In Defense of the Outcasts - Which "Unpopular" albums of a band do you like?

killer_roachkiller_roach Washed Up
edited July 2011 in History of Rock
Every one of us has a band that they listen to regularly where there's an album of theirs that gets pretty well put through the wringer by, well, everybody... yet you're sitting there thinking "hey, this isn't that bad" (or, even, "this is pretty damn good!"). What albums are these for you?

To get things started:

Magma - Attahk: Yes, it's the ugly duckling of the catalog. Yes, there are Magma fans who don't even consider it canon. But when you have tracks that infuse elements of R&B ("Spiritual"), disco ("Liriik Necronomicus Kanht"), and even belching ("Maahnt"), the album turns out to be a fair bit of stupid fun.

Radiohead - Amnesiac: In many ways, it takes the style of Kid A and runs with it, often improving on the formula. Yet it's often considered a dud... I realize that its predecessor was a hard act to follow, but it's not like it was a second Pablo Honey or anything...

Phideaux - Fiendish: Okay, so maybe I'm a sucker for debut albums. And maybe throwing a fair bit of goth rock influence is a good way to get me to swoon over an album. Still, a couple of weak tracks excepted, it's one of the more engaging albums he's ever done, yet it's about as well-regarded amongst prog fans as 313 (the album he wrote, recorded, and produced in one day).

Comments

  • exploderexploder Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    I agree about Youthanasia
  • Dylan619Dylan619 Unsigned
    edited June 2011
    Hypnotize from System of a Down is often considered there worse material but I love it!
  • Onslaught_feiOnslaught_fei Headliner
    edited June 2011
    Sepultura's Chaos AD. I still like Sepultura during this album. Roots is where they really go to ****.
  • killer_roachkiller_roach Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    Mega-Tallica;4420563 said:
    Disturbed - Believe

    I can't believe (no pun intended) that Disturbed fans reputably hate on this album. Great musicianship, great guitarwork in particular. Dan Donegan must've had his creative juices flowing because nothing he's done since matches the guitarwork on this album. Songs like "Prayer", "Awaken", "Remember", "Breathe", "Devour"... really makes me wish Disturbed never strayed away from this style.

    The fact that this album isn't better accepted surprises me... but, that being said, far easier to defend it than, say, Ten Thousand Fists or Asylum...
  • a21schizoidmana21schizoidman Prog-nosticator
    edited June 2011
    clashcityrocker10;4420488 said:
    It's overlooked more than despised, but I enjoy Give 'Em Enough Rope more than the average Clash fan, I'd say. I think it has some of Mick's best guitar work ever.

    that's easily my favorite Clash album
  • seriousbussonseriousbusson Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    GEER is up there for me, as well. Actually, it might tie with London Calling on certain days.

    As for me, I really like Stormbringer, although I don't know how unpopular that is. Then again, Burn is my favorite Deep Purple album overall, so I might just be a Mk III whore.
  • a21schizoidmana21schizoidman Prog-nosticator
    edited June 2011
    for me, Born Again by Black Sabbath fits this thread
  • RunesmithRunesmith Headliner
    edited June 2011
    The Cars - Shake It Up (seems like a lot of people, music critics included, think their first two albums are really the only ones worth listening to in full)

    Depeche Mode - Songs of Faith & Devotion, Exciter, Ultra, Speak & Spell, Playing the Angel...honestly, anything that isn't Violator.

    White Zombie - Their first two albums.

    The Cure - 4:13 Dream, The Top, and the self-titled album.

    Bauhaus - Burning from the Inside

    The Misfits - Famous Monsters

    TSOL - Any of their straight-forward hard rock, decidedly non-punk albums.

    Bruce Springsteen - Nebraska (critics loved it, the charts hated it)

    REM - Monster

    David Bowie - Earthling

    Interpol - Antics, Our Love To Admire

    Ministry - Twitch
  • UltimatumUltimatum Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    Husker Du - Land Speed Record
    Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Yanqui U.X.O.

