Poll

Votes for all entries you feel are important enough to deserve a spot on the list. Don't just vote for shit because you like it, and don't just not vote for shit because you don't like it.

A Night at the Opera - Queen
10 (14.3%)
Ten - Pearl Jam
11 (15.7%)
Avalon - Roxy Music
5 (7.1%)
Paranoid - Black Sabbath
7 (10%)
├ćnema - Tool
6 (8.6%)
What A Crying Shame - The Mavericks
2 (2.9%)
Life'll Kill Ya - Warren Zevon
4 (5.7%)
Sailing The Seas Of Cheese - Primus
6 (8.6%)
London Calling - The Clash
11 (15.7%)
Off The Deep End - Weird Al Yakovic
8 (11.4%)

Total Members Voted: 24

Voting closed: August 19, 2012, 04:15:28 PM


Author Topic: 100 Albums to Which You Have to Listen, or All Y'all Need to Hear This!!!  (Read 43455 times)

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Offline Starman!

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Wait, where's The Joshua Tree? I thought I nominated that.


Offline D.B. Barnes

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Remember to bold those nommminations, okay folks? We can do this. Go team, go team go. :highfive:

Joshua Tree will be in the next poll.
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Offline LucasM

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Since I've been finding and listening to the nominations as they came in (rather than waiting until the poll was up to start looking), I'm almost done.  Listening to the last one now [Gorillaz] and am quite enjoying it ('course I thought I might, as I enjoyed the one tune of theirs I heard when they were on Colbert Report back when I used to watch it).


Something that I occasionally have to remind myself of as I'm listening to some of these (especially needed for ones that don't fit my musical taste ;)) - which I thought some others might like a 'refresher' for - is the 'rules' for this list: "As with the movies poll, the goal of this thread is to generate a list of albums that should be experienced by everyone at least once in their life. The only qualification for nominating an album is that, for whatever reason, you feel it is important enough to deserve a place on a list of the top 100 must-listen-to albums of all time."

It is NOT a 'favorites' list: that's left to the 'List of Crap's.

It is not really even about what we 'like', and definitely not what would be on our personal 'Top 100' list; it is about albums that are - for whatever reason - 'important' or 'relevant'.

That is why the description of why people think an album deserves to be on this list is so important: if there is no 'justification' for a nomination, people will simply vote for things they 'like' and certain albums will be left behind that maybe shouldn't be.

On the first two polls nearly 1/2 the votes I gave were given to albums I didn't like, or wouldn't ever listen to again... but which I felt better for having heard.  I know there will be at least two on this one that I will vote for that fit that criteria also.  And there will be some nominations I make during the course of this thread for albums that I won't listen to again.


"Apologies" for the 'space filling' for this post to those who have no trouble remembering these nomination/voting criteria.  "You're welcome" to those who do. ;)
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects


Offline TheUnabeefer

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I can't like that post enough Lucas....

Anyways, I already nominated Pet Sounds (The Beach Boys) for the next poll, so that's my nom...  but here's a link to the whole damn album on YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGTdmLhKEBk

Honestly, the best way to appreciate this album (if you don't already) is to listen with headphones and keep in mind that the guy who did the writing, arrangements, production, and 90% of the vocals is DEAF IN HIS RIGHT EAR.

While the rest of the Beach Boys were out on tour, Brian Wilson amassed a friggin huge group of studio musicians to record this album, having each one play SEPARATELY (no backing tracks to play along to... just Wilson metronoming with his hand) in fragmented little segments.... where he spliced everything together in production using tape and scissors.  Many interviews with the musicians have them stating that he'd have one horn play a major dissonant chord, and another instrument play a minor flat.... and neither of them knew how any of the short little recordings would fit into any form of a structured song... only to hear it eventually in its finished form.

Then Wilson recorded EVERY vocal layer of himself for the album, and when the rest of the "Boys" came back, he had each one do a little bit and a few lead vocs for Mike... and replace some of his own vocals with theirs.... but 90% is Brian.

