DJ LuCifer was a staff writer for Changes In Time (CIT) Ezine when I was welcomed aboard in 2001. At CIT I helped bring The Cruxshadows to a local venue, and after my first article caused bit of controversy, I knew this was something I wanted to pursue. The untimely demise of CIT a year later led directly to the creation of Midnight Calling Ezine, with DJ LuCifer and most of the ex-CIT staff migrating over to the new ezine. DJ Lucifer spun Punk, Goth, and Deathrock at Kashmir & Spanky’s in West Palm from June to July of 2001. DJ’s from a certain prominent South Florida Goth night caused an altercation at Kashmir’s, causing the night to be cancelled. Yep, evidently the Gothic “establishment” considered DJ LuCifer a threat to their comfortable, watered down repertoire. I had the honor of briefly working the door at “Malkavia”, co-produced by DJ LuCifer, which was one of South Florida’s only all-ages Goth nights. He also spun at the landmark establishment Churchill’s in Miami, and in downtown Fort Lauderdale, both during May of 2003. In the new millennium, DJ LuCifer was the first South Florida DJ to specifically bill Deathrock as a featured music genre, in response to renewed interest in DR after the s0-called “Deathrock Revival”. Other South Florida DJ’s continued to ignore Deathrock requests until new DR became fashionable a few years later. (I remember fruitlessly trying to get a popular “Goth” Night in Sofla to spin Cinema Strange.) Anyway, on to DJ LuCifer’s top 13 album picks. Here there be Dragons….
To say this was an easy task would be in a word WRONG! After about 6 or 7 records that were definite lock-ins, I never thought in a million years the rest of the list would have so many REAL contenders. Short of playing darts or drawing names from a hat, I had to do this novel thing called THINKING! So after long daunting introspection, sequestered soul-searching and chemical ingesting, err I mean coffee, here it is, my top 13 favorite albums!!! Some will be obvious to those who’ve only known me for a minute, some might shock people who’ve known me all my life. Drum roll please! Al spelling errerz r min!
And in no particular order of importance EXCEPT the first two.
#1 Queen – “The Works”
I’m (somehow!) old enough to remember a time when this was the NEW Queen album! On my family’s disastrous nightmare automotive-breakdown plagued 1986 summer vacation, we were camped in Devil’s Tower National Monument in Wyoming and I was miserable! This dying piece of shit 1972 motor-home my dad was suckered into buying should have died years sooner! To her credit, my sister saved the day, and possibly my life, by bringing her boombox! I’ll never forget there at Devil’s Tower, wishing every waking moment that I could play the 5 note song from Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, summon the aliens, and get the HELL out of there! Then along comes my sister playing Queen, and my jaw hit the floor! Truly a holy SHIT moment! It was “Death On Two Legs” from Night At The Opera and “Dead On Time” from Jazz, and my mind was BLOW! And that was JUST the first two songs on the tape I got to hear! One great song after another I was instantly a Queen fan! What the HELL compares that THAT?! So is the case with the rest of the Queen catalog! The Works definitely fits that criteria! One great song after another. Not too much of the damn synthesizer in place of what wild weird amazing noises could be otherwise cranked out of Brian May’s Red Special! (Brian May is STILL the #1 guitarist of ALL time, with the possible exception of Jimi Hendrix!) It hits a very hard to hit balance of everything Queen, but The Works does so nicely! Roger Taylor, when they were recording this album, and came up with the title (thank you Wikipedia, I didn’t know this until I just read it now!) when he said “Let’s give them the works!”! Sod Capital Records for their under-promotion of this album, as well as “A Kind Of Magic”! The reissue is even better with the bonus tracks, “I Go Crazy” is a great Brian May song! I believe it was the b-side from a 12″ of “Radio Ga Ga” I still have somewhere buried, and the 12″ extended duel Doppler remixes of “Radio Ga Ga” & “I Want To Break Free” show how much was likely cut down “back in the day” to to 12″ vinyl limitations. One of my absolute favorites is “Machines (Or Back To Humans)” one of only two songs written just by Brian & Roger, the other is “Thank God It’s Christmas” which is on the mostly otherwise horrible Queens Greatest Hits 3! I still believe the rumor that Roger Taylor’s original lyrics for the chorus of “Radio Ga Ga” was “All we here is, radio no hit, radio’s bullshit”!!!!!!! After he said in “The Magic Years” video series “I don’t like religion, it tends to fuck people up!” this rumor might just be for real! I could go on and on and on about this album, and Queen, so this is the perfect way to end this: when you hear the end of the “Break Free” 12″ version where it samples a few seconds of every song on “The Works” and then it ends with a muffled gun shot sound effect (“More Of The Jazz” the last song on the “Jazz” album ends the same way, samples every song on the album and then BOOM!) you get a quick reminder of AGAIN how great The Works is and how even if it’s just Brain & Roger carrying on the Queen banner, the spirit of Freddie Mercury never truly died and never will!!!!!!! Queen always has been and always WILL be my favorite band EVER! LONG LIVE THE QUEEN!!!!!
