Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Final Countdown. 10-1 Beeso's 50 top albums.

I wrote this post yesterday in a sparkling and witty price of writing that surely was one of my best. And then lost it. So you get this instead. On to the last ten.

No 10. Decoder Ring - Decoder Ring
You'd have to be happy with this if it was your debut album. Dark, moody, cinematic, it is so seamless it is more one price than several tracks. Big chunky guitar riffs, throbbing organ lines, or was that the porno I watched last night? Not on iTunes unfortunately but well worth tracking down.

No 9. Taste the Secret - Ugly Duckling
Only one US hip hop band could write a hip hop lullaby, or in this case a concept album set in a fictional fast food chain called Meatshake. Great songs with tight beats and witty and mocking lyrics, the skit between the manager of Meatshake and his nemesis, the manager of rival VegeHut is hilarious. Good enough that a mate of mine who has rock music through his veins and shoots greenies on sight might actually enjoy some hip hop.

No 8. Surrender - Chemical Brothers
If only all electronic music was this good. Driving beats and fantastic guest vocals from start to finish this is one of my favorite albums to play really, really loud.

No 7. Angel Dust - Faith No More
Speaking of playing loud, this is how I like my rock music. Big riffs and chunky, funky bass lines and then Mike Patton's voice. It can do more tricks than a cirque de solie troop, going from an evil low croon to a howl that would rival most metal bands in a nano second. Then throw a chart topping cover in for a bit of a laugh.

No 6. Deep Down and Dirty - Stereo MCs
I got this album in a bunch of promo CDs that I regularly got for The Alley and it sat on my desk until the week before the Livid festival. I popped it in when my house mate mentioned they had written Connected, which by law must be used by every telecommunications company in the world at least once. I'm so glad I had a listen or I would have missed one of the top live experiences of my life. The albums has really tight song writing, with the contrast of that gravelly, serious British MC and the bright, happy vocals of the backing singers. I'm not a fan of the albums before and after, in complete contrast to the UK, which wanted the pop style of the other albums and trashed this one.

No 5. Blood Sugar Sex Magic - Red Hot Chilli Peppers
Easily their best album, with that funk style still rough enough to not be commercial poppy crap. A mate of mine, upon hearing Califonication, wanted to put together a fighting fund to send them some more drugs, in the hope that it might get them to write more albums like this.

No 4. Shin Ki Row - Shin Ki Row
A band with the wrong timing. Today, when hip hop is played regularly outside community radio and JJJ these guys would have had a great career. They had a live band with a MC and they were a good band too. The lyrics were like a hip hop version of Paul Kelly, examining the suburban life. "wrap tape round a tennis ball, over the fence it's out, on the bounce it's four." Unfortunately they had come and gone by the late 90s and not many people would have this album.

No 3. Killervision - Salmonella Dub
It was a really long and hard think to decide which album to put in for Salmonella Dub. They have so many styles they draw on, the main one being dub and it's easy to think that most of the percussive sounds you hear on this record and that give it that special sound come out of a sampler. Until you see them live and look at the huge box of instruments they dive into during a set. Never get sick of this album.

No 2. Foggy Highway - Paul Kelly
It seems strange now but I was never a fan of Paul Kelly until this album. It was another that came across my desk from EMI and sat there for a while, despite Darryl talking it up when he gave it too me. I mean a Paul Kelly bluegrass album? However from the very first listen I was hooked and it made me appreciate the quality of his writing and I have since become a huge fan and devoured his back catalogue. Easily Australia's best song writer and I would say he puts guys like Bob Dylan in the shade as well.

No 1. The Calling - Hilltop Hoods
Easily the most influential Australian hip hop album in the last twenty years, because it was the album that broke out of the community radio, JJJ cycle and onto the Nova's and Sea FM's of the world. I even gave my copy to Gold Coast FM through a record company mate because the distributor hadn't sent them a copy. Why would they? It wasn't that far removed from MMM's no rap crap ads. It is a great record. Party tracks like The Nosebleed Section right through to the hip hop version of Hotel California, (The Sentinel) it holds up well even now and they have gone on and sold bucket loads of records and are pretty much as mainstream as you can get. When this album came out, that was unthinkable.

That's it. It was an interesting exercise thinking about my music collection and what I actually thought were the strong records and about ones I loved when they came out and no longer really listen to. Sorry to the Phil Collins and Coldplay fans, no joy for you.

- Lantanaland from my iPad

Location:Should save my work.


  1. Good top 50. I certainly don't agree with you on many of your selections (can't stand the Hoods), but agree with your rationale for choosing them.

    Interesting that you have Killervision up there. For mine, Inside The Dub Plates blows everything else away - tight atmospherics mixed with some sweet pop melodies. Can't fault it.

  2. Agree. If not for the one album rule i would have probably had two in the top ten and three in the top 50. I think The Wife said she would pick One Drop East. Just a fantastically prolific band.

    While I understand a lot of peoples indifference to Australian hip hop, i think the calling was just as an important album in oz music history as say, High Voltage

  3. The Australian version, anyway. If you're thinking of the Seppo version - which was just an overseas-market recap of TNT and Dirty Deeds - it was never sold here except as a parallel import. TNT was the pivotal 'debut' album (Long Way To The Top etc) even though High Voltage was technically the debut.

    Good top 50 - don't agree with it but like the fact that (a) it exists (ie PULL FINGER CONNOLLY) and (b) you backed your arguments.

  4. Oh man. I've been reading both of your lists, and boy, is my knowledge of music severely limited. While I've heard of some of these bands and some of the albums (I'd probably know more of the songs if you listed them), much of it has gone over my head.

    Sigh. Oh well. I'll go back down to the Lady Gaga end of the swimming pool.

    Oh, and that sucks about losing your first post. I hate it when that happens!

  5. Doc - I was more trying to think of an early AC DC album that at the time wouldn't have seemed that important, but was viewed as seminal later. Looking over the list now I'm pretty happy, don't think I'd change anything and not quite as hip hop focused as I thought I'd be.

    GC one of my mates is touring to listen to an bit off each album a day, mainly through YouTube I think.

  6. Wahoo - The Hoods for #1. I love those guys and would definitely have them in my top ten or around to our house for breakfast again, like I say I love those guys.

    Unlike GC I know all of these artist - which is not surprising given we share the same music collection but, it has made me think about how different my own top 50 list would be while keeping to the parameter of our collection. Hmmm may have to put my own list together....

  7. OKAY..so everybody has aid it YOUR top 50 and that fine, BUT HILLTOP HOODS FFSAKES!..you have been getting way way to much fkn sunlight my friend and the statement about the last 20 years..well I will let you have that, only on the basis you are a pup and the previous 20 you possibly have no idea on.... actually, naaaaah, I will leave that alone.

    As for some of the other stuff...fkn hell!,

    No midnight OIL!...you srsly have to be shitting me, Bedlam bridge...FK MAN, some of the lyrics are so fkn profound and timely its not funny. PLUS..they fkn ROCK!.

    *still shaking me fkn head*

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  9. agree with some- but blatantly disagree with others, I don't know how you did it, actually! I don't think I could prioritise mine. You are right about the Chilli Peppers though. That is probably their best album.

  10. Faith No More's Angel Dust was indeed a fine album. But their Album Of The Year was better.

  11. holy potatoes - i'll tell kurt that shin ki row is well and truly alive in your heart. he is working on solo stuff now.. sort of ambient instrumental hip hop...