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 Lists
09.15.14 Gimme 2014 Recs08.24.14 Estonia Was Cool
08.21.14 Euro Skramz08.19.14 Artuma's Top 200: 50-1
08.05.14 Converge Closers Ranked08.04.14 Artuma's Top 200: 100-51
07.26.14 Artuma's Top 200: 150-101 07.20.14 Artuma Hits 10k! Top 200 Albums: 200-15
07.13.14 Terrifyer Vs Prowler In The Yard07.10.14 Rec Me Industrial Black Metal
07.09.14 Top 10 Agalloch Songs07.05.14 Female Fronted Crust
06.29.14 Artuma's Q206.03.14 Some Great Closers, Pt. 2
06.01.14 Finally I Got Some Time For Music05.17.14 Artuma's 2014: Top 10
05.03.14 1000 Ratings Woo04.28.14 Songs That Give Me Chills
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Artuma's Top 200: 50-1

i've been such a lazyass but here it is
50Talking Heads
Remain in Light


#50: Remain in Light is always an interesting listen. It feel always as unpredictable as ever, and combines styles that make it eccentric, fun and still quite dark at points. Songs like "Once in a Lifetime" rely on funky catchiness, while the more artistic pieces of the album, like "The Overload" take a lot more ambient approach. It's an incredibly unique album, mixing post-punk, funk, psychedelic rock and ambient for a sweet fusion, not to mention David Byrne's fantastic, peculiar vocal delivery.
49Immolation
Close to a World Below


#49: I have never been the biggest fan of death metal, but Close to a World Below is simply too perfect not to be jammed frequently. It could be best described by its album cover: Close to a World Below is a furious, brutal and hellish effort. Ross Dolan's growls are deep, and the music is pure relentless carnage, with its terrific riffs, maniacal drumming and frenetic shredding.
48The National
Alligator


#48: The National made a huge leap in quality with their third effort, Alligator. Matt Berninger's screams on Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers are now gone, which allows his signature deep voice to shine. It fits to the music, which is now more subtle than it used to be, and the melodies are quite a lot more memorable. The band still knows how to rock out though, as songs like "Mr. November" prove. One big shout-out goes to the drummer Bryan Devendorf, who on this album made a big step to be hailed as one of the most ingenious drummers in the indie rock genre. Damn, his drum comping is sometimes even more memorable than the melodies.
47Hammock
Kenotic


#47: Kenotic is the culmination of Hammock's style of making post-rock. While everything Hammock has made has been ultimately uplifting and beautiful feel-good ambient music, Kenotic is the only one to have completely swallowed me within its beauty. It is perfect for any situation, and is able to change any bad moment to good. However, when Kenotic is at its absolute best, it is when it rains. Kenotic is Hammock's masterpiece and one of the most beautiful albums I've ever listened to.
46The Clash
The Clash


#46: Even though London Calling is often regarded as The Clash's magnum opus and one of the most remarkable punk albums of all time, their eponymous debut should never be overlooked. The Clash's self-titled album is a seminal punk classic and The Clash at their rawest. It is full of some of the most famous punk songs ever recorded and lyrics that defined the genre's attitude at the time. The Clash is an extremely influential album and easily one of the best punk albums ever made.
45Radiohead
The Bends


#45: As Radiohead has gone far from their sound in the early 90s, it is hard to appreciate The Bends as much it should be. The Bends is an early Radiohead classic, and simply a perfect alternative rock album. Unlike OK Computer for example, The Bends is at its best when it comes to individual songs and not the whole album, but honestly it doesn't have a single even average moment, and all the songs have something memorable in them. The songs that stand out the most on The Bends are the most emotional ones. "Fake Plastic Trees" and "Street Spirit" are some of the most gloomy songs Radiohead has ever made, and provide Thom Yorke's best performances as a vocalist.
44Cult of Luna
Somewhere Along the Highway