Queen’s official site is http://QueenOnline.com & on Twitter http://Twitter.com/QueenWillRock & Dr. Brian May’s site is http://BrianMay.com he’s also on twitter http://Twitter.com/DrBrianMay
#2 Gary Numan – “The Pleasure “Principle”
I’m convinced Gary Numan is my older brother from another mother of a slightly whiter color! Well what can I say about my musical hero that I already haven’t said 1,000 times on my social media to the point where someone even said to me “GET ANOTHER FAVORITE”!!! Sorry dude, it doesn’t work that way! (Gary can safely say he’s my 2nd favorite music act, and I hope he’s not insulted if he’s reading this, but com’on, Queen, duh!) Probably from birth, my other sister (who hold a masters degree in Psychology…rut roh!) always insisted I have what I call Asperger’s Gift, as opposed to “Syndrome” which I flat out REFUSE to call it as such. What a conkydue that Gary has the gift too! Birds of an Aspberger feather flock together huh? Almost universal to “Aspies” is a high IQ and being masters of music! And Gary Numan fits that bill IN SPADES! Who else has DIRECTLY influenced everyone from Trent Reznor (no real surprise there!), Lady Ga Ga (I’ll admit, that surprised me!), Marilyn Manson, The Foo Fighters, Prince, Fear Factory (with which Gary remade “Cars” in 1998), Africa Bambatta (who remade “Metal” with Gary!), Beck (Beck Hansen, NOT Jeff Beck!), Queens Of The Stone Age, David Bowie (who was one of Gary’s early inspirations!), Robert Palmer (who Gary wrote and recorded with!) and countless others! “The Pleasure Principle” (YES IT’S THE ALBUM WITH “CARS”!) in the end, won the #2 spot on here, mainly since it was my first “real” Numan album to hear that wasn’t some $2 slapped together compilation by some 2 bit record label looking to cash in with the umpteenth million live version of “Cars” as it’s selling point! (Nevertheless, a shitty Numan compilation is better than NOTHING, and for a long long time, that was all you could find!) From the first note of “Airlane” to “Engineers” AND the SEVEN bonus tracks, you can’t beat this album! If you know someone who’s always liked “Cars”, but has no clue of anything else by Gary, PLAY THEM THIS ALBUM IMMEDIATELY! I was torn to say the least between this, and at least a dozen other Gary albums. Yes kids, Gary has TWENTY ONE studio albums!!! And despite what Gary says, they’ve all damn good at the very least, yes even “Machine & Soul” which Gary HATES! I’ll take the worst Gary Numan album ANY DAY over most people’s BEST offerings! It’s also a slight personal bias that I can play approx. half the songs on this landmark album! For years, I’d tried to play everything from NIN to Jane’s Addiction, to the most simple of songs, on either guitar or keyboard or bass, and it just didn’t work! But Gary Numan’s songs DID. Birds of an Asperger feather flock together indeed! (Also to belabor my “point” that Gary’s my long lost brother, he’s also a massive Queen fan, dyes his hair black, and to put it nicely, is extremely non-religious!) You could easily start a budding Numanoid off with ”Sacrifice” (especially the extended version!!!), ”I, Assassin”, (these two were SERIOUS contenders for this list!) “Dead Son Rising”, “Exile”, “Pure”, “Tubeway Army” (1st album), Tubeway Army’s “Replicas”, Tubeway Army’s “The Plan”, “Telekon”, “Dance” (another very serious contender too since it features Queen’s Roger Taylor on 3 songs!!!), “The Fury”, “Berserker”, “Jagged”, they’re all flawless albums! But I’d be 100% intellectually dishonest if I didn’t go with this album! You know you want to crank “Cars” now! And why not! It’s still a fucking great song and it always will be! I’ll bet you’re opening another tab to view the video on Youtube, aren’t you! Go ahead, just don’t X this one out! From the “robotman” persona (classic of Aspberger’s) to the neon pyramid, it’s still one of the all time greatest videos! Yes, I’m old enough to remember seeing it on eMpTyV, along with the live video of “Down In The Park” which is hilarious with Gary singing the whole song while driving a miniature car around the stage,I love it!!! Not to be outdone, Gary often LOSES money on touring due to his massive stage show, and even at a small venue like West Palm’s Carefree Theatre were I lucked out and saw Gary live from the 2nd row May 27, 1998 (and I had my ticket autographed nanny nanny boo boo!!!!!!) he puts on a top of the line show even if 2 dozen people show up, or if 20,000 show up! Playing “Cars” 3rd