50 Albums you must hear before you buy a house 2.0 (8): 15-11

Hohoho, no worries if you’re still looking for some christmas presents for those who are about to buy a house, as albumblog’s three music professors have selected another fine assortment of all-time favorite records. Time for those albums that just miss out on a top ten spot, with of course some big names in rock music’s history:


11. The Beatles – Abbey Road (1969)
12. The Band – Music from Big Pink (1968)
13. Jefferson Airplane – Surrealistic Pillow (1967)
14. Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here (1975)
15. The Beach Boys – Pet Sounds (1966)


11. (14) Brian Wilson – SMiLE (2004)
12. (*)   Jethro Tull – Aqualung (1971)
13. (5)   Moody Blues – In Search of the Lost Chord (1968)
14. (21) Radiohead – Kid A (2000)
15. (4)   The Band – The Band (1969)


11. (22) Radiohead – In Rainbows (2007)
12. (5)   Guided By Voices – Alien Lanes (1995)
13. (14) Electric Light Orchestra – Out of the Blue (1977)
14. (23) Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Déjà-Vu (1970)
15. (31) The Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967)

Both Radiohead’s Kid A and In Rainbows gain some places in GvZ’s and RKH’s lists, while Sgt. Pepper’s and Aqualung enter the top 15 out of the blue (ha!). Some new albums may also be expected in the top 10 this year, as In Search of the Lost Chord, The Band and Alien Lanes have lost ground. Meanwhile DOK finally found his box with sixties records, presenting a splendid christmas quartet from 1966 to 1969. Wish You Were Here is the seventh time Pink Floyd comes around, making it the runner-up  if we have a look at the top bands, just behind Radiohead and The Beatles (8, solo albums not included). No doubt we’ll meet them again.

50 Albums you must hear before you buy a house 2.0 (5): 30-26

Concluding the bottom half of our lists this week with a lot of undisputed classics. Of course there’s The Dark Side of the Moon, classic among classics, appearing in the lists of both DOK and GvZ after already having conquered a spot in RKH’s selection (#38). Moreover, GvZ finally put his sixties fetish aside, presenting his first eighties and nineties albums and a brand new entry by The Rolling Stones.


26. Pink Floyd – The Dark Side of the Moon (1973)
27. Blind Faith – Blind Faith (1969)
28. Santana – Abraxas (1970)
29. John Lennon – Plastic Ono Band (1970)
30. Talking Heads – Remain in Light (1980)


26. (36)  Talking Heads – Remain in Light (1980)
27. (*)    Rolling Stones – Sticky Fingers (1971)
28. (20)  Pink Floyd –  The Dark Side of the Moon (1973)
29. (39)  Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Déjà Vu (1970)
30. (34)  Radiohead – OK Computer (1997)


26. (39)  Panda Bear – Person Pitch (2007)
27. (19)  The Beach Boys – Pet Sounds (1966)
28. (*)    Neil Young – After The Gold Rush (1970)
29. (*)    Cream – Disraeli Gears (1967)
30. (*)    Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run (1975)

RKH also welcomes a bunch of new albums, including the first albums of Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen that come around this year. Thanks to a total of eight albums this week, the seventies are the leading decade with half the albums behind us now (23/75, equally distributed among the three professors).

50 Albums you must hear before you buy a house (7): 20-16

We continue with our list today, having another ten splendid albums to fill your cold winter evenings with. Some big all-time classics are delivered by mister Hofmeijer while mister van Zwanendonk gives you the opportunity to complete your prog collection further.


16. Van Morrison – Astral Weeks (1968)
17. The Moody Blues – In Search of the Lost Chord (1968)
18. Eagles – Hotel California (1976)
19. The Beach Boys – Pet Sounds (1966)
20. Prince – Purple Rain (1984)


16. Electric Light Orchestra – Out of the Blue (1977)
17. Pink Floyd – Atom Heart Mother (1970)
18. King Crimson – In the Court of the Crimson King (1969)
19. The Move – Shazam (1970)
20. Pink Floyd – Dark Side of the Moon (1973)

Hofmeijer starts with a little fetish on #20, after which two absolute Westcoast classics follow, Pet Sounds and Hotel California respectively. Both albums go together well with eating a Greek souflaki, or even better with thinking about eating a souflaki while you’re sitting in a hot van. The list is topped by two 1968 classics, with an absolute masterpiece at #17 and an album we found earlier in the other list at #41.

