Recently, we read an article in the Guardian wherein critic Tom Ewing proclaimed loudly that he’d never heard Nirvana’s Nevermind. While Ewing’s oversight was apparently more due to apathy than willful ignorance — as he writes, “often I let an album pass me by, watch the buzz around it swell, crest and ebb” — the piece did get us thinking about how we’re generally of the opinion that you should give everything a chance, and then make a judgement, not dismiss things out of hand because they don’t fit your view of what’s good and what ain’t. While only the most curmudgeonly would dismiss Nevermind out of hand, there are plenty of other less fashionable albums that people these days tend to dismiss a priori as terminally uncool. And so we got to thinking about some such unfashionable records that we still think are totally worthy of a spot on your shelf and/or your iPod. We’ve nominated a few after the jump — (polite) suggestions are, as ever, welcome.
Pink Floyd — The Dark Side of the Moon
Curiously enough, if there’s any Floyd revisionism going on these days, it’s directed toward their Syd Barrett era (a point demonstrated amply by the backlash in the comments section of an article we ran a while back that nominated The Piper at the Gates of Dawn as a relatively ropey debut album). The rest of the band’s oeuvre is still mired in a perception that it’s all overblown stadium pizzle and giant inflatable pigs, and that Roger Waters et al should remain firmly in dad’s record collection, and/or on the cover of Mojo (which is basically the same thing). But wait, grab that copy of The Dark Side of the Moon and stick it on the turntable. You’ll be rewarded with the best lyrics Waters ever wrote — particularly “Time,” which contains a two-for-one package of cutting observations on fleeting youth and English society — and music that still sounds startlingly contemporary today.