As I stated before, I spent the first 24 years of my life LOATHING the Beach Boys, only to pick up Brian Wilson's "Smile" album (the solo finished version of the lost Beach Boys album unfinished after Pet Sounds), and that led me to give in and listen to Pet Sounds.  I am now in love with Brian's writing and arrangements and he's a personal hero of mine.

Despite my own love of this, it's highly regarded as one of the (if not THE) best albums of all time... and if anything belongs on this list, it's Pet Sounds.
...and there he was, reigning supreme at number two.  The One... The Only... The Unabeefer.



Offline LucasM

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Thanks, TU.  :)

Even though Pet Sounds isn't an album I listen to with regularity, I agree: it is one that MUST be on this list!

And with your justification - which was superb, I might add  :) - I plan on digging it out again and listening to it again.  Because even though it is possibly my brother's favorite album, I never knew 90% of what you discussed on how Brian assembled the album.  I knew that he was an amazing person, despite his mental challenges, but that is freaking incredible.

Thanks for the write-up for it, so I can 're-think' the album when I listen to it now.  It would be great if every nomination was accompanied by the depth of info you added. :)


[Funny aside: when my brother and I were kids, I loved the Beach Boys (I believe the first 'adult' album I ever owned was Little Deuce Coup which I got around age 5, when it came out), but my brother was indifferent to them... as life went on, that reversed.]

[EDIT: merely to fix my age when I got Little Deuce Coup.]
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 10:54:43 AM by LucasM »
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects


Invader_quirk

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I'll nominate Reconstruction Site by The Weakerthans. The Weakerthans write some of the best and most insightful lyrics, and their music matches the emotion in the lyrics very well. I love all Weakerthans albums, but I chose Reconstruction Site because I think it is the best album, meaning the order of the songs is important and well-conceived. The album starts off with [Manifest], a short and upbeat song full of hope. Two other songs, spaced evenly across the tracklist, share the same tune and continue the story, with the final installment ending the album. In between are songs that range from optimistic to despairing. Feelings of resignation, frustration, fear, and everything in between are presented beautifully and without being preachy or over-dramatic.

My favorite track, "Plea from a Cat Named Virtute" (which I've posted below), made me cry the first time I heard it, even though I hadn't really caught the lyrics and didn't know why I was crying. It's easily the most profound song written from the perspective of a cat that I've ever heard. I have a feeling it will affect you similarly, LucasM, knowing how much you treasure your cat. :) The song has a sequel on the next album that makes me cry every time. Just seeing the name of that song when we first got the album nearly broke my heart because of how much this fictional cat meant to me.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/fdwMkA1WaGU" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/fdwMkA1WaGU</a>


Offline TheUnabeefer

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Thanks, TU.  :)

Even though Pet Sounds isn't an album I listen to with regularity, I agree: it is one that MUST be on this list!

And with your justification - which was superb, I might add  :) - I plan on digging it out again and listening to it again.  Because even though it is my brother's favorite album, I never knew 90% of what you discussed on how Brian assembled the album.  I knew that he was an amazing person, despite his mental challenges, but that is freaking incredible.

Thanks for the write-up for it, so I can 're-think' the album when I listen to it now.  It would be great if every nomination was accompanied by the depth of info you added. :)


[Funny aside: when my brother and I were kids, I loved the Beach Boys (I believe the first 'adult' album I ever owned was Little Deuce Coup which I got around age 4 or 5), but my brother was indifferent to them... as life went on, that reversed.]

