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Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

So, another list. This one is really interesting, though, because it's the first one I've seen that covers both the nineties and the first half of the current decade, so one can see, how recent favourites compare to long-established classics. It was compiled by the staff of the music zine Music Underwater in July 2004. Typically for music zine lists, Radiohead is all over it.

http://www.musicunderwater.com/top_100_albums_since_1990.htm

1. My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
2. Radiohead - OK Computer
3. Radiohead - Kid A
4. Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
5. Pavement - Slanted and Enchanted
6. The Flaming Lips - The Sotf Bulletin
7. Guided by Voices - Bee Thousand
8. Nirvana - Nevermind
9. Pavement - Crooked Rain Crooked Rain
10. Weezer - Weezer (blue)
11. Modest Mouse - Moon and Antarctica
12. Nirvana - In Utero
13. Beck - Odelay
14. Blur - Parklife
15. Smashing Pumpkins - Siamese Dream
16. Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
17. Beastie Boys - Check Your Head
18. Radiohead - The Bends
19. Interpol - Turn on the Bright Lights
20. Guided by Voices - Alien Lanes
21. Elliott Smith - Either/Or
22. Blur - 13
23. The Microphones - The Glow Part 2
24. ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead - Source Tags and Codes
25. Built to Spill - There's Nothing Wrong with Love
26. Broken Social Scene - You Forgot It In People
27. Dismemberment Plan - Emergency and I
28. Sigur Ros - Agaetis Byrjun
29. The Wrens - The Meadowlands
30. Belle and Sebastian - If You're Feeling Sinister
31. Weezer - Pinkerton
32. Air - Moon Safari
33. Modest Mouse - Lonesome Crowded West
34. DJ Shadow - Endtroducing...
35. Guided by Voices - Under the Bushes Under the Stars
36. Yo La Tengo - I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One
37. Ben Folds Five - Whatever and Ever Amen
38. Bjork - Homogenic
39. Built to Spill - Perfect From Now On
40. Grandaddy - The Sophtware Slump
41. Ben Folds Five - Ben Folds Five
42. Godspeed You Black Emperor - Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
43. Spoon - Kill the Moonlight
44. Sonic Youth - Murray Street
45. Nas - Illmatic
46. Aphex Twin - The Richard D. James Album
47. R.E.M. - Automatic for the People
48. Jeff Buckley - Grace
49. Slint - Spiderland
50. Beastie Boys - Ill Communication
51. Built to Spill - Keep It Like a Secret
52. Radiohead - Amnesiac
53. A Tribe Called Quest - Low End Theory
54. Tom Waits - Bone Machine
55. Pixies - Trompe le Monde
56. The Breeders - Last Splash
57. PJ Harvey - Rid of Me
58. Spiritualized - Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space
59. Pixies - Bossanova
60. R.E.M. - New Adventures in Hi-Fi
61. Grandaddy - Under the Western Freeway
62. Mogwai - Young Team
63. Death Cab For Cutie - Something about Airplanes
64. Godspeed You Black Emperor - F#A#oo
65. Bonnie "Prince" Billy - I See a Darkness
66. The Appleseed Cast - Low Level Owl
67. The Shins - Shutes Too Narrow
68. The Wrens - Seacaucus
69. The Notwist - Neon Golden
70. The Breeders - Pod
71. Beck - Mellow Gold
72. Bjork - Post
73. Sufjan Stevens - Greeting from Michigan the Great Lake State
74. The Strokes - Isn't Anything
75. Mr Ward - Transfiguration of Vincent
76. The Strokes - Room on Fire
77. Pavement - Terror Twilight
78. Guided by Voices - Isolation Drills
79. The Magnetic Fields - 69 Love Songs
80. John Frusciante - Niandra LaDes And Usually Just A Tshirt
81. Sonic Youth - Dirty
82. Olivia Tremor Control - Black Foliage Animation Music Vol. 1
83. Silver Jews - American Water
84. Elliott Smith - XO
85. Fugazi - Red Medicine
86. Public Enemy - Fear Of A Black Planet
87. Ween - The Mollusk
88. They Might Be Giants - Flood
89. Boredoms - Super AE
90. Massive Attack - Mezzanine
91. Marcy Playground - Marcy Playground
92. Toadies - Rubberneck
93. The Jesus Lizard - Goat
94. Wilco - Summerteeth
95. Radiohead - Hail To The Thief
96. Pulp - Different Class
97. Bjork - Debut
98. Sonic Youth - Goo
99. Sunny Day Real Estate - Diary
100. Green Day - Dookie

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I think #74 is supposed to be IS THIS IT, not ISN'T ANYTHING. Also, it's "M. Ward", not "Mr.". "Hey, dude, Mr. Ward is my father -- I'm just 'M'."

