Overrated 'Classic' Albums

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Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby SilentScream on Sun Feb 27, 2011 3:12 pm

Ever listened/bought a album that was/is universally regarded as Classic and thought.....
Nah, not really.

Pet Sounds by The Beach Boys is one for me. Some good tracks - God Only Knows, Caroline No and Sloop John B - but the thing just sounds so bloody twee to me, lightweight, slightly repetitive and never nothing more than pleasant. It passes by like comfortable night in, nothing exciting happens, nothing out the ordinary. Just, well, slipper and pipe time music. How it garnered it's huge reputation is a mystery to me. OK, Brian Wilson went ga-ga for a while but is this really the reason to overhype the thing in order to justify his so-called mad genius?
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby minstrel on Sun Feb 27, 2011 3:36 pm

I'll go out on a limb here and say Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, by the Beatles, along with a few other albums they recorded late in their careers. These are great albums, no question, from a couple of the best songwriters who ever worked in popular music, but I find that, because the pop music press regards the Beatles as gods, they regard their albums as the revealed words and music of gods, and that's not quite the case. Great albums, yes, especially for their time (they all sound a bit dated these days), but musical Bibles? Not so much. Celebrate them for what they are, but don't say they're divinely inspired.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby Seppuku on Sun Feb 27, 2011 5:14 pm

Personally, I preferred the Beatles when they were a male girl group. Those songs sounded alive! Something sterile started to seep in around Help.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby TheBaxter on Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:15 pm

i was looking for a thread for the most UNDERRATED albums, but this is all i found, so...

i just saw U2 last week for the 4th time, and once again was disappointed that they didn't play a single song from "POP". this is easily their most underrated record (not to be confused with their most OVERRATED album, the joshua tree). i really think all the superficial stuff that went along with the record got in the way and confused people. between the discotheque video with them doing a village people imitation, all the talk in the press about going "techno" and using dance and club music influences, and of course the ridiculously over-the-top Popmart tour, all this extraneous crap obscured what was really a very sonically challenging and emotional record full of great songs and soulful performances. sure, there are 2 or 3 really horrible songs on the record too, but that's true of EVERY U2 record, so it shouldn't be held against them just this one time. a lot of people i don't think gave the record a fair shake because they thought it was something it wasn't based on all that other stuff.

every time i listen to this record, i feel like it's their most fulfilling and consistent record, which i guess is ironic consider all the difficulties they had making it, all the different producers and engineers they worked with, etc. but it's just a very solid collection of songs. Discotheque is a very good pop song whose lyrics get misunderstood and gave a lot of people the wrong impression of what the band was trying to say and do with this record. Do You Feel Loved is another very good upbeat song that brings in the electronic influences in a non-intrusive successful way. MOFO is the over-the-top techno song of the album, and is understandably divisive, but is probably the most successful of the pure techno songs on the record. If God Will Send His Angels is just a gorgeous ballad, one of their best IMO, particularly due to it's understated manner. U2 isn't exactly known for understatement, which is a shame as this song shows how good they can be when they hold back a little. Staring at the Sun is a cool little piece of psychedelic pop, Last Night on Earth is a fantastic rock song, and Gone is one of my all time favorite U2 songs, with some pretty deep and powerful lyrics and a great guitar motif that accentuates the despair of the vocals. Miami and Playboy Mansion, back to back, are the duds of the record, just absolutely terrible songs. but once you get through that, its If You Wear That Velvet Dress, a sublime song that gets under your skin. i'm generally not a fan of U2's slower, quieter songs that they stick near the end of albums, but this one is really good. then you have another very emotionally powerful song with Please, and end up with the haunting Wake Up Dead Man.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby Peven on Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:43 pm

U2's entire body of work is over-rated. they are the most over-rated, over-paid band.........maybe ever
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby so sorry on Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:46 pm

TheBaxter wrote:i just saw U2 last week for the 4th time,

Heard it was a great show down there. Going to see them this month in Philly (probably my 4th time too... going back to the "overrated" ( :evil:) Joshua Tree tour in '87).

TheBaxter wrote:and once again was disappointed that they didn't play a single song from "POP". this is easily their most underrated record


Meh, never did anything for me personally... except...

