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Via Chicago's Top 100 Albums of All Time: Summer 2010 edition

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{{{click here for the Top 100}}}

 

 

This was a lot of fun a couple of years ago (check out this thread for all the weird rulings, regrets about lists sent in too soon, bitching about each other's lists, etc.). So let's do it again!

 

As posted in the previous thread (because I'm too lazy to come up with new rules):

 

The concept is simple: everyone votes for their favorite 20 50 albums, and then I compile all the votes and come up with VC's Top 100. The rules are: there ain't no rules.

 

No, wait, that's not going to work. OK, the rules are:

 

1. Polls will open on June 15, and close on July 31 August 8. Results will be announced on August 8 15, or sooner if I've got my act together (or later if this "Top 50" business breaks me :P).

 

2. Feel free to post your lists in this thread, for discussion, lobbying, etc. However, anything posted in this thread, or PM'd to me, will not count as an official vote. Votes must be sent to VCtop100@gmail.com.

 

3. List your Top 20 50 albums of all time, numbered from 1 to 20 50, and please include both the album title and artist name. Also include your VC screen name and your real name (first name only is fine), just in case I need to verify anything about your vote.

 

4. I will give each #1 vote 20 50 points, #2 will get 19 49, etc. Please don't list anything as a "tie". I will come back to you and make you decide. :pirate I know it's nearly impossible to make a list like this, but give it your best shot. Flip a coin for the ties, if you have to.

 

5. Once you submit your list, that's it. No take-backs, no changes. That's why the voting period is so long. You've got plenty of time to refine your list, think out loud in this thread, etc. Make it perfect, and then send it to me. (I cannot stress this enough. Post your list, and give everyone else a chance to say "dude, what about that one album that you always talk about, how did you forget that one...?" Trust me. You will regret it if you don't.)

 

Note that there were some questions asked in the previous round, that required rulings from me. My rulings are final. Anyone who wants to make a list with their own rules can do so, but not until after this thread is closed. :P Some of the rulings I made previously were that compilations, live albums, box sets, etc., are all OK. Pretty much anything that was released commercially counts. No singles, just albums; I think what I said in that last thread was that EPs are iffy, but if you can make a case for it, I'll accept it. I'll answer other questions in this thread, as they come up, but feel free to go back and check the other thread, too.

 

Obviously, thinking strategically about how to get your picks into the top 100 goes against the spirit of the exercise, but I will point Big Star fans to this post. Keep it in mind, people!

 

OK, start working on those lists! :thumbup I'm looking forward to seeing what changes people come up with since the last round.

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can't it be 100 choices, or at least 50?

surely everyone can think of that many, and it'll mean there won't just be a list of beatles & bob dylan albums.

although, i assume it might result it it being harder to work out the votes. or maybe not, you just do 100 points for no.1 down to 1 point for no. 100

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The results were in a spreadsheet the last time, and if you look at the full results (click here) you'll see that there were a total of 563 different albums, from 58 people who sent in their top 20s.

 

So yeah, a longer list from each contributor is going to give us more total albums, but is it going to change the Top 100 all that much? I'm not sure that it will. Note that when you get to #100, you're talking about albums that only got votes from 2 or 3 people. I'd much rather see more people contributing, than having a (relatively) small group of people send in longer lists.

 

Also: 100 albums from each contributor is definitely going to be a ton more work for me! The whole thing will be a little easier than last time, since I'm assuming that a lot of the same albums are going to turn up on the list again, so I won't need to re-enter all of those. But each vote still needs to be entered on the spreadsheet, that's where the real work comes in. And a spreadsheet with 100 vote columns would be totally crazy to work with.

 

I'd be willing to go up to a Top 40 list from everyone, if there's a real belief out there that 20 was too limiting. But I'd also reserve the right to pull that back to Top 20s again the next time we do this, if the 40s make me nuts. :)

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go on, make it 50.

 

that 563 figure from 58 people shows why 20 votes for a top 100 doesn't work to show a fair representation of what those 58 people like. this is because 3 people might vote sgt pepper, for example, at number 20 - and yet it ends up being no.1 simply because all the other votes are spread out. (that's an extreme example, i know)

 

one thing i forgot to say is that if it's 20 again then my list stays the same. which is a bit boring, and the list is more likely to be different (unless loads of new people vote) if there are more votes per person.

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Fifty is probably a happy compromise. I understand both sides of this argument, on the one hand greater number of votes allows the voter more chance to express their tastes, and this might draw out and boost some of the interesting and different low-scoring entries a tad. On the other hand, the only thing that will change the chart outcome significantly - beyond the sacred Beatles, Dylan, Pink Floyd, Led Zep, Wilco - is to get more/new people to vote, and increasing the number needed to vote can be daunting for the voter, ultimately detracting as many as it attracts. Not to mention it being a total ballache to compile (I know having done a few myself).