#44: Somewhere Along the Highway is a perfect post-metal album. It continues on the same path that its predecessor, Salvation, went for, having a lighter approach to the heavy sludge metal style of their early works. However, in comparison to Salvation, Somewhere Along the Highway has a lot darker atmosphere and it really works for its advantage. The heavy riffs and harsh vocals are perfectly accompanied by the bleak atmosphere that provides a picture of a lonely wanderer and takes you within the journey. The riffs and songwriting on Somewhere Along the Highway are absolutely top-notch and the album is really more than just essential for the genre.
43Bon Iver
For Emma, Forever Ago


#43: For Emma, Forever Ago shows Justin Vernon's music at its most stripped down. The whole albums centers around the beautiful acoustic melodies, Justin's magnificent falsetto voice and his heartfelt lyrics, with small musical twists. For Emma, Forever Ago is an emotional and gorgeous trip through Justin Vernon's experiences and really takes indie folk in a whole new level. It is not only a modern folk masterpiece, but an extremely sentimental one for the musician as well, and it shows.
42Slowdive
Souvlaki


#42: While My Bloody Valentine single-handedly created the whole shoegaze genre with their classic album, Loveless, Slowdive took a different approach to the genre and made something that is almost as much of a classic than Loveless with their sophomore effort, Souvlaki. Souvlaki is more conventional and poppier than Loveless, but everything works for its advantage and the album definitely doesn't lack in memorability. It features dream pop classics like "When the Sun Hits," beautiful atmospheric ballads like "Machine Gun" as well as experimental shoegaze masterpieces like "Souvlaki Space Station" and every single song on the album has something to offer.
41La Dispute
Somewhere at the Bottom of the River...


#41: La Dispute's debut LP is one of the most ambitious rock albums recorded in the past ten years, and is a pure success in many levels. The musicianship on the album is top-notch and the band's musical style combines post-hardcore, metalcore, atmospheric rock and even progressive rock in a way that is always interesting and works impressively well. Then we have their polarising vocalist Jordan Dreyer, whose performance on the album is quite an acquired taste. He never really sings, nor screams, but instead his voice is more of an combination of spoken word, crying and shouting. However, the mix is fairly accessible, and in the end it is pretty easy to love the band's music. Even though the band's musical output is fantastic, it's the lyrics that play the biggest role in the album. They are admittedly overblown and melodramatic, but absolutely ingenious, passionate and incredibly emotional, and Dreyer really shows that in his vocals.
40Modest Mouse
The Moon & Antarctica


#40: The Moon & Antarctica, Modest Mouse's greatest masterpiece, is just as odd, intelligent and features as great songwriting as their other albums, but what separates it from them is the brooding atmosphere that goes throughout the album. Songs like "The Cold Part" and "The Stars Are Projectors" show exactly what The Moon & Antarctica is all about with their bleak atmosphere, ambitious song structures and the signature Modest Mouse sound.
39Elliott Smith
Either/Or


#39: Elliott Smith is widely regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of the last 25 years, and on Either/Or it is easy to see why. The musicianship is fairly simple and Elliott sings with his gentle voice, but the songs are some of the most melancholic ever written. The music is both lyrically and musically extremely depressing, and the songs are very easily relatable. Obviously the fact that Elliott died in a young age only six years after releasing this album adds it own spice to the tragical album as well.
38Led Zeppelin
Houses of the Holy


#38: While Led Zeppelin's fourth album is often regarded as their pinnacle (as well as one of the most important rock albums of all time), their truly biggest musical achievement came with its follow-up, Houses of the Holy. It is Led Zeppelin's creativity and songwriting at its best, as the album is their easily their most diverse and eclectic. Houses of the Holy keeps the listener always interested with the upbeat rock-out of "The Song Remains the Same," acoustic folk of "Over the Hills and Far Away," reggae influence of "D'yer Mak'er" and dark and trippy progressive rock of "No Quarter" (which I'd probably declare to be the greatest song Led Zeppelin has ever made).
37Titus Andronicus
The Monitor


