A few years ago, I hosted a blogfest on the best debut albums (you can check out my list and links to the other sites HERE.)
Rolling Stone has compiled their list of the 100 greatest debut albums of all time HERE, and I thought I would be interesting to contrast their list with the results of the blogfest.
Rolling Stone "discounted" the debut if the artist went on to greater success, and gave extra recognition to debuts where the success was never repeated. They skipped debuts from artists who had left well-known bands.
This explains why Greetings From Asbury Park did not make the top 25, but does not explain why Boston is not in the top ten.
As is the case with most Rolling Stone lists, it suffers from a bit of pandering and political correctness. So while their guidelines were not a bad idea, some of their choices (and the running order) are, in my opinion, missteps.
No question that The Beastie Boys belong on the list...but at number 1? While N.W.A. certainly belongs, some of the other rap choices surprise me. And where the heck is Todd Snider's debut (let alone Bob Dylan's)?
Another problem I have with the list is the notion that they gave extra recognition where the success of the debut album was not repeated, but have so many recent debuts on the list.
1. Beastie Boys “Licensed To Ill”
2. Ramones (S/T)
2. Ramones (S/T)
3. Jimi Hendrix Experience (S/T)
4. Guns N Roses “Appetite For Destruction”
5. The Velvet Underground “Andy Warhol”
6. N.W.A. “Straight Outta Compton”
7. Sex Pistols “Never Mind The Bollocks”
8. The Strokes “Is This It”
9. The Band “Music From Big Pink”
10. Patti Smith “Horses”
11. Nas (S/T)
15. Arcade Fire “Funeral”
16. The Cars (S/T)
17. The Beatles “Please Please Me”
18. R.E.M. “Murmur”
19. Kanye West “The College Dropout”
20. Joy Division “Unknown Pleasures”
21. Elvis Costello “My Aim Is True”
22. Violent Femmes (S/T)
23. The Notorious B-I-G “Ready To Die”
24. Vampire Weekend (S/T)
25. Pavement “Slanted And Enchanted”
Too many of these choices (Strokes, Nas, Jay-Z, Arcade Fire, Kanye West, Joy Division, Violent Femmes, Notorious BIG, Vampire Weekend, Pavement) are just the Rolling Stone editors trying to show how hip they are-I guess now that Spin ceased publication they feel like they're the new "cool" magazine.
How Get The Knack did not make the top 25 is beyond me, and I've already mentioned the Todd Snider debut. And Bob Dylan? Not to mention a certain Eddie Van Halen who changed the way electric guitar was played (sorry Hendrix fans-no one plays with their teeth, but everyone is a-tapping).
Sucking up to your young readers is one thing, but I would have liked to have seen a list more representative of debut albums that people actually purchased while they were debut albums, not after the band hit it big (or got killed by a rival gang member, making them a rap martyr).
More to come......
THE PRETENDERS-BRASS IN POCKET
THE BAND-UP ON CRIPPLE CREEK
BEASTIE BOYS-FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHT