evolved....or since the phonograph and its attendant technology were developed by Thomas Edison in the late 19th century......

    If the incredibly elastic term 'of all time' is used, - which is very generous, mind-bogglingly so - may we assume that music from the 19th century is included, (there, I'd have to contemplate Ludwig van Beethoven's Ninth Symphony which is sublime, and utterly magnificently, magisterial), or the 18th, when W. A. Mozart's 'The Marriage of Figaro' would strike me as one of the most incredible, creative, and symphonically perfect musical compositions in all of musically recorded history?
  4. mobilehaathi macrumors 604


    Aug 19, 2008
    The Anthropocene
    It isn't clear to me that music from different genres is comparable or that it is even appealing to designate a "best."

    Then there is the question of who is performing, another complication in my mind. I can't read music, so I must judge a work based on its performance.

    Sorry, you probably didn't desire such a picky and obnoxious post. :eek:
  5. HE15MAN macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2009
    Florida's Treasure Coast
    Korn - Korn
    Slipknot - Slipknot
    Opeth - Blackwater Park
    Opeth - Still Life
    Stone Sour - Stone Sour
    Dry Cell - Disconnected
  6. Thraun macrumors regular


    Dec 18, 2008
    Abbotsford, BC
  7. Huntn macrumors G4


    May 5, 2008
    The Misty Mountains
  8. SJism23 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 20, 2012
    Imagine or Double Fantasy — John Lennon (& Yoko Ono)
    Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band — The Beatles
    Dangerous — Michael Jackson
    The Reminder — Feist
    The Wall — Pink Floyd
  9. MacNut macrumors Core


    Jan 4, 2002
    Greatest album is generational and very subjective. There will never be a greatest.
  10. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    I don't get the whole deserted island thing. You have power to begin with, just bring the iPod. :rolleyes:

    Abbey Road - The Beatles
    Definitely Maybe - Oasis
    Rumours - Fleetwood Mac
    The Stranger - Billy Joel

    And then one of the Beach Boys greatest hits, because why wouldn't they be relevant when you're stranded on an island?

    And yeah, you can't really say "the best album of all time", because we're all from different decades and generations.
  11. firedept macrumors demi-god


    Jul 8, 2011
    Favorite is Classic Rock. Do enjoy some Alternative these days though.

    AC/DC - Back In Black
    Led Zeppelin - IV
    Beatles - Abbey Road
    Journey - Time
    Jethro Tull - Aqualung
  12. ValSalva macrumors 68040


    Jun 26, 2009
    Burpelson AFB
    When in only a few posts the top albums go from Swedish tech death metal to Michael Jackson (I personally never understood the whole Michael Jackson thing) then I'd have to say you are absolutely right!
  13. Goftrey macrumors 68000


    May 20, 2011
    Wales, UK
    A few that spring to mind;

    Red Hot Chili Peppers - Californication
    James Gang - Yer' Album
    Led Zeppelin - III
    The Black Keys - Brothers
    The Beatles - The Blue Album
    Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - Mojo
    Fleetwood Mac - Rumours
    Coldplay - X&Y
  14. dec. Suspended


    Apr 15, 2012
    I'm somewhere between (old school-)Prog Metal, Industrial, Synth Pop, Prog Rock and other stuff. Albums that have aged extremely well for me and therefore are proven Island material are:

    WatchTower - Control and Resistance
    Tangerine Dream - Ricochet
    a-ha - Hunting High and Low
    Mercyful Fate - Don't Break the Oath
    Marillion - Seasons End

    (I'd have at least another 20 or 30 I could easily list)
  15. Mr. McMac macrumors 68030

    Mr. McMac

    Dec 21, 2009
    Long Island, NY
    My favorites reflect my age

    Just a few out of countless many

    The Who - Who's Next
    The Beatles - Revolver (Original American Release)
    Led Zeppelin - 1
    Jefferson Airplane - Crown Of Creation
    Rolling Stones - Beggars Banquet
    Procol Harum - A Salty Dog
    Grand Funk - The Red Album
    Beach Boys - Pet Sounds
    Bob Dylan - Blonde On Blonde
    The Band - Music From Big Pink
    The Patti Smith Group - Easter
    etc, etc....
  16. MacNut macrumors Core


    Jan 4, 2002
    I have noticed that most of these "best albums" are rock bands of some generation. Most of these groups would not crack the top 50 in the huge scale of music over the past 200 years.
  17. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    My point exactly and I agree with you entirely.