I could honestly go on for hours of Brian Wilson trivia (especially dealing with SMILE. I gathered SO many bootlegs of sessions tracks back in 2005-6 and spent 3 months of unemployment making my OWN mix of the album.... I stopped sleeping and kinda went nuts on my own for a bit there too) but I won't!   His own insanity though really emerged AFTER Pet Sounds (once again, with SMILE).... but his hearing problem (claimed to be from his dad beating him) is actually why he prefers to mix in mono.   Anyways, I've grown to really love even the early BB's music, except I loathe Mike Love. (as does most of the world)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Uhm, even though I wasn't the one to nominate it, I'll say a little something on behalf of In The Court of The Crimson King by King Crimson

First of all what Black Sabbath is to metal, King Crimson is to progressive rock.  I'm not sure if there was any album before this one that could really be classified as "progressive rock" but I'll just say that as far as I know, this was the first.  There sure as hell wasn't anything like it before, and if anyone's aware of how much kCrimson changes/changed over the years.... there hasn't been anything like this album SINCE.

While everyone else was mixing blues, jazz and rock (specifically blues and rock), Robert Fripp and company (also ever-changing) was influenced mostly by classical music... going so far as to play some Holst at their live shows.

ITCOTCK is the first of a legacy of bizarrely soothing and interesting music, and is an album that should be heard by everyone even if just to expose them to something that's "erratically different than the norm" ...  To quote wikipedia: In his 1997 book Rocking the Classics, critic and musicologist Edward Macan notes that In the Court of the Crimson King "may be the most influential progressive rock album ever released". The Who's Pete Townshend was quoted as calling the album "an uncanny masterpiece"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_the_Court_of_the_Crimson_King


The most famous track:  "21st Century Schizoid Man" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLHao_k0BmI

MY favourite track: "Epitaph" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiJy2GT_fBQ

The title track: "In The Court of The Crimson King" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlNantlznCA


I was lucky to see King Crimson on their tour with Tool... and Robert Fripp with Porcupine Tree... and Robert Fripp and Adrian Belew with Porcupine Tree... and whatever the hell the most recent ProjeKct was a few years ago.  I hope Fripp never stops.
...and there he was, reigning supreme at number two.  The One... The Only... The Unabeefer.



Offline LucasM

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I haven't done so before in this thread (never did in the '103 Movies' thread, either), but in case anyone is interested, these are what I voted for this time (in the order they are listed in the poll), and why:

In The Court of the Crimson King - King Crimson
I wouldn't listen to it regularly, but for many of the reasons TheUnabeefer gave, I voted for it.  My personal King Crimson taste tends much more toward 1981's Discipline, a superb album I may nominate at some point, if someone else doesn't beat me to it [like D.B. did with AXIS ;)].  [Had tickets to see them perform Discipline, but it was an outside venue and - at the entrance - they informed us all that because of the approaching thunderstorm it was cancelled for 'safety reasons' (like we gave a shit about little stuff like possible lightning strikes when Fripp, Belew, Levin and Bruford were nearby almost ready to play! ;D.]

Electric Ladyland - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Y'all know why I voted for this. ;)

The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars - David Bowie
This was the start of 'glam' rock (as well as 'hair metal', 'performance rock' [e.g. Alice Cooper], and more).  While Bowie went on to write and perform many albums that I prefer to this one, it was revolutionary in its time, with him creating a persona that Bowie had to fight hard to lose.  (I actually just watched a superb BBC special on Ziggy, with how it came about and how Bowie finally 'escaped' it.)

Rio - Duran Duran
I actually actively dislike this (DD's music sounds too simplistic and the instruments too 'shallow' for my taste [others may describe it as being 'direct' and 'clean-sounding'... depends how one approaches music]), but this was such a perfect representation of what the '80s were about to so many people, I voted for it.

Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical.  (Endlessly thudding backbeats - regardless of what instrument they are played on - with nothing else but vocal monotone, are not, to me, 'music'.  YMMV)


[[Again: yup... this thread may kill me.  But hey, it's all about music, a soul-enriching experience for me... so maybe I'll at least die happy. ;)]]
« Last Edit: July 25, 2012, 10:22:24 PM by LucasM »
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects


Invader_quirk

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Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical.  (Endlessly thudding backbeats - regardless of what instrument they are played on - with nothing else but vocal monotone, are not, to me, 'music'.  YMMV)

Exactly. I wouldn't have nominated that particular album because I think the other two are better albums (although Clint Eastwood may be my favorite song from them), but I love almost all Gorillaz because they made rap work. I generally despise rap, but I did not resist Gorillaz at all. They made it immediately clear that the problem with rap was not inherent, but rather the tendency the genre has for insipid lyrics and lack of actual musical merit.


