Sunday, May 5, 2013

Music to My Ears: #iPodAlbumPlaylist


Since March, I've been making my way through a massive, 600+ song "album playlist" on my iPod. It includes both perennial favorites and LPs I acquired from friends without listening to them before. After each album finished, I tweeted a picture of the cover and a link to my favorite track. Now that the playlist is done, I am featuring the entire lineup here.

The playlist was shuffled by album, so the order is entirely random.


Another Green World (1975) - Brian Eno


Me Against the World (1995) - 2Pac
Favorite track: "Me Against the World"

Pet Sounds (1966) - The Beach Boys
Favorite track: "Wouldn't It Be Nice"

The Predator (1992) - Ice Cube
Favorite track: "When Will They Shoot?"

I'm the Man (1979) - Joe Jackson
Favorite track: "On Your Radio"

Dark Was the Night (compiled from 1927-30) - Blind Willie Johnson

Magic, Murder, and the Weather (1981) - Magazine
Favorite track: "Suburban Rhonda" (not online)

Coltrane Jazz (1961) - John Coltrane
Favorite track: "Village Blues"

Off the Wall (1979) - Michael Jackson
Favorite track: "Rock With You"

Bitches Brew (1970) - Miles Davis

Los Angeles (1980) - X

Catholic Boy (1980) - The Jim Carroll Band
Favorite track: "Catholic Boy"

 The Correct Use of Soap (1980) - Magazine
Favorite track: "Philadelphia"

Tabula Rasa (composed 1977) - Arvo Part
Favorite track: "Tabula Rasa"

Lioness: Hidden Treasures (compiled from 2002-11) - Amy Winehouse
Favorite track: "Valerie ('68 Version)"

Remain in Light (1980) - Talking Heads
Favorite track: "Seen and Not Seen"

It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988) - Public Enemy
Favorite track: "Party For Your Right to Fight" (not online)

Country on the Click (2003) - The Fall
Favorite track: "Mountain Energei"

Entertainment! (1979) - Gang of Four
Favorite track: "Not Great Men"

 Darkness on the Edge of Town (1978) - Bruce Springsteen
Favorite track: "Candy's Room"

Definitely Maybe (1994) - Oasis
Favorite track: "Supersonic"

Romantic? (1990) - The Human League
Favorite track: "Men Are Dreamers"

 Symphony No. 4 (composed 1900) - Gustav Mahler
Favorite track: "Fourth movement: Sehr Behaglich"

Cronenberg on Warhol (2006) - David Cronenberg
Favorite track: "Kiss, Silver Disaster #6, Blow Job" (not online)

 The Basement Tapes (compiled from 1967-1975) - Bob Dylan & The Band
Favorite track: "Tiny Montgomery"

Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973) - Bob Dylan
Favorite track: "Knockin' on Heaven's Door"

The Complete BBC Recordings (1979) - Joy Division
Favorite track: "Sound of Music"

Crown of Creation (1968) - Jefferson Airplane
Favorite track: "Crown of Creation"

 Loveless (1991) - My Bloody Valentine
Favorite track: "To Here Knows When"

The Dignity of Labour Pts. 1-4 (1979) - The Human League
Favorite track: "The Dignity of Labour Pt. 3"

Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! (recorded 1969) - The Rolling Stones
Favorite track: "Sympathy for the Devil"

Requiem (composed 1791) - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Favorite track: "Introitus / Kyrie"

  Mind Games (1973) - John Lennon
Favorite track: "Intuition"

BBC Radio 1 Live in Concert (recorded 1987) - New Order
Favorite track: "Touched by the Hand of God" (not online)

 Mezzanine (1998) - Massive Attack
Favorite track: "Man Next Door"

 Avalon (1982) - Roxy Music
Favorite track: "Avalon"

 A Hard Day's Night (1964) - The Beatles
Favorite track: "I Should Have Known Better"

Beautiful Future (2008) - Primal Scream
Favorite track: "Suicide Bomb" (not online)

Milestones (1958) - Miles Davis
Favorite track: "Sid's Ahead"

Criss Cross (1963) - Thelonious Monk
Favorite track: "Criss Cross"

Exit (1981) - Tangerine Dream
Favorite track: "Choronzon"

Out of Our Heads (U.S. version) - The Rolling Stones
Favorite track: "Play With Fire"

The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (1967) - Pink Floyd
Favorite track: "Lucifer Sam"

 Bringing It All Back Home (1965) - Bob Dylan
Favorite track: "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue"

Homework (1997) - Daft Punk
Favorite track: "Around the World"

 Electric Ladyland (1968) - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Favorite track: "1983 (A Merman I Should Turn to Be)"

Exile on Main Street (1972) - The Rolling Stones
Favorite track: "Sweet Virginia"


The Man Machine (1978) - Kraftwerk
Favorite track: "Neon Lights"

Fun House (1970) - The Stooges
Favorite track: "L.A. Blues"

Daydream Nation (1988) - Sonic Youth
Favorite track: "Total Trash"

 Nosferatu (1978) - Popol Vuh
Favorite track: "Mantra I"

Portishead (1997) - Portishead
Favorite track: "Only You"

Messiah (1741) - George Frideric Handel
Favorite track: "I Know That My Reedemer Liveth"

Houses of the Holy (1973) - Led Zeppelin
Favorite track: "The Ocean"

Ready to Die (1994) - The Notorious B.I.G.
Favorite track: "Gimme the Loot"

6 comments:

Doug Noakes said...

This is amazing and eclectic group of album selections.

Joel Bocko said...

Yeah, it was great listening to them. Some were discoveries for me, as well - albums I'd had on there forever without checking out or (relatively) recent acquirements from friends. I've now made a 53-song playlist featuring my favorite track from each LP, and am listening to that now, so it never ends!

Mike said...

Quite an electric mix indeed! I've only listened to 3 of these albums, brief thoughts-

Me Against the World- Used to really like this album but I don't listen to it as much anymore. I love the gritty NYC feel on several songs (If I Die 2Nite, Old School especially). My favorite song would be So Many Tears.

It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back- Well, this gets my vote for the most important hip hop album ever made. Maybe not my personal favorite, but it's top twenty for sure. My favorite song is Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos (a great song to work out to, in fact the whole album is great to pump you up)

Ready to Die- This is the album that really opened my eyes to the power and possibilities of hip hop. I listened to it for the first time all the way through twice in a row and my mind was blown. Such a fantastic album, it never gets old either. My favorite song constantly changes, Gimme the Loot, Juicy, Big Poppa, Ready to Die, and recently Everyday Struggles are all favorites of mine.

Haven't gotten into Ice Cube yet, but he's been on my radar for a while now. The Predator is generally considered one of his first "non-classic" albums although the song you link here sounds really fantastic. AmeriKKKas Most Wanted is first priority though.

Joel Bocko said...

One of the interesting thing about 2Pac is that despite the association of him with L.A. & West Coast, he's actually from all over the place; and this album does have a particularly NY flavor. Unfortunately, I still haven't really warmed to the Public Enemy LP yet after several listens. Not sure why. As for the Biggie, that's easily one of my favorite albums of all time, hip-hop or otherwise. Only sour note is the grotesque fallatio track, but it's at least brief. Like you, my favorite track changes all the time. At various times it's been or could be Juicy, Machine Gun Funk, Big Poppa, Gimme the Loot, Ready to Die, One More Chance, Things Done Changed, The What. And I really love that intro track too. Really I just like the whole thing. Life After Death, to me, has a lot more filler though it's got some strong tracks too. Not only is Ready to Die stronger pound for pound, the shorter album also probably has more tracks I like period.

I think you'll probably love the Cube. I'm actually not familiar with his discography at all; like many other artists on my iPod I only have 1 or 2 albums - I tend to go for breadth over depth (and not just in music). But I'm hopefully going to get more Cubes from a friend soon.

Hope you get to check some more of these albums out over time. Lots of classics here, certainly something for every taste (as with movies, I tend to be eclectic - although some of these were first listens for me too and hence not necessarily favorites).

A top 10 culled from this list would include:

Another Green World (Brian Eno)
Pet Sounds (The Beach Boys)
Catholic Boy (The Jim Carroll Band)
The Complete BBC Recordings (Joy Division)
Loveless (My Bloody Valentine)
Mezzanine (Massive Attack)
^I think you'll love this one
Avalon (Roxy Music)
Exit (Tangerine Dream)
Exile on Main Street (The Rolling Stones)
Ready to Die (The Notorious B.I.G.)

Part of that's what is freshest to me, though (Avalon, Exit, and Catholic Boy are relatively recent discoveries for me; whereas I've worn familiar favorites like Bringing It All Back Home or A Hard Day's Night to the bone). Definitely don't want to miss out on the Dylan, Beatles, Zeppelin, etc if you haven't heard them yet.

Mike said...

I know a few really huge hip-hop heads who flat out don't like PE and/or refuse to listen to them. Chuck D isn't the greatest lyricist of all time and sometimes his lyrics just don't make any damn sense but I've always really loved the energy he brings to the table. If you didn't like Nation of Millions maybe check out Fear of a Black Planet. Some say it's even better than Millions.

Life After Death is a bit uneven but in all honesty it is a VERY good follow up to Ready to Die since Biggie made sure to keep both camps happy- mainstream (Mo Money Mo Problems, my favorite Biggie song period, Hypnotize, I Love the Dough) and street (Kick in the Door, Ten Crack Commandments, Notorious Thugs). All of these songs are top notch in my opinion, and had the album been cut to one disc with all the best songs it might even surpassed Ready to Die in terms of quality.

I am very narrow-minded when it comes to music. The closest thing to diversity on my iPod are a few film score albums and The End by The Doors. I would love to see a top 100 album list from you. Your film list has already led me to many new discoveries (I have seen your number one movie and enjoyed it, it was also my first Godard, not sure if I would have gotten into his films if it wasn't for this one).

Joel Bocko said...

Really glad my film list served as a good guide for you - thanks! I'm not as well-grounded in music, partly because there's so much more out there than with movies (with more of a divide between different eras and genres). Partly because the period when I really fell in love with rock music only lasted for a couple years, tips, and since then my explorations have been pretty scattershot. As I mentioned with Ice Cube, there are a lot of artists whom I have only 1 or 2 albums of, and probably not even the most famous ones. But a top 100 list would be fun and I may pursue it. There will probably be some more of these Album Playlists to come too though at the moment I'm taking a break. If you're mostly big on hip-hop, both Massive Attack and Portishead might be good ways to branch out. Both have very strong hip-hoppy acoustics but with a more mellow, hypnotic vibe and singers vs. rappers (at least the albums I have).