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Where is that pop euphoria: Album Edition

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  • Where is that pop euphoria: Album Edition

    With the great pop song topic, it's worth considering the all time great pop albums.

    Let's say "Pet Sounds" is the undisputed* heavyweight champ for complete album brilliance.

    Others?

    Todd Rundgren "Something/Anything", "Hermit of Mink Hollow"

    Squeeze "Argybargy"

    "The Cars"

    Nick Lowe "Pure Pop for Now People" (aka "Jesus of Cool"), "Labor of Lust"

    "Marshall Crenshaw", produced by Richard Gotteher who great run in the late 70s-early 80s (the first 2 Blondie albums, The Go-Go's debut, Joan Armatrading "Me Myself I")

    Fountain of Wayne "Utopia Parkway" and "Welcome Interstate Managers"


    Is it odd that much of what we considered "New Wave" 25-30 years ago was really good pop with an attitude?


    * well, anything is disputable on the web

  • #2
    Elvis Costello's My Aim Is True

    I was in pop heaven the day I first heard that album. But why do the angels want to wear his red shoes? Every song has multiple hooks that kill.

    Carol King's Tapestry

    Just such solid song craft from the heart rivaling Bacharach and David for pure pop craft genius.

    Elton John's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

    Elton could absolutely make a climatic hook soar into the realms of euphoria. "Harmony and me... we're pretty good company. Lookin' for an island on our boat upon the sea"

    Simon and Garfunkel's Bridge Over Troubled Water

    Simon is a god.

    Crowded House - Crowded House and Woodface

    Neil Finn has the ability to turn pop euphoria into something earthy and spiritual. Deep and old and poppy all at once. One of a kind.

    I'll add Squeeze's East Side Story

    Too many great tunes to dismiss, though Argybargy is their masterpiece for sure.

    Stevie Wonder's Talking Book

    Funky and yet can grab you by the pop heart strings in a big way. Groundbreaking.
    __________
    Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
    Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
    Jesus

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    • #3
      Oh yeah!!!!


      10CC's Deceptive Bends

      People in love do funny things
      Walk under buses and burn their wings
      People like us do nothing right
      Talk to the ceiling into the night
      __________
      Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
      Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
      Jesus

      Comment


      • #4
        TS-Stay Hungry
        Billy Joel-The Stranger
        Aldo Nova (1st)
        RIP: Nite Owl Jazz

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        • #5
          I used to love that 1979 A&M sampler album called NO WAVE.... anyone remember that? My LP was in clear aqua-colored vinyl.

          I also had this 2-disc set of British pop, just pre-Beatlemania.... it subtended the British chart hits between the years of approximately 1958--1963. Wish I could remember the name of the album. I loved all those tunes, still do. It was basically your British recordmakers taking the American pop and rock sounds and putting their unique spin on them--- as the Brits have always done so well.

          I even owned a tremendous 3-disc collection from RCA called TURN BACK THE HANDS OF TIME. It was a various artists collection of adult pop hits--- definitely not Rock hits--- of the 1950's. It was an important listen for me because it bridged the gap between my grandfather's era and that of my parents. It contained gems by Kay Starr, Jaye P. Morgan, Kitty Kallen, Perry Como, The Ames Brothers, Paul Anka, you get the picture. Those songs showed me the importance and the beauty of a fine arrangement.

          The AMERICAN GRAFFITTI OST was very formative for me too.... In 1973, all those R&B and rock 'n' roll songs were brand-new to me, 'cause by then the radios had stopped playing those numbers.

          But do "Various Artists" compilations count here?

          I second BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER. Roy Halee got some amazing sounds. That shrill violin sound at the end of the album-- the title track--- still leaves me breathless. I now understand that this song was about a junkie getting his smack fix.... How taboo that was in 1969... not so much today...

          I thought ABC's LEXICON OF LOVE was just a pop masterpiece. I even got to tell 'em so, which was a big thrill for me at age 19.

          I even thought SOFT CELL's NON-STOP EROTIC CABARET was pretty special from beginning to end.

          I lo-o-oved Alice Cooper's WELCOME TO MY NIGHTMARE back in the day. Bob Ezrin et.al. It still sounds great.