song in the set was surprising, but as I like to say “Gary Numan DOES have other songs, people!” Please don’t forget about the other 16 tracks! “Complex” (which ALSO went to #1 in the UK as did “Cars”) is a true tear-jerker, and deserves to be played live again for sure! I didn’t know members of his band played viola & violin on this and other songs on the album, until I read the liner notes! The live tracks are a great addition as well! The slower and more electronic, brooding version of “Bombers” makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up! The cover of George Benson’s “On Broadway” is classic, one of the very few covers Gary’s done! “Asylum”, the b-side of “Cars”, is a truly haunting instrumental you do not want to play at 3 AM, trust me on that one! Hell, it could very well fit in on a NIN album and it’d be seamless fit as it would be if it was an instrumental Trent wrote! So could “Oceans” & “Random”. The 7″ of “Cars” I found at my favorite West Palm thrift store for a few cents (no picture sleeve, hrmph!) has “Metal” for it’s b-side instead of “Asylum”, which shows Atco records wasn’t into taking any chances I guess! I damn near wore that single out!!! Not that Beggars Banquet (Gary’s UK label) was keen on chancing “The Pleasure Principle” being released as a Gary Numan album instead of the already established Tubeway Army name, which is stupid since other than Paul Gardiner on bass who is also on this album, and Gary’s uncle Jess Lidyard, Gary played keyboards & guitar, and sung, and wrote EVERY SONG! When I finally got good at playing “Cars”, “Oceans”, “Airlane”, M.E”, “Metal” and “Tracks” (and more, mostly songs from “Replicas” & “Telekon”) on my keyboard, and guitar to a lesser extent, it was like pealing the layers of an onion, no, it was like I found both the Arch of the Covenant AND the Holy Grail of music!!! (How’s that for blasphemy?!) By deconstructing the songs (ie playing slower when just waking up!) I truly saw the complexity to Numan’s music and style and approach to music was far more complex than I’d imagined! Speaking of, notice this album has NO GUITARS, so as to let the keyboard shine? I didn’t! Until I read the liner notes! Which Beggar Banquet did an outstanding job by getting Gary’s autobiography’s co-author & now co-manager Steven Malins provided page after page of depth to this and other albums, a lot of which was derived from the “Praying To The Aliens” autobio, you get the FULL picture of what Gary was out to accomplish, the back-story of this album came is great such reading. (More so with “Replicas” which is quite bold concept album!) It drives me absolutely batshit fucking NUTS when people say “Gary Numan was just a 1 hit wonder.” WRONG, JACKASSES! Who else had the #1 UK album (Replicas) AND at the SAME TIME the #1 UK single (“Are ‘Friends’ Electric?”)!!!! A total of THREE #1 UK albums (Telekon & this album are the other two) and even cracked the US market with this album?! Who else’s song (“Down In The Park”) was covered by both Marilyn Manson AND the Foo Fighters, both cover versions radically different from each other and Tubeway Army’s original!? “M.E” was the basis for Basement Jaxx’s massive hit “Where’s My Head At”! “Are ‘Friend’ Electric?” was the basis for The Sugarbabies monster hit “Freak Like Me”! “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” can also be heard on an often run Howard Stern promo on his SiriusXM channels! Who else showed the world how to PROPERLY use a synthesizer!? Who else inspired Trent Reznor, who summed it up best when he said “When I heard ‘Cars’ by Gary Numan, I knew I wanted to make music with synthesizers!”?! Who else’s music was played along side of the originators of rap in The Bronx & had people break dancing in droves!? Above all, who else got me off my ass and seriously playing music again, for the first time in 28 years?! GARY NUMAN, THAT’S WHO! And over 33 years later, “The Pleasure Principle” and ALL of Gary Numan’s work, continues to inspire while easily withstanding the test of time, raising the bar for quality in music, & moreover, still way AHEAD of its time!!!!!! If I ever somehow become a professional musician, I will owe it all to Gary Numan!!!!!!!! I’ll have to be extremely careful not to rip him off, much like I’d have to do the same with Bill Hicks if I was to be a stand up comic! The best way to end this, before I get carpel tunnel, is with the words of Beck: “I don’t care what anyone says, I love Gary Numan!”
