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I don’t know if you can call the marketing campaign a success just because it yielded a #1 album in a week where the only significant competition was a Katy Perry album that had been out for half a month. “Reflektor” actually sold slightly less than “The Suburbs,” and given the intense marketing campaign – to say nothing of the massive profile boost garnered by the AOTY Grammy – I would call that a pretty clear insistence of under-performing, commercially.
That’s just my inner chart geek talking though. My inner Arcade Fire fan doesn’t care how the album performs commercially because it’s awesome.
But think about it from an NME writers perspective: if you start including acts from places like Africa, Asia, or South America, where like 80% of the world’s population lives, how would you ever find room for albums from every sad-sack Brit-Pop warbler and wannabe-soul-diva to play Top of the Pops in the past four decades?
Well, you’re still right :P
Multiple people have expressed this exact complaint already.
Ranking Vespertine over Homogenic is common enough for Bjork fans, even if its not orthodox. Ranking Debut as her best isn’t just strange, its completely bizarre, and I really don’t know anyone, even other Bjork diehards, who would consider it a Top 50 contender on a list like this, It’s not an especially ambitious album, and the songwriting is good but still weaker than anything she did up until Volta/Biophilia.
Like you said, it just doesn’t show any understanding of her progression as an artist. It’s like putting “The Bends” over “OK Computer” and “Kid A” — maybe not *indefensible* as a matter of personal preference, but neglects what made the artist special to their fans and significant to the evolution of popular music as a whole. And yeah, if you’re going to argue for “pop Bjork” over “avant garde Bjork,” “Post” is the obvious choice, since the songs have more depth and also it has her biggest hits.
Agreed. Love the Smiths, buts its an awful choice for #1.
think “The Queen is Dead” gets overrated on albums lists because it seems wrong to snub such a great band and I guess that’s their masterpiece if you’re inclined to agree that any Smiths album is a masterpiece. It is the best album by one of the best bands, but that doesn’t mean its one of the best albums ever. IMO Smiths singles > Smiths albums.
Interesting piece. I suppose my major objection would be that a lot of the artists you mention just don’t sound like each other at all (what sounds like Yeezus other than Yeezus? Certainly not Haim or Lorde). Also, that pop acts, pop-rock acts, and crossover hip-hop acts would all be dabbling in the same trendy sounds isn’t especially surprising… if you go deeper into a particular genre you’ll definitely find a lot more diversity of influences and sounds, even a willingness to revel in a particular niche (think Savages, the Knife, Run the Jewels). And then you have acts like Sleigh Bells who really fit your account of what the monogenre is like, but also have a distinctive and immediately recognizable sound.
I think part of what’s going on here is that the reception of a new act or a new single now often depends on whether or not people will want to add it to their playlists. Lorde and Haim can go on a playlist with pretty much anything, and their songs are strong enough that they may well steal the show. It’s a good recipe for turning casual fans into converts.
Not sure if I’d ultimately put in my top 10 but I kind of love “The Antidote” from the soundtrack to whatever Twilight movie came out last year. I never would have heard it if I hadn’t come across it on Spotify. Takes her genius for awesome guitar tones and channels it into a sick little arena rock riff. One of her catchier choruses too.
Yeah, it’s already a solid song, but the live version is a Top 10 for sure.