I know, you're all shocked that this isn't a wheat-related post. Sorry. I have to mix it up with boring posts every once in awhile.
Here I am writing about music, which I have done before, but I think it's dangerous territory. It's pretty hard to convey how you feel about a piece of music even though it may be something that you love and want to share with people. Getting people to spend three minutes to listen to something is even harder. And then you're really hit and miss because everyone has such different tastes that most of the time they're not really going to be impressed with something what you're sharing anyway.
Despite how discouraging that is, there is one aspect of music that I want to talk about: the album. How do you feel about albums? Because I have had a rocky past with them.
I really hated spending money on albums in high school and getting home and hating 80% of what was on there. Back then, there wasn't iTunes to preview songs ahead of time, although I did use Amazon from time to time which only had 5 or 6 songs to preview. And sometimes 30 seconds is not enough, right? When iTunes finally did come into my life, it was heaven! 99 cents and I could just get the one dang song that I wanted and I stopped wasting money on albums that ended up being 3 hits and 9 duds. Suddenly my music library flowered into a stellar collection whose "shuffle" setting could only be marred by those unfortunate album songs that I bought in high school.
So, basically, I'm not a fan of albums. I've heard cases made FOR them, and I can understand how artists are exploring different things musically and artistically and they're putting everything out there for you and sort of have a specific direction and purpose to the whole arc of an album. My response is: it doesn't really matter, I will still think it was a waste of money if I don't like it (Squirrel Nut Zippers' Perennial Favorites, I'm looking at you).
Having said all this, there are a few albums out there, a few golden tickets where I love most if not all of the songs, albums that I'm happy to pay full price for, and I wanted to list my favorites here. Not just so I have a handy place to remember them, but also because I usually relinquish musical selections to what I think other people will like, and as a result I don't think that people really know what I like.
I have to add a disclaimer that I'm not going to put any Beatles albums on here, because they are in a whole class of their own and I don't want to hurt any of my other albums' feelings. So here are my top 7 favorite albums:
This album is dark and gritty and sexy and I love it. I really have to be in the mood for it but even when I'm not I still have to admit that this is cool stuff.
I know this isn't topping any "most awesome albums of all time" lists, but I still like almost every single song and that's something not every album can say.
Love, love this album. Fun, sexy, and SO much style. Flying around on synchronized treadmills was just the beginning, these guys have serious chops.
Happy Place video from a few years ago, and a few of the songs give me nearly out-of-body experiences. Haunting, beautiful, joyful, melancholy, etc, etc. This album packs so much in and it's all good. Well done.
I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.
So tell me what you think about albums? Have you ever bought one that was one great song and the rest were duds? Or do you like the variety and artistry of a complete album? What are your favorite albums?