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Added by JxSxPx on 5 Jul 2017 06:25
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500 CDs You Must Own Before You Die!

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Classic Rock

From Blender, 2003

Your guide to the finest CD collection available to humanity. Use it well.

There was a time when a person had to endure a lifetime of searching and disappointment to assemble an excellent music collection. But not anymore. The gracious experts at Blender have compiled the Mother of All Lists, one which should put an end to all confusion and musical unfulfillment: The 500 CDs You Must Own Before You Die. We tell you what the greatest CDs of all time are, and what made them that way. Then, borrow about $7500 from your parents and get collecting!

WRITTEN BY:
John Aizlewood, Matt Ashare, Michael Azerrad, Greg Beato, Johnny Black, Ben Brandt, J.D. Considine, John DeFore, Tom Doyle, Richard Gehr, Joe Gross, Gerald Hammill, John Harris, David Hiltbrand, Erik Himmelsbach, Hua Hsu, Howard Johnson, Daniel Krauss, Stuart Maconie, Craig Marks, Andy Pemberton, Tony Power, David Quantick, Richard Skanse, RJ Smith, David Smyth, Phil Sutcliffe, Rob Tannenbaum and Jonah Weiner

Edited by John Aizlewood
People who added this item 311 Average listal rating (214 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 0
Highway to Hell - AC/DC
The album that firmly cemented AC/DC’s trademark sound — grooving backbeats topped with heavy, play-in-a-day riffs — and original singer Bon Scott’s nihilism. Six months after its release, the frontman would be found dead in a car in London following a booze bender.
Standout track: “Highway to Hell”
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People who added this item 486 Average listal rating (338 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Back in Black - AC/DC
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People who added this item 54 Average listal rating (28 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 0
Heartbreaker - Ryan Adams_II
Alt-country motormouth Adams surprised many with his first solo album after the demise of Whiskeytown. Where that group’s records had been rough and rowdy, here was a relaxed, soothing beauty that melted hearts with its smoky, lovesick charms.
Standout track: “Come Pick Me Up”
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People who added this item 121 Average listal rating (77 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 0
Toys in the Attic - Aerosmith
Although they copped their share of Rolling Stones licks (not to mention Rolling Stones attitude), Aerosmith also had a jones for James Brown, and it was their sly sense of funk — particularly in “Walk This Way” and “Sweet Emotion” — that kept these Toys in play.
Standout track: “Walk This Way”
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People who added this item 59 Average listal rating (41 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 0
Rocks - Aerosmith
A tough, arrogant follow-up to Toys in the Attic, Rocks is a tasty, nasty set of fuck-me riffs and fuck-you swagger, combining Aerosmith’s coarse blend of maximum R&B/blues metal and perfecting prototypical 1970s American hard rock in the process.
Standout track: “Back in the Saddle”
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People who added this item 25 Average listal rating (14 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 0
An example of great musicians stretching out and simply flowing. Even though producer Tom Dowd skillfully edited some of the jams, we’re still talking 10 minutes–plus on three tracks.
Standout track: “Statesboro Blues”
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People who added this item 14 Average listal rating (9 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 0
Led by Eric Burdon and masterful organist Alan Price, the Animals leavened their R&B grit with English pop hooks. This compilation of pre-’66 hits captures their early peak, from British Invasion staples to the obligatory blues covers.
Standout track: “We Gotta Get Out of This Place”
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People who added this item 52 Average listal rating (40 ratings) 8.8 IMDB Rating 0
Music From Big Pink - The Band
Their landmark debut: The oracular lyrics and the music’s subdued desperation form a meditation on social turbulence, while their rootsy approach proved surprisingly visionary. Steeped in history and myth, the album’s mystique hasn’t diminished.
Standout track: “The Weight”
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People who added this item 52 Average listal rating (33 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
The Band - The Band
Like Italians reinventing the Western, these Canadians envisioned a hillbilly funk and melancholic grandeur that Americans hadn’t recognized in themselves. Here, Robbie Robertson comes into his own, writing or cowriting every tune.
Standout track: “Up On Cripple Creek”
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People who added this item 4 Average listal rating (3 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 0
Brian Wilson at his early peak (1963 and ’64), before the demons took over. Embellishing the myth of good-time California, the Boys celebrate cars and surf with thrilling harmonies. An exhilarating mix of nerdiness and swagger.
Standout track: “I Get Around”
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People who added this item 5 Average listal rating (2 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Following his 1964 breakdown, Brian Wilson fled the road to concentrate on studio work. This pairing of the band’s two 1965 albums spotlights the more mature and complex music that resulted.