#37: The Monitor is Titus Andronicus' most ambitious and epic effort, as well as one of the best albums released this decade so far. It is a huge rollercoaster of an album with its raw indie melodies, progressive song structures, fast punk rock passages and beautiful ballad-like parts, which are all tasty ingredients in the long concept album dealing with the American civil war. It is lyrically (and sometimes even musically) highly retrospective, but doesn't bow too much for their influences. Punk albums aren't necessarily known for having 6+ minute epics, but The Monitor is full of them, and everything is culminated in the massive 14-minute closer, "The Battle of Hampton Roads."
36The Smiths
The Queen Is Dead


#36: The Smiths might have been the most important individual band for indie rock and The Queen Is Dead is everything that made The Smiths such a seminal band. It is perfect in many ways as they really showed their sense of writing anthemic and incredibly catchy pop tunes with interesting instrumentation, but the album really wouldn't be the same without the marvellous performance of their vocalist, Morrissey. His lyrics are quirky and witty yet deep and melancholic, and The Queen Is Dead is imbued with memorable lyrical lines. His voice is also completely unique and is a big factor in making The Smiths' music recognizable.
35Edge of Sanity
Crimson


#35: Crimson comprises of only one 40-minute song divided in eight parts, and resulting undoubtedly their greatest song. Despite its massive length, Crimson is an astoundingly cohesive composition, and a landmark in progressive death metal. It features furious death metal blasting, infectious (and sometimes atmospheric) melodic riffs and tasty guitar soloing, and it never repeats itself too much. Crimson is a breathtaking concept album and should be heard by any progressive metal fan.
34Defeater
Lost Ground


#34: Lost Ground was Defeater at the top of their game both musically and lyrically. The album's lyrical content is based on the song "Prophet in Plain Clothes" off their debut, Travels, and what a heartbreaking story it is. The lyrics are highly emotional, and Derek Archambault's shouted vocals are incredibly passionate. Lost Ground is absolutely top notch musically as well, as the melodies are memorable and full of hardcore rampage, not to mention Kurt Ballou's perfect production.
33The Pax Cecilia
Blessed Are the Bonds


#33: On their sophomore effort, The Pax Cecilia goes Toby Driver with their post- hardcore sound. Blessed Are the Bonds is significantly more complex than their debut, and flawless in every level. The album features a vast amount of Kayo Dot- esque modern classical vibes (which are notably shown on the opener, "The Tragedy") while still retaining the raging post-hardcore to some extent (of which "The Progress" is the best example). Blessed Are the Bonds is a landmark in modern art rock. It is emotional, challenging, diverse and every note is absolutely perfect.
32Neurosis
The Eye of Every Storm


#32: The Eye of Every Storm can be described as the ultimate outcome of the evolution Neurosis have been striving for since Souls at Zero. As Neurosis sound has been going more atmospheric step by step, The Eye of Every Storm is their lightest and most ambient album ever. This is exactly what shows the best qualities of the band, as it is still heavy and devastating, but mostly atmospherically rather than sound-wise. The Eye of Every Storm is a grandiose listen, and Neurosis at their best.
31Brand New
The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me


#31: At first glimpse The Devil and God might not seem like an album that would deserve all the praise it gets. Simplifiedly, it's just emotional alternative rock. However, on repeated listens The Devil and God is able to become a full soundtrack for one's psychical problems and features accessible yet magnificent musicianship. Even though the music is always memorable, the climaxes are huge, and it's hard to find any flaws of it, it's the vocalist Jesse Lacey who steals the show. The Devil and God is easily his best performance, as his vocals are passionate and he shows the perfect balance of sensitive clean vocals and truculent shouts. His lyrics are easily relatable, which is why The Devil and God is likely to become a considerably personal album for any listener into alternative rock.
30The National
High Violet


#30: High Violet was a logical step for The National from its highly acclaimed predecessor, Boxer. On High Violet, The National retain their signature sound and style, but manage not to write the same album again. It is their most atmospheric effort to date, and just like on Alligator and Boxer, pretty much everything they do works perfectly. Whether it was the beautiful harmonies of "Sorrow," the driving melody of "Conversation 16" or the piano-based "England," High Violet is perfect in every way. Again, what immediately makes The National such a recognizable act in the current indie scene, is Matt Berninger's deep baritone voice (and his sense of writing memorable one-liners) and Bryan Devendorf's astonishing performance behind the kit.
29Streetlight Manifesto
Somewhere in the Between


