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Aids's Top 30 Of All-time

30th list, 30 albums. One per artist to prevent an overflow of Pink Floyd.
A Picture Of Nectar

I'll guiltily admit that I hadn't heard a Phish song until seeing the song
'Stash' somewhere in Guitar World's Top 100 solos ever. They're a great
band who are hard to pigeonhole. Their music regularly encompasses
aspects from all different genres including jazz, funk, prog, and many more.
Technically, all the members are virtuous on their respective instruments.
Trey Anastasio (guitar) stands out in particular.
29David Gilmour
On An Island

As many of you may know, David Gilmour was the guitar player for Pink
Floyd ever since Syd Barrett's legendary breakdown early in the band's 25
year span. This album focuses on Gilmour's guitar textures and beautiful
tones. The lyrics are kind of boring, but it's not really the sort of album
where that matters. I say that because, to me at least, this album takes
me back to those early Saturday mornings when we would try to catch a
couple of extra hours of sleep on the bus from UBC to Whistler Mountain.
Resting my head against the window, watching the gorgeous scenery of
the sea-to-sky highway roll by, and filling my eardrums with Gilmour's
sleepy (in a good way) notes: pure bliss.
28Sufjan Stevens
The Age Of Adz

To quote a much better writer than myself:
"Here is what you need to know about Sufjan Stevens. He lives in a room.
This room has no windows, but it is a magic room. It responds to Sufjan's
every thought, warping and twisting with every leap of Sufjan's wild
imagination. But the real magic is that this is also a musical room - every
twist a note, every warp a harmony. This all sounds pretty awesome, but
the downside is that poor Sufjan is stuck in this bloody room. He hasn't
seen daylight for years, which means he has to conjure it all in the form of
music. And let's give the man credit where credit is due: his imagination is
wild, colorful as the brightest day and vivid as the greatest portraits could
ever convey." - Alex Silveri, StreetlightRock
27Rise Against
Siren Song Of The Counter Culture

This is basically the album that got me into punk. On this album,
Chicagoans Rise Against release all of their pent up energy and anger in a
fast-paced, hard-hitting classic. Opener 'State Of The' is a ruthless
commentary on the state of the United States and its' governing bodies.
Tim McIlrath's aggressive vocals back up the message of the song.
Another highlight is in the furious 'Rumors Of My Demise Have Been Greatly
Exaggerated' when Tim belts "Shots fired into the sky are now returning.
Where the fuck will you hide?"
But Siren Song is not without variety. 'Swing Life Away' is a slow acoustic
ballad that displays the bands softer side.
This is a brilliant release of political angst that I will be listening too long
after George Bush becomes irrelevant. Which should be pretty soon
26Minus The Bear
Planet Of Ice

I think I owe some of my intense love of this album to the circumstances
under which I went through my first phase of listening to it. My love for
music was growing at a rapid pace: I was exiting the "classic-rock purist"
period of my life. I was hanging around with good ol' Jash Frazer quite a bit
and he was indie-fying my world (My Bloody Valentine, Modest Mouse,
Radiohead, GY!BE, Neutral Milk Hotel to name but a few of the many
essentials I was missing at the time). I was in my "get-megastoned-listen-
to-complete-albums-and-do-nothing-else" phase. And lastly, I had just
gotten the most bitchin', high-tech, expensive, noise-cancellation
headphones as a Christmas present. All of these combined to form the
perfect atmosphere to lisen to Minus the Bear. This album blew (and
continues to blow...haha) my mind. It's catchy and pop-y in some respects,
but musically diverse and intriguing. As a guitar-player who was boxed into
the pentatonic mode of riffing and soloing, this album did wonders for my
playing. Each time I listen to this album, I'm taken away to a better place. I
love this album. And while I'm sure I've overblown it quite a bit (like I said,
it may be that the circumstances made the music for me), this is a fantastic
album and worthy of a full listen from anybody who is a fan of music, or for
that matter, anybody alive.