Standout track: “Help Me, Rhonda”
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People who added this item 274 Average listal rating (185 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Pet Sounds - The Beach Boys
Ignoring ’60s pop conventions, Brian Wilson turned the noises in his head into a musical universe. Heavenly arrangements punctuate an emotionally wrenching song cycle bursting with youthful hope, longing and doubt. This is why Brian Wilson is a genius.
Standout track: “God Only Knows”
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People who added this item 23 Average listal rating (16 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 0
The Great Twenty-Eight - Chuck Berry
Quintessential rock & roll, the trunk of rock’s family tree. Berry’s iconic guitar licks and his sly poetry provide ruminations on love, school and cars. This ideal introduction is packed with addictive music that bows to no one.
Standout track: “Johnny B. Goode”
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Ozzy Osbourne’s astonishing howl and Tony Iommi’s sludge-filled riffs were the definition of metal and created some of the most dense, dark noise ever recorded.
Standout track: “Paranoid”
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People who added this item 21 Average listal rating (10 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Neil Young, Stephen Stills and Richie Furay kept it together for two years and three albums, blueprinting the ’70s L.A. sound. Always diverse, often brilliant.
Standout track: “For What It’s Worth”
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People who added this item 27 Average listal rating (17 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
When David Crosby left the Byrds, Gram Parsons entered and transformed the folk-rock trailblazers. In contrast to leader Jim “Roger” McGuinn’s eclectic irony, Parsons displayed a deep feeling for old-fashioned roots music that still rings true today.
Standout track: “Hickory Wind”
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People who added this item 8 Average listal rating (4 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Roger McGuinn and company invented folk-rock by making the music of Bob Dylan safe for mass consumption. But these West Coasters’ true brilliance lay in their dirty-Beatles and space-pop originals.
Standout track: “Eight Miles High”
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People who added this item 111 Average listal rating (63 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 0
Tracy Chapman - Tracy Chapman
Chapman has yet to better this powerful and socially conscious debut. The rootsy arrangements are masterpieces of understatement, focusing attention on the sincerity of Chapman’s world-worn voice and her confessional, storytelling lyrics.
Standout track: “Fast Car”
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People who added this item 20 Average listal rating (13 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Cheap Trick at Budokan - Cheap Trick
They previously underachieved everywhere except the far East, but this live set made these Midwestern ne’er-do-wells heroes at home. Full of distorted Beatles hooks in an arena of screaming teens — there’s no finer distillation of pop charm and heavy-rock thrills.
Standout track: “I Want You to Want Me”
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People who added this item 40 Average listal rating (24 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
The Cream of Clapton - Eric Clapton,Cream_IV,Blind Faith,Derek and the Dominos
Honors both the chart-friendly, easier-listening, late-’70s Clapton and the whirling dervish of years earlier, scaling his creative peaks with Cream and keeping Jimi Hendrix from snapping at his heels. His vocals aren’t bad either.
Standout track: “Layla”
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In his pomp, the man formerly known as Vincent Furnier produced a fistful of classic, glam-tinged rock anthems. Twenty-two remasters of the Alice band’s finest moments on one CD give you everything you need.
Standout track: “Under My Wheels”
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Creedence suffused sturdy songwriting with socially conscious, visionary Americana. John Fogerty’s plain-spoken lyrics were as indelible as his hooks, while the band’s elemental swamp-rock swung mightily.
Standout track: “Fortunate Son”
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People who added this item 14 Average listal rating (10 ratings) 9.1 IMDB Rating 0
Transcendental, pervy pop-rock, often imitated but rarely bettered. This double-disc compilation gathers the radio hits (“Hello, I Love You”), the lengthy wig-outs (“The End,” “Riders On the Storm”) and fan-friendly rarities. Best skip the organ solos, though.
Standout track: “Break On Through”
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People who added this item 163 Average listal rating (104 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 0
A year after the British Invasion had trained our attention on the other side of the Atlantic, Dylan brought it all back home with an album that electrified both folk music and the rock audience. Suddenly, the music’s possibilities seemed endless.
Standout track: “Subterranean Homesick Blues”
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People who added this item 311 Average listal rating (204 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
Highway 61 Revisited - Bob Dylan
Dylan flips the bird at the naysayers with his first (almost) entirely electric set. It featured the rant “Like a Rolling Stone” and the twisted mythology of the title track, remaining defiantly “plugged” until the acoustic 11-minute closer, “Desolation Row.”
Standout track: “Like a Rolling Stone”
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Official release of the legendary bootleg. Its acoustic half finds Dylan hushed and stoned, while during the electric segment, his hardcore audience is effectively at war. The word compelling scarcely suffices.
Standout track: “Ballad of a Thin Man”
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People who added this item 334 Average listal rating (218 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Blonde on Blonde - Bob Dylan
An album that could confirm Dylan’s genius on its own. Arrogant at times, Beatles-influenced, thoroughly in love with pop music, full of delicate instrumental detail and yet epic in scale. More evidence that 1966 was the best year of the last century.
Standout track: “Just Like a Woman”
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People who added this item 71 Average listal rating (45 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 0
John Wesley Harding - Bob Dylan
John Wesley Harding goes for country over folk, despite using what are seemingly folk tales to couch its cryptic political allegory. The sound is straightforward, paving the way for country-rockers, but the words are knottier than ever.
Standout track: “All Along the Watchtower”
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People who added this item 35 Average listal rating (16 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
The Basement Tapes - Bob Dylan, The Band
These homemade demos are quintessential Dylan performances, gritty and spontaneous. Recorded in 1967 with his new group, the Band, they easily outshine many of the tracks on his official albums.
Standout track: “This Wheel’s On Fire”
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People who added this item 227 Average listal rating (148 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Blood on the Tracks - Bob Dylan
In 1975, Dylan was in the throes of divorce. His best album since Blonde On Blonde was the result. Its intimate ambience and gorgeously warm production still make many acolytes claim that it’s the finest album he’s ever made.
Standout track: “Tangled Up in Blue”
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People who added this item 54 Average listal rating (30 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 0
Love and Theft - Bob Dylan
Released on September 11, Dylan’s best album in a decade was downright prophetic. A recording steeped in borrowed blues perfect for verses riddled with apocalyptic revelations and other things “too terrible to be true.” Unnerving.
Standout track: “Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum”
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People who added this item 257 Average listal rating (171 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 0
Hotel California - The Eagles
Balmy West Coast country-rock at its chilling best. Don’t let familiarity breed contempt: “Hotel California” remains a benchmark song, and the rest of this album, although dwarfed by the title track, is a soft-rock masterpiece. And that’s something you don’t hear too often.
Standout track: “Hotel California”
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People who added this item 88 Average listal rating (58 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 0
Their Greatest Hits - The Eagles
They liked Gram Parsons, drugs, rock & roll and money, but they sounded smooth as platinum, with harmonies that made the Beach Boys seem like pigs. The Eagles had hits like teens have acne: everywhere and all the time.
Standout track: “Take It to the Limit”
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Part British whimsy, part faux classical, but mostly a better-produced Beatles, Electric Light Orchestra were the sound of the mid-’70s for a bespectacled generation.
Standout track: “Livin’ Thing”
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People who added this item 3 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 0
All-Time Original Hits - Everly Brothers
A huge influence on the Beatles, the ever-squabbling Don and Phil Everly were energetic, country-influenced rock & rollers who proved even before the Fabs did that pop could motor and that tunes were no enemy to rocking.
Standout track: “Cathy’s Clown”
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People who added this item 51 Average listal rating (33 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 0
Fleetwood Mac - Fleetwood Mac
On which an ailing Brit-blues band is transformed into megaplatinum superstars by the arrival of brilliant songwriter-guitarist-producer Lindsey Buckingham and his hippie-chick partner, Stevie Nicks. A benchmark for aspiring AOR tunesmiths.
Standout track: “Rhiannon”
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People who added this item 270 Average listal rating (185 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
Rumours - Fleetwood Mac
The culmination of F-Mac’s transformation from British blues icons to masters of California pop, Rumours spent an astonishing 31 weeks at number 1. Feather-light harmonies and deep, dark soap-opera emotions give it real bite.
Standout track: “Go Your Own Way”
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People who added this item 0 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 0
Sin City: The Very Best of - Flying Burrito Brothers
Piloted by ex-Byrds Chris Hillman and Gram Parsons, the classic Burritos lineup lasted for two albums, but it alchemized the monster known as country-rock.
Standout track: “Hot Burrito #2”
