My long serving iPod. May he live forever.

What are your Ten Perfect Albums?

The Premise

Perfect Albums you say? Well. This is a project I’ve been working on in my head for about 5 years. It started out even longer ago, based on the seemingly innocuous question, “Hey, what are your top ten favourite albums?” The more time I spent thinking about it, the more it bothered me. Could an album really be my favourite if I’m skipping 40% of it, but I really like 5 or 6 songs? Sure I love Bros – Push, but is it really in a top 10? (Hey I said it was a long time ago.)

I have decided to re-frame the question. I’m now asking, “What are your top ten albums that you consider perfect?” Perfect in this sense being those albums:

  • where there are no tracks that I skip,
  • that I often find myself returning to,
  • that I easily put back on again from the beginning after it finishes.

Choosing my Ten

After years of deliberation, I have finally decided on my ten. I’m no music critic and it’s important to stress the importance of “I consider perfect” not being equivalent to “technically great” or “musical genius”. In some cases I may even admit that there are “better” albums by the same artist, if so I’ll try to acknowledge these in the posts.

Many people have written about the links between music and memory. It is widely recognised that songs and albums can transport you to a time and place (sometimes whether you like it or not) and this has been very much in my mind when considering the list. All the albums I have chosen feel connected to my life in some way.

I can promise there is no Bros in the line-up, I can’t promise there isn’t anything you’ll consider a dubious choice. Hopefully though you’ll stick with me (both of you), and at least read the posts where I’ll share my thoughts, perhaps pick out some standout tracks and maybe even talk a bit out the memories the album evokes. We’ll see.

The Plan

I intend to treat each album to an individual blog post. Aiming to cover an album every couple of weeks. When I’m done I may do a couple of honourable mentions, as there are a number on the cutting room floor.

I’d also be very interested to hear other people’s take on this question, although that may require people reading the blog. I shall keep my expectations low.

13 thoughts on “What are your Ten Perfect Albums?

  1. Kevin Watson

    I have a few I consider perfect, I’ve been coming back to them for years, and you’re correct, each of them triggers a memory or a sense of an era in my life and I feel strong emotions when I listen. These are off the top of my head but I know I will listen to them forever. Don’t know if you want this but my list is an easy pick, I do not skip any tracks in any of these and consider them perfect pieces of work that benefit from being an album rather than just a collection of songs.

    In no order…
    Pearl Jam – Ten
    Pink Floyd – Dark Side of the Moon
    Queensryche – Operation Mindcrime
    Guns n Roses – Appetite for Destruction
    Joss Stone – Mind, Body and Soul
    Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Welcome to the Pleasuredome
    Pet Shop Boys – Actually
    Megadeth – So far, so good, so what ?
    Metallica – Metallica
    Dire Straits – Brothers in Arms

    1. kayjoon Post author

      Great input, thanks Kevin. Good to see your list too. One of those will pop up in my own list too, but in the interest of building suspense, I’ll let you wait for the reveal when I get to doing that post.

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  3. Mr Bees

    In no particular order 10 perfect albums.

    Faith No More – Angel Dust
    Tool -├ćnima
    Monster Magnet – Dopes to infinity
    Refused – Shape of Punk to Come
    Slayer – Reign in Blood
    Neurosis – Through Silver in Blood
    Therapy? – Troublegum
    Sepultura – Chaos AD
    Fear Factory – Demanufacture
    Ministry – Psalm 69…

    The hardest part of this procss was just picking 10. In the end I just picked the first 10 flawless albums that came to mind. I could have easily have listed so many other albums that to me are perfect. Looking at @Kevin choices above I could have easily have another list comprising of 8 of those albums.

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