Offline D.B. Barnes

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My personal King Crimson taste tends much more toward 1981's Discipline, a superb album I may nominate at some point, if someone else doesn't beat me to it [like D.B. did with AXIS ;)].  [Had tickets to see them perform Discipline, but it was an outside venue and - at the entrance - they informed us all that because of the approaching thunderstorm it was cancelled for 'safety reasons' (like we gave a shit about little stuff like possible lightning strikes when Fripp, Belew, Levin and Bruford were nearby almost ready to play! ;D.]

Discipline is easily my favorite King Crimson album and I was definitely planning on nominating it at some point, although it would seem somebody might just beat me to it.
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Offline LucasM

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Since I suspect there are some people who only visit this list when votin' time comes around, I figured I'd both bolster, and repost, what I included (after the fact) in my nomination for Jimi Hendrix - Electric Ladyland, because given the importance of this album, the proportions just don't seem right in the vote tallies thus far.

When Jimi was first playing with his band, in England, the people who populated the audience were people like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Animals [of course: it was Chaz Chandler who helped get Jimi started with his own band], and ultimately it was the key musicians of the time who first recognized the rare talent that came from this unassuming Seattle-born musician.

Jimi Hendrix is often referred to as 'The Greatest Guitarist Who Has Ever Lived'.  That may, or may not be the case; I think there are very viable reasons for stating so, not the least of which is the depth of emotion he was able to convey via the instrument, though others may focus more on the sheer number of sounds he was able to get out of an instrument most people are lucky to be able to 'strum a little'.  He also was at the forefront of squeezing the most music out of a studio, a tape machine, etc., and using effects to heighten the impact of what he played (e.g. moving sound between speakers, TUNED feedback, creating previously unavailable sound modifiers like what ultimately turned into a mainstay of guitarists: the phase shifter, speeding up/slowing down music as well as reversing it [yes, others such as The Beatles did that as well (but with The Beatles, it was largely Phil Spector twiddling the dials, on this album Jimi did it all himself, and did it better ;) )]).

But what really stands out for Hendrix is his composition.  The way his music flows from one approach to another, the quicksilver morphing from blues, to rock, to 'space' music, to jazz, and back again, or any combination of these (and more) ...or simply all the styles at once.  His lyrics were often science-fiction or fantasy based (or spiritually based, via s-f or fantasy, depending on the listener's predilections).  Hendrix didn't like the sound of his voice singing, but it has a great deal of both grace and power to it.

In this album (as this point is 'buried' below), Jimi Hendrix may have started what became fusion jazz (the entire '3rd album side' is easily its precursor [which is done better than most of those who played fusion jazz in the 70s]).  [Fusion jazz was the music that my friends and I were into (I more than most), while others in our school were into less involved music (simpler pop/rock).]  In the 70s, fusion jazz pretty much took over the magazine 'Down Beat' (the monthly jazz magazine of the time)... certainly those at its forefront were the major winners of the annual readers' poll [e.g. Weather Report, Return to Forever (both of whom you will read more about later in the poll ;))].  And I have found very few hints of that type and depth of music prior to Electric Ladyland.

And all of this: his guitar playing, his composition, his ground-breaking and blending of styles ALL come together on this album.

AXIS, Bold As Love, voted in in the last round, was Hendrix's 'Beethoven's 5th Symphony'.

Electric Ladyland, was his '9th'.  ;D


So: as those in Mayor Daley's Chicago used to say, "vote early, vote often," and make sure that Jimi's exceptional and ground-breaking final studio album makes it into your voting.

