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100 albums from the 1970s

Over on Twitter (@andylong) a few months ago I started a little project where I chose ten albums from each year of the 1970s, played one each day and posted my thoughts and memories. It’s been great fun, I’ve listened to one hundred fantastic albums from my collection and I’ve had lots of really entertaining conversations and made some new Twitter friends. I had to spend a bit of money too as some people were recommending albums to me that I didn’t already own, so I’ve discovered a couple of albums that I should have been listening to for years.

Here’s a list of all the albums, alphabetically by artist, there is not now and never was any though of putting them in order of which was ‘best’ as that is purely subjective.

How many have you got, which have meant the most to you, which ones have you never heard of and now want to?

Ten albums from each year of the 1970s
AC/DC Highway to Hell 1979
Atomic Rooster Death Walks Behind You 1970
Barclay James Harvest Baby James Harvest 1972
Barclay James Harvest Octoberon 1976
Barclay James Harvest Gone to Earth 1977
Be Bop Deluxe Axe Victim 1974
Be Bop Deluxe Sunburst Finish 1976
Black Sabbath Black Sabbath 1970
Black Sabbath Sabbath Bloody Sabbath 1973
Budgie Never Turn Your Back on A Friend 1973
Camel Mirage 1974
Camel Music Inspired by the Snow Goose 1975
Can Tago Mago 1971
Can Future Days 1973
Caravan In the Land of Grey and Pink 1971
Chris Squire Fish Out of Water 1975
David Bowie Ziggy Stardust 1972
Deep Purple In Rock 1970
Derek and The Dominos Layla And Other Assorted Love Songs 1970
Eagles Desperado 1973
Eagles Hotel California 1976
Electric Light Orchestra Out of The Blue 1977
Electric Light Orchestra Discovery 1979
Emerson Lake and Palmer Pictures at An Exhibition 1971
Emerson, Lake and Palmer Brain Salad Surgery 1973
England Garden Shed 1977
Eno Here Come the Warm Jets 1974
Eno Another Green World 1975
Fleetwood Mac Rumours 1977
Focus Moving Waves 1971
Focus Hamburger Concerto 1974
Foreigner Double Vision 1978
Foreigner Head Games 1979
Frank Zappa Joe’s Garage Act 1 1979
Fruupp Modern Masquerades 1974
Genesis Nursery Cryme 1971
Genesis Foxtrot 1972
Genesis A Trick of The Tail 1976
Gentle Giant Octopus 1972
Gentle Giant Free Hand 1975
Gong Angel’s Egg 1973
Gryphon Red Queen to Gryphon Three 1974
Hawkwind Doremi Fasol Latido 1972
Jaco Pastorius Jaco 1976
Jeff Wayne War of The Worlds 1978
Jethro Tull Aqualung 1971
Jethro Tull Thick as A Brick 1972
Jethro Tull Songs from The Wood 1977
Jethro Tull Heavy Horses 1978
Joni Mitchell Hejira 1976
King Crimson In the Wake of Poseidon 1970
King Crimson Starless and Bible Black 1974
Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin Four 1971
Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti 1975
Mahavishnu Orchestra Birds of Fire 1973
Mike Oldfield Tubular Bells 1973
Miles Davis Bitches Brew 1970
Moody Blues A Question of Balance 1970
Nektar A Tab in The Ocean 1972
Peter Hammill Fool’s Mate 1971
Peter Hammill Over 1977
Pink Floyd The Dark Side of The Moon 1973
Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here 1975
Pink Floyd Animals 1977
Pink Floyd The Wall 1979
Premiata Forneria Marconi L’Isola Di Niente 1974
Quatermass Quatermass 1970
Queen Live Killers 1979
Rainbow Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll 1978
Rainbow Rising 1976
Rick Wakeman The Six Wives of Henry VIII 1973
Rush 2112 1976
Rush A Farewell to Kings 1977
Rush Hemispheres 1978
Santana Abraxas 1970
Soft Machine Bundles 1975
Steely Dan Katy Lied 1975
Steely Dan Aja 1977
Steve Hackett Please Don’t Touch 1978
Steve Hackett Spectral Mornings 1979
Steve Hillage Fish Rising 1975
Strawbs Grave New World 1972
Supertramp Breakfast In America 1979
Tangerine Dream Phaedra 1974
Tangerine Dream Force Majeure 1979
Thin Lizzy Jailbreak 1976
Thin Lizzy Live and Dangerous 1978
UFO Obsession 1978
Uriah Heep Demons and Wizards 1972
Van Der Graaf Generator Pawn Hearts 1971
Van Der Graaf Generator Godbluff 1975
Van Der Graaf Generator Still Life 1976
Van Morrison Moondance 1970
Weather Report Mr Gone 1978
Whitesnake Trouble 1978
Whitesnake Lovehunter 1979
Yes The Yes Album 1971
Yes Close to The Edge 1972
Yes Relayer 1974
Yes Going for The One 1977
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An appeal for the album as a work of art

Those of you who are of a similar age to myself, i.e. you remember when there was no Internet and you had to talk to actual people, will likely have fond memories of saving up your pennies to go to the record shop and buy an album.

Led_Zeppelin_-_Led_Zeppelin_IIIyessongs_us_uchiIn those days albums came on vinyl or cassette, or even 8-track cartridge. We relished the album as a piece of art, the gatefold sleeve of vinyl was often taken beyond it’s standard form and became something to explore whilst listening to the music. Take “Led Zeppelin III” for example, with it’s revolving insert or “Yessongs’ which stretched to a full four feet.

Most importantly thought the album was something that you listened to in it’s entirety. You put the needle in the groove at the beginning of side 1 and listened to all of it, then you flipped it and did the same with side 2 (and 3 and 4 quite often). You made the time to listen to the music and let it sink in, you stopped what you were doing and gave your time to the music and because of that you appreciated it all the more.

dark sideYou could not, for instance, just dip into ‘Dark Side Of The Moon’, play one track and then randomly skip to something else, it has to be all or nothing.

Downloads, shuffles, random plays, streaming, YouTube, Spotify. All these guys have done their best to destroy the album as a work of art, but for many of us it’s importance is still right up there. Now that vinyl is making a strong comeback (for some inexplicable reason) I want to make an appeal to readers to revisit the album and appreciate its value as an entire work.

This evening, stop what you are doing, switch the telly off, put your computer, tablet and phone to one side, get a nice cuppa or a bottle of beer, sit in front of the fire with your slippers on and your feet up, dig out one of your favourite albums and just listen to the whole thing, let it soak in, let it envelop you in it’s beauty and creativity.

amfI try to listen to at least one whole album each day, a bit later on this evening I’ve got a real beauty lined up, “A Major Fancy” by John Lees of Barclay James Harvest. BJH have always been one of my passions so I’m looking forward to spending some time with this album.

I hope you find time to spend with some of your favourite albums too, let me know what you choose and how you get on.

Enjoy!

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