Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Kerrang! Top 100 Albums

First posted 2/19/2005; updated 8/5/2020.


The Top Albums

This is an exclusive DMDB list which consolidates eight lists from the British music magazine Kerrang!, which focuses on heavy metal and punk (links to individual lists at bottom of page).

Also, check out annual picks for album of the year.

1. Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols (1977)
2. Metallica Master of Puppets (1986)
3. Slayer Reign in Blood (1986)
4. Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti (1975)
5. Black Sabbath Black Sabbath (1970)
6. Iron Maiden The Number of the Beast (1982)
7. Nirvana Nevermind (1991)
8. Guns N’ Roses Appetite for Destruction (1987)
9. AC/DC Back in Black (1980)
10. Green Day Dookie (1994)

11. Black Sabbath Vol. 4 (1972)
12. The Stooges Raw Power (1973)
13. Metallica Kill ‘Em All (1983)
14. Bad Brains Rock for Light (1982)
15. Discharge Hear Nothing, Say Nothing, See Nothing (1982)
16. Napalm Death Scum (1987)
17. Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin IV (1971)
18. Def Leppard Hysteria (1987)
19. The Clash London Calling (1979)
20. Def Leppard Pyromania (1983)

21. Motörhead Ace of Spades (1980)
22. Metallica Ride the Lightning (1984)
23. The Clash The Clash (1977)
24. Korn Korn (1994)
25. Pearl Jam Ten (1991)
26. Black Flag Damaged (1981)
27. Sepultura Roots (1996)
28. Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine (1992)
29. Ramones Ramones (1976)
30. Alice in Chains Dirt (1992)

31. Rancid And Out Come the Wolves (1995)
32. Hole Live Through This (1994)
33. Sublime Sublime (1996)
34. The Offspring Smash (1994)
35. Nine Inch Nails The Downward Spiral (1994)
36. The Prodigy Fat of the Land (1997)
37. The Wildhearts Earth Vs. the Wildhearts (1993)
38. Bon Jovi Slippery When Wet (1986)
39. The Stooges Fun House (1970)
40. Deep Purple In Rock (1970)

41. Manic Street Preachers The Holy Bible (1994)
42. Pantera Vulgar Display of Power (1992)
43. Reef Glow (1997)
44. Ash 1977 (1996)
45. Van Halen Van Halen I (1978)
46. Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream (1993)
47. Aerosmith Toys in the Attic (1975)
48. Terrorvision How to Make Friends and Influence People (1994)
49. Dead Kennedys Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables (1980)
50. Thin Lizzy Live and Dangerous (1977)

51. Iron Maiden Iron Maiden (1980)
52. Rocket from the Crypt Scream, Dracula, Scream! (1995)
53. Boston Boston (1976)
54. Motörhead No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith (1981)
55. Queensryche Operation: Mindcrime (1988)
56. Bush Sixteen Stone (1994)
57. Motörhead Overkill (1979)
58. Queen A Night at the Opera (1975)
59. Killing Joke Killing Joke (1980)
60. Venom Black Metal (1982)

61. Skunk Anansie Paranoid & Sunburnt (1995)
62. Sisters of Mercy Floodland (1987)
63. Saxon Wheels of Steel (1980)
64. Fugazi Repeater (1990)
65. Journey Escape (1981)
66. Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin II (1969)
67. Refused The Shape of Punk to Come: A Chimerical Bombation in 12 Bursts (1998)
68. Operation Ivy Energy (1989)
69. Black Sabbath Paranoid (1970)
70. The Damned Machine Gun Etiquette (1979)

71. Manic Street Preachers Everything Must Go (1996)
72. Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin I (1969)
73. Therapy? Trouble Gum (1991)
74. Kyuss Welcome to Sky Valley (1994)
75. The Descendents Milo Goes to College (1982)
76. Bryan Adams Reckless (1984)
77. Aerosmith Rocks (1976)
78. Deep Purple Machine Head (1972)
79. Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood Sugar Sex Magik (1991)
80. Kiss Alive! (1975)

81. Bon Jovi Bon Jovi (1984)
82. Michael Bolton Everybody’s Crazy (1985)
83. Quicksand Manic Compression (1995)
84. Rainbow Rising (1976)
85. Judas Priest Screaming for Vengeance (1982)
86. The MC5 Kick Out the Jams (1968)
87. Helmet Meantime (1992)
88. Magnum On a Storyteller’s Night (1985)
89. The Ruts The Crack (1979)
90. Foo Fighters The Colour and the Shape (1997)

91. Stiff Little Fingers Inflammable Material (1979)
92. Judas Priest Stained Class (1978)
93. Iron Maiden Killers (1981)
94. Nirvana In Utero (1993)
95. Exodus Bonded by Blood (1985)
96. Tool Ænima (1996)
97. Anthrax Among the Living (1987)
98. Kreator Pleasure to Kill (1986)
99. Megadeth Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying? (1986)
100. NOFX Punk in Drublic (1994)

Resources and Related Links:

Thursday, July 25, 2019

50 years ago: Yes’ debut album released



Released: July 25, 1969

Peak: -- US, -- UK, -- CN, 38 AU

Sales (in millions): --

Genre: progressive rock


Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Beyond and Before (Squire, Clive Bailey) [4:52]
  2. I See You (Jim McGuinn, David Crosby) [6:47]
  3. Yesterday and Today (Anderson) [2:49]
  4. Looking Around (Anderson, Squire) [3:58] (11/3/69, --)
  5. Harold Land (Anderson, Squire, Bruford) [5:40]
  6. Every Little Thing (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) [5:41]
  7. Sweetness (Anderson, Squire, Bailey) [4:31] (9/29/69, --)
  8. Survival (Anderson) [6:18]

Total Running Time: 40:36

The Players:

  • Jon Anderson (vocals, percussion)
  • Peter Banks (guitar, backing vocals)
  • Chris Squire (bass, backing vocals)
  • Tony Kaye (keyboards)
  • Bill Bruford (drums, vibraphone)


2.242 out of 5.00 (average of 8 ratings)

About the Album:

Yes formed in mid-1968 and released this, their first album, a year later. Among the tracks are two covers (The Beatles Every Little Thing and The Byrds’ I See You). The lead singer Jon Anderson wrote or co-wrote five of the other six songs. Bassist Chris Squire was a co-writer on four songs.

The opening cut, Beyond and Before, was written by Squire and Clive Bailey, who were in the psychedelic rock group Mabel Greer’s Toyshop. The group, active from 1966 to 1968, also included Peter Banks and later Jon Anderson, making it a precursor to Yes. Squire described the song as “one of those acide rock ind of songs.” WK

Sweetness marked the first time Anderson and Squire collaborated on a song together. That song and Looking Around were both released as singles, but failed to chart.

The Post-Crescent’s David Wagner described Yes as a “very promising” group. WK Rolling Stone’s Lester Bang said it was “the kind of album that sometimes insinuates itself into your routine with a totally unexpected thrust of musical power.” WK

Notes: The 2003 remastered edition of the album added two versions each of “Everydays,” “Dear Father,” and “Something’s Coming.” The latter, the B-side to “Sweetness,” was from West Side Story. “Dear Father” was a B-side to the 1970 single “Sweet Dreams.”

Resources and Related Links:

First posted 7/25/2021.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Dave's Music Database Hall of Fame: Song Inductees (July 2019)

Originally posted 7/22/2019.

In honor of the 10th anniversary of the DMDB blog on January 22, 2019, Dave’s Music Database launched its own Hall of Fame. This is the third set of song inductees. These are the ten biggest #1 pop songs of the pre-rock era (before 1955). Each of these songs spent 13 weeks or more on top of the Billboard pop charts. Not listed here are previous inductees “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby and “My Blue Heaven” by Gene Austin.

Francis Craig with Bob Lamm “Near You” (1947)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Craig was a nearly fifty-year-old has-been orchestra leader when he wrote the melody for “Near You” for his grandchildren. The song topped the Billboard pop charts in 1947 for 17 weeks. It set a record that wouldn’t be surpassed until Lil’ Nas X hit #1 for 19 weeks in 2019 with “Old Town Road.” Read more.

The Ink Spots “The Gypsy” (1946)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Billy Reid was the first British songwriter to top the pop charts in the United States. He wrote “The Gypsy” for Welsh singer Dorothy Squires when she joined his group. It was a hit in the U.S. with five top-ten versions in 1946, but the biggest was by the African-American pop vocal group the Ink Spots, who spent 13 weeks at the pinnacle. Read more.

Harry James with Helen Forrest “I’ve Heard That Song Before” (1943)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Composer Jule Styne and lyricist Sammy Cahn launched a successful musical writing partnership with this Academy Award-nominated song TY featured in the 1942 film Youth on Parade. Bob Crosby introduced the song in the film, but the big hit was by Harry James’ Orchestra with Helen Forrest on vocals. Read more.

