10 Greatest CDs of All-Time

Ok, here for you consideration and then acceptance are the 10 greatest CDs (albums for you old foggies) of all-time, at least that I’ve heard, in reverse order. If you asked me tomorrow, I’d probably rearrange it or trade in a few others, here’s what I’ve got today. In my opinion Greatest Hits compilations don’t count because that’s cheating, cramming all your best songs together into one CD.

10. Welcome Interstate Managers – Fountains of Wayne: Excellent song-writing throughout. Pop-rock at its finest. A variety of memorable gems and great for singing along to.

9. Nothing’s Shocking – Jane’s Addiction: This CD hit me like a punch in the face. A punch I deserved. A punch I savored. Fury crossed with powerful, crunchy guitars overlaid with Perry Ferrell’s semi-crazy, evil/childlike banshee cries.

8. Moving Pictures – Rush: While Rush has almost become a punchline, there’s no denying the sonic power and precision of this CD. While the band is well known for Geddy Lee’s shrill soaring voice and Neil Peart’s flashy rhythms, Alex Lifeson truly shines on this CD with brilliant guitar work, especially on “Spirit of Radio.” I’m embarrassed to say the crescendo of that song still gives me goosebumps.

7. Document – R.E.M.- Thoroughly creative, fun, thoughtful and varied CD of a great band in its prime.

6. Purple Rain – Prince and the Revolution: Prince is a weird dude, and I haven’t liked much he’s done since this, but this is one of the most creative and yet catchy pop CDs ever made. And the little guy jammed on the guitar too.

5.Across the Borderline – Willie Nelson: Most underrated Willie CD because it came far after his supposed glory years. Fact is, Willie continues to crank out greatness, including the bewitching Teatro. But this collection of collaborations and remakes is my favorite of numerous Willie classics.

4. Synchronicity – The Police: The final CD of a unique, smart and extremely talented band. Apparently their varied musical passions pulled the band apart. But with this CD they perfectly melded their eclectic and eccentric sound into haunting, unforgettable rock.

3. X&Y – Coldplay: I used to hate Coldplay, or at least the idea of it. You could say this CD changed my mind. (Vida La Vida, by the way, almost made me reconsider.)

2. The Song Remains the Same – Led Zeppelin: Jimmy Page spills out his genius over two CDs of mind-blowing riffs, while Robert Plant summons the gods. Greatest live performance ever by anyone.

1. The Joshua Tree-U2: Not debatable. The greatest of many masterpieces from the greatest band ever. Majestic, rustic, organic, beautiful, primitive.

Honorable Mentions: Sheryl Crow-Sheryl Crow, numerous other u2 CDs like (Unforgettable Fire, Acthung Baby, Rattle and Hum and All That You Count Leave Behind), Loretta Lynn-Van Lear Rose, Pink Floyd-Wish You Were Here, Moby-Play, Junior Brown-Semi Crazy, The Sugarcubes-Life’s Too Good, Led Zeppelin-Houses of the Holy, and many others I’m sure I’ll think of later!

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~ by jonwbecker on May 17, 2009.

6 Responses to “10 Greatest CDs of All-Time”

  1. Excellent list! I have 7 of the 10 (all except “Purple Rain”, “Across the Borderline”, and “Nothing’s Shocking”). I definitely need more Prince. I only have 3 MP3s of his and no excuse for it.

    Also ‘hear, hear’ to U2’s “Joshua Tree”! It was the first album I added to my “Must Own Album” list (http://msotd.wordpress.com/must-own-albums/). “X&Y” is to be added sometime soon too (and I totally agree, “Vida La Vida” is not nearly so good). “Synchronicity” is also a favorite of mine.

  2. have you ever heard the rumour about ACHTUNG BABY?It is a well known fact herei n ireland that they didnt write it in the first place.

    • Haven’t heard that one. Not sure I believe it because it sounds so distinctively U2. If someone else could write something that good, they should do it themselves and become rich and famous like U2. Unless Coldplay wrote it 😉

  3. Jon, I knew you drank the U2 koolaid, but to rank them number 1? Oh, the agony.

    • It was them or The Wiggles. I still have a hard time forgiving U2 for having someone in their band named The Edge.

  4. “The Spirit of Radio” was actually on Rush’s Permanent Waves album, another great album. I stand corrected by my friend Brad, another Rush fan. Still Moving Pictures is my favorite Rush CD. Not a bad song in the set.

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