Interesting list, although any list that ranks DIFFERENT CLASS below one-hit wonders like Toadies and Marcy Playground is a little suspect. But major props for ranking IN THE AEROPLANE OVER THE SEA so highly; anything that helps boost NMH's AM rank can be forgiven just about anything.

They sure love them some Guided by Voices, don't they?

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

You're right about the Strokes and M. Ward, Harold. My mistake, I must have been distracted. And you should be happy to know "In the Aeroplane..." is high on another list I found, which I will post soon. I agree it is a wonderful album, although a bit overrated by the indies (but grossly underrated by everybody else, of course).

Yes, Definitely a Hardcore Rock List...

the closest thing to, say, R&B is Beastie Boys, and they're an act that's embraced by modern rock, so no surprise to see it listed.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I'm curious, JR, do you know any modern RnB artists that would be worthy of inclusion on such a list? Because as far as I know mainstream RnB mostly sucks. Of course the same can be said about most mainstream rock. So, is there any "RnB underground" worth checking out or maybe some good artists that didn't make it big?

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Just some of the R & B albums that deserve recognition:

Prince- Symbol
Prince- The Gold Experience
Janet Jackson- The Velvet Rope
Aaliyah- One in a Million
Aaliyah- Aaliyah
RES- How I Do
India.Arie- Acoustic Soul
Lauryn Hill- The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
OutKast- Aquemini
Missy Elliott- Supa Dupa Fly
Missy Elliott- Miss E... So Addictive
Busta Rhymes- When Disaster Strikes...
Digable Planets- Reachin'...

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Well, Outkast can't complain about lack of critical acclaim, can they? But let me tell you, Moonbeam, these guys really need an editor. Just because you can put over 70 minutes of music on a CD doesn't mean you have to. As a a result large portions of their albums consist of filler. This is a problem o modern music in general, but it is most apparent in RnB and rap because the way I see it these two genres are more single oriented i.e. albums are treated as collections of songs, not concise artistic statements, so the more songs there are the better.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

This is the problem with lists... whoever makes them always goes overkill with their personal preferences. Rolling Stone believes the only worthwhile album from the 90s and beynd was Nevermind for example. Here, for whatever reason, the editors hate the "grunge" scene and punish it to the point of discrediting the whole list. For a movemement that changed the entire direction of rock and roll (and inspired a good portion of the bands on this list), to not have ANY albums from Pearl Jam, Soundgarden or Alice in Chains is a disgrace. For Shame

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

It's a VERY typical indie list, much in the mode of Pitchfork and Stylus, from what I can see. I've got no clue about the Toadies or Marcy Playground's appearances though.

They may as well have just eliminated rap altogether -- the obvious tokenism given to Illmatic, Low End Theory and Fear of a Black Planet is laughable, as is their placement considering what surrounds them. No Outkast is also shocking, and I'm sorry, but many of these other albums have just as much filler as the best hip-hop/modern r&b albums.

Well, at least they got the Boredoms in there. Hopefully it's enough to get Super AE into Henrik's list, as it's a mind-blower.

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Thanks Jacek!

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Actually, Sonofsamiam, Pitchfork holds rap in high regard. Just take a look at their list of 100 best albums from 2000-2004 and you will see there are two rap albums in the top three and more more throughout the list. And when it comes to modern music indie rock is my genre of choice, so I like most of these webzine lists.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Right, right, I know both P-fork and Stylus like their rap. It's like this one namechecks all the indie favorites from the other 'zines, and then throws in some token rap albums in an attempt to be like them. It just comes off as hollow to me -- Fear of a Black Planet's[/i] placement is frankly embarrassing.

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Hey, how did you make this smile in your post?

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

By accident! I used brackets rather than angle brackets when attempting to italicize.

That said -- what a bizarre smilie!

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

You know, the brilliant "janitor-x" would probably say that almost EVERY SINGLE ONE of the albums included in that list is a sixties rip-off which is deliberately disguised to show its lack of originality. [He does not see himself as able to judge rap because he does not listen to it, and he does appreciate SOME Somic Youth, but the ONLY album in that list "janitor-x" MIGHT approve of is the Jesus Lizard's "Goat".]

