- NEUTRAL MILK HOTEL:IN THE AEROPLANE OVER THE SEA: 1998: I had heard about this album but had never heard it. The band dissolved 20 years ago after only two albums. This is the most highly acclaimed of the two. The album was largely inspired by the Anne Frank story. Some have cited this album as one of the greatest of all times. I am not hearing that on first listen but this album is complex- more listening required to even assign it a grade let along understand it.
- JOE SMITH: INTROSPECT: 1968: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: A great under the radar debut album. The key is the great songwriting- Games People Play was a #12 hit but also Rose Garden, These Are Not My People, Birds Of A Feather, All My Hard Times, Redneck- outstanding- the debut would turn out to be South’s peak. Won a couple Grammy’s for Games People Play.
- R.E.M.: AUTOMATIC FOR THE PEOPLE: 1992: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Their 8th album and their peak both artistically and in popularity. Outside of Murmur my most listened to R.E.M. album. The album had six singles and sold 18 million copies world wide. The six singles- all good but none were big hits-Drive, Man On The Moon, The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite, Everybody Hurts, Nightswimming and Find The River. One of my favorite early 90’s albums.
- JOE SOUTH: DON’T IT MAKE YOU WANT TO GO HOME: 1969: 3 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Three Joe South classics on this- the title track, Walk A Mile In My Shoes, and Children. Not close to the unappreciated great debut album Introspect. At times it seems like he’s trying too hard.
- THE BEATLES: MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR: 1967: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The opening track- Magical Mystery Tour I rank as 10th out of the 12 Beatles opening tracks.
- DON MCLEAN: AMERICAN PIE: 1971: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: American Pie was a #1 hit and Vincent- the great song about artist Vincent Van Gogh peaked at #12. The album went to #1 but overall a fine album one of my favorite singer-songwriter albums of the period. The album was dedicated to Buddy Holly. Its been fun over the past 48 years reading into the lyrics of the title track.
- JOHN FOGERTY: CENTERFIELD: 1985: 4 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Fogerty’s best and most popular solo album. Centerfield one of the greatest baseball songs ever. The Old Man Down The Road- a hit single is the one that got him sued unsuccessfully for plagiarism himself. Other favorites Rock And Roll Girls, Big Train From Memphis and I Saw It On TV.
- LOW: DOUBLE NEGATIVE: 2018: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Listened to this album/group for the first time a week ago- one thing I find kind of humorous is 4 singles have been released from it. I am loving the sound of this album- but I can’t imagine any of this as a single. Part of a review at Stereogum sums it up pretty well ” It’s been just about three months since I first listened to Low’s new album Double Negative, and I’m still striving to make sense of it.” This is an album that you can’t listen to just once or twice. Interesting.