Five LPs that I can’t put down.

You really can’t listen to just one of any of these. . . but these are all the stellar high points in their respective musicians’ careers. My favorite in this group has to be. . . (your guess here).

Iggy Pop — Raw Power
Iggy’s early stuff is the best, period. He’s done super stuff since, but for consistency, Raw Power delivers what an angry young man wants to hear on every track.

Pink Floyd — Dark Side of the Moon
No one disputes the easy listening pleasure of Pink Floyd. Dark Side was their ground breaker — the record that harnessed their freaky sound into something that spoke to masses. Go back one release and listen to Ummagumma. It’s another sound entirely.

Grateful Dead — Workingman’s Dead
Workingman’s Dead was the first folk-oriented release by the Dead and arguably their best studio work. They never really did another studio follow-on in this vein, but you could always hear it in their live work, of which there are massive amounts.

Frank Zappa — One Size Fits All
Frank Zappa’s One Size Fits All has so much complexity, so much intensity and at the same time so much absolute silliness that it takes a dozen listens to wrap your mind around it. I returned the record when I first bought it in ’75, but bought it again as an 8-track in ’76, then as an LP in ’80 and finally got the CD in ’98. The jewel case is busted and scratched but that CD still plays.

Kraftwerk — Trans-Europe Express
And once upon a time, synthesized music was new and strange and really too strange for most. Kraftwerk brought melody to the alien sound, wrote about post-war Germany and Europe and made it all so very cool that I decided I had to learn how to speak German and visit the Fatherland myself.


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