#29: Streetlight Manifesto created third-wave ska perfection on their debut, Everything Goes Numb, and it couldn't have a better successor than Somewhere in the Between. Just like Everything Goes Numb, Somewhere in the Between features incredibly catchy ska punk melodies, anthemic choruses, Tomas Kalnoky's terrific vocals and memorable, thought-provoking lyrical content. "The Receiving End of It All" is probably the best ska punk song ever made, and a perfect representation of all that makes Streetlight Manifesto such a brilliant band, both lyrically and musically. Somewhere in the Between is essentially a fun and anthemic record, and beneath its accessibility lies intelligence that not many bands in the current punk scene can top.
28Dream Theater
Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory


#28: Back in the day when I was only getting into progressive music, I inevitably came across Dream Theater, and their critically acclaimed concept album, Scenes from a Memory. It was everything I needed. The album had its interesting story and musical virtuosity that immediately appealed to me, and it was one of the first albums I truly fell in love with. It goes without saying that Scenes from a Memory is a very nostalgic album for me, but looking behind that fact shows that it isn't just a typical progressive metal album. Scenes is a masterpiece in the genre with the best songwriting Dream Theater has ever made, accompanied by memorable riffs, guitar solos and catchiness. Like every other Dream Theater album, it is incredibly technical, but this is one of the few albums where their indisputable technical skills actually feel meaningful.
27Streetlight Manifesto
Everything Goes Numb


#27: It's almost laughable how much Streetlight Manifesto dominate the ska punk scene. Already with their debut album, Everything Goes Numb, Streetlight created something that no one can ever top within the genre. It is simply perfect in every level, and every song on the album is a third-wave ska anthem of its own. Like all their albums, Everything Goes Numb is based on their ability to write fun and catchy ska punk tunes, interesting instrumentation and Tomas Kalnoky's anthemic, witty lyrics. The album goes from a ska punk masterpiece to another for its whole running time, and it's almost impossible not to sing along on every single track.
26Slint
Spiderland


#26: When talking about 90s underground classic albums, it's nearly impossible to ignore Slint's masterwork, Spiderland. With Talk Talk's last two albums, it was highly instrumental for the genre that would later be known as post-rock. Spiderland has a take on atmospheric music no one had ever created, as it is full of extremely dark and eerie guitar riffs and basslines which are accompanied by creepy spoken-word vocals. The album has its recognizably scary nature, which was something that had rarely been focused on in rock music. Spiderland culminates in the last song, "Good Morning, Captain," where Brian McMahan screams those famous lyrics: "I MISS YOU!" and this is at the latest when you know it's a classic album you're listening to.
25Modern Life Is War
Witness


#25: With Witness, Modern Life Is War created a landmark melodic hardcore release and one of the most important punk albums of the decade. It is everything that all the melodic hardcore albums try to reach, with its heartfelt screamed vocals, frantic and memorable hardcore riffs, and melancholic lyrics that helped to define what the genre is all about. Witness is simply a perfect melodic hardcore album. It is catchy, straightforward and anthemic, yet passionate, thoughtful and absolutely relentless.
24Godspeed You! Black Emperor
Slow Riot for New Zero Kanada


#24: Godspeed You! Black Emperor has always been known as a genre-defining post-rock band with their huge build-ups and climaxes. The songs go naturally past the 10-minute mark, sometimes even the 20-minute mark, which leads up to monumental album lengths. However, Slow Riot for New Zero Kanada is an EP that needs only 28 minutes to show what the whole band is all about. Both of the albums two songs, "Moya" and "BBF3," are masterpieces and some of the greatest compositions GY!BE has ever created. They are also strictly connected to each other, which makes Slow Riot an incredibly cohesive record, and provides a perfect representation of the band's sound. It is a perfect album for anyone who is willing to get into the band or the genre.
23Cryptopsy
None So Vile


#23: Cryptopsy's masterpiece, None So Vile, is everything I'm looking for in death metal. It was a highly influential album for technical death metal, and also the best in the genre. None So Vile is a landmark album for death metal and features some of the best musicianship I've ever come across. Lord Worm's guttural growls are extremely brutal and powerful, Jon Levasseur's guitar riffs are tasty, catchy and memorable, and Flo Mounier shows here why he is regarded as one of the best death metal drummers of all time. His playing is ridiculously technical and fast, and he provides some of the biggest highlights of the album. None So Vile is basically the perfect death metal album, and one that never leaves you cold.
22The Antlers
Hospice


#22: There are heartbreaking albums, and then there's Hospice. The Antlers' sophomore effort is an emotional and atmospheric indie rock masterpiece that is one of the few albums that have the ability to make me shed a tear. The music is incredibly subtle and beautiful, but what shines the most on Hospice is the vocalist Peter Silberman's breathtaking falsetto voice and depressing conceptual lyrics. It is simply one of the saddest albums I've ever heard, as well as one of the most gorgeous indie rock albums of all time. Just listen to "Kettering" and you'll see.
21Ulver
Bergtatt - Et eeventyr i 5 capitler


#21: Ulver's debut album, Bergtatt, is easily one of the most remarkable albums in the Norwegian black metal scene. It is a combination of the Norse folk of Kveldssanger and the raw 2nd wave black metal of Nattens Madrigal, and the end result couldn't possibly be any better. Bergtatt is comprised of five chapters, each of which are absolutely perfect (except for Een stemme locker, which pretty much serves as an interlude for the album's gorgeous closer). Bergtatt was an exceptional album in the 90s Norwegian black metal scene, as it was one of the first albums to have such a high folk influence, and it was definitely the most important one. It is easily one of the most essential black metal albums ever and could be described as the perfect representation of the beauty of the Norwegian nature in a musical form.
20Swans
Soundtracks for the Blind


#20: The seminal post-punk band Swans is mostly known for the abrasive, noisy sound of their 80s music, but Soundtracks for the Blind shows a new brand of perfection for the band. It is an exhaustingly long double album that needs full attention, but it's also possibly the most diverse album Swans have ever created, and the best as well. Soundtracks is basically Swans showing that they aren't only the masters of noise rock, but they really are able to write masterpieces of post- rock ("The Sound"), minimalistic music ("Empathy"), ambient ("Surrogate Drone") and hell, even dance music ("Volcano"). The album's biggest epic might be the lengthy "Helpless Child," which is one of the greatest post-punk compositions and a big influence on the band's later material.
19Circle Takes the Square
As the Roots Undo


#19: Even though As the Roots Undo is lyrically clever and sophisticated, there is such immaturity found in the music that it becomes just attractive. Circle Takes the Square's debut is full of random transitions and eccentric overlapping female+male screamed vocals, but that's exactly where As the Roots Undo's biggest appeal lies. It's not an immediate album to say the least but it's one that has tremendous grower potential. Of course, it shouldn't either be ignored that Drew Speziale's guitar work is absolutely fantastic, and the album is both incredibly technical (especially the first half) and breathtakingly epic (especially the latter half). The lyrics are also just heartbreaking, and if given enough time As the Roots Undo truly reveals how much of a beast it is.
18Pixies
Doolittle


#18: It's hard to find a more badass album than Doolittle in the indie rock scene. It was highly influential to many genres that began to flourish in the 90s and was both a critical and commercial success, but it is also one of the most kick-ass albums in the indie rock genre ever. Doolittle is the perfect follow-up to the raw masterpiece that was Surfer Rosa, and ends up being catchier, a bit more polished and a even more memorable than its predecessor. It's quite easy to get into Doolittle as it has its fair share of catchy rock tunes like "Debaser," "Monkey Gone to Heaven," "Here Comes Your Man" and "Hey," not to mention Black Francis' witty lyrics and extraordinary voice. Doolittle is the album that showed the listeners what was to come in the 90s.
17Opeth
Still Life