    Strangely enough, it has some of my favorite GY!BE moments and was really one of my first memorable experiences with the band.
  • instantdeath999instantdeath999 Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    afterstasis;4420479 said:
    Merzbow's Animal Magnetism is actually one of my favorites from the man, despite the overwhelming hate from most noise fans.

    I haven't heard this one, why do people hate it so much?
  • Lameboy19Lameboy19 Headliner
    edited June 2011
    hate me all you want, but The Red Album was above average.

    I love that cover of "The Weight" and "The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived" is the best Weezer song since Green
  • TheDescentTheDescent Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    FlyGuyLXI;4420451 said:
    Iron Maiden - The X Factor
    A lot of Maiden fans snubbed Blaze Bayley, of course the Bayley years weren't Iron Maiden's best years, but The X Factor is an album that surprisingly still holds up for me even today, incorporating the same formulaic styles of their late 80s albums with that creative touch backing it up. This album is actually preferred over even to their acclaimed The Number of the Beast. "The Edge of Darkness" and "Sign of the Cross" are both immensely solid works.

    NOnonononono... I agree that "Sign Of The Cross" is a kickass song, but seriously, the bailey-era is like the dark age of maiden. IMO they went downhill from "Fear Of The Dark" album, despite having an awesome title track, and they came back with brave new world, great underrated album, imo.

    New Adventures In Hi-Fi - R.E.M.

    This is really an underrated album, and considered a B-Sides collection by REM fans themselves, but even If I'm not their best fan, I think that this record got really some precious gems. How the west was won, E-bow the letter, New Test Leper, So Fast So Numb, and the magnificent Electrolite. That song almost bring me to tears every time I listen to it.
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    instantdeath999;4420755 said:
    I haven't heard this one, why do people hate it so much?

    The consensus is normally that any post-analog Merzbow is bad, particularly his "animal rights" phase, which is precisely where this LP lands.

    To be fair, I agree that most Merz released in the past 10 years is dull as hell.
  • RHCPfan96RHCPfan96 Opening Act
    edited June 2011
    What if we reverse this? Like, albums everyone likes but you don't? Just a thought.
  • seriousbussonseriousbusson Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    Well, out of the first four Pumpkins albums, I think Siamese Dream is easily the weakest.
  • clashcityrocker10clashcityrocker10 Headliner
    edited June 2011
    Lameboy19;4420761 said:
    hate me all you want, but The Red Album was above average.

    I love that cover of "The Weight" and "The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived" is the best Weezer song since Green

    I will say that The Red Album was Weezer's best after the first four, but I still don't like it that much.
  • Soror_YZBLSoror_YZBL Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    Some of my favorite albums by some of my favorite bands are the "ugly ducklings" of their discographies.

    Hawkwind - Space Bandits. The reason people hated this record, namely the addition of a female vocalist, is the reason it's my favorite of their albums. Although, to be fair, she only handles lead vocals on one track.
    The Mission UK - Masque. All of my Hussey fanboy friends think I'm a blasphemer (including Mr Hussey himself) for liking this record. And then when I tell them that "She conjures me Wings" is my favorite song, they have heart attacks and die. (FYI, it's a song so unpopular that there is NO youtube version. And it's in my top 5 favorite mission songs.)
    Skinny Puppy - The Process. This album never had a chance, between all the band drama, revolving producers, heavy metal guitars, and fatal overdoses. It could never live up to expectations no matter how good it is. Which is sad, because it's actually phenomenal. It's like the heaviness of Rabies, the groove of Bites, and the delightful oddity of Last Rites, all wrapped up in the slickest production they had ever managed. It's not their "best album", but it's their most polished and consistent.
    My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult - Hit and Run Holiday. Every one hates this record with a passion. They followed up the satanic disco rock groove of 13 under the night with this, the soundtrack to an unproduced Russ Meyer film. Big horns, bigger choruses, and best of all, it doesn't sound like any industrial album you've ever heard in your entire life. I actually hated it when it first came out, but then took it on a few road trips and was hooked. It's really the ultimate driving record, especially when you're travelling with someone else who knows that glamour is a rocky road.
    Throwing Muses - Red Heaven. Not my favorite TM album (that would be a tie between HTornado and RRamona), but there are a number of standout tracks that make this one not the "Worst thing kristen hirsch ever pooped". The Bob Mould track is especially fantastic, and the track Pearl has been part of my "get stoned, play guitar" setlist for almost 20 years now. There are a few other great tracks on there, but those two are absolutely fabulous.
    REM - Green. Yeah, it doesn't reach the emotional high points of fables, nor does it have the poeticism of murmur or out of time, but dammit, it's a great pop record and a great REM record to boot. This album was actually my least favorite throughout the 90's, until they started releasing worse and worse music. A fresh listening brought me immediately back to my senior year of high school, doing the "stand" dance (typically topless, as to evoke the Pop Song 89 video). OMG I'm doing it at work now. Stop me before I take my clothes off.

