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Should I bother with these albums...

This year I've been focusing on filling gaps in my 80s and 90s collection, next year will be 60s and 70s.

Here are some albums that are borderline for me, I need advice for whether or not to keep them on my list.

Meat Puppets - Up In The Sun
Arguments for: I like II.
Arguments against: I don't like it *that* much.

Replacements - Pleased To Meet Me
Arguments for: Let It Be
Arguments against: Tim

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
Arguments for: My brother who has good taste likes it, it's high on AM
Arguments against: It's Bon Jovi

Billy Bragg - Talking With The Taxman About Poetry
Arguments for: Relatively high on AM
Arguments against: I know absolutely nothing about him

Madonna - Like a Prayer
Arguments for: Early Madonna albums have really good singles
Arguments for: Early Madonna albums are really inconsistent

George Michael - Faith
Arguments for: Faith is a good song
Arguments against: I haven't heard anything else by him

Run DMC, Eric B & Rakim, Boogie Down Productions, NWA
Arguments for: Very critically acclaimed
Arguments against: All rap is extremely hit and miss for me, and I find crime-glorifying and self-franchising lyrics off putting.

REM - Green
Arguments for: I like most of the other eight REM albums I have, it's one of the ones huge REM fans claim to be underrated
Arguments against: They also claim Up is underreated

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Faith had about 4 or 5 singles. I would recommend it. Can't speak to the rest.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Definitely 'Like A Prayer' is worth getting...

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Based on your arguments:

Meat Puppets - Up In The Sun: No, it doesn't have the obvious good songs in like II and if you didn't like those that much...

Replacements - Pleased To Meet Me: No, not if you didn't like Tim.

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet: No, if you don't like Bon Jovi in the first place you're not going to like this album because basically it's the Bon Jovi album with their the most good songs on it. If you don't like those songs it's not worth having just to say you have it.

Billy Bragg - Talking With The Taxman About Poetry: Yes, because everyone should at least listen to his music. I don't like it but you have to give it a shot.

Madonna - Like a Prayer: No, just buy the singles or wait until you can find it cheap used or something. If you think all of Madonna's early stuff is inconsistent you'll feel the same here.

George Michael - Faith: Couldn't tell you, I haven't listened to the full album myself and I don't really like Faith

Run DMC, Eric B & Rakim, Boogie Down Productions, NWA: Maybe, but not NWA which happens to be the only one i like a lot from the group.

REM - Green: Yes, I'm not a huge fan but it's nowhere near Up.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Like a Prayer is definitely worth it- it's definitely Madonna's best album, and the non-singles are often better than the singles.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

About the Meat Puppet albums: "Up On The Sun" has a more laid back and melodic feel than the punkier II, and Kurt Kirkwood's voice is smoother so if these differences sound appealing you might like "Up the Sun" better. I think it's a perfect summer album.

But then again I'm one of those REM fans who think "UP" is underrated.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
Stay away from this album or you're likely to change your opinion about your brother

Madonna - Like a Prayer
This is her most consistent album, buy it!

George Michael - Faith
Lots of great singles and surprisingly consistent too.

REM - Green
Compared to Up, this is a lot more Up-lifting.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Get the George Michael and Billy Bragg

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

according to your all time album list, Bill, you're obviously not THAT much into pop. so I'd say Taxman and Green are a pretty safe bet for you. however, Faith and Like A Prayer are at least worth giving a listen, although the consistency of LAP is quite debatable ...

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
"Stay away from this album or you're likely to change your opinion about your brother"

Thats some of the best alum buying advice i,ve ever heard

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Sounds like the consensus so far is REM, Billy Bragg, Madonna, and George Michael.

Maybe with the rap albums I'll just go with NWA. Because I do like Public Enemy and De La Soul, and that's by far the highest rated out of the ones I listed.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

If you really like those aforementioned bro legends (PE and DLS), I'd emphatically recommend you Boogie Down Productions first 4, Eric B & Rakim's first 3 and R-DMC's first 2 albums from the menu card. but that's just me loudspeaking...

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

If you're put off by misogyny, you're going to have some trouble with Straight Outta Compton. And I don't remember you being a big fan of Dre.