Gary Numan’s official site (and store, PLEASE buy some stuff people! Start with his latest “Dead Moon Falling”! THEN you can pick up a $1 used copy of “The Pleasure Principle” off Amazon, don’t lie, you know you’ve already got THAT tab open too!) is http://Numan.co.uk Gary’s also on Twitter http://Twitter.com/NumanOfficial & Facebook http://Facebook.com/GaryNumanOfficial
#3 Jane’s Addiction – “Ritual De Lo Habitual”
This was a easy pick for sure! No question about it! I love the 1st (live) album and “Nothing’s Shocking” both masterpieces as well, and the newest “The Great Escape Artist” is pretty damn good too. Ritual however, takes it to the next level! And what an album cover too! All you kids out there doing the digital downloading thing don’t know what you’re missing! I was still in high school listening to pretty much nothing but old fart classic rock since by the late 80′s/early 90′s rock N roll had degenerated into not much more than hair metal shit! Bubbling under the surface just waiting for the right moment to break through like roots under pavement were albums like this. And this is the one that deserve the credit that Nirvana’s “Nevermind” got! I even went so far as to pierce my septum & make my own nose ring like Perry’s, even though by that time he’d taken it out since idiots in the front row were trying to yank it out! Never did want the dreadlocks dyed green or purple, though it was and still is a look that along with the album covers, make you stop in your tracks! I’ll never forget the first time I saw the video for “Been Caught Stealin’” and I laughed so hard it hurt! Perry Farrell’s sense of irony is one of the best, and from the concert bootlegs I have, he could have easily been a hilarious stand up comic! On the other hand, the dark side is there, especially on side two (yes, I’m old!) which serves as a brilliant tribute to his deceased friend Xiola Blue. Perry’s voice, Dave Navarro’s guitar playing, Eric Avery’s bass, Steven Perkins drumming, you could easily pick them out in a non-Jane’s song, they all are one of kind! A great example of this is Dave’s guitar on “You Ought To Know” by Alanis Morrisette, I knew the first note that was him! (Flea plays bass on it, just FYI!) Some kids in my high school had the cd single (again, I’m old!) of “Classic Girl” and holy shit, the live versions of “No One’s Leaving” and “Ain’t No Right” left me all but speechless! The “LA Medley” of the Doors “LA Woman”, The Germs “Lexicon Devil” & X’s “Nausea” is genius, plus I immediately had to get the original albums with the Germs & X’s songs, and what great bands they are as well! These live tracks should be on a reissue of Ritual! Jane’s Addiction truly deserved the title of The Led Zeppelin of The 80′s & 90′s! I’ve seen Jane’s live twice, and Porno For Pyros twice, and never once did they have the same bass player! (Martyn LeNoble & Mike Watt for P4P, Chris Cheney & Eric for Jane’s!) Let’s just hope they can find a bass player, which seems almost as bad as the drummer position in Spinal Tap! One of the many highlights of my life was being replied to on Twitter by BOTH Perry & Dave, and I even got an email reply from Perry, my gods that must have been in 1996 since it was when he still had the Teeth.Net site!!! VIVE JUAN-AS ADDIC-SHE-ON!!!! And bless you Howard Stern for the defacto Jane’s reunion that resulted from the Porno For Pyros’ (with Dave & Flea) great song “Hard Charger” on the “Private Parts” soundtrack album!
Jane’s Addiction’s official site is http://JanesAddiction.com and they have more social media links than you can shake a stick at so make use!
#4 Jesus Jones – “Doubt”
THIS was the album that got me into what used to be alternative/underground music! And cured me of a years long classic rock hangover! 1991, ahh the memories! Before I stumbled up Jane’s Addiction, and NIN, Jesus Jones was IT! And what a great sound they have! I’ve never heard a band before or since combine punk, rap, classic rock, metal, dance music, and more, put it in a blender and come out with something far more than the sum of its parts! “Right Here Right Now” deserved to be a hit, as did every song on this album! From “Trust Me” and “Stripped” which could easily blow your speakers and ear drums, to “I’m Burning”, “Blissed” and “Welcome Back Victoria” subdued and sounds like Mike Edwards is channeling Ray Davies! There is nothing like Jesus Jones. I’m so glad I saw them at the Cameo Theatre in Miami Beach, August of ’91, when this album was HUGE and my god the line of people who couldn’t get in! They could have easily played the Bayfront Amphitheatre or hell even the Miami Arena! Plus I’d never saw two women with blue and green hair and nose rings kiss and I mean KISS, and make out! Ah, the memories indeed!!! I was so close to putting their first album “Liquidizer” AND “Perverse” (3rd album) on here but “Doubt” holds that special place in my cold black heart since it was the 1st one I heard. And it still holds up all these years later, and Jesus Jones is still awesome!