    Swans - The Burning World. First of all, it's a mostly quiet acoustic album, which puts off most swans fans immediately. Secondly, it's damn catchy, and honestly even the saddest song on the album (the not-so-subtly titled God Damn the Sun) makes me giddily happy when I listen to it. Maybe I like that in each verse, his solution to his problems is to get wasted, or maybe it's that rising keyboard melody at the end. In either case, it's hands down my favorite Swans album.

    Interesting trivial - I purchased both Space Bandits and The Burning World from a (now defunct, obviously) chain record store for about 99 cents each, new on cassette. I still consider them the best investments I've ever made.
  • clashcityrocker10clashcityrocker10 Headliner
    edited June 2011
    People dislike Green? They must be sadly mistaken.
  • hiimSMAPhiimSMAP Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    A Thousand Leaves- Sonic Youth

    This is in my top 5 SY albums. I don't get the meh on it. Just incredible work really.

    Pablo Honey- Radiohead
    Hell, I prefer this to Hail to the Theif.

    The Red Album- Weezer
    Strangely, I still prefer this to everything except their first two. A few horrible lyrics, but overall, really refreshing.

    I'm sure there's more, but those are big ones.
  • hiimSMAPhiimSMAP Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    clashcityrocker10;4420896 said:
    People dislike Green? They must be sadly mistaken.

    It's generally seen as more poppy and with less depth, than previous REM.
    I still like it though.
  • instantdeath999instantdeath999 Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    clashcityrocker10;4420896 said:
    People dislike Green? They must be sadly mistaken.

    I love Green, though it is probably my least favorite of their early albums. Either Green or Document, at least, and I really like both.
    afterstasis;4420785 said:
    The consensus is normally that any post-analog Merzbow is bad, particularly his "animal rights" phase, which is precisely where this LP lands.

    To be fair, I agree that most Merz released in the past 10 years is dull as hell.

    I don't believe I've heard anything from his "animal rights" phrase, though I've only heard about 3 of his records.

    Have you actually listened to every Merzbow record?
  • afterstasisafterstasis Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    instantdeath999;4420966 said:
    Have you actually listened to every Merzbow record?

    Haha, I don't think anyone has heard every Merzbow release.

    I've heard a good chunk though, and I did go through the entire Merzbox over the course of about two years.
  • Soror_YZBLSoror_YZBL Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    clashcityrocker10;4420896 said:
    People dislike Green? They must be sadly mistaken.

    When it came out, it was their "worst album". Considering how great the early discography was, though, that's like saying "This is the worst strawberry shortcake i've ever eaten." There is no bad strawberry shortcake. However, there are bad REM albums, as they've shown since. Green is a masterpiece compared to Monster, or Up, or (sorry) New adventures in Hi-fi.
  • Soror_YZBLSoror_YZBL Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    hiimSMAP;4420904 said:
    A Thousand Leaves- Sonic Youth

    This is in my top 5 SY albums. I don't get the meh on it. Just incredible work really.

