The rules: Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen albums you’ve heard that will always stick with you. List the first fifteen you can recall in no more than fifteen minutes:
Kate Bush: Aerial
Well worth a 12 year wait! It was released in autumn 2005, when I was recovering from my life going completely pear-shaped. I found it uplifting then and still do now.
Kate Bush: The Kick Inside
I first heard this when I was a child and my favorite song then was ‘Them Heavy People’ with its chorus of “Rolling the ball”. Rediscovered it when I was 14. Very impressed, especially with the songs about sex! (Personal & Social Education classes made sex sound terrifying, this album contained songs written by a young woman who made it sound as though it was worth a go!)
Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man
A witty, sexy album which I’ve loved to bits ever since it came out.
Pet Shop Boys: Fundamental
It’s hard to pick just one PSB album, so I’ll plump for this one in gratitude for the fact it helped keep me sane whilst weekend commuting between Nottingham and Birmingham during 2006.
Tori Amos: From the Choirgirl Hotel
Again, it’s hard to pick just one Tori Amos. But this is probably the album of hers that I find most satisfying as a whole. Couldn’t bear to listen to it during my pregnancy with A for obvious reasons, but it’s back on my playlist now.
This one is easy to single out from Bjork’s solo albums as it reminds me of when I was briefly smitten by a beautiful ‘Venus as a Boy’.
Abba: The Visitors
I have loved Abba since I was a kid, and this is my most-loved Abba album now that I’m a grown-up.
Bob Dylan: Desire
I used to get sick of some Bob Dylan albums cos my dad would play them all the time. But then I discovered this one in his record collection and it’s irresistible.
Pulp: Different Class
I like the bitter and twisted moments best. I would go to sleep listening to this in the dark in my tiny flat in Leeds.
A-ha: Headlines and Deadlines
Sorry this is a greatest hits album but it has to be in there because it represents common ground with my sister Lucy. We saw them live in November 2010 and they were really, really fantastic. Lucy said she had never realised how good Morten Harket’s voice was because she had been distracted by his other assets!
Suzanne Vega: Suzanne Vega
This reminds me of my youth CND group, including my first boyfriend. I’ve already written a post about a track from this album called ‘Straight Lines’. I’ve actually got back into Suzanne Vega in a big way recently, including going to a breast cancer benefit concert she did on my 40th birthday last year (which was 25 years after her first album was released). And I love her recent ‘Close Up’ albums which re-interpret her songs in a more stripped down way.
Elvis Costello: Punch the Clock
A similar era to Suzanne Vega. Strangely uplifting, despite being strongly associated with a rather miserable week in Wales. Being an early Costello album it contains some fun, bordering on cheesy, lyrics “I punch the clock, and it’s ok, I know a girl who takes my breath away”.
Once I’d heard this I couldn’t get it out of my head. Also reminds me of a very good friend.
Peter Gabriel: So
Included here for ‘In Your Eyes’, ‘Red Rain’ and ‘Don’t Give Up’. Was very pleased to get a good copy on vinyl from Oxfam Books and Music recently as my original one was almost unplayable after being passed around the ‘in crowd’ I wanted to get in with during my fifth year at school.
Paul Simon: There Goes Rhymin’ Simon
A really sweet, uplifting album. Another album I was very pleased to get an almost mint copy on vinyl from Oxfam Books and Music recently as it sounds best on vinyl.
So there you go. Listed in the order in which I thought of them. I’d be very interested to see other lists – so go on, do a list of your own!
Linking up with Mammy’s Monday Music Meme.
This is a slightly edited update of a post originally written on LiveJournal