19 Albums Deserve to be Heard in Their Entirety

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Owning a complete album is worthless in the era of Spotify playlists and 99 downloads. 

Why listen to or purchase a whole album when you can get the highlights, you ask? Most of the time, that is innovative thinking. 

However, there are times when an album is so perfect, so wonderful from start to finish, that focusing solely on the few songs that are played on the radio would be a terrible disservice. 

Some albums have pieces that have the potential to be singles. 

Here are the albums you must listen to front to back, regardless of whether you support Spotify, Apple Music or own a record player and a vinyl collection. They are that wonderful.

Kanye West’s song “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.”

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You’re against Kanye West. He’s arrogant, conceited, and a little bit of a dick. We understand. 

However, keep Kanye, the person, from deterring you from Kanye, the musician, since some of his albums are pretty close to perfection. 

  • One of them—My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy—might even be ideal. 
  • You may infer what you’re getting from the title alone: a weird, ugly journey into Kanye’s head. 
  • Kanye’s most creative ideas are reportedly kept in the deepest recesses since the songs sound like Kanye on steroids. 
  • Nothing is kept back as the thoughts and emotions are on full blast. It’s absurd, fantastic, and above and beyond wonderful.

David Bowie’s The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars

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The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust by the late David Bowie introduced a make-believe world. 

  • You could take a shallow dive by listening to “Starman” or “Five Years,” but to understand what the legendary musician accomplished, we’d advise taking a deep dive. 
  • The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust offers a unique, utterly different listening experience and is sometimes referred to as a “sci-fi soap opera.” 
  • Sure, the concept of an album about an extraterrestrial visiting Earth and leaving a message seems like something that would be made for the $1 bin at your neighborhood record shop, but not in Bowie’s hands.

Bon Iver’s song “For Emma, Forever Ago.”

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For Emma, the song Forever Ago is mostly about singer Justin Vernon’s breakup with his then-girlfriend Christy Smith and his subsequent sense of being lost in society.

However, labeling it a “breakup album” out of the blue is unjust since that term is often attached to any album that discusses a divorce, regardless of how emotionless the songs are. 

  • For Emma, Forever Ago is not just a breakup record but much more. 
  • Vernon withdrew to his father’s remote cottage after the couple broke up to be alone and compose music. 
  • He achieved this by first writing tunes that, in his opinion, communicated more deeply. He then used terms to link them.
  • As lovely as any album produced in the last ten years, the outcome was an excruciating, terrible discharge of unrefined emotion. 
  • Just drop the needle and let it go on a chilly day. Every song is flawless.

Gorillaz’s Demon Days

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The general audience may fall flat on its face if it doesn’t understand a concept. 

So it wouldn’t have been surprising if Blur’s Damon Albarn and comic book artist Jamie Hewlett formed a virtual band, issued an album, and then lost interest. 

  • You may be aware that the reverse took place. 
  • The duo’s band, Gorillaz, was a great hit; they performed live gigs behind a screen while the audience enjoyed seeing the characters’ images. 
  • Their self-titled debut was decent, but their second album was superior. 
  • Demon Days contains jewels like “Feel Good Inc.” (you remember that one), “Dirty Harry,” and “DARE,” as well as contributions from MF DOOM, De La Soul, and many more. 
  • This one lives up to the anticipation and is often listed among the top albums.

Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue

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Just a few standout tracks won’t make your jazz album the best-selling jazz record of all time. Because Kind of Blue is the best jazz album, each tune is fantastic. 

  • Kind of Blue, recorded over two days at Columbia’s 30th Street Studio in 1959, has appeared on almost every ranking of the greatest albums ever made. 
  • Davis required the musicians to play inside a predetermined scale to create the modal jazz epic rather than providing them with a total score. 
  • You could do much worse on a lazy Sunday than to listen to Kind of Blue.