    I concur. Thousand leaves is WAY underrated. Sonic Nurse, too.
  • FujiSkunkFujiSkunk Headliner
    edited June 2011
    I can't find it now, but back when I first joined the forums, there was a thread on underrated/under-appreciated albums from big-name artists. I'm regurgitating a lot of that list here:

    Boston: Walk On - It's missing Brad Delp, and it came out when Tom Schulz's brand of high-gloss production was falling on deaf, grungy ears. But listen to the "Walk On" medley in all of its 12-minute glory, and you just might forget there were three albums before this one. (Okay, that's a wee bit exaggerated, but seriously, the song is awesome.)

    Pink Floyd: A Momentary Lapse of Reason and The Division Bell - David Gilmour's tenure as the head of Floyd gets a smidgeon more respect nowadays than it used to, and even the hardcore fans have begrudgingly accepted "Learning to Fly" into the canon of Floyd classics. But still much more respect is deserved. My favorite track is "Wearing the inside Out," featuring a rare lead vocal by Rick Wright.

    Yes: Open Your Eyes - Yes's revolving staff door has become as legendary as the band itself, and not undeservedly so. This title, released after the glory days of Rick Wakeman and Trevor Rabin, but featuring a prodigal return of Steve Howe, sonically falls somewhere between the two best known eras of Yes. Fans didn't give it a whole lot of consideration, but I call it their best album of the '90s, even better than Rabin's swan song, Talk.

    Bad Company: Company of Strangers - Normally I'm not a fan of bands that desperately try to hold onto their glory years (and their fans) by hiring sound-alikes and play-alikes after the true articles have jumped ship, but, Bad Company did okay here with a Paul Rodgers clone named Robert Hart. Actually, maybe they didn't do so well, since the album went nowhere and Hart was never heard from again. But, against all logic, I still like this one, if only for the song "Down and Dirty."

    Styx: Brave New World - An improbable reunion of Styx's best known line-up lead to two massively successful concert tours, which in turn made a new album pretty much inevitable. But even before the accountants could finish depositing the spoils of the tours, the band was already splintering again. They somehow still managed to get an album out, though really it sounded more like some tunes by the Dennis DeYoung Project mixed with tracks by the Shaw-Young Band. But despite the obvious lack of cohesion and the resulting brush-off by critics and fans, there are some great tunes to be had here, on both sides of the DMZ. The highlights are Shaw's "Everything Is Cool" and DeYoung's "High Crimes & Misdemeanors (Hip Hop-cracy)," which proved rather prophetic after DeYoung was ejected from the line-up.
  • a21schizoidmana21schizoidman Prog-nosticator
    edited June 2011
    i agree on The Division Bell and Company of Strangers, enjoy those albums

    for me, The Cure's Wild Mood Swings fits this thread
  • killer_roachkiller_roach Washed Up
    edited June 2011
    Some of these I didn't even realize before this thread weren't well regarded...
  • darkwinterbeast8darkwinterbeast8 Headliner
    edited June 2011
    Emperor-IX Equillibrium: The album that Black Metal elitists panned and dismissed as the worst Emperor album ever. Yet some of my favorite tracks from Emperor appear on this album.
  • soup567soup567 Headliner
    edited June 2011
    Metallica: Load, Reload, and St. Anger

    Yeah I know those albums get a lot of hate. I don't think they are nearly as bad as people say. Sure I greatly prefer thrashier Metallica, but I still think they're pretty good albums. I can't stand the whole hate on Metallica because of the sound change thing.

    Dream Theater: Falling into Infinity

    I don't know why people don't like that album. It's a great album if you ask me.

    R.E.M.: Green

    I had no idea that some people dislike this album, until it was mentioned in this thread. Maybe I'm biased because it's the only full R.E.M. album I have, but I think it's really good.
  • berkthgarberkthgar Road Warrior
    edited June 2011
    Someone mentioned Hypnotize by SOAD, it's my favourite album by them. Hurley is my favourite Weezer album, and Catch Without Arms is my favourite Dredg album. Just a few that come to mind.
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