Guys, we are in the top 20 now. Get ready for long-winded nostalgia with each album. And ramblings about people you've never heard of. Albums that I probably should have forgotten about after the age of 16. Giving power to songs and melodies that others overlooked. But, hopefully, also albums you as well love and cherish, and we are now bounded on another level because that is what music and sharing does.
20. Ben Folds Five- Whatever and Ever Amen
When I was young, my dad used to be a part of those CD clubs, where you would get 11 CDs for $10! and then have to buy a CD a month for a year after that. Do you remember those? They were big time in my life. Really. Dad would sometimes let me pick out half the CDs and, so one time, going through my catalog of choices, I saw this CD. I had never really heard of Ben Folds (Brick was JUST about to be famous) But, I did vainly see that they had a song called 'Kate' on their album. That was all it took, ORDERED. As i shared the CD with friends, I would many a time walk into a classroom where someone had scrawled the lyrics 'She plays wipe-out on the drums, the squirrels and the birds come, gather round to sing the guitar, oh I, have you go nothing to say? I WANNA BE KATE.' Just their way of saying 'HI!' to me from the class period before. Kate, Evaporated, Song for the Dumped
19. Michael Jackson- Thriller
Who doesn't like this album? You are ridiculous. (and I know for a fact this applies to a few of my friends, and I just try to forget that when thinking about you, b/c it makes me so upset.) P.Y.T will always and forever make me think of my friend Brady. It will also always be my favorite Micheal song, with 'Scream' the duet between him and Janet as my second favorite. You just cannot have a dance party with out PYT. Fact. And man, I love a good dance party.
18. Sufjan Stevens- Seven Swans
Now, it was super hard for me to pick between this album and 'Illinois' but, in the end Seven Swans won for a few reasons: I like the ambiance of it overall better, I believe it is a lot more cohesive. It contains what I feel is one of the prettiest songs out there (The dress looks nice on you), and Fuck it i just a GOOD album.
The Dress Looks Nice On You, The Transfiguration, Size too Small.
17. The Postal Service-Give Up
I was in my sophomore year of college when I first heard the Postal Service. Actually it was around the time Garden State came out. I didn't realize that the Iron and Wine version of 'Such Great Heights' on the soundtrack was a cover. When I learned the truth, my mind was blown. The whole album is one I have long ago associated with car trips, and is such an easy full album listen, that I know there wont ever be a time when I tire of it. Nothing Better, We Will Become Silhouettes, Sleeping In.
16. The Beatles- Let It Be
I grew up in a Beatles house hold. I woke up to the Birthday Song almost every birthday. I passed notes with friends in class that were simply the lyrics to 'Why Don't we Do It in the Road?'. I thought for a long time that the White Album was my favorite album b/c it was the one I had the most exposure to, and it was my mom's favorite. As I got older though, though I LOVE the White Album, I came to hold a fondness in my heart for Let It Be. Overall it has the most tracks I dig (or maybe the least amount I DON'T dig) and that makes a straight through listen all the better. Dig a Pony, Two of Us (though a close call with 'I Me Mine'), I Got A Feeling
15. Eddie Veddar-Into the Wild Soundtrack
Yes, Earlier I said no soundtracks. BUT I DO WHAT I WANT. and really, the whole soundtrack is Eddie Veddar written and performed, so I mean, it is like a real Eddie Veddar album. Now, mind you, I am not a pearl Jam fan, and never really have been. I usually compare the vocals of Veddar to a goat. But this album, this album just encapsulates the movie 'Into the Wild' SO WELL. And well, as corny as it sounds, it was the album playing when I drove my car into Alaska for the first time. It's a little piece of home. No Ceiling, Rise, Guaranteed.
14. The Presidents of the United States of America-self titled
5th grade. Having just moved to South Carolina. Living in an apartment beach house next door to a (kind of) family that included 3 children. They had a trampoline, and we would blast this album while jumping on the trampoline for hours. I still know every word. And I still love love love this album, and ALL its ridiculousness. Everyone needs a silly album to counteract the angst-y albums (see Fiona Apple below). Kitty, Dune Buggy, Naked and Famous.
13. Death Cab For Cutie-Transatlanticism
Oh look, another Ben Gibbard band (ahem, The Postal Service above...). It is funny the associations you make with music. Though it wasn't my introduction to DCFC, I very much remember an ad for the movie 'Shop Girl' (Steve Martin, Claire Danes, Jason Schwartzman) that used the Sounds of Settling in the trailer. It was one of the reasons I saw the movie, honestly (well, I went out and read the book first...). I have had many associations since this, but for some reason that is still what sticks out in my mind. A song in a trailer, for a movie that was merely 'meh'. Oh life. Lightness, Tiny Vessels, Transatlanticism
12. Fiona Apple- When the Pawn...
Really this place should just be 'Fiona Apple, ANY ALBUM.' I like them all equally, as they are ALL soo different. each one has its own time and place. But, I went with her sophomore collection 'When the Pawn...' as I think overall it has the collective most listens. I remember I originally received this CD as a Christmas present in the post from one of my childhood friends in Maine my Freshman year of high school. It has since been listened to (mostly at night, but also through headphones while copy song lyrics over and over again into binders) more times than I can recall... I Know (elvis Costello version, b/c that's badass), Limp, Love Ridden.
11. The Features- The Beginning EP
I saw the Features the first time opening up for Jump, Little Children (see earlier in the list) when I was a freshman (I think?) in college. I had never heard of them, but immediately feel for their sound. I was also a little in love with their drummer, a guy named Rollum. He would play the drums so lackadaisically and then all of a sudden go spastic. It was quite entertaining to watch. I immediately bought their EP at the show, had them sign it and all. The six song EP is all about the lead meeting his wife, and them having babies. It is adorable. And not what you would expect. I have since seen The Features two times since, and every time they blow me away. Such great energy and sound. And the song 'The idea of growing old' may be the most adorable love anthem I've ever heard.