Thank you, and good night.  Now, I turn you back over to me, from about three pages back, that some of you likely missed (as the details were added a day or two after the original post):

[Oh... and if possible, listen to this album with headphones on.  You will be richly rewarded.]


This beats out AXIS for my favorite Hendrix album, despite how superb AXIS is (this is my favorite album of all time).  Hendrix raised the bar on what constituted a superb album with AXIS, then topped it with this just 11 months later.  A large majority of the songs on this album - when I am listening to them exclusively (i.e. 'not doing anything else at the same time') - can bring me to tears just from the beauty of the music, as well as much of it giving me head-to-toe goosebumps.

This album is not - by any means - 'background music'.  It fits with Hendrix's statement that [paraphrasing, because I can't remember which of the numerous things I've read about him it came from to find exact wording], "the listener of a particular piece of music should put as much effort into the listening as the artist did in the creation of that piece of music."

This album shows Hendrix's versatility as a composer and musician.  He plays 'space music' (...And the Gods Made Love), beautiful 'orchestral' music without a hint of standard orchestral instruments (1983, A Merman I Should Turn to Be [into] Moon Turn the Tides, Gently, Gently Away [first clip, below]), straight-ahead [well, as 'straight-ahead' as he ever got ;)] rock (Crosstown Traffic), a driving 'field holler'-style tune (Gypsy Eyes), 'classic' blues (Voodoo Chile [with an amazing 17 year old Steve Winwood actually keeping up with him in possibly the best keyboard playing of Steve's career], one of the most gut-wrenching odes to lonliness which he does in a sort-of neo-Victorian style (Burning of the Midnight Lamp [lyrics below]),  potentially the start of Jazz-Rock fusion (Rainy Day, Dream Away/Still Raining, Still Dreaming), and to my knowledge, the only cover of a Dylan song that Dylan thought was better than his own version (All Along the Watchtower).  [[Sorry I couldn't link all the tunes to YouTube cuts, but the second flash insert below has the full album, and, if you click the 'YouTube' button on it, it will take you to YouTube, where the uploader indexed where each tune begins.]]

On Electric Ladyland each vinyl 'album side' had a kind-of 'tone' to it, and yet, with all the variety of songs, it still works well as a single album... much like the movements of a symphony work together.

And this album - more than any other I can think of - shows just exactly how much music can possibly 'fit' into the tiny number of minutes each tune lasts [listen to Burning of the Midnight Lamp with eyes closed and try to guess how long it is: Hendrix 'expands time' with his music because there is so much depth to it].


Now for the 'samples':
One of the most incredible tunes he ever recorded (shows him 'playing the studio' every bit as well as the guitar):
<a href="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/z_D6qU525MY" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/z_D6qU525MY</a>

And, if you like, [which you should ;)], the full album, with time stamps listed in its written intro on the YouTube site so you can jump to any tune on it:
<a href="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/dAmvgGZkIL0" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/dAmvgGZkIL0</a>

Burning of the Midnight Lamp.  Lyrics are below so you can read them afterwards, but listen with eyes closed to get the depth of the music first, OK?
<a href="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/smNJQZxZMeA" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/smNJQZxZMeA</a>

Burning of the Midnight Lamp lyrics [spoiled for size]
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 09:48:33 PM by LucasM »
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects


Offline Starman!

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I voted for Ziggy Stardust, Electric Ladyland and Paul's Boutique (even though I think the Beastie Boys are overrated).


Russell

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For the next round I nominate
The Police
Synchronicity


Offline Johnny Unusual

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Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical.  (Endlessly thudding backbeats - regardless of what instrument they are played on - with nothing else but vocal monotone, are not, to me, 'music'.  YMMV)

Exactly. I wouldn't have nominated that particular album because I think the other two are better albums (although Clint Eastwood may be my favorite song from them), but I love almost all Gorillaz because they made rap work. I generally despise rap, but I did not resist Gorillaz at all. They made it immediately clear that the problem with rap was not inherent, but rather the tendency the genre has for insipid lyrics and lack of actual musical merit.