Paid in Full is a must. it's hard for me to imagine a lot of rap since without it.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Every song on Straight Outta Compton is absolutely indispensable for at least a few minutes. I recommend it.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

(For a few minutes after you've heard it, I mean.)

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

I'd go with NWA and Green.

On the stylistic continuum of Replacements albums, Tim is a blend of Let It Be and Pleased To Meet Me. I'm thinking that what you don't like about Tim is even more pronounced on PTMM.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Eric B and Rakim's Paid in Full is brilliant. It's one of the most creative albums I have ever heard; not to mention, probably my favorite rap album.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Talking With The Taxman is Billy's best album. It's melodic, meaningful, and touching - get it. It's worth it for Levi Stubbs Tears alone.

R.E.M.'s Green is also pretty darn good. Sure, it's not Automatic For the People or Document, but is very satifying. It's got Stand, Orange Crush, Pop Song 89, and World Leader Pretend on it for Pete's sake. I just saw the boys in concert (1st date of a world tour in Burnaby BC, Canada - a suburb of Vancouver) and they played Get Up from the album and it went over well too.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Don't know about the others, but...

Up on the Sun is very much worth getting - it's a lot different than II and I love it because of the really awesome interplay between bass and guitar. Best album they put out, imo. Really, it's like ear candy to me.

Green is underrated in my book. It's got the poppy, catchy singles, and the slower, earthier songs are really engaging. I can listen to it the whole way through without getting bored, and that's something I can only do with like 4 REM albums (Murmur, Document, Green, Automatic).

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Maybe I'll add Eric B & Rakim to the list too. 'Creative' is a buzzword that kinda works for me.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
If you like their singles, get it. If not, pass. This one ranks high on the strength of the singles.

Madonna - Like a Prayer
I am no Madonna fan but I will agree with Henrik that it's pretty consistent

If you're going to get a George Michael album, go for LISTEN WITHOUT PREJUDICE first.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

up on the sun is my gf's fav meat puppets album. it certainly is different to II. i would use words like "cute" "playful" and "innocent" to describe the feel of it. hmmm, i can't find any decent clips on youtube. bottom line, i think it's a great album, but there are probably larger holes in your collection.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

II is way different than stuff the Meat Puppets did after that. Listen to Too High To Die.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Nirvana might have given them the publicity but it was all directed towards their least accessible album!

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

II is way different than stuff the Meat Puppets did after that.

duck away

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

oh god, he's still here!

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

*Checks timestamp*

Yeah, I thought this thread died two and a half months ago. Thanks for the belated advice though.

I do have new questions though, so when in roam.

Tom Petty - Damn The Torpedoes

Tom Petty is the sort of guy who I don't like that much, but when he happens to come on the radio, I don't complain. He's talented, but only a few of his songs are unlame. The question is, is there a concentration of those unlame songs on Damn The Torpedoes.

ABBA - Arrival

I've hardly heard any Abba at all. It's popular enough, but I'm just skeptical of pop.

Van Halen - s/t

I think Jump is a great song but the rest of 1984 is lame.

Dire Straits - s/t

I like Brothers In Arms. But still, it's mainstream enough to make me skeptical.

Boston - s/t

I've heard like their one hit, and ditto the Dire Straits comment.

Genesis - The Lamb Lies On Broadway

I hate Phil Collins, and very few prog has ever managed not to sound indulgent to me.

Bee Gees - Saturday Night Fever

I like Stayin Alive, but. You know.

Bob Marley - Natty Dread, Exodus

I have Catch A Fire, which I sort of like, but raggae is a sort of music I enjoy at first then dies on me, so they'd have to be better than Catch A Fire to interest me.

Richard and Linda Thompson - I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight

Love Fairport Convention, find Turn Out just above average.

Prince - Parade

Love 1999, Sign, Purple Rain, like Dirty Mind. The question is, how sharply does the quality decline after his absolute best?