Jesus Jones official site is http://JesusJones.com on Twitter http://Twitter.com/JesusJonesBand & FB http://Facebook.com/JesusJonesBand
#5 Cabaret Voltaire – “Microphonies”
For those of us who great up in the 1980′s, remember the poster on the back of Farris Bueller’s door? It was the cover of this album! Which I never knew until AFTER I FINALLY found a copy of this, at CD Connection in Boca, which sadly I must have been the only to do so because approx. 2 years later I picked up another Cabaret Voltaire album there and the guy who ran the store said to me “Hey didn’t you buy one of their albums a few years ago?”!!!!!!! Around 1994 at a thrift store in West Palm, I first found the 12″ of “Sensoria” my god what a mind blowing version, thankfully its a bonus track on the cd! And the b-side which isn’t on cd to my knowledge “Cut The Damn Camera”, and wow what a great song too! I don’t know how I didn’t ware that 12″ out OR the tape I made of it!!! I first heard of Cabaret Voltaire in a Spin issue on industrial music, and you guessed it, I had my pen & paper hand! I now had a mile long list of bands to look for! And since Trent Reznor recommended CV, they went almost to the top of the list! Oh hell, I remember now, that was the same thrift store I found the 7″ of “Cars” b/w “Metal” by Gary Numan! Now I gotta go back and make my Gary article LONGER hhhhhhhh! So like with that, I couldn’t wait to get home and hear the 12″! Cabaret Voltaire is probably THE quintessential industrial band! They were there from the start and did it right! This album is genius and CV at their best, and I loved this album from the minute I first heard it! One great song after another, from “Digital Rasta” to “Blue Heat”, especially the 12″ ext. version that’s also on the CD as a bonus track, “The Operative”, “James Brown”, you can’t go wrong with Cabaret Voltaire and especially with “Microphonies”!!! And Steven Mallinger was a great addition to the very short lived Ministry side project Acid Horse on “No Name No Slogan”. Leave it to Al Jorgensen to crank that out!
#6 Robert Plant – “Now And Zen”
This was not easy to not go with a Led Zeppelin album, trust me on that one! “Zep 3″, “In Through The Out Door”, “Presence”, “Zep 1″, “Physical Graffiti”, even Zep 4, were all serious contenders, but “Now & Zen” is where it all really began for me. Whoever sat Robert down and said “STOP RUNNING AWAY FROM YOUR PAST!” needs a Nobel peace prize! Not to slag his previous 3 solo albums, they’re all damn good, but they were lacking that extra OOMPHA! that we all knew damn well Mr. Plant has to offer! And it was INSANE that he wouldn’t play any Zep songs in concert until this album! I was infuriated to say the least that my parents just had to do another all summer long nightmare excursion vacation in 1988, meanwhile my sisters go to see Plant be the first rock act to play the Miami Arena in July! I still don’t know how I didn’t stroke out over that! But I still have the tour shirt they got me and some how it still fits!!! I also don’t know how I didn’t wear out the tape I made of this album, along with “Walking Towards Paradise”, a great song, non-album b-side of “Heaven Knows.” I was so glad to see it as the bonus track on the cd. Phil Johnstone, Chris Blackwell & Doug Boyle, along with Charlie Jones who didn’t play bass on this album, but did on the tour & the next Plant album “Manic Nirvana” (yet another contender for this list!) these guys brought out the best in Robert Plant, and it was the closest thing to a Zep album you’d get without Jimmy Page & John Paul Jones! Speaking of, I almost forgot, Page IS on this album! His solos on “Heaven Knows” & “Tall Cool One” take each song to a whole other level I just can’t put into words!!! I think Jimmy got a crappy deal in that he played these two amazing solos, and Robert returns the favor by singing “The Only One” (Jason Bonham plays drums on it, and 6 other songs) on “Outrider” (yet another very serious contender for this list!) and goddamn! Did he write the lyrics AND record it all in the same day!? I hate like Hell to say it, but it’s because of THAT I didn’t opt for “Outrider”! I still love that album too, and I was VERY close to putting it on this list, but that track needed more work than what made the final cut! Nevertheless, Robert Plant at his worst is still better than ALL the lousy 80′s hair metal acts who often imitated him & Zep, while never even coming close to duplicating, and no one ever will! I’ll never forget how fired up I was to see Plant twice live on his own, especially the first time Oct. 23, 1990, and I remember the date because it was the date the Zep 4 CD Box Set came out, and twice with Page was even better! Like a kid in a candy store with his parents credit card! And I got John Paul Jones’ autograph in 2000, on 2 of his CD’s and the “Scream For Help” album! If I ever see Plant or Page I should show them that and say “Now, you guys DO remember who he is, right?!” And would someone please sit Mr. Plant down AGAIN and tell him to stop making country albums!!!!