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People who added this item 23 Average listal rating (15 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Peter Gabriel 3 (Melt) - Peter Gabriel
Acknowledged as the former Genesis man’s best solo effort. Paranoia and navel gazing has never sounded so captivating; the production is beautifully sympathetic; and with songs as extraordinary as “Games Without Frontiers,” there are no defects.
Standout track: “Games Without Frontiers”
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People who added this item 26 Average listal rating (16 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Workingman's Dead - Grateful Dead
Temporarily putting aside their long space jams and LSD-inspired studio games, the Dead mined Hank Williams, Robert Johnson and Buck Owens for this album full of working-class blues.
Standout track: “Uncle John’s Band”
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People who added this item 68 Average listal rating (48 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 0
American Beauty - Grateful Dead
The Dead’s second great country-rock album is a masterpiece of cosmic American songwriting, mostly acoustic arrangements and angelic vocal harmonies. You’ll hardly notice the absence of guitar solos.
Standout track: “Box of Rain”
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People who added this item 2 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 0
Two from the Vault - Grateful Dead
Although they still relied on keyboardist Ron “Pigpen” McKernan’s R&B growl for their power, this set finds the Dead beginning the transition from LSD-soaked folk-blues act to psychedelic, genre-destroying rock explorers.
Standout track: “Dark Star”
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People who added this item 296 Average listal rating (200 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
Are You Experienced? - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
The most thrilling electric guitar playing ever recorded. The ejaculatory spurts of “Foxey Lady” seemed to catch even Hendrix marveling at his own genius. The reissue also offers singles “Hey Joe” and “Purple Haze.” Lucky you.
Standout track: “Foxey Lady”
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People who added this item 250 Average listal rating (158 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Electric Ladyland - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
The guitar genius’s third and most ambitious album is a sprawling, eclectic masterpiece, taking in jazzy extended jams, concise riff-pop, psychedelic reveries, cosmic dashiki soul and fevered blues deconstructions.
Standout track: “Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)”
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People who added this item 7 Average listal rating (6 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 0
The Beatles got the inspiration for their name from Holly’s backing band, the Crickets. Had he lived, Holly might have been their competitor. The first wise white rock & roll songwriter, Holly remolded the primal beat and made eyeglasses cool.
Standout track: “Not Fade Away”
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People who added this item 11 Average listal rating (6 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Starting in 1981, when Jett and her bad reputation split from the all-girl, sexploitative Runaways, she rocked harder and more consistently than anyone without a dick, inspiring a generation of riot-grrrl stepdaughters.
Standout track: “I Love Rock & Roll”
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People who added this item 4 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 9 IMDB Rating 0
Essential Janis Joplin - Janis Joplin
Joplin could belt out basic blues, but her electrifying performances prefigured female rockers as disparate as Bonnie Raitt and Courtney Love. But her early years with acid-tinged Big Brother & the Holding Company are the most rewarding listening here.
Standout track: “Piece of My Heart”
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People who added this item 0 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 0
The crowning glory of garage rock, courtesy of Dave Davies’s blitzkrieg solo on “You Really Got Me.” Brother Ray was already a master of the wry and bittersweet, and this collection of 18 early singles doesn’t even get up to 1967’s “Waterloo Sunset.”
Standout track: “I’m Not Like Everybody Else”
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People who added this item 8 Average listal rating (4 ratings) 9.3 IMDB Rating 0
The Kink Kronikles - The Kinks
The Kinks’ glorious 1966–’70 era documents not only a vanishing England, but endearing melancholy. Magical songwriting and stoic ensemble work make a first-rate introduction to this influential but still underheralded band.
Standout track: “Waterloo Sunset”
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People who added this item 18 Average listal rating (14 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 0
Double Platinum - Kiss_II
Kiss’s hits underscored their status as a first-class heavy-metal pop band. Thumping good tunes and Spinal Tap–like lyrics (Paul Stanley’s “Love Gun,” Gene Simmons’s “God of Thunder”) reign supreme. Alas, Double Platinum predates their disco phase.
Standout track: “Detroit Rock City”
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Chunks of text are missing since Blender folded in 2009. The Wayback Machine has some of the pages, but clearly chunks of the site are missing and items on the master list were missing.

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