    Either the thread title should be amended (to read something along the lines of 'what do you think are the greatest rock albums in history'?) or- it should be made clear that the discussion is not confined to a specific musical preference such as rock (admittedly, one that was hugely influential), and neither is it confined to a specific time period.

    A discussion that conflates rock music with 'the greatest album of all time' runs the risk of missing the point, I think. As it happens, I have no quarrel with discussing great rock albums, - and even agree with some of the selections mentioned above - but, to be honest, there is more to great music than rock.
  18. Peace macrumors P6


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    DSOTM-Pink Floyd

    Led Zeppelin III

    The Beatles White Album
  19. Apple fanboy macrumors G5

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    Surly this one has to be in there?

    Attached Files:

  20. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin 3
    Rush - Power Windows
    John Lennon - Imagine
    Kate Bush - Hounds Of Love
    Perfume - Triangle
    Black Sabbath - Heaven and Hell
    Boney M - Nightflight to Venus ;)
  21. vrDrew macrumors 65816


    Jan 31, 2010
    Midlife, Midwest
    That is true.

    But it is also worth considering that the concept of a music "album" really only existed for a relatively short period of musical history. The long-play 33 ⅓ rpm vinyl album was only invented in 1948, and didn't gain widespread acceptance till more than a decade later. By the mid 1980s we had CDs, and by the late 1990s we had mp3 files.

    The constraints created by the LP format played a very large part in their creation by the (rock) bands of the era. Great thought was given to the order in which the tracks were arranged on the album, and frequently special attention was given to the track just prior to the halfway point - often cueing the listener that it was time to get up and flip the record over. Great effort - and sometimes expense - was given to the artwork on the cover, which at about 12 1/2 inches square was big enough to properly display images that the band felt would best reflect the artistic, and commercial, interests of the band.

    Never is a long time. But I seriously doubt that anyone will ever create a musical album quite the way artists did in the period between ~ 1960 and 1984.
  22. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, USA
    Good analysis. As much as I hate to admit it, Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is probably the best example of what you're describing in terms of deliberate track order and arrangement I have heard in some time.
  23. 4JNA macrumors 68000


    Feb 8, 2006
    looking for trash files
    a small smidge of me on the inside misses the covers. beautiful things they were especially when you were flipping through them in the record store. row after row, pulling them toward you fast enough to get through, but not so fast as not to be able to read the squiggly bits. nice, but gone that habit is.

    i lived through that whole sorry mess that was 'track order and arrangement' and can honestly say i never really got it. love music, love art, love art as music and so on. with the exception of a few works that actually were stories or pieces meant to be heard in order, the rest were a bunch of songs in exactly the wrong spots. they ALWAYS got it wrong, which is why i spent so much of my early years making mix tapes. good songs in a good order, screw the record companies and radio play.

    yes, i'm having a senior moment, thanks for noticing. now get off my lawn.
  24. afireintonto macrumors 6502a


    Jul 22, 2008
  25. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Excellent and thoughtful post, and I agree with you to a large extent.

    But sometimes music influences - or dictates the form of technology used - every bit as much as the technology available influences how music is presented for popular consumption.

    One of the reasons I referenced L van Beethoven's stunning Ninth Symphony (apart from it simply being a sublime piece of music) is that it was used as the reference point for what a single CD should be able to hold when standards were set for the manufacture of CDs in the late 1970s & very early 1980s.

    I'm enjoying your 'senior moment'. Lovely post.

    As a teenager, I well remember the joy of free days, half-days from school, or breaks of a few days (such as Hallowe'en) when one would race into what we then called 'record shops', and, as you so well express it, flip through and rummage through the assembled albums (in the well stocked shops these were arranged alphabetically), at speed (but not without rapidly reading the detailed material on album covers), and, perhaps, plan a purchase.

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