Glenn Miller “In the Mood” (1939)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

“In the Mood” is “one of the best known musical themes of the World War II era” NRR and one of the big band era’s most recognizable songs. Tin Pan Alley composers Joe Garland and Andy Razaf arranged it based on “Tar Paper Stomp,” a 1930 song by Joseph “Wingy” Manone. After it passed through several others’ hands, Miller arranged it to include the famous tenor sax battle WK and it became the biggest hit of Miller’s career. Read more.

Patti Page “Tennessee Waltz” (1950)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Pee Wee King and Redd Stewart wrote this in 1947 while riding in Stewart’s truck. King’s recording hit #3 on the country charts and versions by Cowboy Copas and Roy Acuff followed. However, when Patti Page, the best-selling female singer of the ‘50s, JA put her stamp on the song, it marked the moment when country went mainstream. LW With 13 weeks at #1 on the pop charts and sales of six million, it was one of the ten best sellers of the first half of the century. PM Read more.

Ben Selvin “Dardanella” (1920)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Over his career, Ben Selvin’s 2000+ recordings rank him above any other bandleader. PM His biggest hit, however, was an instrumental version of “Dardanella.” It was the first song to sell over 5 million copies, PM one of the ten best sellers of the first half of the 20th century, PM and the biggest-selling song in the first quarter-century of recorded music. SB Read more.

Artie Shaw “Frenesi” (1940)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Alberto Dominguez originally wrote this for the marimba and then others adapted it as a jazz standard. WK When Artie Shaw, a bandleader and one of jazz’s finest clarinetists, recorded the song it became the biggest hit of his career, one of the biggest #1 songs in chart history, and the first million-selling song by a Mexican writer. TY The success helped “popularize Brazilian rhythms in jazz and pop music.” JA Read more.

The Weavers “Goodnight Irene” (1950)

Inducted July 2019 as “Top 10 #1 Pop Songs of the Pre-Rock Era.”

Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter’s best-known song can be traced to African-American composer Gussie L. Davis, SS who first published the sentimental waltz in Cincinnati in 1886. JA By the early 1940s, the song was a mainstay in the folk community. The Weavers’ recording, complete with “violins and other orchestra touches provided by Gordon Jenkins,” SS divided folk purists but made for a monstrously successful commercial recording, hitting #1 in 1950, just months after Leadbelly’s death. Read more.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

50 years ago: Blind Faith released its only album

Blind Faith

Blind Faith

Released: July 21, 1969

Charted: August 16, 1969

Peak: 12 US, 12 UK, 14 CN, 2 AU

Sales (in millions): 1.0 US, 0.1 UK, 8.0 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: classic rock


Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks)

  1. Had to Cry Today (Winwood) [8:48]
  2. Can’t Find My Way Home (Winwood) [3:16]
  3. Well All Right (Alison/Holly/
  4. Presence of the Lord (Clapton) [4:50]
  5. Sea of Joy (Winwood) [5:22]
  6. Do What You Like (Baker) [15:18]

Total Running Time: 42:01

The Players:

  • Steve Winwood (vocals, keyboards, etc.)
  • Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
  • Ric Grech (bass, etc.)
  • Ginger Baker (drums, percussion)


3.971 out of 5.00 (average of 24 ratings)

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

“When you look back over time at the various rock ‘supergroups,’ the one that really started it all was Blind Faith.” NO Eric Clapton, along with bassist Jack Bruce and drummer Ginger Baker were part of Cream, a “massively popular blues-rock power trio.” TM The latter two “were frequently arguing, and there was considerable tension about their future musical direction.” AZ

Clapton “jumped right back into another overhyped supergroup.” JR-25 He “wanted space to be a little adventurous” AZ and “sought out [Steve] Winwood for some informal jamming in early spring 1969.” TM The pair had “worked together briefly in the short-lived Powerhouse project” SW and Winwood had, while still a teen, “demonstrated deep appreciation of soul and R&B on several hits with the Spencer Davis Group” TM before fronting his own group, Traffic.

After Baker turned up uninvited TM and Family’s Rick Grech (who later worked with Winwood in the reformed Traffic) was added on bass, “rock’s first supergroup was in place.” TM “Concert promoters rushed to book the band before any material had been completed, hence the band’s eventual name, Blind Faith.” SH With so little repertoire, the group relied in part on Cream songs in concert and while crowds went wild, it was exactly what Clapton wanted to avoid.