Yeah, well, I think that Plastic Beach and Demon Days are pretty awesome, but I decided to go with the first one because as much as I love the other albums, this one feels more like a game changer while the other ones are simply very strong continuations.  Personally, I like some rap, but what you might like about rap depends on what you enjoy in the art of it.  I think that there's a lot that depends on repeated sounds and there is an art to that, which is the same art in dance music, but since I'm not into dancing, I find a lot of it monotonous.  But there is some really great stuff out there if you look for it.

Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical. 

What about this.
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/yG_rEqCivn4" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/yG_rEqCivn4</a>

Sorry, I thought you said "a" musical.  Saying that rap is generally not musical isn't really fair.  I'm sure you have no intent to belittle, but I think the world of rap is far richer than you imply.  I mean, it would be like suggesting that modern rock is awful by basing your analysis on Foster the People and Nickelback.


Offline LucasM

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Personally, I like some rap, but what you might like about rap depends on what you enjoy in the art of it.  I think that there's a lot that depends on repeated sounds and there is an art to that, which is the same art in dance music, but since I'm not into dancing, I find a lot of it monotonous.  But there is some really great stuff out there if you look for it.

I agree 100% with what you say (that I highlighted in red).  That is also the essence of many raga-style tunes [I'll get back to that with later nominations ;) ].  It is also the absolute CORE of ambient/'chill' music [which I will also get back to with later nominations ;) ].


Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical.

Saying that rap is generally not musical isn't really fair.  I'm sure you have no intent to belittle, but I think the world of rap is far richer than you imply.  I mean, it would be like suggesting that modern rock is awful by basing your analysis on Foster the People and Nickelback.

You cut out the relevant part of my original comment to what would be my response to that (in particular, that part here highlighted with red, bold, italic, etc.):
Gorillaz - Gorillaz
I may very well be mistaken, but it seems to me this might be a breakthrough as the first 'rap' album that is actually musical.  (Endlessly thudding backbeats - regardless of what instrument they are played on - with nothing else but vocal monotone, are not, to me, 'music'.  YMMV)

It was my opinion on what I've heard before.  I didn't say it as an objective statement of fact about rap.  "I don't like what I've heard," is what that boiled down to.  There may very well be 'good' rap out there, but what would constitute 'good rap' to me would be so rare I'd spend all my time listening to stuff that would cause severe problems for me: with the head injuries, loud minimally-altering, throbbing sound is pretty much guaranteed to cause a headache from 'subclinical' seizure activity; thanks to the PTSD I got from the same accidents causing the head injuries, loud 'yelling' voices result in a full-body cringing, increased blood pressure and heartrate, and tension/agitation that may take DAYS to calm down.  I don't care to dig through the stuff that would cause all this for me on the off-chance that I MIGHT find something that I actually could listen to and enjoy.  So I generally avoid the genre as a whole.  [Gorillaz was initially heard by me by accident: I happened to be watching The Colbert Report and they were on, and I was surprised and amazed.]



[[This, actually, is a good example of why I've not expressed what I voted for before in this thread, nor did I ever do so on the '103 Films' poll: because it takes so much out of me to explain my position [this post took two hours to write]... and I tend to do so regardless of the condition I'm in (which is very 'not good' right now).  [My action: my responsibility for doing so.]

[[I would LOVE to share my thoughts like this, and clarify my viewpoint... that's one of the joys of communicating for me (especially about music!).  But - in the condition I am in, and have been in since last October - I really just can't afford to.  It causes too much damage (as pushing myself mentally has resulted in a permanent increase in my seizure disorder, for which I will have to take additional meds the rest of my life... I keep it up, and it continues to get worse :( ).]]
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 11:49:58 AM by LucasM »
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects