This is a list that I feel like will be different for everyone. Many lists I do could have similar options near the top for most people, but this is a list that is definitely a personal choice and will vary wildly between different people.
While I sit at home every day working in my office in the basement, one thing that keeps me going is rocking out to music while working. I listen to pretty much everything but country. Despite growing up in Alabama and having a dad that really liked country music – I just never could get into it. However, anything else is up for grabs.
For the sake of this not being a little skewed, I’m leaving off “Best Of” albums and live albums. I’d love to throw Journey’s Greatest Hits or AC/DC Live on there.
Also, I’m 33, so it’s hard to put a lot of albums from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s on here. Sure, I love music from then, but I never got to experience those albums when they were newly relevant.
Best Albums of All Time
1. Third Eye Blind (self-titled)
Best Songs: Semi-Charmed Life, Jumper, London, Narcolepsy, Losing a Whole Year, How’s It Going to Be
For albums to truly be great, you have to be able to listen to the entire thing and enjoy every bit of it. This was the first album I remember being able to listen to every track on it over and over again. As for hits, they only had a few with Semi-Charmed Life, Jumper and How’s It Going to Be – but there is so much more from this album. It hits right off the bat with Losing a Whole Year and continues all the way to the end.
Fun fact, I played Jumper for my 6th grade talent show. I nailed it (at least in my mind).
The underrated track here is London. It doesn’t get the same play as many of the others, but I love it.
2. Random Access Memories – Daft Punk
Best Songs: Get Lucky, Contact, Lose Yourself to Dance, Fragments of Time, Instant Crush
I was already fond of Daft Punk, but this album was near perfection to me. I can listen to the entire thing and want to go back for more each time. A great cast of featured artists as well, especially Pharrell who did an incredible job with the album.
The underrated track is Contact. I feel like it doesn’t get as much love as it should.
3. Endless Summer – The Midnight
Best Songs: Jason, Vampires, Lonely City, Memories, Daytona, The Comeback Kid
This is the album that got me hooked on The Midnight, who I now view as my favorite band. I first fell in love with the song Memories and quickly graduated to their monster hits Jason and Vampires. While neither of the two people that make up the band play the saxophone, they feature it in these two songs like no one else ever has in my opinion. Vampires may be my favorite song of all time.
The underrated track is Lonely City, which gets lost in some of the bigger songs, but is incredibly catchy.
4. Yourself or Someone Like You – Matchbox 20
Best Songs: 3 AM, Real World, Push, Long Day, Damn
Matchbox 20 was my first obsession when it came to music. I became obsessed with the first few songs of the album – Real World, Long Day, 3 AM, Push. I learned how to play them on my guitar, and listened until I wore my CD out. Then I got to go to a concert of theirs (Nine Days, Semisonic, Matchbox 20 – what a concert) and the next day got their autographs at a record store down the street from where I live now. (remember record stores?)
The underrated track here is Girl Like That.
5. The Colour And The Shape – Foo Fighters
Best Songs: Monkey Wrench, My Hero, Everlong
While they probably aren’t my absolute favorite band, the Foo Fighters may be the greatest band of all time. Dave Grohl is definitely one of the most accomplished musicians of all-time. My Hero and Everlong put them on the map, but I think the underrated track here is actually Monkey Wrench, which I think is the best on the album. It was technically the first single from the album, but never performed as well as the other two. I think they made the right choice in going with that first.
Honorable Mentions (in no order)
Collision Course – Jay-Z, Linkin Park
Enema of the State – Blink 182
Reanimation – Linkin Park
1989 – Taylor Swift
Hotel California – Eagles
Appetite for Destruction – Guns N’ Roses