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I have a theory

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Showing 1-18 of 18 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 17 Nov 2008 09:40:48 GMT
Red Mosquito says:
I have a theory that any band, regardless of how many albums they've released, will only produce one masterpiece. A masterpiece being, every track is an absolute gem with no fillers (covers allowed if they are better than the original). Can anyone dispute my theory?

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Nov 2008 17:45:47 GMT
Neutral Milk Hotel made two.
Ultrasound made lots of little masterpices in their EPs and a (very long) masterpice in thier album.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Nov 2008 17:55:59 GMT
Tikka says:
It's a fair theory. Some well known bands (including Queen, who I really like) never even made one truly great album.

But perhaps Pink Floyd (Wish you were here and Dark Side of the Moon) or Led Zep (I, II, IV and Physical Graffiti) disprove it.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 00:57:15 GMT
jonthemorsk says:
rush.... 2112 and farewell to kings?

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 00:59:16 GMT
zargb5 says:
I think you are probably right, the trouble is bands just keep going on making droves of dull pointless albums for decades until enough band members croak so they eventually have to give up.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 02:05:01 GMT
Last edited by the author on 18 Nov 2008 02:07:26 GMT
MC Zaptone says:
Hi DM Clarkson
I think it's a given that since the advent of cd's great as they are bands have been under
pressure to fill up the 74 minutes available in essence making every release a double album so filler is bound to occur. But to say only one masterpiece has ever been produced by a single band is madness, Please tell me which of the following is the lame sibling:

Love / Forever Changes - Love
Are You Experienced / Electric Ladyland - Hendrix
Beggars Banquet / Let It Bleed - The Stones
Pet Sounds / Surfs Up - The Beach Boys
Dixie Chicken / Feats Don't Fail Me Now - Little Feat
Overnight Sensation / Apostrophe - Zappa

And thats off the top of my head. Don't hold water that theory of yours i'm afraid

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 02:27:35 GMT
spiderboris says:
I have to agree with LM Betteridge on the tragically forgotten Ultrasound, their album Everything Picture is a big mad crazyfest of a record, like the band Radiohead should have been. Go pick it up people, I'm sure you can get it for cheap somewhere... like all of Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Queen and Oasis forming the maddest prog supergroup you've never heard...

At least they did the sensible thing and then split up. Too many indie and rock bands's debut albums - especially in recent years - tend to be so spectacularly brilliant they often struggle to follow them up and either just repeat themselves or attempt a 'new direction,' ie 'going' dance. I might have said this elsewhere but look at bands like Bloc Party, Editors, Arctic Monkeys, Franz Ferdinand and many others - I think it's quite easy to say that there's only so far you can take a sound and too many bands wear it out on the first album and run of b-sides.

And when it comes to a run of classics, I'll have to nominate the Smashing Pumpkins, who turned out the heavy goth doomfest of Gish, the psychedelic grungefest of Siamese Dream, and the gloriously overblown double album Mellon Collie. Plus a ton of b-sides along the way. After that Billy Corgan sort of burned himself out, but for three albums that'll do for me.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 11:19:40 GMT
Nugent Dirt says:
I've given this a few seconds thought and're right and I'll take on all comers who disagree.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 11:37:54 GMT
Continuing the lists already begun:-

David Bowie has had a few classics.
We have probably all got out favourite Bowie album.

I can find no filler in the first three Clash Albums.
.....and Sandinista would have no filler if they hadn't released it as a triple album to piss off their record label.

Both Electro-Shock Blues and Beautiful Freak by Eels are classics.

I would add 'The Wall' to the Pink Floyd list, its my fave.

consider your theory disputed.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 11:48:50 GMT
Sparky says:
'A masterpiece being, every track is an absolute gem with no fillers' - well obviously it's a bit subjective as my killer might be your filler, but going by general opinion Jethro Tull must have at least 2 with Heavy Horses and Songs from the Wood.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 12:21:09 GMT
Last edited by the author on 18 Nov 2008 12:22:56 GMT
Sera69 says:
Tori Amos has made a few masterpieces. I wouldn't change anything from any of her first three and the rest (Strange Little Girls excepted) are uniformly brilliant.