#7 R.E.M. – “Document”
This came along the same time as some of the others on here, but R.E.M. being not as established as most gave me a fiber of hope that there WAS indeed some new music by new or newer acts to be had! It was also nice to see REM, and so many other great bands coming out of Athens, GA, just one state away! Pylon, the B-52′s, Flat Duo Jets, and all the bands featured alongside REM in the “Athens GA Inside Out” film, what a treasure trove of great music! I played the living Hell out of the tape I made of this to the point where I could probably play and sing every song on it in my sleep! I’d never heard anything that mixed punk with a for lack of a better term a real melodic approach! I especially love “Exhuming McCarthy”, a scathing rip on the Reagan Administration and rightfully so! Another highlight is “Oddfellows Local 151″ where Stipe just goes OFF on a tear! That opening guitar riff still gives me goosebumps! And “Finest Worksong” where Peter Buck shows you can rip & riff on the guitar without having to play 900 notes a minute! R.E.M. never shied away from politics, that much is certain and it was great to see the booth for Greenpeace at their shows. Credit REM with waking up my environmental conscious! Come to think of it, R.E.M. holds the honor of being the first REAL concert I saw! (WRONG! Julian Lennon DOES! See album #9!) April 1989 at the Miami Arena, wow that crowd was WILD! But I loved it! This album was the keystone for me to scratch the surface and see what’s out there. Back then (again, old fart alert!) you had SOME radio that would play stuff like this off the beaten path, usual a small watt college station. I never much cared for R.E.M.’s output after “Monster” once Bill Berry left. One might thing him being the drummer would have had such and impact, but he was crucial to their songwriting, and you could tell something was missing. But like Gary Numan, I’d still rather hear the worst R.E.M. album than most people’s BEST albums! I’m still sad to see they broke up, but if the Sex Pistols AND Jane’s Addiction can reunite, ANYTHING is possible! Long live REM!
#8 Nine Inch Nails – “Broken”
I could have EASILY gone with “Pretty Hate Machine”, “Downward Spiral” or “Year Zero”, but “Broken” not only holds that special place in my cold black heart since it was the first NIN album I bought new, on the day it was released, and it’s flawless! There’s a track or two on “PHM” (the studio version of “Sin” sucks next to the remix, more on that in a few!) and “Spiral” that I could urm let’s just say do with out! (Even Trent said he regretted putting “Big Man With A Gun” on “Spiral”) And “Year Zero” though it’s flawless as well, it is just too damn depressing!!! Not that “Broken” is one great big happy-fest! The term “EP” is TRULY outdated since we hardly have 12″ vinyl anymore, so this MINI-ALBUM gives you NIN distilled down to 8 songs (counting the 2 now-bonus tracks that used to come on a 3″ cd, remember those?!) and from the chainsaw-like tear of “Wish” and “Gave Up” to the more mellow “Suck” and Adam Ant cover “Physical” to the instrumentals “Help Me I’m In Hell” & “Pinion”, you get NIN at its best! I’ll never forget finding the CD single of “SIN” again in 1991, what a great year for music that was for me for sure! Ahh, more memories! Around the time, I’d just discovered Jesus Jones & then Jane’s Addiction, and on the heals of the first Lollapalooza tour, eMpTyV finally got off it’s ass and started playing NIN. The video for “Head Like A Hole” is still one of the best videos EVER! Same for “Down In It”!!! Oh back to the “SIN” single! Along with the 3 remixes of “Sin”, especially the first one which RULES, it had the reason I bought it, and became a NIN fan for life: the best Queen cover EVER of “Get Down Make Love”!!! I literally RAN to the check out counter & bought it when I saw that on the back of the single!!! I was floored to see that anyone even KNEW of that song, much less COVERED it! To so radically revamp ANY Queen song like Trent Reznor did with Al Jorgensen & Paul Barker of Ministry producing was absolutely astonishing to me and still is! “Broken” clearly shows the Queen influence, especially when it comes to guitar. I could easily see Brian May playing the main riff of “Last” with no problem whatsoever! Broken is often overlooked by even the most hardcore NIN-heads out there, and it should! It’s solid gold! Since it appears the Gary Numan/Trent Reznor album is never going to happen, how about someone arrange for a Trent Reznor/Queen album!!! (Or how about a Gary Numan/Queen album!!!!!!)
