Entertainment Weekly has recently come out with its list of 1000 best of the last 25 years (1983-2008). Basically it’s a list of the top 100 music, movies, TV shows, books, etc over the last 25 years. Of course the top 100 albums is a just a mess. Now I understand the reason for these lists: they generate discussion. And by being controversial, the list is discussed, linked to, and argued over. If EW’s list made any sense, I probably wouldn’t have mentioned it. Furthermore, I understand that EW has to have a much broader range of musical types than what interests me.
But given those caveats, come on EW, your list is just mind blowingly bad. For instance there is no Nirvana Nevermind on the list. Let me repeat, Nevermind wasn’t even considered the 100th best album of the last 25 years. The album that basically ended the popularity of hair metal bands, the album that practically generated a new genre of popular music, that created a whole new way of dressing. An album that doesn’t have a bad track on the and a few classics that will be played 50 years from now.
But it’s not just a lack of Nevermind that makes the list suspect. How about the fact that Radiohead’s OK Computer is listed at #62 while Sheryl Crow’s debut is listed at #39? Achtung Baby listed at #3 but Joshua Tree at #63? In Rainbows at #10? Mariah Carey at #21 while Replacements Let It Be at #89 (I guess we should be thankful EW even know it exits!)
According to EW, 2007 was a banner year for popular music as five albums from that year were the best of the last 25 years. The early 1990s (1990-1993) had some of the driest years (which again makes the case for Nevermind). For what it’s worth I have 29 of the albums on my I-Pod. Plus I think a couple more are bouncing around our house on other I-Pod’s. Below is the top 20 but check out the entire list here. What do you think of the list?
1. Purple Rain Prince and the Revolution (1984)
2. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill Lauryn Hill (1998)
3. Achtung Baby U2 (1991)
4. The College Dropout Kanye West (2004)
5. Madonna Madonna (1983)
6. American Idiot Green Day (2004)
7. The Blueprint Jay-Z (2001)
8. Graceland Paul Simon (1986)
9. Back to Black Amy Winehouse (2007)
10. In Rainbows Radiohead (2007)
11. MTV Unplugged in New York Nirvana (1994)
12. Stankonia OutKast (2000)
13. You Are Free Cat Power (2003)
14. Disintegration The Cure (1989)
15. The Marshall Mathers LP Eminem (2000)
16. Rain Dogs Tom Waits (1985)
17. Odelay Beck (1996)
18. People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm A Tribe Called Quest (1990)
19. Dangerously in Love Beyoncé (2003)
20. Tidal Fiona Apple (1996)