          In recent years, Bacharach/Costello's collaborative album PAINTED FROM MEMORY is just a great, great timeless masterpiece. A bit of a downer maybe... but that's like saying "Macbeth" is a downer.

          I sure enjoyed Joe Jackson's LOOK SHARP! LP.

          Blondie PARALLEL LINES was just pop perfection to me. Those songs also still sound great.

          I sure loved all the Asher/Massenburg albums of Linda Ronstadt in the 1970's....

          Boz Scaggs's SILK DEGREES just blew me away in 1976.

          I loved Gino Vannelli's STORM AT SUNUP LP.
          Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


          Friend me on FACEBOOK!

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          • #6
            Heart -- Dog and Butterfly
            Fleetwood Mac -- Rumours
            Frampton Comes Alive
            Joe Jackson -- I'm the Man
            Alice Cooper -- School's Out
            Madonna -- Like a Virgin (big Nile Rogers fan)
            Quincy Jones -- Back on the Block

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            • #7
              Cyndi Lauper - She's So Unusual
              Originally Posted by Shane Marley


              I'm Richard Simmons' pool boy.

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              • #8

                Elton John's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

                Elton could absolutely make a climatic hook soar into the realms of euphoria. "Harmony and me... we're pretty good company. Lookin' for an island on our boat upon the sea"



                I just heard that full album for the first time a few weeks and it totally changed my perception of Elton John (and I guess present-day pop music too). That's an unbelievable record.... and Harmony is an awesome song
                weebz wrote:God appeared to me in a dream and said "Thou shalt post on Guitar Jam"

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                • #9
                  THE BEE GEES - The Bee Gees 1st or Cucumber Castle
                  ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA - Out Of The Blue or A New World Record
                  BADFINGER - Straight Up or Ass
                  THE ASSOCIATION - And Then.....
                  THE ZOMBIES - The Zombies
                  THE MONKEES - Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, and Jones
                  SWEET - Desolation Boulevard

                  I thought ABC's LEXICON OF LOVE was just a pop masterpiece. I even got to tell 'em so, which was a big thrill for me at age 19.


                  WOW! I forgot about that one.."How To Be A Zillionaire" was good too but Trevor Horn's production of "Lexicon" is fabulous..
                  "Many (bands)have retooled with that marketing concept in mind without understanding that the party experience is supposed to be for the audience and NOT themselves" - wheresgrant3

                  Still HCBF's reigning "Sexiest Forumite"....Dont hate me because Im beautiful

                  DRF On MySpace

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                  • #10


                    THE ASSOCIATION - And Then.....


                    An ASSOCIATION fan! Aw, after me own heart. "Along Comes Mary" is one of the best pop singles ever made, period. Ever stopped to listen closely to all that's "going on" in that record? Wow-ee-wow!
                    Every paint-stroke takes you farther and farther away from your initial concept. And you have to be thankful for that. Wayne Thiebaud


                    Friend me on FACEBOOK!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I even owned a tremendous 3-disc collection from RCA called TURN BACK THE HANDS OF TIME. It was a various artists collection of adult pop hits--- definitely not Rock hits--- of the 1950's. It was an important listen for me because it bridged the gap between my grandfather's era and that of my parents. It contained gems by Kay Starr, Jaye P. Morgan, Kitty Kallen, Perry Como, The Ames Brothers, Paul Anka, you get the picture. Those songs showed me the importance and the beauty of a fine arrangement.

                      Small world. A couple of months ago a met a fellow by the name of Billy Mure. Billy had some old records that he wanted me to "fix" for him and transfer to cd. One of the records was by an artist by the name of Billy Ekstein and Billy (Mure) had written the song. I had heard of Ekstein over the years but wasn't all that familiar with him so I started to quiz Billy (Mure this is getting confusing) about other things that he worked on in the past. As it turns out, he had worked with most of the artists that you mention above. He played guitar on many of their hits and did the arrangements on still more of them. Billy is STILL playing (with HIS band) at a club here every Sunday evening and at other clubs another couple of nights when he gets the bookings. He is now 91 years old (turns 92 next month) and still having a great time. I hope to work with him on an album that he is puting together of kids songs for his grandchildren. That is what got me back into this stuff after being out of recording since the analog days. Now I have to learn Cubase.
                      My new webpage: http://www.richardkingmedia.com/ Take a look and let me know what you think.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        THE BEE GEES - The Bee Gees 1st or Cucumber Castle
                        ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA - Out Of The Blue or A New World Record
                        BADFINGER - Straight Up or Ass
                        THE ASSOCIATION - And Then.....
                        THE ZOMBIES - The Zombies
                        THE MONKEES - Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, and Jones
                        SWEET - Desolation Boulevard


                        WOW! I forgot about that one.."How To Be A Zillionaire" was good too but Trevor Horn's production of "Lexicon" is fabulous..


                        Nice list! ELO kills me. Listen to the latest ELO album from a couple years back. It's really just Jeff Lynne and Ringo mostly. It is a really great half an album. It's good all the way through, but the first half... IS GREAT.
                        __________
                        Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
                        Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
                        Jesus

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman by John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman
                          Wheatstraw Suite by the Dillards
                          In the Wee Small Hours by Frank Sinatra
                          Lilly & Maria by Lilly & Maria
                          Clear Spot by Captain Beefheart
                          Trout Mask Replica by Captain Beefheart
                          Songs of Leonard Cohen by Leonard Cohen
                          Records Are Like Life by Andy Pratt
                          Andy Pratt by Andy Pratt
                          Surrealistic Pillow by Jefferson Airplane
                          After Bathing at Baxter's by Jefferson Airplane
                          Love Songs by Nat King Cole
                          Pandemonium Shadow Show by Nilsson
                          James Taylor by James Taylor
                          Sweetheart of the Rodeo by the Byrds
                          The Notorious Byrd Brothers by the Byrds
                          The Birth of Cool by Miles Davis
                          Kind of Blue by Miles Davis
                          Bitches Brew by Miles Davis
                          Da Capo by Love
                          Forever Changes by Love
                          Talking Heads 77 by Talking Heads
                          Remain in Light by Talking Heads
                          My Life in the Bush of Ghosts by David Byrne and Brian Eno
                          Another Green World by Brian Eno
                          Here Come the Warm Jets by Brian Eno
                          Taking Tiger Mountain by Brian Eno
                          El Dorado by Electric Light Orchestra
                          London Calling by the Clash
                          Real Life by Magazine
                          Fearless by Family
                          In Rainbows by Radiohead

                          More than a few albums on other folks' lists would have made it to mine, too, foremost among them, My Aim is True, Pet Sounds, Parallel Lines. (I threw that last one on my list above, you know, kinda pro forma... since I can't help but feel it's contributed to the zeitgeist that perhaps helped foster this topic. I know I'm certainly enjoying it and a lot of folks are excited about it.)

                          I'm just gonna cork this, now, 'cause, fueled by coffee and a desire to escape actual work, I could probably do this all day long. (And since I finally made peace with Yahoo and subscribed to their Yahoo Music Unlimited that replaced the old Music Match On Demand subscription service, I can follow through on a lot of it. Not all maybe. But it feels good to have a "couple million" songs within reach again. And only about 1.2 million seem to be duplicates and alt versions. Seriously, though, it's pretty good. If I'd known, I would have switched over quite a while ago. Call me resistant to change. Yeah, you could call me that. )
                          .

                          music and social links | recent listening

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                          • #14
                            I'm sure I'll get flamed for being so cliche but I think Sgt. Pepper's beats out all of the above. There aren't many albums that take you so far in so short a time, and just feel so satisfying to listen to.

                            -We have really happy songs (With a little help from my friends, Getting Better, Lovely Rita)
                            -Trippy songs (lucy in the sky w/diamonds)
                            -really sad songs (she's leaving home)
                            -songs about mortality and spiritual awareness (within you without you, when i'm sixty-four)
                            -and an epic closer that combines all of these things into one track (a day in the life)

                            and to top it off, every song sounds totally different and is a musical masterpiece on its own (even without the lyrics) that ranges in styles from classical to present day. just think of the sheer variety of instruments on that album... beautiful vocal harmony... etc

                            yea... so maybe im just a fanboy... but whatever
                            weebz wrote:God appeared to me in a dream and said "Thou shalt post on Guitar Jam"

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                            • #15
                              John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman by John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman


                              Maybe the all-time greatest jazz vocal album. Certainly my absolute favorite. 32 perfect minutes of music.

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