And so we move, to end game. Hello. Welcome. There are six people in the final and they have each been asked to pick an album from the 1980s, an album from the 1990s, an album from the 2000s, and (surprise surprise) an album from the 2010s. It’s a tricky task. Where would you even start? I fully believe that all of them are up to it though. You don’t get to the final without knowing your onions.
I have decided to draw the final out as long as possible by announcing the results of one set of albums a day between now and Sunday. Mathematically, it could all be over by Saturday. Let’s hope not though, eh? For drama’s sake.
Enough preamble. Let’s do this.
Picky Bastards recommended Straight Outta Compton by NWA
I have tried, for a long long time, to like this album. Instinctively I love the first thirty seconds or so of most of the tracks on it, but by two minutes I’m checking my watch, wondering when something new will happen. The lyrics are… let’s say… not without their problems too. Not unlike the Sex Pistols’ debut, this album fits more in the ‘hugely influential classic’ category than the ‘actually still listen to’ category (and there is nothing wrong with that, obviously) but it makes for a great album rather than a great recommendation.
James Park recommended Purple Rain by Prince
I mean, where to start? There is an argument to be made that the minute from 5.07-6.07 of the song Purple Rain is the finest sixty seconds of music recorded in the last fifty years. It would be a pointless argument, with no way of coming to a definitive answer, but still… I’m happy to start it anyway. This choice just feels right. Good pick. Very good pick.
Sleepy recommended Doolittle by The Pixies
I view this album with different eyes than I did when I first heard it, a long long time ago. I have less visceral eyes now, more dispassionate eyes…
Jesus. Did I just write ‘visceral eyes’? What the fuck would that even mean? Bloody hell. Start again, mate…
Right. I don’t get as excited by Doolittle as I once did because I’m older/old. I’m… I don’t want to say jaded, but… well… you know… You only get a few of those rushes of blood to the head from hearing something for the first time that is nothing like anything you have heard before, and most of them will be in your teens. The Pixies were one of mine, and I’ll forever be grateful, but I can never recapture that feeling.
What I’m saying, in a nutshell, is I’m strangely unqualified to judge the quality of this album. I apologise in advance for any pain or confusion its ranking causes any of you.
John Power Jr recommended 3 Feet High and Rising
The songs on 3 Feet High and Rising are good. Some of them are very good. Some of them are truly great, the best I’ve heard today. But as has been pointed out, my god are they surrounded by skits. I really hate skits. Skits and intros, I’ve no time for them, none at all. There are probably only a dozen or so albums that wouldn’t benefit from losing all the skits and the bloody intro. 3 Feet High and Rising isn’t one of them. It has been marked down accordingly.
Donna Morris recommended Brothers in Arms by Dire Straits
Objectively the worst album chosen in this round, but it does have Sting on it, which is dead funny. It is worth remembering though that this is a competition to find the best recommendation, not the best album, and while I hated almost every second of Brothers in Arms I do begrudgingly respect anyone brave enough to recommend Dire Straits after what I have repeatedly said about them this year. Donna, you didn’t change my opinion of them, but your attempt to try should, and might, be rewarded.
Graham Cox recommended Neither Washington Nor Moscow by The Redskins
I had never heard this album before. I will never listen to it again. But some credit should be given for recommending an album that was new to me. It won’t be given. But it should.
And so, the scores are currently as follows…
- James Park – 6 points
- Sleepy – 5 points
- John Power Jr – 4 points
- Donna Morris – 3 points
- Graham Cox – 2 points
- Picky Bastards – 1 point