Eluvium is recording name of musician Matthew Cooper. He creates
soothing sound textures by using aspects of post-rock, electronica, and
ambient music. On top of that, he plays beautifully composed piano
melodies. I think that if I checked my play counts on iTunes, this album
would have hundreds because it's so relaxing that I often put it on repeat
while I sleep.
Another classic by Eluvium is 2010's Static Nocturne. Check it out.
24Red Hot Chili Peppers

Here's the scene: I'm 10 years old, I'm in A&B sound (which no longer exists
in Nanaimo *sniff*) with my dad, I have two CDs in my hand. One would
turn out to be probably the most influential album to me of all time. The
other would become one of my guiltiest pleasures.
...In case you were wondering, the other CD was Can't Take Me Home by
P!nk. I rock that shit daily.
The Moon Is A Dead World

Gospel are part of the hardcore punk movement known as 'emo.' This term
is kind of misused so I thought I would point out that this isn't the sort of
music that makes you want to cringe at the obnoxious whiny vocal work or
derivative pop-punk chord progressions. This is the sort of music that
makes you feel the heart and emotion of the music through the vocal tone
and shit your pants at the mind-blowing complexity of the plethora of jazzy
breakdowns and time changes present throughout the album.
If you've never liked bands whose vocalists scream, this might be a good
introduction to the genre because the vocals are mixed quite low in the
recordings and are a hybrid of screaming and regular singing.
Viva la Vida

Some people are probably going to try to be all elite and say that Coldplay
are boring radio rock but I don't care. Those people are stupid and were
abused as children. I love everything about this album from the huge
arena sound of the title track to the quiet intimacy of album closer 'Death
And All His Friends.'
Also, I just want to throw this out there. If you're a heterosexual male, try
to think who is the one man you would have sex with if you had to. HAD
TO. For me, it's Chris Martin, and you wouldn't even have to take long
convincing me.
21Jimi Hendrix
Axis: Bold As Love

I've gotta have some Hendrix on this list. I mean damn, what would rock
music today look like without him? Would it even exist? Well, probably, I
mean The Beatles were still around. But I can bet you we wouldn't be
playing flaming guitar with our teeth. He's not my favourite guitar player
ever, but I don't think anyone would really argue me that much if I said he
was the most influential of the last fifty years.
20Off Minor
The Heat Death Of The Universe

Another band of the aforementioned emo branch of hardcore punk, Off
Minor formed out of the ashes of legendary French screamo band Saetia.
This three-piece creates a huge sound that is hard hitting immediately.
After the prickly uneasy guitar notes that open the first few seconds album
subside, Off Minor explode into a spazzy, fragmented, horribly mesmerizing
attack of delicious punk yumminess. At 25 minutes, you won't even know
whaat hit you.
Watch Out!

If Rise Against were the band that got me into punk, Alexisonfire are the
band that got me into hardcore punk.
This is Alexisonfire at their very best. On Watch Out, they hit a perfect
balance between their more aggressive approach like on their self-titled
debut and the more melodic and accessible sound like on later albums such
as Crisis and 2009's Old Crows / Young Cardinals. This album, at least
vocally, is what every good post-hardcore album should be. The interplay
between George Petit's screams and Dallas Green's softer tones create a
constant back and forth that sounds like a battle sometimes, but an
agreement at other times. The drumming is superb, the guitars are
distorted and played with attitude to fit the themes of the songs, and the
bass playing, while a little lost in the mix (what else is new), is very good.
Almost all of the songs on here are AOF classics. Listen to Accidents,
Control, It Was Fear Of Myself That Made Me Odd [probably their greatest
song to date], Hey It's Your Funeral Mama....screw this, just listen to all of it
and tell me it isn't the most versatile and endearing post-hardcore record
you've ever heard
18Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin IV

I guess it's a cliche but I mean come on. Stiarway to fuckin' Heaven.
Enough said.
Misty Mountain Hop is the only song here that isn't absolutely brilliant.
17The National
High Violet

My personal front runner for album of the year comes from New-York indie
band The National. Some are turned off by the singer's low vocal tone, but
to me, it helps to emphasize the emotions in his house. He is a brilliant
lyricist as well and this album is no exception. What propels this album
above other The National releases is the more cohesive sound that the
guitars, keyboards, and bass have created. Also, probably the best drum
beats in all indie-rock music.
Bloodbuzz Ohio for song of the year!
16Brand New
The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me