#17: Still Life marked Opeth's debut in the Peaceville Records and they only needed one shot to strike gold. Still Life features everything that I love in Opeth's music. It has some of the best riffs the band has ever made, fantastic vocal performance by Mikael Åkerfeldt and their best songwriting. It is a concept album, and while the story itself isn't anything special it really adds to the bleak atmosphere the album is striving for. As mentioned earlier, the album is full of superb riffage, but some of the band's catchiest moments as well. However, what makes it Opeth's best album is, besides the aforementioned qualities, that Still Life is simply highlight after highlight and there are absolutely no low points on the album. Consistent perfection.
16King Crimson
In the Court of the Crimson King


#16: When it comes to the history of progressive rock it's inevitable to mention King Crimson's debut in some way. It is the father of progressive rock as we know it, and without a doubt one of the most innovative rock albums of all time. It is already shown on the album opener, "21st Century Schizoid Man," that this is an album like nothing else. The music is incredibly complex and technical, and the songwriting is absolutely surreal, which inspired most of the 70s big progressive rock bands. In the Court of the Crimson King is psychedelic, extraordinary, intricate and highly influential.
15The Clash
London Calling


#15: While The Clash's self-titled album was a remarkable straightforward punk album, the band expanded upon that sound and created something at least as remarkable with London Calling. It is an incredibly diverse album and showed that punk can be so much more than what had been heard before, as London Calling covers up a bunch of genres such as reggae, jazz and ska, and everything works perfectly. The lyrics are just as political as ever, and the album features some of the most memorable lines in the history of punk. London Calling is a revolutionary album, and it is not a miracle that it's often claimed as one of the greatest albums of all time.
14Pink Floyd
Animals


#14: Released in 1977, Animals marked the start of Waters-dominated Pink Floyd, and it couldn't have turned out better. Animals is as ambitious as ever, featuring only three "real" songs, all of which surpass the 10-minute mark in length. All those three songs can be considered as some of the musically greatest the band has ever made. However, Animals' biggest strength compared to Pink Floyd's other albums might be its fantastic songwriting and intelligent political lyrics. Animals is without a doubt a classic, and is a literally flawless album.
13Arcade Fire
Funeral


#13: There is a reason why Funeral became one of the biggest albums of the last decade. It was something that was never heard before, and was released exactly when indie rock was making its commercial rise. It was a phenomenon of its own, and a frontrunner for the indie rock bloom. Funeral is a unique listen with its intriguing use of various extraordinary instruments, combined with their rock sound. It's undoubtedly very bombastic but also an extremely heartfelt one, and shows beautiful modesty in many ways (songs such as "Haiti" and "Rebellion" are perfect examples of this). The huge anthemic climaxes of the album are powerful and the emotional feel of it is prominent, especially during the album's breathtaking closer, "In the Backseat," not to mention that Win Butler's raw vocal performance fits perfectly to the album's sound. Funeral is an interesting listen to say the least and will always have a place in my heart.
12The Cure
Disintegration


#12: Disintegration is just something one simply can't dislike. It is without a doubt The Cure's magnum opus, as it is over an hour long album full of bleak atmospheric tunes, depressing lyrics and probably the best representation of Robert Smith's absolutely desperate, hopeless voice. Disintegration has a fairly modern sound to it considering it's an 80s album, which makes it quite an accessible one, but the songs itself can be very ambitious, as the 9-minute "The Same Deep Water as You" shows. The album doesn't have a single moment that would give any hint of hope, and to say that it's melancholic would be a huge understatement. Disintegration is gothic post-punk at its best with its memorable tunes and a deeply depressing tone that not many have been able to match.
11Pink Floyd
The Wall


#11: The Wall seems to be quite a controversial album here in Sputnik, and it's easy to see why. The album is 80 minutes long, and features a lot of short interludes that might seem like out-of-place. However, it all adds to the album's interesting concept, and every single song on The Wall is necessary. It's every time a thrilling experience to listen to The Wall as a whole, as it's climactic, enigmatic and sweetly psychedelic. The songwriting is absolutely top-notch again, and David Gilmour provides some of his best guitar riffs and solos ever. The Wall may not be a flawless album for everyone, but it is for me, and that's what matters the most. It is highly nostalgic for me as it was the album that got me into the greatest band of all time and therefore it doesn't come off as a big surprise that I revere The Wall as much as I do.
10Burzum
Hvis lyset tar oss


