Albums of the Year

What, no Arcade Fire, Arctic Monkeys or Britney Spears!? That’s right, instead of treading through the mediocrity of 2007 I’ve decided to post the now defunct Select’s top 30 of 1997 (it really was a decade ago). I’m fairly confident that most people would rather listen to one of these albums than anything from this year’s crop [I can think of 3 possible exceptions]. Look how good these albums are – by real bands with personalities!! Nearly all of them are overflowing with ideas, original melodies and musical invention.


This isn’t a matter of subjective taste; it’s an objective tangible fact that things really were better ten years ago. There are many reasons for this: I think the decline of magazines like Vox, Select and Melody Maker played a large part. Musically, in 2007 there has been very little creativity or experimentation. So instead of trying to cobble together a list of the least worst albums from this year’s paltry selection I thought it would be a better idea to put up a timely reminder of just how far backwards things have gone. [Additional proof of the dearth of musical innovation in 2007: the musical year culminates in a media frenzy over the reunion of one of the most boring bands of the last 50 years Led Zeppelin  – an event that would have been considered a joke ten years ago.]


So join me, tell best of 2007 lists to go an’ shite and dig out that dusty old tape of When I was Born for the 7th Time! (What an album: global smash hit about a Bollywood star,  Allen Ginsberg, ‘Funky Days are Back Again’, ‘Sleep on the Left Side’.)

Cornershop – Sleep on the Left Side [it’s even better than I remember]


1997 Albums of the Year

  1. Radiohead – OK Computer
  2. Spiritualized – Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space
  3. Primal Scream – Vanishing Point
  4. The Verve – Urban Hymns
  5. Cornershop – When I Was Born For The 7th Time
  6. Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds – The Boatman’s Call
  7. Pavement – Brighten In The Corners
  8. Prodigy – The Fat Of The Land
  9. Blur – Blur  
  10. Etienne De Crecy – Super Discount
  11. The Chemical Brothers – Dig Your Own Hole
  12. Supergrass – In It For The Money
  13. Stereolab – Dots And Loops
  14. Oasis – Be Here Now
  15. Edwin Collins I’m Not Following You
  16. Roni Size Reprazent – New Forms
  17. Bentley Rhythm Ace – Bentley Rhythm Ace
  18. Travis – Good Feeling
  19. Daft Punk – Homework
  20. Teenage Fanclub – Songs From Northern Britain
  21. David Holmes – Let’s Get Killed
  22. Wu-Tang Clan – Wu-Tang Forever
  23. Super Furry Animals – Radiator
  24. Death In Vegas – Dead Elvis
  25. Salaryman – Salaryman
  26. Various – Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas
  27. Missy ‘Misdemeanour – Supa Dupa Fly
  28. Eels – Beautiful Freak
  29. Jimi Tenor – Intervision
  30. The Charlatans – Tellin’ Stories

Any album from this list would easily be a contender for album of the year if released in 2007. If you think this is good, you should check out the lists from 1996 and 1998 too.


3 Responses to Albums of the Year

  1. JJ says:

    Some excellence there alright, Vanishing Point was my favourite from that year and probably that bunch of Scottish vampires’ best record overall. Though one thing I can remember clearly is that Be Here Now got 9/10 in the NME, 11/12 in Hot Press and various degrees of brilliant press reviews (5/5 in Select too I think) when it first came out.

    I was talking to one fella who got a review copy delivered by a courier, with an agreement he had to sign saying he’d only listen to it by himself allowing no one else in the room. Think he and all the other journos involved liked the subterfuge so much it clouded the judgement of such lyrics as ‘you see me, i got my magic pie’. Ladies and Gentlemen and obviously the number 1 still stand up anyway amongst a good few others there.

  2. James says:

    Cheers JJ,
    Vanishing Point is one of my favourites too. The Scream’s live shows around that time were excellent too. I saw them in the SFX, supported by Asian Dub Foundation. The Vanishing Point movie/60’s riots visuals really worked with the music.

    I had an inkling people might seize upon Be Here Now as the Achilles’ Heel of an otherwise phenomenal list of albums. That said, people were queueing outside HMV before it opened to get a copy. It’s inconceiveable that people would do that for any album nowadays. I can’t really summon up the energy to defend it. Some OK tracks and Johnny Depp on slide guitar probably make it at least as interesting as most of the guff from 2007.

  3. music says:

    very interesting.
    i’m adding in RSS Reader

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