Sunday, January 9, 2011

Top 25 Albums of All Time

Okay, so I don't claim to know everything about pop music... Actually, I'm pretty quick to say that I have never heard the music of a lot of artists out there. But I do know what I like, and I also think that I'm a pretty good judge as to what other people should like, too. Pompous? No, I don't think so. I think that I have been given the honored privilege and ability to critique music well - both on aesthetic and technical levels.

About a week ago, I watched a ten-minute clip of an interview with Josh Ritter, published by some magazine (the video was a part of a series titled something about eating with artists...). In the video, Ritter mentioned that music, like movies and other art, should be judged 15 or 20 years after it has been released (obviously, that's no help to the actual artist living it out in real-time). His point was that a good song is still a good song 20, 50, or 300 years after it is written.

The goal of music criticism is to assess a song or album in a cultural vacuum (outside of current pop trends or stylistic leanings), allowing the music to stand on its own, judging it against nothing but its ability to relate to the human experience across space and time.

I have been thinking a lot about my favorite art of all time - primarily books, movies, and music; and I think I'm going to try to compile a list of my top 25 albums of all time. The difficulty with this is that I have been told that there are some *unbelievable* records out there - ones that people can actually name by name - that I haven't even heard for myself yet, and so I'm going to be taking this slowly, making sure to leave some room in the top 25 for records that I'll have to listen to between now and before I finish my list. (If you have any suggestions, please comment on them on this post.)

So, without further delay, I would like to announce the first (not number one, but just "one of") of my top 25 picks of all time:

And that, of course, is what I am listening to right now.

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