#10: I have always had a certain interest for the Norwegian black metal, not only musically, but also considering the stories of it. One of the most intriguing characters in the scene was without a doubt Varg Vikernes, a.k.a. Burzum. He is obviously a lunatic, and it's really interesting to hear his music. Hvis lyset tar oss is often considered as his best work, and I immediately grabbed it when I heard about it. It was the album that got me into black metal, and completely changed my music taste. Hvis is a full soundtrack to Varg's mysterious mind, and it is frankly pure genius. His shrieks are unique and some of the creepiest I've ever heard, the production is intentionally raw but not unlistenable, the musicianship is fairly simple but still powerful, the atmosphere is gloomy, and the album doesn't have a single low point. While the first three songs are Norwegian black metal at its best, the fourth and last song on the album is something completely different: "Tomhet" is a long and repetitive ambient track, but it's breathtakingly beautiful as well, and I'd describe it as the perfect song for a walk in a dark northern forest in the winter. I've done it. It's one of the best experiences I've ever felt with music.
9The National
Boxer


#9: It's incredibly hard to find words to make justice to The National's best effort. As they are one of the most consistently amazing bands around, it says something that this really is the best. Boxer is more than just a perfect album. Pretty much every song can be considered as the best song on the album, and it shows all the best qualities of The National. Every song has memorable melodies, Berninger's devastating one-liners (for example these gems: "I want to hurry home to you / Put on a slow, dumb show for you / And crack you up." off "Slow Show" or "You keep changing your fancy, fancy mind / Every time / I decide to let go." off "Brainy") accompanied by his recognizable relaxed voice, Devendorf's amazing drumming, and the band's untoppable charm. One of the best aspects of Boxer is also that it's more of a grower than any of their other albums. It's simply awesome to feel when every individual song just clicks, and after a while you'll be listening to nothing else.
8Refused
The Shape of Punk to Come


#8: Somewhere back in time when I was mostly into progressive rock/metal I met The Shape of Punk to Come. I wasn't into punk music at all at the time, considering it as a dumb and talentless genre, but Refused's highly acclaimed swan song opened my eyes. The Shape of Punk to Come isn't just another punk album: it was an experimental and revolutionary hardcore release that took the genre to a territory never touched before. Its core is deeply in the classic hardcore punk ideology but it also experiments with post-punk, jazz and electronic music, and was instrumental in the development of post-hardcore. The album's nature is probably best represented in the anthemic "New Noise," which features relentless punk energy, spoken-word verses, electronic interludes and absolutely revolutionary lyrics.
7My Bloody Valentine
Loveless


#7: Considering my huge amount of love for shoegaze music it would go without saying what Loveless means to me. It is the album that created the template of the genre and is the album that every shoegaze band ever has to take influences from. Essentially Loveless is a pop album, but all the pop elements are well covered with highly distorted and tremolo bar saturated guitar work which gives the album its peculiar sound. The overall tone is very dream-like and Kevin Shields' vocals are high-pitched and relatively subdued which makes them sound like just one of the instruments. Loveless is an album of its own and even though many try to follow its suit it's very unlikely that any shoegaze record will ever top this masterpiece.
6Agalloch
The Mantle


#6: Agalloch has never been an easy band to categorize and The Mantle does everything but helps with the task. It is easily Agalloch's most diverse album, and that's exactly what discloses the band's best elements. The album combines acoustic folk, black metal and post-rock in the best way possible. On The Mantle, especially the post-rock tendencies are more evident than on any of their other albums, which is most notably shown on "Odal." The Mantle is an atmospheric masterpiece with its woodsy feel, dreamy tone, gorgeous melodies and perfect use of harsh and clean vocals. It is full of lengthy epics, but if I was to choose only one song to represent the whole album, it would be "In the Shadow of Our Pale Companion." It perfectly shows all the aforementioned strengths of the album, as well as amazing lyrical lines such as "If this grand panorama before me is what you call God, then God is not dead..."
5Radiohead
OK Computer


