My Top 50 Favorite Albums of All-Time (Part 2 of 5)
40. Tiger Army – Tiger Army (1999)
Genre: Psychobilly, Punk Rock
Tiger Army is one of the most underrated bands of the Punk Rock scene. I’m not sure why they never really broke into the mainsteam – maybe it is because they don’t release albums very frequently. But when they do, they are great. This self-titled debut album is amazing from start to finish. A staple album for any punk rock, rockabilly, or psychbilly fan.
39. Motörhead – Ace of Spades (1980)
Genre: Speed Metal, Heavy Metal
The Ace of Spades album is rock/metal music classic. One of the best metal albums by any band, ever. Period. The band doesn’t consider themselves ‘metal’ but this album and early Motörhead laid the ground works for the thrash metal genre (Metallica would later release the genre defining albums Ride the Lightning and Master of Puppets in 1984 and 1986, respectively and also later cover many Motörhead songs on Garage Inc.). But back to Motörhead…this album, among other things, is listed in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die and rightfully so. You might not like metal but this album needs to be heard and experienced. There is truly nothing like the sound of this legendary three-piece band. Lead singer and bassist Lemmy Kilmister is a legend in and of himself.
38. The Strokes – Is This It? (2000)
Genre: Indie Rock, Garage Rock
Who doesn’t like The Strokes? It’s a pretty fair question to ask! They make good, fun, and catchy music, plain and simple. I don’t think they can top this release and most Strokes fans would agree that this is their best album. There are many things great about this album but the element that most sticks in my mind is the fact that The Stokes burst onto the scene with this album and everybody was like “whoa, who are these guys, they are really good and…different”. Their sound is similar to older bands like Velvet Underground and The Stooges and a casual search around Google will show that a lot of people complain they ripped off these older garage-rock bands. But to me, The Strokes sound like The Strokes and this album was a centerpiece in the garage rock revival of the early 2000’s and The Strokes are one of the most prominent indie-rock bands to come out of the U.S.
37. Static-X – Wisconsin Death Trip (1999)
Genre: Industrial Metal, Nu Metal
Another one of my metal favorites. Static-X showed the world what they were made of with this debut album. One of the best ‘nu-metal’ albums to be released in the genre’s glory years – the late 1990s/early 2000s, lead by Static-X’s definitive anthem “Push It”. This album is straight up good. Experimental yet simplistic. Get lost in it.
36. Social Distortion – White Light White Heat White Trash (1996)
Genre: Hardcore Punk, Punk Rock, Cowpunk
Social Distortion was one of the pioneers of the punk-rock revival in the late 80’s to mid 90’s. But these guys had already been around for awhile when punk rock exploded in the mid-nintees. This is a classic punk rock album and I love it. The second verse of “Don’t Drag Me Down” is one of the best punk verses of all time, let alone one of the best punk songs of all time. A must-hear album for any punk rock fan and a staple record for any long-time fan.
35. No Doubt – Tragic Kingdom (1995)
Genre: Ska Punk, Alternative Rock, Punk Rock
This album is a classic and put No Doubt on the map. This album is full of energy and spunk and home to some of the best punk-rock-ska songs ever written. Gwen Stefani is amazing. Everyone should own this album. Actually over 16 million people worldwide do! Ranked number 441 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. Well it is number 35 on my favorite albums list.
34. Operation Ivy – Energy (1989)
Genre: Ska Punk, Hardcore Punk
Operation Ivy is largely an unknown band but Energy is one of the most important albums of the ska punk genre. Hugely influential to punk and ska-core bands of the 1990s. A collection of songs with messages that matter. Tim Armstrong and Matt Freeman, two original members of Operation Ivy went on for form one of the best punk bands in history, the incomparable, Rancid.
33. The Living End – The Living End (1998)
Genre: Punk Rock, Punkabilly
Several songs on this album were my anthems when I was a teenager, especially “Prisoner of Society”. Even though I was never a rebellious kid, I always liked rebellious punk songs and punk bands. This band has never really broken through to the mainstream (although I hear they are pretty big in their home country of Australia) but I think they are a good band with some really good material. I love the combination of rockabilly and punk!
Genre: Punk Rock, Alternative Rock, Pop Punk
The quintessential Green Day album and the one that put them on the map. This album was so popular they ended up releasing a total of 5 singles off the album and as of 2010 there has been 20 million copies sold world-wide. The album also won the 1995 Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album. It is also #193 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All-Time.
31. Kings of Leon – Aha Shake Heartbreak (2005)
Genre: Garage Rock, Southern Rock
I got so many people into Kings of Leon by letting them borrow this album!. It seemed like everyone got into them based on this album. Now Kings of Leon are HUGE and selling out arenas. I’m not crazy about their new material; I’m more into the older stuff. This album is fun, catchy, and rockin’.