#9 The Beatles – “Abbey Road”
Huuuwee, get in the time machine here! I must have first heard this album when I was probably only 2 years old! THIS is the Beatles album that deserves the reputation & credit etc. given to Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band! With the exception of “Revolver”, every other Beatles album has at least one song on it that I’m like hhhhhhhhh really? Seriously?! But not “Abbey Road”! Even Ringo’s song “Octopus’s Garden” is great! Why am I reminded now of Bill Hicks? “The Beatles were so high, they let Ringo sing a few songs!!!” It was phenomenal to see Paul McCartney live TWICE play the “Medley” from side two of “Golden Slumbers”, “Carry That Weight” & “The End”, not to mention the rest of the show! And I take back what I said about REM being my first REAL concert, Julian Lennon WAS! Perry Farrell once said to Spin that if you’re an up and coming band, “don’t be afraid to be popular, hey the Beatles were popular and they made great music”! And “Abbey Road” is the best example of that! From the first note of “Come Together” to the long almost never ending last note of “The End” and oh wait, don’t forget “Her Majesty”, you’ve got the REAL “Sgt. Pepper masterpiece” right here!
#10 Pink Floyd – “A Momentary Lapse Of Reason”
I just heard Roger Waters on The Best Of The Year of the Howard Stern Show when Howard had him in back in January, and I ain’t lyin, though he’s a great talent, he’s got such an ego that I could feel it oozing through my Sirius radio!!! That Roger could put out that piece of CRAP “The Pros & Cons Of Hitchhiking”, AND the leftovers (they were outtakes for a reason!) from “The Wall” in the form of “The Final Cut” and then say “Momentary Lapse” was bunk, is just flat out asinine! This is another album that came along in 1987/88 around the time of REM’s Document & Robert Plant’s Now & Zen that made go “woah, where the fuck have I been?!” Other than the likes of “Another Brick In The Wall 2″ and “Money”, I had no earthly clue who Pink Floyd was! The joys of a sheltered life! I came very close to going with “About Face” by David Gilmour, but I would have been lying to myself and only would have done so if I REALLY hated Roger Waters! Which I don’t, for the record. He just needs to chill the fuck out and stop being a completely uncompromising control freak, to the point that people are leaving the band and/or not getting in a musical contribution, which kind of defeats the PURPOSE of a BAND! David Gilmour GOT that, and with Wright & Mason, “Momentary Lapse” benefits and is better than it would have been as a David Gilmour album, even though “David Gilmour” & “About Face” are excellent! Great lyrics, great guitar work, great album PERIOD! And instead of releasing this masterpiece on his own, which would have instantly made David Gilmour a household name, he got Nick Mason on board, and about halfway thought got Richard Wright back into the mix, though it’s unclear what keyboard parts are his and what’s not, and instead of giving up on Pink Floyd like Roger Waters did, Dave, Nick & Rick took Pink Floyd to the next level! From “Learning To Fly”, “Dogs Of War”, “On The Turning Away” to the “deeper cuts” like “Terminal Frost”, “Sorrow” & “Yet Another Movie”, it’s still my favorite Pink Floyd album! It’s sad that Richard Wright died and they only cranked out “The Division Bell” after this album. But I say if Brian May & Roger Taylor can keep Queen going, why can’t Gilmour & Mason keep Pink Floyd going!!!
#11 Alien Sex Fiend – “I’m Her Frankenstein”
Well bloody Hell! This doesn’t have a Wikipedia entry?! For shame! I tried to not have any compilation albums on here, but this is going to have to be an exception! Thankfully it’s not a “Greatest Hits” type package and you get a great deal of tracks that aren’t otherwise on cd, some great forgotten gems. I kept hearing Alien Sex Fiend songs on WKPX which I was almost out of range of but I had a monster antenna, and I never could find anything on cd from them for years, talk about frustrating! Finally, “Now I’m Feeling Zombified” made it to the big leagues by getting clowned out by Beavis & Butthead! Actually, if I remember correctly (and that’s suspect at best!) B&B were more ambivalent to “Zombified” though they made up their own lyrics to it! So thanks to B&B, my closest record store had “I’m Her Frankenstein” and once again couldn’t wait to get home! From “Nightmare Zone” to “Sample My Sausage”, I was like jesus CHRIST on a pogo stick! I don’t know how I haven’t worn out my cd of it! I could have easily gone with “Maximum Security” since it’s the first “proper” Alien Sex Fiend” I heard, but “I’m Her Frankenstein” won, and it’ll always be a favorite, love it, love it, love it!!!