 

Like Joss, if we stick to 20 albums then I can see my list being exactly the same. And if this mindset is consistent with other voters then the pack of the final results will remain similar and only slightly shuffled.

 

Happy to support whatever decision is made though.

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that 563 figure from 58 people shows why 20 votes for a top 100 doesn't work to show a fair representation of what those 58 people like. this is because 3 people might vote sgt pepper, for example, at number 20 - and yet it ends up being no.1 simply because all the other votes are spread out. (that's an extreme example, i know)

If you look at the list, though, when you get down to the 90s, you've really only got two or three people voting for each of those albums. I think all you're going to to do with more picks is shuffle those bottom-of-the-listers a bit, I don't think it's going to significantly change the top picks.

 

Can someone with a more statistically-astute mind than mine take a look at that, and let me know if I'm interpreting that correctly? I think I'm right on this one, I think we're just going to end up with a lot more albums, but not a lot of change at the top of the list. Again, I think it's more statistically valid to get 20 picks from 200 people, than to get 100 picks from 40 people. Maybe not as much fun, though...

 

 

one thing i forgot to say is that if it's 20 again then my list stays the same. which is a bit boring, and the list is more likely to be different (unless loads of new people vote) if there are more votes per person.

Yeah, I'll admit, I'm far more sympathetic to this argument.

 

 

Fifty is probably a happy compromise. I understand both sides of this argument, on the one hand greater number of votes allows the voter more chance to express their tastes, and this might draw out and boost some of the interesting and different low-scoring entries a tad. On the other hand, the only thing that will change the chart outcome significantly - beyond the sacred Beatles, Dylan, Pink Floyd, Led Zep, Wilco - is to get more/new people to vote, and increasing the number needed to vote can be daunting for the voter, ultimately detracting as many as it attracts. Not to mention it being a total ballache to compile (I know having done a few myself).

People did actually ask the last time if they needed to do all 20!

 

Also, since when is 50 a happy compromise??? Please take another look at that spreadsheet, and talk to me about what a total ballache that's going to be with more than 20 votes per person! :P

 

 

OK, since the voting technically doesn't begin until tomorrow, this will be up for discussion for another day. If I hear any more votes for... well, for more votes :) I'll bump it up to 50. If I hear anyone saying that that's too many, I'll make an executive decision by midnight tonight, for either 20 or 40. Check back in the morning (afternoon-ish for you across-the-ponders) for the final word.

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Also, since when is 50 a happy compromise???

 

An extra 80 votes (Joss' original request)? Or an extra 30? I'd say that's happier...um... ish?! ;)

 

Please take another look at that spreadsheet, and talk to me about what a total ballache that's going to be with more than 20 votes per person! :P

 

I'm happy to help out and lighten your load: I've got form in compiling album lists, albeit to a very basic sub-novice standard.

 

OK, since the voting technically doesn't begin until tomorrow, this will be up for discussion for another day. If I hear any more votes for... well, for more votes :) I'll bump it up to 50. If I hear anyone saying that that's too many, I'll make an executive decision by midnight tonight, for either 20 or 40. Check back in the morning (afternoon-ish for you across-the-ponders) for the final word.

 

Many thanks for sorting this and your efforts!

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So, are we doing 20 or 40, then? :unsure

That's still up in the air. It's going to be either 20, 40, or 50, depending on what people have to say about it, for the next day or so:

OK, since the voting technically doesn't begin until tomorrow, this will be up for discussion for another day. If I hear any more votes for... well, for more votes :) I'll bump it up to 50. If I hear anyone saying that that's too many, I'll make an executive decision by midnight tonight, for either 20 or 40. Check back in the morning (afternoon-ish for you across-the-ponders) for the final word.

 

Also, remember: voting starts tomorrow, but is open for weeks and weeks. Don't worry about sending me anything right away. Once the number is definite, I will make that perfectly clear, in a new post and also by amending the top post in this thread.

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An extra 80 votes (Joss' original request)? Or an extra 30? I'd say that's happier...um... ish?! ;)

Yeah, I was taking the request for 100 as not even in the realm of possibility. :lol So I was kind of hoping that 40 would be seen as the happy compromise offer! But I know, I know, if I could do 40, why not 50...

 

Thanks for your offer of help, too. :yes

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33 1/3 !

 

Hey, thanks for doing this again.

The process is fun to watch, and the results are kinda cool too.

The sociological aspect of our inability to follow simple rules as a group is priceless.

 

I may have asked this last time, but is it easier if we voters send you a spreadsheet you can cut/paste into yours rather than just text in an email to re-type?

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The sociological aspect of our inability to follow simple rules as a group is priceless.

Agreed! A lifetime ago, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth and physical discs were still traded through the mail, I had to quit doing B&Ps because it made me nuts that people couldn't follow the most simple instructions. :twitchsmile

 

 

I may have asked this last time, but is it easier if we voters send you a spreadsheet you can cut/paste into yours rather than just text in an email to re-type?

Based on the above, I'm going to say: probably not. :lol Even though in a perfect world this would be the way to go, if I got anything from anyone that screwed up the master spreadsheet, I'd probably go ballistic. I'm hanging by a thread at the best of times, people!

 

No, thanks for the suggestion, and I should probably work on figuring out an easier way to do this for the next time (an on-line form, maybe?), but for now, let's just stick with the lists. I'll work it out, no worries. :thumbup

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Having heard no complaints about Top 50 lists (aside from my own :ermm ), that's what we'll be doing.

 

 

Rev 'em up, folks! Give me your Top 50 of all time, let's see what ya got!

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Sent 'em in.

Here's my list:

 

1. Beach Boys - Pet Sounds

2. Beatles - Revolver

3. Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea

4. Harry Nilsson - Nilsson Schmilsson

5. Kinks - Something Else

6. Wire - Pink Flag

7. Toots & The Maytalls - Funky Kingston

8. Tom Zé - Estuando a Samba

9. John Cale - Paris, 1919

10. Guided By Voices - Alien Lanes

11. Brian Eno - Another Green World

12. Brinsley Schwarz - Cruel To Be Kind (Live @ the BBC)

13. Television - Marquee Moon

14. Sam Cooke - The Man & His Music

15. Roy Wood - Boulders

16. Violent Femmes - Violent Femmes

17. Nick Lowe - Jesus of Cool

18. Nick Drake - Bryter Layter

19. Joe Pisapia - Daydreams

20. Meat Puppets - Up On the Sun

21. Uncle Tupelo - No Depression

22. Harry Nilsson - Aerial Ballet

23. Hüsker Dü - New Day Rising

24. XTC - Drums & Wires

25. The La's - The La's

26. Blur - Parklife

27. Shrimp Boat - Cavale

28. Nick Cave - Abbatoir Blues/Lyre of Orpheus

29. James - Laid

30. Yo La Tengo - Electr-O-Pura

31. Miles Davis - Kind Of Blue

32. De La Soul - 3 Feet High & Rising

33. Sun Ra - Jazz In Silhouette

34. XTC - Skylarking

35. Martin Newell - The Greatest Living Englishman

36. Teenage Fanclub - Songs From Northern Britain

37. Operation Ivy - Energy

38. Richard Hell & The Voidoids - Blank Generation

39. Bruce Springsteen - Born To Run

40. Matthew Sweet - Girlfriend

41. Thin Lizzy - Jailbreak

42. Willie Nelson - The Red Headed Stranger

43. Prince - Purple Rain

44. Super Furry Animals - Radiator

45. My Bloody Valentine - Loveless

46. Jim Ford - Harlan County

47. Charles Mingus - Mingus Ah Um

48. Los Lobos - Kiko

49. 13th Floor Elevators - The Psychedelic Sounds Of...

50. Pixies - Surfer Rosa

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And you are the first person to get asked: dude, seriously? :lol I'm not saying I'm not going to take it, but...

 

5. Once you submit your list, that's it. No take-backs, no changes. That's why the voting period is so long. You've got plenty of time to refine your list, think out loud in this thread, etc. Make it perfect, and then send it to me. (I cannot stress this enough. Post your list, and give everyone else a chance to say "dude, what about that one album that you always talk about, how did you forget that one...?" Trust me. You will regret it if you don't.)

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I believe I was the person last time who asked if we had to list all 20. :lol It's not that I couldn't think of 20 ... or 50 ... albums I like a whole lot. I guess I just have less faith than everyone else in my own personal ability to be the arbiter of "Best Album Of All Time" as spread over 50 choices, especially given the number of albums in existence that I've never even heard. Maybe I'm just thinking about this in the wrong way. Regardless, I'm sure you'll be getting a list from me. :thumbup

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Yeah, I think for a lot of people, it's a question of a big drop-off after a certain number. Not that you can't come up with 20, or 50, or whatever, but after your top 10 maybe, you're just not nearly as passionate about the next batch.