TheBaxter wrote:Gone is one of my all time favorite U2 songs, with some pretty deep and powerful lyrics and a great guitar motif that accentuates the despair of the vocals.


Hell yes, fantastic song.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby minstrel on Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:42 pm

I think "The Unforgettable Fire" is an UNDERrated album by U2. Everyone talks about "The Joshua Tree", but "The Unforgettable Fire" is better, IMO. It's the first album on which U2 really sounded like nobody else on Earth. They identified themselves with that album. (I'm sure Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois had a lot to do with that.)

They started a slide after that. JT is good, but not really all that great. After that, Bono's ego started outgrowing the band, and The Edge dialed back his amazing sonic experiments. U2 became just another rock band.

Something magic happened on Unforgettable Fire. But I haven't bought a U2 album since Joshua Tree, because what I hear on the radio doesn't amaze me anymore.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby so sorry on Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:59 pm

minstrel wrote: But I haven't bought a U2 album since Joshua Tree, because what I hear on the radio doesn't amaze me anymore.


If you only buy albums based on amazing music you must have one tiny collection!
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby TheBaxter on Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:14 am

minstrel wrote:I think "The Unforgettable Fire" is an UNDERrated album by U2. Everyone talks about "The Joshua Tree", but "The Unforgettable Fire" is better, IMO. It's the first album on which U2 really sounded like nobody else on Earth. They identified themselves with that album. (I'm sure Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois had a lot to do with that.)

They started a slide after that. JT is good, but not really all that great. After that, Bono's ego started outgrowing the band, and The Edge dialed back his amazing sonic experiments. U2 became just another rock band.

Something magic happened on Unforgettable Fire. But I haven't bought a U2 album since Joshua Tree, because what I hear on the radio doesn't amaze me anymore.


agree about unforgettable fire, it's also a great record, their best of the 80s IMO. i'd put POP as best of the 90s, and Atomic Bomb as best since 2000.

i have to disagree with edge "dialing back his sonic experiments", if anything in the 90s he took a much more experimental approach. instead of just relying on the chimey, echoey guitar parts he employed in the 80s, he used tons of different effects and different recording techniques to branch out from that sound. there's stuff on POP that you wouldn't even know was guitar unless someone told you. his sound got a lot more diverse in the 90s, to varying degrees of success. after POP bombed (relatively speaking) though, he's since dialed it back and taken a safer approach, but that's ok, he's got a big enough library of sounds and techniques to fall back on now and still make some great music. their last album was actually their most creatively ambitious and experimental since POP, unfortunately it's also their crappiest.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby minstrel on Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:48 pm

Bax, you're probably right. I haven't heard enough of their music recently to know what's been going on with U2 - as I said, I haven't bought one of their albums in a long while. I did actually buy a concert DVD of theirs within the past couple of years, but I haven't gotten around to watching it yet! Yes, I buy a lot of stuff I don't watch or listen to. I need to buy more shelves to hold stuff I haven't looked at yet.
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby Nice Marmot on Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:17 pm

Wilco's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. I listened to this album in its entirety 4 or 5 times for the first 2 years it was out. It does absolutely NOTHING for me. All my friends and all the critics and whoever declared it the best thing EVER. Everyone was so all over it I started convincing myself I must have a chemical imbalance or something. Whatever everyone is getting or understanding about it is flying WAY over my head.

And I'd repeat that same exact paragraph for that first Strokes album.

Are those classics?

There aren't any overrated 'classic' albums that I hate. I agree that Sgt.Peppers and Joshua Tree, both mentioned already, are overrated but I still enjoy them. I would even consider Dark Side of the Moon and Led Zeppelin's 4th overrated, but I still love them to death.

To this day I've never listened to Pet Sounds. Always wanted to see what the big fuss was . . .

Someone said a LOT of later Beatle's albums are overrated. If you told me White Album or Abbey Road were overrated, I'd be dumbfounded. I could listen to those albums once a day. Except for that #9 song . . .
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Re: Overrated 'Classic' Albums

Postby so sorry on Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:36 pm

Nice Marmot wrote:Except for that #9 song . . .


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