“Refined through jamming, Blind Faith’s music was less dense and more transparent than that of Cream” TM by merging that group’s “heavy riffing and outsized song lengths” AMG with Traffic’s “soulful blues.” AMG Vocally, Winwood “sings like he’s got one last chance to redeem himself.” TM “Surrounded by Eric Clapton’s questioning lead guitar, the herculean drumming of Ginger Baker, and oceans of reverb, his voice became almost celestial.” TM “His performance on Sea of Joy, one of several originals he wrote for Blind Faith, is a marvel of optimism – at once perfectly formed and utterly spontaneous. His ecstatic vocals connect the rhythm section’s galloping roar to moments of placid, lakeside-at-sunset calm.” TM

Highlights include “the virtuoso electric blues of Had to Cry Today, the acoustic-textured Can't Find My Way Home, the soaring Presence of the Lord (Eric Clapton’s one contribution here as a songwriter, and the first great song he ever authored) and Sea of Joy.” AMG

“Not all of it works.” AMG “The band doesn’t do much with the Buddy Holly song Well All Right; and Ginger Baker’s Do What You Like was a little weak to take up 15 minutes of space on an LP that might have been better used for a shorter drum solo and more songs. Unfortunately, the group was never that together as a band and evidently had just the 42 minutes of new music here ready to tour behind.” AMG

Aside from the music, there was “the controversial original cover with the 12-year-old girl and her airplane.” NO A later version “featured a black and white photo of the group taken at Clapton’s home in Surrey.” NO

The group’s “self-titled debut, released in the summer of 1969, was a hit, but the extreme pressure on the group” SH and “Clapton’s greater interest in Blind Faith’s opening act Delaney & Bonnie & Friends” WK “led to their breakup even before the end of the year.” SH “Despite the crash-and-burn history of the band itself,” AMG “Blind Faith’s first and last album…remains one of the jewels” AMG in its individual member’s catalogs and “one of the true landmark albums of the rock era.” NO Clapton said of the album, “I think it’s a lovely record…It’s like it’s looseness. It’s like a supersession record.” JR-25

Notes: The 2000 Deluxe Edition adds “Sleeping in the Ground,” an electric version of “Can’t Find My Way Home,” an “Acoustic Jam,” and “Time Winds” to the original disc. A second disc of material includes four lengthy jams and another version of “Sleeping in the Ground.” It “is loaded with extra material. There are new expanded liner notes, rare session photos, and the cover art from both versions of the album.” NO

Resources and Related Links:

Other Related DMDB Pages:

First posted 7/21/2012; last updated 11/9/2021.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

50 years ago: David Bowie’s Career Takes Off – Thanks to Men Landing on the Moon

Space Oddity

David Bowie

Writer(s): David Bowie (see lyrics here)

Released: July 11, 1969

First Charted: August 16, 1969

Peak: 15 US, 17 CB, 11 GR, 10 HR, 1 CL, 1 CO, 12 UK, 16 CN, 9 AU, 1 DF (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, 0.77 UK, 1.02 world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 121.03 video, 284.35 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

July 20, 1969 marked one of the greatest achievements of mankind when American astronauts walked on the moon. The event was televised throughout the world, with an estimated 600 million people watching. In the U.K., the BBC’s coverage included a song called “Space Oddity” by a then fairly-unknown David Bowie. Inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, he crafted a “haunting ballad about alienation” TC in which Major Tom is a “disillusioned astronaut cutting off all contact with the planet Earth.” DT

The song was Bowie’s first single with Mercury Records following his split from Deram Records. He’d been releasing music for five years with the King Bees, the Manish Boys, as Davy Jones with the Lower Third, and under the name David Bowie. However, he’d failed to achieve any chart success until “Space Oddity” reached #5 in 1969. A reissue in 1975 went all the way to #1.

An early version appeared in Bowie’s Love You Till Tuesday promotional film. The song alluded to the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey and lampooned the British space program. He recorded a new version in anticipation of the Apollo 11 moon landing. The song was produced by Gus Dudgeon (who later worked with Elton John on the similar-themed “Rocket Man”) HL after Tony Visconti said no. Visconti went on to work with Bowie on numerous albums, but thought “Space Oddity” was too gimmicky. TB It ended up celebrated as “one of Bowie’s finest narrative songs.” TB

In the U.S., Bowie hit the Billboard Hot 100 with “Changes,” “Starman,” and “The Jean Genie” before “Space Oddity” hit #15 after a 1973 reissue. The 1968 album, Man of Words, Man of Music, from which the song originated, was rechristened Space Oddity and charted in 1972 after Hunky Dory and The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars had introduced American audiences to Bowie.


Related Links:

First posted 7/20/2011; last updated 4/13/2023.