 

Anyway, everyone send me what you can. And if you don't have 50, start horse-trading in this thread to throw a few extra points to someone else's #51!

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I believe I was the person last time who asked if we had to list all 20. :lol It's not that I couldn't think of 20 ... or 50 ... albums I like a whole lot. I guess I just have less faith than everyone else in my own personal ability to be the arbiter of "Best Album Of All Time" as spread over 50 choices, especially given the number of albums in existence that I've never even heard. Maybe I'm just thinking about this in the wrong way. Regardless, I'm sure you'll be getting a list from me. :thumbup

 

i did my list last time, and will this time, based on the albums I LIKE THE BEST, not on the best albums. otherwise i'd have chosen Pet Sounds, as it's the most perfect album ever made. however, if i want to listen to the beach boys i nearly always grab Holland instead - which is why that was in my list last year and Pet Sounds wasn't. anyway, that's how i'm doing my list - i might think some of them are the best albums ever made and i might think some of them aren't, but all of them will be 50 of my favourite albums of all time.

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And you are the first person to get asked: dude, seriously? :lol I'm not saying I'm not going to take it, but...

 

Oh.

Me fail English?

That unpossible!

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have to start widdling down. Didn't actually make the last version of this poll.

 

Richard Buckner - The Hill

Bob Dylan � Highway 61

Springsteen - Nebraska

Teenage Fanclub - Grand Prix

Elvis - Sun Sessions

Wilco - YHF

Procol Harum � A salty Dog

Love - Forever Changes

Elvis Costello � Blood and Chocolate

You Am I � Hourly Daily

Songs:Ohia - Come Un fantasma

Calexico � Feast of Wire

Josh Ritter � Hello Starling

Replacements � Please to Meet Me

Minutemen � Double Nickels on a dime

Beach boys � Pet Sounds

Toots and the Maytals � Funky Kingston

Bowie � Hunky Dory

Talking Heads � Remain in Light

Rolling stones � Exile on Mainstreet

Beatles � Revolver

UT � March 16-19 1993

Liz Phair � Exile in Guyville

Wrens � Meadowlands

Neutral Milk Hotel - In the aeroplane under the sea

Randy Newman � Good Ole Boys

Husker Du � New Day Rising

Pernice Brothers � World Won�t End

Japan � Obscure Alternatives

Magazine � Play

Pavement � Wowee Zowee

Townes Van Zandt � High, Low and Inbetween

Tom Waits � Mule Variations (but this changes weekly)

Jam � All Mod Cons

Brian Eno � Here Comes the Warm Jets

Kinks � Village Green Preservation Society

Gun Club � Fire of Love

Zombies � Odyssey and Oracle

Burning Spear � Marcus Garvey

Pogues � Run Sodomy and the Lash

Faces � Five Guys Walk into a Bar

Radio Birdman � Radios Appear

REM � Reckoning

Big Star � Number 1 record/Radio City

Bottle Rockets � Brooklyn Side

Johnny Cash � at San Quentin

Clash � London Calling

Grant Hart � Ecco Homo

Nick Lowe � Labour of Lust

Van Morrison � Astral Weeks

Mummies � Fuck the mummies

Elliott Smith � Either/Or

Steely Dan- Pretzel Logic

Richard Thompson � Hand of Kindness

The Who � Quadrophenia

Urge Overkill - Saturation

Shriekback - Care

XTC - Black Sea

Matthew Sweet - Girlfriend

Echo and the Bunnymen - Porcupine

The National - Alligator

Broken Family Band - Hello Love

Broken Family band - Welcome Home Loser

One Hundred Dollars - Forest of Tears

Palace Music - Viva Las Blues

Deadly Snakes - I'm not Your Soldier Anymore

Damien Jurado - I Break Chairs

Weakerthans - Left and Leaving

Rock Plaza Central - Are We Not Horses?

Joe Strummer and Los Mescaleros - Streetcore

New Pornographers - Mass Romantic

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I'm going to be a crumudgeon and boycott this on general principals.

 

I am so very tired of hipsters using lists to show how hip they are. I don't need to see some Hungarian heavy alterna-metal band nobody has ever heard of outside of the confines of internet message boards touted as having 'the best record ever'. Pffft.

 

I'm cranky.

 

I'm old.

 

And I am not hip.

 

So ya'll shouldn't care what I think is the best of all time, because, if truth be told, I really don't care what anyone else thinks.

 

By the way on a different and much less cranky note...I just heard Lou Barlow on an in-studio performance at KXT is Dallas...the dude has game.

 

(Can you see the irony here? I point it out because there are quite a few humor challenged people here.)

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