#5: As if I could tell anything new about this album. OK Computer might be the most important rock album of the last 20 years and everything that could be said about has been said. Like for thousands of people as well, OK Computer was an incredibly important album for my taste. With its melancholic sound, beautiful rock tunes, futuristic lyrics and hypnotic feel it essentially made me realize that intriguing music doesn't have to be progressive. Obviously at the same time it got me into Radiohead which led me to expand my tastes even further. OK Computer's influence on 2000s music was remarkable and even if the band didn't really mean it to be such a revolutionary album, it was simply inevitable.
4Tool
Lateralus


#4: I have a lot to thank Lateralus for. Its impact on my music taste is inexplicable since it was the album that made me truly fall in love with listening to music and it was also my first touch on progressive music. When I first heard it, I absolutely despised it. Lateralus is incredibly complex, the songs are long and it all seemed like it was going nowhere. However, it instantly grabbed my attention even though I didn't like the album. I started to look closer at it and with time it all started to make sense. Compositions such as "The Grudge," "Lateralus" and "Reflection" began to sound interesting and I found nuances that I had never thought about in music. Lateralus isn't a perfect album, but it is vastly important for me and every now and then I lose myself to its abstract, hypnotic soundscapes and the band's astonishing musical virtuosity.
3Pink Floyd
Wish You Were Here


#3: Wish You Were Here was Pink Floyd at the absolute top of their game. It has everything that I love in the band, and even more. Pink Floyd's amazing songwriting capability is shown "Shine on You Crazy Diamond," which is one of the most massive epics the band has ever created and a real contender for the greatest song ever made, but that is only one of the four masterpieces of the album. "Welcome to the Machine" is an extremely creepy piece of art, "Have a Cigar" is a fun jam that I will never get enough of, and the album's title track is probably their most heartbreaking song ever, with its famous guitar melody and beautiful lyrics. It's just terrifying how perfect Wish You Were Here is, and even though many of you know that I have such a soft spot for The Wall, this album is simply unmatchable.
2Neutral Milk Hotel
In the Aeroplane Over the Sea


#2: In many ways, my love for In the Aeroplane Over the Sea is very much like Channing Freeman's love for The Devil and God. It is an album I find myself listening to every now and then, and every listen is a different one. Whether it's the soaring lyrics of the title track, the brass section on "Holland, 1945," the absurd line "Semen stains the mountaintops" on "Communist Daughter," or the cry-inducing acoustic closer "Two-Headed Boy Pt. 2" there is always a different moment that just hits me so hard I don't even. In the Aeroplane Over the Sea is an album for any situation. It feels perfect no matter if it was summer or winter, or did I have a good or bad day. It can cheer me up when I'm sad, it can bring me hope and it can make me relaxed. Neutral Milk Hotel's lo-fi indie masterpiece is one of the most personal albums ever for me, and I am so thankful that these albums exist.
1Converge
Jane Doe


#1: So, this is it. It doesn't come off as a big surprise that this Sputnikmusic's very own cult classic is currently my absolute favorite album. Jane Doe is an album I can't enough of. It is incredibly ferocious, energetic, emotional, painful, epic, melancholic, technical and memorable, all at the fucking same time. Once you get lost within its vortex there is no way to get out. Jane Doe is unforgivable. The album starts with a vicious one-two punch in the shape of "Concubine" and "Fault and Fracture" but that is definitely not all the album has to offer. It is a soundtrack for every single moment in my life and if I had to fully describe it I would easily run out of adjectives. It gets me pumped when I want to, it crushes my mind when I feel like listening to heavy music and it understands me when I feel melancholic. Those days don't come often when I'm not listening to Jane Doe. It is not only Converge's musical and lyrical masterpiece, nor the biggest classic in underground metalcore, but it is easily relatable as well. All this makes Jane Doe the reason I love music.
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