The only common album in van Zwanendonk’s part also appeared on #41 in the opposite list, more precisely Dark Side of the Moon. Other absolute prog classics can be found on 17 and 18, with Floyd’s heavily orchestrated Atom Heart Mother and the epic In the Court of the Crimson King. Also from 1970: the magnificent second album from The Move, one of the greatest British sixties bands that was never successful overseas. These guys started covering songs from The Byrds, and while the typical sixties pop sound still can be heard on this album, the band is already moving towards something different with longer and more complex compositions. That something different would end up to be Electric Light Orchestra, after Jeff Lynne joined the band. Their ultimate pop explosion of happiness can be found on #16.

“I’m looking through you, where did you go?”: Rubber Soul (The Beatles)

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Year: 1965

Genre: Rock

Preceded by: Help! (1965)

Followed by: Revolver (1966)

Related to: Bob Dylan – Highway 61 Revisited, The Byrds – Mr. Tambourine Man



We’re still in the middle of our ‘basics’ and here’s our second Beatles album already. This is explicable by the fact that their oeuvre is essential for exploring rock history. And the fact that I love them, obviously. I talked about their last album earlier, when they had developed as a mature band already, exploring their limits as talented musicians. We’ll now return to the point where they were ‘growing up’, to Rubber Soul. The announcement of what would become a legendary sequence of albums from the world’s biggest band.

It was 1965 and the world had just experienced ‘Beatlemania’, a sort of mass hysteria around a band that dominated the charts with one hit single after another and was touring all over the world. With Rubber Soul, this band decided to record an album in a period without touring. This resulted in a number of technical innovations which can be found throughout the album, going beyond the traditional instruments of a rock band. Besides, The Beatles were heavily influenced back then by American acts like Bob Dylan (lyrically, moving from positive love stories to more abstract notions of love and even negative portrayals) and The Byrds (musically, absorbing elements of folk rock).

Let’s just run over this gem. The album is opened by McCartney’s ‘Drive My Car’, an awesome upbeat track on which McCartney actually plays the guitar solo and Harrison the bass part. It’s followed by ‘Norwegian Wood’, a pioneer song concerning the introduction of non-Western instruments in a pop song, as Harrison plays the sitar on this one. His interest in this instrument was stimulated by Harrison’s friend David Crosby, who was a big fan of Indian music. ‘You Won’t See Me’ was the Beatles first experiment with a song lasting longer than three minutes and ‘Nowhere Man’ was among the first songs that were unrelated to romance or love whatsoever, doors that were opened by Dylan on Highway 61 Revisited.

What follows are the two really rocking tracks from the album: ‘Think For Yourself’ and ‘The Word’, according to the legend the first song Lennon and McCartney wrote after they had smoked pot. Side one of the original LP is closed by ‘Michelle’, an oh so typical poppy love song of McCartney.

Side two starts with ‘What Goes On’ and ‘Girl’ (Lennon’s own version of Dylan’s ‘Just Like A Woman’?), after which a real musical orgasm starts. ‘I’m Looking Through You’ is one of my personal McCartney favorites and is followed by an all-time Beatles favorite: ‘In My Life’. This is pure beauty in it’s simplest form, including an awesome baroque piano bridge in the middle of the song. ‘Wait’ was initially recorded for their previous album Help!, but was released on this one because they were one song short with the release deadline looming.

Another personal favorite is Harrison’s ‘If I Needed Someone’. You can very clearly hear the musical friendship between Crosby and Harrison on this song: it could have been released on a Byrds-album without anyone noticing. Besides, it’ s the only song from Harrison The Beatles ever played live. The final track is ‘Run For Your Life’: a slight preview of what Lennon was about to write during his solo career with ‘Jealous Guy’. Maybe he just wanted to write a remake because of the fact that this song was one of his least favorite Beatles songs.

Certainly check out this one if you liked Abbey Road, and also if you didn’t: Rubber Soul shows us The Beatles as a developing band, but still in a pure form. Maybe the album will inspire you to great things, as it did to Brian Wilson as he started to record Pet Sounds after hearing Rubber Soul for the first time.

Top Tracks:
1. In My Life
2. If I Needed Someone
3. Drive My Car