These are all albums I think might be good enough to want to hear them. But, they'll never be as high on my list as stuff like Before And After Science, Suicide, New York Dolls, Stranded, Rock Bottom, etc.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

From what I know from your posts I'd stay away from all of those albums except for maybe Tom Petty. ABBA- The Album is the album rock fans should start with IMO.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

I can speak up for Parade. It was recorded in the midst of what is mostly regarded as his classic period (80-8 . Here's my review:

Having succeeded in planting a giant question mark in the minds of the public and fans alike with Around the World in a Day, Prince once again dipped his feet into soundtracks with the follow-up, Parade. As usual, Prince was busy with his myriad side projects, but managed to deliver an album for the ages with his soundtrack to the less successful movie Under the Cherry Moon.

While Around the World in a Day came as a shock to listeners at the time with its whimsical psychedelia, Parade actually ups the ante and delivers Prince's most colorful album to date. By this point, the Revolution had become a well-oiled machine firing on all cylinders, incorporating a wide assortment of influences and styles to put forth this stunning document of their prowess. Parade is also the album that sees the band distribute the roles most, as Wendy and Lisa are heard singing throughout, even carrying the vocal lead on "I Wonder U". Sadly, it would prove to be the last album released before the ugly breakup of the band.

The album greatly succeeds as a soundtrack for the film. With a seemingly limitless palate, the album boasts gleeful woodwinds (see the dreamy fog of "I Wonder U"), xylophones ("Christopher Tracy's Parade") and lush strings and horns that burst with the color absent from the movie itself. Set in the summer of the French Riviera, piano ballads such as "Under the Cherry Moon" and the gorgeous "Venus de Milo" effectively communicate the extravagance of the white aristocracy portrayed. "Do U Lie", a dainty little ditty, sounds as removed from modern rock and roll as anything in Prince's entire career, strolling on virtually bereft of percussion and guitar to set a tone of 20s glamor.

But just in case you forgot who was in command, Prince lays down some serious funk on this album. "New Position" reminds us that he's still as nasty as ever in spite of the slick guise, while "Girls and Boys" stands out as the most polished funk jam of his career with its sassy finger cymbals and greasy horns. Who knew synth strings could be so funky? The album's blockbuster single, "Kiss" bursts forth with its minimal guitar crunch and some of his very best vocals to date. Another single, "Anotherloverholenyohead" sees the bass guitar slapped to submission as Prince unveils his now trademark paranoia with a sing-along chorus practically unmatched in his repertoire.

The most noteworthy tracks, though, are those where Prince and company turn spiritual. "Mountains" sees the band at its most heavenly, its rapturous joy exuded with messages of encouragement in the wake of turbulence. "Love will conquer if you just believe", Prince affirms as Wendy and Lisa chime in for the angelic chorus. A glorious success, "Mountains" captures the ecstasy of Lovesexy in an economic 4 minutes. On the other side of the coin, the closing ballad "Sometimes It Snows in April" resonates with pain and loss as Prince's tale of the lead character's life and death isn't so specific as to diminish its effect. Anyone who has ever experienced loss should relate to this song and lines like "Love isn't love until it's past," which just aren't written anymore.

Parade suffers from little more than preceding the monumental opus Sign o' the Times, and as a result benefits from its lack of overexposure. Prince would never create an album that is more colorful (although Lovesexy makes a strong case), nor would he ever release such a great album without any grandstanding. But brilliance has its price. The Revolution yielded four astonishing albums from 1982-1986 and Parade acts as a perfect benchmark of their reign, brimming over with ideas. But alas, all good things they say never last.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

I can speak for Boston - s/t. Personally, I love the album (but mostly due to nostalgia). The album is great at first, but it does get old pretty quickly. So, the final decision would be if you liked "More Than a Feeling," then go buy the album, since most of the songs sound pretty similar to it anyway.

Re: Should I bother with these albums...

Maybe I'll start out with Tom Petty, ABBA and Prince and then maybe think about the rest when their year comes up in the 70's poll.

As The Resident...

big Madge fan, I absolutely agree with Henrik (and whoever else said it) that Like a Prayer is her best album- for me, it's that and Ray of Light, but I have to give LAP the slight edge. Great themes, and it's one example what sets her apart from her contemporary pop females. It's even classical-sounding in spots. The transition from "Dear Jessie" to "Oh Father" is one of the best I've heard on an album.

I think you'll enjoy it.