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A list that Des may or may not enjoy or agree with entirely.

 
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Foleyite



Joined: 02 Mar 2007
Posts: 3389
Location: Bitters, California

PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 2:42 am    Post subject: A list that Des may or may not enjoy or agree with entirely. Reply with quote

http://pitchfork.com/features/lists-and-guides/10045-the-50-best-britpop-albums/

Oasis gets short shrift these days, but still ranked highly. I suppose The Bends falls sort of, technically, somewhat under the Britpop umbrella but Radiohead were always a little off to the side of the Britpop wave; which now seems like an ahead-of-the-curve move, although they were just one of plenty of acts that hated the pigeonholing and press' portrayal of Britpop.

Mostly, this list just reminded me of some bands/albums/songs I haven't listened to in a good while.

Bluetones, My Life Story, Dodgy (and some others I'll think of later) did not make the cut.
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HelloDes



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have thirty-one of those albums.

The best Britpop album is ranked #40 by Pitchfork. The second-best (probably) is ranked #24. A few of the best albums aren't there at all. Pulp did not record 3 of the top 11 Britpop albums ever-- they probably don't have any-- but they're right in Pitchfork's aesthetic wheelhouse so that's how that happened.

The list suffers from the typical "tick the box" mentality, to make sure that each reader sees their champion represented.

Some of these acts had, says me, trouble sustaining an entire album even as they did great songs: e.g. Pulp, La's, Verve, Ash, Charlatans. (Of course, so did My Life Story and the Bluetones.)

Several of the fifty album picks are akin to the old Elvis Presley albums, with one or two singles and ten filler songs. Some of those are ranked #3, #8 and #10, and perhaps #1.

Not on the list at all are several albums that should be somewhere in the #10 to #25 range:
Blur-- The Great Escape
Dodgy-- Free Peace Sweet
Dodgy-- Homegrown
Super Furry Animals-- Mwng
Super Furry Animals-- Guerrilla
Boo Radleys-- Wake Up!
Suede-- Coming Up

So, yeah.
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Foleyite



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HelloDes wrote:
I have thirty-one of those albums.

The best Britpop album is ranked #40 by Pitchfork.


It's funny you say this because I would disagree..

....and YET - I've been on a kick of listening to stuff from this list since I read it, and the only album I've listened to all the way through is The Boo Radleys' Giant Steps.

The list is definitely more of a "who captured the zeitgeist" roll call list than a list of the best albums. It's weird to have a Britpop list with 3 Blur albums on it, and have The Great Escape not be one of them.

The Verve's Urban Hymns feels like a post-Britpop album, much in the same way that Blur's self-titled, This is Hardcore, or OK Computer does. It's a silly catch-all phrase and like WWE's "Attitude Era", people disagree on the beginning and end points. But by 1997, Britpop and most of its major players had kinda crashed and/or burned or moved on.
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HelloDes



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Foleyite wrote:
The list is definitely more of a "who captured the zeitgeist" roll call list than a list of the best albums.


Yeah, that's apparent. The writeups of the albums emphasize cultural buzz or real-life band storylines wherever possible.


Foleyite wrote:
It's a silly catch-all phrase and like WWE's "Attitude Era", people disagree on the beginning and end points. But by 1997, Britpop and most of its major players had kinda crashed and/or burned or moved on.


The shorter an official timeline gets, the sillier a "Fifty Best" concept gets. There weren't 50 great Britpop albums, which makes Pitchfork's omissions much, much stupider.

Anyway, music lists like this one are valuable not as smug reinforcement or "argument starters" for my own biases, but as shopping lists. I love when I see some random guy's Top Ten list and I already think four of his picks are terrific but don't know three of them. That's three albums (movies, books, etc) that I make a note to check out.

I've got the first album by Sleeper, a band which was among that big mush of interchangeable, unremarkable Britpop acts: Echobelly, Catatonia, Marion, Cast, Embrace, Shed Seven, Ocean Colour Scene, Supernaturals, etc... sadly, I live in America and thus I had to buy some of those wearisome albums to find that out. Within the Britpop pantheon, all of these bands were like Herman's Hermits during the 1960s British Invasion.

Okay, that's going too far. Herman's Hermits had some good songs.

So, Pitchfork's Top 50 list included Sleeper's SECOND album, but NOT the first. So maybe I just picked wrong. So I just gave it a whirl on YouTube. So now that list has personally harmed me. Sleep with one eye open, list. You made a bad enemy.
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HelloDes



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 29, 2017 5:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some Village Voice Pazz & Jop stuff, from the self-appointed "Dean of Music Critics," the very self-satisfied (but undeniably pithy) Robert Christgau.

These are respective album ratings from some of his annual "best of" ballots:

1971:
#1-- "Joy of Cooking" by Joy of Cooking
#17-- "Sticky Fingers" by the Rolling Stones
Not on Top 30 list-- "Led Zeppelin IV" by Led Zeppelin; "Tapestry" by Carole King; "What's Going On" by Marvin Gaye; "Maggot Brain" by Funkadelic

1975:
#4-- "Got No Bread, No Milk, No Money, But We Sure Got a Lot of Love" by James Talley
#36-- "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd

1976:
#1-- "Have Moicy!" by Michael Hurley and the Unholy Modal Rounders
Not on Top 30 list-- "Boston" by Boston

1977:
#3-- "Dancer with Bruised Knees" by Kate & Anna McGarrigle
#26-- "Low" by David Bowie
Not on Top 30 list-- "My Aim is True" by Elvis Costello; "Saturday Night Fever" soundtrack
(also "The Clash" but that was import-only in 1977)

1978:
#8-- "Night People" by Lee Dorsey
Not on Top 30 list: "The Cars" by the Cars; "Darkness on the Edge of Town" by Bruce Springsteen

1979:
#3-- "Dub Housing" by Pere Ubu
#26-- "Off the Wall" by Michael Jackson
Not on Top 40 list-- "The Wall" by Pink Floyd; "Singles Going Steady" by the Buzzcocks; "Breakfast in America" by Supertramp

1980:
#4-- "Sector 27" by Tom Robinson
#22-- "Pretenders" by the Pretenders
Not on Top 40 list: "Back in Black" by AC/DC

You could do this with any of the voters' ballots, because they only get to vote for 10 albums. But Christgau goes past his ballot to list his Top 30, Top 40, and as the years go on, his Top 70. So ha ha to retroactive smugness.
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