Kyuss also have a couple of masterpieces in a very short career. Both 'Blues from a red sun' and 'Welcome to Sky Valley' are indispensible if you like that kind of rock.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 17:28:46 GMT
jonthemorsk says:
absolutely! hanne huckelburg - little things and rykestrasse or regina spektor - soviet kitch and mary ann meets....
both have the most fantastic and heart-wrenching voices that can convey such a strong feeling in a minimalist and bleak style, without complicating them with over produced music accompanyment. id stack either of their voices against aretha or billie holiday anyday.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2008 19:04:02 GMT
Red Mosquito says:
Clearly the theory is flawed and it was never feasable to thoroughly test it on my own because I haven't heard every album ever recorded. Thanks for all your contributions. You've introduced me to music I've never listened to, but will now. You've found the theory to be weak and lacking evidence to support it. I still think that Pearl Jam, Kyuss, Zep and Floyd are the creators of one masterpiece each. They've all made other brilliant albums but masterpiece is a cut above brilliant in my humble opinion. However..........................I have another theory

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Nov 2008 13:31:40 GMT
Sera69 says:
'A masterpiece being, every track is an absolute gem with no fillers' ???

Puressence have two.
Their self titled debut and second, 'Only Forever', are virtually flawless if you like a grander, darker version of Snow Patrol/Coldplay-esque rock. And of their two other albums there's only a few four star tracks.

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Nov 2008 22:42:05 GMT
Last edited by the author on 19 Nov 2008 22:58:54 GMT
spiderboris says:
I'll agree on Bowie, who I was never a massive fan of but anyone who been consistently been making interesting music for four plus decades deserves some kudos.

Similarly Prince, who like Bowie has turned out some clunkers, but there's more gold in there than crud.

And - although it's exceedingly fashionable to hate her - Madonna. Just take her singles alone and thats a heck of a decent slab of great pop music.

I did used to love Seal, who's first three albums I'd call classics. Quite terrifyingly though he's just released a deeply bland album of soul covers just in time for Christmas which can only suggest that getting married to a supermodel is enough to destroy anyone's creative fire...

Also agree with jonthemorsk on Hanne Hukkelburg and Regina Spektor. And think the important byword is quality control, which is something that so many artists forget after the third album. Elbow also I think have thus far managed not to do anything at all rubbish. I also think three or four albums is kind of the cutoff point for the quality control, so many artists I can think of produce a trilogy of classic, absolutely perfect records, and then spend the rest of their careers trying to claw back some of that magic.

See also the Cure, who in my opinion produced three of their greatest albums in Disintegration, Pornography and Bloodflowers, three albums Robert Smith see as a loose trilogy. Although old Smithy is guilty of running the whole 8-minute gloomy jangly goth-ballad thing into the ground - too many Cure songs just sound like rewrites of other Cure songs.

Tori Amos also. Her first three album form a incredibly strong trilogy, and controversially I think Strange Little Girls is a terrific album production wise, but then you had the Beekeeper more recently which I think was just utterly dire from beginning to end.

Right, going on a bit, off now...

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Nov 2008 12:51:01 GMT
Last edited by the author on 27 Nov 2008 12:53:33 GMT
It all depends on your understanding of the word "Masterpiece". What is one man's thrash is another man's treasure as the old cliché goes. In other words, what is appealing to you might not be necessary be appealing to me. Surely, this boils down to individual taste and how the attentive listener interprets an album by finding the intricacies within the music they enjoy and can relate to in a positive way. I have on occasion, recommended to other parties what I think is a great album only to be told later that they do not share the same sentiments as me. Fundamentally, this has to be down to individual choice and taste I suppose - have I blown this theory out of the water...who knows??

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Nov 2008 16:49:46 GMT
Mad Earwig says:
Anyone remember the band 'Live'? Their album 'Throwing Copper' was a masterpiece and was slightly overlooked by Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden of the same era, but every Live album since has not even come close...yet as a fan we still buy in hope.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Nov 2008 17:53:07 GMT
Last edited by the author on 28 Nov 2008 17:55:39 GMT
spiderboris says:
I really liked 'The Distance To Here', Mad Earwig. Although to describe it as hysterically overblown might be an understatement.

Also foolishly they were one of those bands who failed to come up with a name that was easy to search for on the internet. See also James (no, not Morrison! Who do you think I AM???) 'A' (now disbanded emo-brit-punk types) E (he was just called that before Eels)and whatever Prince called himself when he wasn't Prince.

There's not even a key for that, you funky lunatic! Pressing most of the shift symbols at the same time doesn't do diddly squat!

Anyway. There's another very boring thread waiting to happen!
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Discussion in:  rock discussion forum
Participants:  13
Total posts:  18
Initial post:  17 Nov 2008
Latest post:  28 Nov 2008

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