Alien Sex Fiend’s official site is http://www.asf-13thmoon.demon.co.uk & on FB https://Facebook.com/AlienSexFiendOfficial
#12 The Genitorturers – “Sin City”
I’m still mortified yet astounded that I had the audacity to give Gary Numan a homemade Genitorturers and told him “PLEASE check out this band! I promise you will like them!” Gary thought it was a flier for MY band! I said “I WISH!” So who knows, maybe Gary said “oh what the hell!” and checked them out; but he probably said “what in the bloody buggery bollocks is this crap that crazy bloke gave me?! Geni-what?!” Nonetheless, because of that, and endless internet plugging bordering on spamming, I got to see Gen live for at least a dozen times for free and go backstage, so I guess it balances out! To see this album come to life in concert is a mindblower! My god what a stage show!!! Due to the 5 years between albums gap, I played the living hell out of my copy of the first album “120 Days Of Genitorturer” which is more of a metal album than “Sin City”, and when “Sin City” came out, I wore it out 10 times more than I did with “120 Days!” By adding a keyboard or two, that gave “Sin City” what it needed; that gave them such a bigger and better and more commanding razor-sharp edge of a sound that is one of a kind! From “Sin City” to “Crucified” I couldn’t get enough of this album, and still can’t! Everything they’ve done since is equally as great, “Machine Love”, “Flesh Is The Law” and most recently “Blackheart Revolution”, but I had to go with this album since it, again, holds that special place in my cold black heart! It’s also so great to see such a great band come from here Florida too! I’m old enough to remember seeing fliers for their shows from the early ’90′s, and thinking “What in the…wow…bet that’s a crazy-ass crowd!!!” And yes, it is! The opening band on some of those fliers was another, and then little know, FL band Marilyn Manson & The Spooky Kids. Manson clearly “borrowed” a good lot of his stage show from Gen, most notably the squirting dildo that got him arrested in the Baptist controlled Jacksonville, imagine that! In the video of “Gave Up” by Nine Inch Nails (the one that made the OFFICIAL release, not that one that looks like a snuff film!) Trent Reznor is wearing a Gen shirt. I wouldn’t mind seeing Manson & Trent put Gen over like they have for Gary Numan! And the next time I see Gary, I’ll give him a copy of this album, as well as a copy of my bootleg of Queen’s first ever concert! Sure beats the crap out of one of my homemade fliers!!! And for the record, I’d be remiss if I didn’t say, GEN IS STILL HAWT!!!
http://Genitorturers.com is their official site, on Twitter http://Twitter.com/Genitorturers and their FB url is a pain, so just search for it!
#13 The Doors – “Strange Days”
I found this at a Phramore that was closing in west Delray thanks to their CEO or someone embezzling millions & they had to close most of their stores. It didn’t even come with the cover, but for a few cents I wasn’t about to complain! I picked up quite a few great cds there too, even before the closeout sale. Something by the Eurythmics, a Grateful Dead album that had “Ripple” to see how it compared to the Jane’s Addiction cover (Jane’s is better!) and, damn I don’t remember what else, oh even another copy of “Perverse” by Jesus Jones that I gave to a friend just to help the album sales! Now that’s commitment! But “Strange Days” was clearly the stand out! I’ve been a fan of the Doors ever since I first heard them, and this is the first PROPER Doors album I got to hear. Glad I found this one since it IS the best! Especially “Strange Days”, “When The Music’s Over” and “Moonlight Drive”. My friend Alex once said “have you ever noticed that the Doors really don’t have a bad song?” and I thought about it and it’s true! Yes, even “Touch Me”!!! I still love the Oliver Stone Doors movie though the remaining Doors hate it, especially Ray Manzarek. Just the feel of it takes you right back to the late 1960′s, even those of use who weren’t even convinced yet! “Strange Days”, like Jesus Jones’ “Doubt” & Tubeway Army’s “Replicas” again disproves the “sophomore slump” cliche most artists are thought to have. So don’t start with that 2 CD Doors best of, or the soundtrack to the movie, start with “Strange Days”!