There are times in life where you just have to be cruel to be kind. Even musical geniuses are capable of taking their eye off the ball, and how often have you given a supposed classic record a spin and wondered exactly what other people can hear that you can’t? . Now, I’m a true believer in the “no bad music” motto. Whatever moves you is great. Except for most hip hop of course….
Remember. I’m not saying these are BAD albums. Just overrated. There is a big difference.
Captain Beefheart And The Magic Band – Trout Mask Replica
First of all, let me just clarify two things: 1) I don’t dislike Captain Beefheart – Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller) is kind of an enjoyable album. And 2) I appreciate experimental music. But, for me, Trout Mask Replica is simply beyond comprehension. My disdain for this record grows every time it graces a list in the music press. I was looking through Rolling Stones 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. There it is, that silly trout-faced cover staring at me at number 56! Is it really better than Meet The Beatles (number 59) or Purple Rain (number 72) No chance. Trout Mask Replica is 28 tracks of rambling vocals, bagpipes, horns and guitars that sound like they should’ve been bagpipes. It’s unlistenable – everyone owns it (including me) but no one ever listens to it. Fact.
Patti Smith: “Horses”
Influential? Of course. The work of a genuine artist? Absolutely. Worthy of the slobbering attention it has got in best-of lists ever since? No.
Sure, it may have lit the fires of inspiration in the head of Michael Stipe, but so did the Banana Splits. Can you name any track on it apart from Gloria (a cover by the way)?
Doors: “LA Woman”
Morrison was in very bad shape when this album was being made, showing up for sessions totally wasted and not even speaking to the other band members most of the time, it was a miracle that this album got finished. But beside the title track, was it worth it? Chances are had Morrison lived, with the tension between the band members and his legal problems looming, this would have been the Doors’ last effort anyway. Not really a bad record at all. But they deserved a better swan song.
Yes: “TALES FROM TOPOGRAPHIC OCEANS”
Vastly different from most of Yes’ previous output; Rick Wakeman didn’t hate it for nothing. Close To The Edge’s songs were based on actual melodies – solid guitar riffs, cool repeating keyboard phrases, harmonious sequences that actually had a beginning and an end. Tales, in comparison, often end up sounding like random sonic collages, with the band carefully avoiding hooks and trying to reach the maximum level of deconstruction. Not that the actual tunes are atonal or highly dissonant; they do have some kind of flow to them, but it’s a forced, mechanical, artificial flow that hasn’t got any real life to it. No matter how much I listen to this stuff, NOTHING agrees to stick in my head
Sex pistols “Never Mind The Bullocks”
Okay, okay I guess it was needed at the time…but was it really? The Ramones were already doing this stuff better and if it’s lyrics you want with your punk, then The Clash did THAT better. What they did was cop an attitude, dress the part, and throw together some “songs” that were marketed toward pimply teenagers. Isn’t that what Britney Spears did? Just on another astral plane…
That’s it for now. Anything ever jump out at you as something you were “supposed” to like but just couldn’t?