In his view, dreamy or soft (psychedelic) music is of no use to people born after the baby boom generation ended. He sees it as an energy draining experience that is likely to deprive younger generations of power to improve or change themselves. "janitor-x" believes that younger people have no interest in the sounds of the sixties or of the many college bands that resemble them who garner critical priase through adhering to a set formula. He believes that ordiary young people need angry, hard, fast music to realise they are capable of changing their world and fighting the problems that really affect society.

"janitor-x" has strong opinions on most social issues, but at heart he is nihilist in views and tends to believe nihilism is the essense of rock. He sees the present as being related to hardcore, metal and industrial bands about which people who follow the advice of professional music critics know nothing.

If you want to read some "classic" "janitor-x" reviews, go to "http://www.amazon.com/gp/cdp/member-reviews/A2AXIWOCL9XOMM/002-8915841-7600806?%5Fencoding=UTF8&display=public&page=11" and scroll back or forward.

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I listened to the Marcy Playground album (like, even past Sex & Candy) and it's really quite good. Nowhere near some of the albums that it beat, however; such as Hail To The Thief. That should be wayyy up there, in front of other Radiohead albums like Amnesiac.

I'm also happy to see some Aphex Twin in there, he's absolutely brilliant in my opinion.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Marcy Playground's album is pretty good but not so good that I'd ever consider it for any sort of 'best of' list. Maybe 'best 50 albums of 1998', it'd make the lower reaches.

So-so list overall. But Weezer, #11?! Weezer is the epitamy of blandness. This list seems to be a lot of really good picks mixed in with a lot of really bland radio-rock. And White Stripes seem to be completely omitted. Also no Screamadelica or Exile in Guyville.

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

What's with this taking old topics back up?

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I suspect they dislike Oasis a little bit,hehe

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Um where is Definitely Maybe? Or (What's the Story) Morning Glory? This list is really a joke without these albums.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

definitely maybe and what's the story morning glory (by oasis) are two of the best rock records of the last twenty years. the only reason they're not on this list is because of the common misconception of oasis in america.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Quote: BillAdama
Marcy Playground's album is pretty good but not so good that I'd ever consider it for any sort of 'best of' list. Maybe 'best 50 albums of 1998', it'd make the lower reaches.


I've heard friends give that one high praise but I still haven't carved out time to listen to it yet.

Quote: BillAdama
So-so list overall. But Weezer, #11?! Weezer is the epitamy of blandness. This list seems to be a lot of really good picks mixed in with a lot of really bland radio-rock. And White Stripes seem to be completely omitted. Also no Screamadelica or Exile in Guyville.


I'm missing EXILE as well. I'll disagree with you on Weezer. I consider BLUE to be their REAL classic..not the overrated PINKERTON even though I like some of it. It's a tuneful album with almost nothing I ever skip...which makes it a great one to me. There aren't many in that category.

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Quote: Jacek
You're right about the Strokes and M. Ward, Harold. My mistake, I must have been distracted. And you should be happy to know "In the Aeroplane..." is high on another list I found, which I will post soon. I agree it is a wonderful album, although a bit overrated by the indies (but grossly underrated by everybody else, of course).

i agree. i really like that album, but 4th? eh maybe not

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I'm glad this list doesn't include Oasis. In my opinion, they're simply awful.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

your right, Oasis realy aren't that good apart from a handfull of great songs.

I noticed a few of my personal favourites (which as far as I know were released in this time period) were ommited: Manic Street Preachers- The Holy Bible, The Libertines- Up The Bracket, Mercury Rev- Deserters Songs, the White Stripes in general

It a okay list

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Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

While I appreciate the strong presence of Radiohead and Modest Mouse on this list, I am baffled as to how anyone could rank Weezer in front of Wilco, or rank Green Day at all while omitting Soundgarden. I'd put Wilco and Soundgarden among the top 20 bands of the 90s - I wouldn't put Weezer or Green day in the top 50.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

Even worse than the Wilco and Soundgarden, is the omission of The White Stripes, maybe the 3rd or 4th best band of this time period. I'm surprised that loveless is ranked ahead of OKC, considering the intense love that this list shows Radiohead.

I think Oasis is a great band. Definately Maybe and (What's The Story) Morning Glory are both excellent albums.

Re: Music Underwater top 100 albums since 1990 (i.e. 1990-2003)

I actually really like both Pitchfork's and Stylus' 2000-2004 lists. The few albums that made it to both lists simultaneously are all favorites of mine.

Surprised to see this old thread come back though.