Untrue – Burial

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Untrue, the second album by electronic artist Burial, is on our list that you may not be acquainted with. The majority of it has no place on Top 40 radio. 

The dubstep album, considered the dubstep album by many, is a mishmash of rhythms and distorted voices. 

  • But what distinguishes it from many others in that genre is its capacity to force individuals to reconsider their ambiguity on dubstep. 
  • It’s strangely friendly, catchy, and can easily blend in with the background music. 
  • Although the album’s standout tune, “Archangel,” paves the way for other jewels throughout, “Untrue” is best appreciated as a whole rather than as a collection of individual songs.

Radiohead’s “OK Computer”

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It may have been thought that Radiohead was destined to be another gloomy pop-rock band of the time with the publication and subsequent success of the song “Creep.” 

  • They revealed their true selves to the world with OK Computer. 
  • The band succeeded in achieving the melancholy mood they would be renowned for by delving into subjects as broad as politics and consumerism. 
  • The songs of OK Computer were sophisticated, sometimes ethereal, and cross-genre, in contrast to “Creep’s” widespread and straightforward nature. 
  • The usage of Thom Yorke’s voice creates the same sense of instrumentation as any other piece.

Paul Simon’s song “Graceland.”

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The word “singer-songwriter” conjures up a few distinct images, including simplicity, thoughtful lyrics, and kindness. 

But in the right hands, this kind of music can be just as thrilling as any big hit from an eight-piece band. 

  • Just consider Paul Simon, one of the finest musicians ever, as evidence. 
  • The African influence on Simon’s eighth solo album, Graceland, gives the songs a new vibe in a genre that is sometimes criticized for becoming stale. 
  • Along with many other honors, it won the Grammy for Album of the Year in 1987.

The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

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Do you need us to convince you to buy the best record by the most influential band in music history? Why don’t we stick to the fundamentals instead? 

  • Rolling Stone named Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band has the best record of all time. 
  • The number of copies sold exceeds 30 million. 
  • The A.V. Club, The Daily Telegraph, Paste, Pitchfork, and several more outlets gave it an excellent rating. 
  • On a list of perfect albums, it is the ideal record.

Finding Daft Punk

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After the 1997 release of Homework, Daft Punk drifted away from the center of the music industry. 

  • They gained attention with songs like “Around the World,” but it took until the release of their sophomore album, Discovery, for the robotic French musicians to win fans. 
  • The 2001 album “Discovery: is a digital dance record that combines appealing singles like “One More Time” and “Digital Love” with background tracks like “Night Vision.” 
  • It’s a fantastic adventure that can be heard, full of beeps and blips.

Weezer – Pinkerton

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The Blue Album by Weezer is the apparent selection. By all the hits, we mean “Buddy Holly,” “Say It Ain’t So,” and “My Name Is Jonas.” Fantastic album, The Blue Album. Better is Pinkerton. 

  • Pinkerton is jam-packed with songs that are just as upbeat and catchy as Weezer’s first album but are also far more emotional. 
  • One listen to Pinkerton will demonstrate how far Rivers Cuomo advanced in his quest to create songs that were more authentic and truthful to his experience of loneliness while attending Harvard. 
  • Due to the album’s unfavorable reception after its release—possibly due to how different it was from the upbeat Blue Album—Weezer returned to their current cheerful, somewhat silly style. 
  • The album has a cult-like following due to it and the fact that Pinkerton is genuinely fantastic.

Wu-Tang Clan: Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)

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The album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) was the catalyst for several people’s careers. 

  • Enter the Wu-Tang is recognized for starting the East Coast Renaissance in hip-hop, being the first Wu-Tang album, and exposing the world to artists like R.Z.A Ghostface Killah, O.D.B.Method Man, and others. 
  • The music has a raw vibe, including soul and martial arts samples and rhythms. 
  • There isn’t a single song on the album that isn’t amazing, including the classics “Protect Ya Neck” and “C. R.E.A.M.”

Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumors”

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Rumors, recorded in California in 1976, is one of the most amazingly flawless albums from when the needle drops until it reaches an end. The band’s internal strife before they went into the recording studio is to blame for the dark lyrics. 

  • In actuality, “The Chain” is the only song to which everyone contributed. 
  • The outcome was an album that sounded like a therapy session and combined stirring songs by Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks, and Christine McVie. 
  • Instead of a yelling fight, you, the listener, were given a collection of masterfully written works on sorrow.

Kendrick Lamar’s Good child M.A.A.D. City

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More than just a terrific rap album was released by Kendrick Lamar with the release of Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City. The album, released in 2012, managed to sound both modern and timeless simultaneously. 

  • It had a new feel thanks to a moody, ethereal sound and production work by people like Pharrell Williams. 
  • However, it also felt like an album taken straight out of the golden age of Compton musicians like Dr. Dre and N.W.A. 
  • Even though his second album, Good Kid, was the one that genuinely made the public aware of Kendrick Lamar’s distinct style of rapping and story-telling, it was M.A.A.D, A city that did so.


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If a musician is fortunate, their first album will contain a few songs played on the radio. They could even think they’re lucky to have one. Boston was fortunate. 

  • Since it has so many radio-friendly tracks, you may mistake their self-titled debut for a Greatest Hits album. 
  • The album is a significant part of the soundtrack for those of us who grew up in the 1970s, and several songs are still regularly played on classic rock radio.

The IV album by Led Zeppelin

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When all genres have transformed into something unrecognizably new in the far future, Led Zeppelin IV will be remembered as the record that defined rock. 

  • Led Zeppelin’s fourth studio album, a financial and critical success, contains some of the most well-known rock songs of all time, including “Stairway to Heaven,” “Going to California,” and “Black Dog.” 
  • Even though Led Zeppelin is undoubtedly one of the most influential rock bands in history, only some records they released were flawless. 
  • When they finally nailed it, it was with Led Zeppelin IV.

Interpol’s “Turn on the Bright Lights”

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Being both well-liked and hip is challenging. Most cool things gain popularity and lose their awesomeness as a result. 

It is why Interpol’s first album, Turn on the Bright Lights, is so exceptional. 

  • Not only did it become a worldwide and domestic smash, but it still sounds like a song from a band that only you and a select few others are aware of. 
  • The music, which seems like it could be more radio-ready and most definitely doesn’t allow for big sing-alongs, is a contributing factor. 
  • Despite this, millions of people like the album and consider it their secret. 
  • In 2002, Pitchfork voted it the finest record of the year, and Rolling Stone named it one of the 100 best albums of the decade.

Frank Ocean, “Channel Orange”

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The album veers across genres, dabbling in spoken word, spoken hip-hop, funk, soul, and more. 

  • But the lyrics truly make the record shine since they give it a weight that unprepared listeners need to prepare for. 
  • With each of his characters, you get the impression that you are entering a confessional as they open up about their worries and sorrows. 
  • Ocean created one of the most complicated love and loss albums that would make any singer-songwriter envious, using surrealist visuals and several voices.

Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side of the Moon”

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Ignore that the album cover is displayed in every fraternity in the nation. Do not consider the possibility that stoners might rant endlessly over the lyrics. 

Remember to think about how much your dad enjoyed it. Whether or not you’re viewing The Wizard of Oz when you listen to The Dark Side of the Moon, it’s one of the best albums ever created. 

  • The band’s sound is toned down and the message is amplified on Pink Floyd’s eighth studio album. 
  • Each music appeals to a deep-seated desire or conviction that you have. 
  • It has been included on every list of the greatest albums ever made for a reason. 
  • Because each song represents a distinct period of life and is best appreciated when heard in sequence, The Dark Side of the Moon has a strong sense of cohesiveness. 
  • It comes across as one cohesive piece rather than a collection of songs. Yes, guy, it is that hefty.

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