Vocalist and lyricist Jesse Lacey has a knack for crafting crooning indie
songs with a punch. It's hard to say whether this album would be better
classified as indie, pop-punk, or even alternative rock, but chances are that
if you like any of those types of music, you'll enjoy this.
15Sigur Ros
( )

This offering from Icelandic post-rockers Sigur Ros has no real title
(sometimes referred to as 'the bracket album) and it's eight tracks are
untitled. Also, the vocals are sung in a language called "Hopelandic" which
is really just a bunch of gibberish that would sound like Icelandic if you
didn't know any better (and now you do). Another great album for
relaxing/sleeping to but be careful for Untitled 7; it's got one part that will
wake you right the fuck up.
14Regina Spektor

Regina Spektor was born in Communist Russia, currently lives in New York
City, is one of the best pop vocalists alive today, and is my dream girl. She
sings like an angel, except when she's faking an orgasm or pretending to
rap. She plays piano like a classically trained genius, except when she's
hitting chairs with sticks and singing songs about Pavlov's daughter. This
record is a treat from start to finish. It'll keep you guessing what's coming
13The Weakerthans
Reconstruction Site

I first heard a song by this band when I started watching the Canadian
show "Less Than Kind" which uses their song 'One Great City' as it's theme
song. The show is set in Winnipeg and the song (written by Winnipeg
natives, The Weakerthans) is a bitterly sarcastic ode to the city that no one
in Canada truly understands (except for those that live there). The rest of
the album is filled with more delightful commentaries and observations.
One song is written in the perspective of a cat whose owner is evidently
experiencing a spell of depression. The Weakerthans are one of Canada's
finest exports.
12La Dispute
Somewhere At The Bottom Of The River...

A break-up letter set to catchy hardcore punk. If you've ever been through
a hard break-up I'll bet you like $50 bucks that at least one lyric in this
album will bring a tear to your eye.
11Bob Dylan
Blood On The Tracks

A break-up letter set to folk and sung by the greatest lyric writer of all time.
10Bon Iver
For Emma, Forever Ago

Another break-up album set to folk. Man what's with all these albums
clumping together here?
This album is the result of Bon Iver's creative genius Justin Vernon isolating
himself in a secluded Wisconsin cabin in the dead of winter. It was recorder
almost entirely in solitude and Vernon's honesty and openness on this
record propel it from a nice sounding folk album to a modern-day classic.
9Neutral Milk Hotel
In The Aeroplane Over The Sea

Any hipster has this album somewhere in their top 20. For most people,
myself included, this album took a long time to sink in. At first I though it
was good, but overrated. I will never forget the moment when it finally
clicked for me. I was in Quito, Ecuador after finishing my volunteer stint on
the Galapagos Islands, and was lying on my hostel bed lonely in a scary
and unfamiliar city. Jeff Mangum's warm voice open guitar chords played as
I contemplated the next few weeks of my adventure and eventually, I
realized that I was finally caving to the hype. By the time that Jeff Mangum
slides his chair back, picks up his guitar, and leaves the room to end the
album, you will have experienced one of the best indie albums of all time.
8Elliott Smith

Smith's story is a tragic one. His life was full of drug abuse and depression
and ended abruptly in 2003. The autopsy revealed inclusive evidence on
whether the fatal stab wounds were self-inflicted.
You can certainly hear in this album that he was a tortured man. no name
no. 5 is a track that read like a musical suicde note. Say Yes is a desperate
plea to an ex-lover. However, there is happiness sprinkled throughout his
music, as their likely was in his life. Unfortunately, it seems that the
sadness won out and took from this world an incredibly talented and
sincere musician at the much too early age of 34.

Vheissu is a cryptic and diverse monster of an album. In terms of Thirce's
musical progression, this was the bridge between their hardcore-punk
roots and their refined progressive/alternative rock sound. It's like the best
of both worlds, because all Thrice is good Thrice. There are a lot of heavy
yet accessible tracks to be found here, but there are also plenty of slower,
peaceful songs (like 'Atlantic').
6King Crimson
In The Court Of The Crimson King

The first (or one of the first) truly great prog rock album. 21st Century
Schizoid Man opens the album up and is one of the greatest prog songs
ever written. The guitar riff is dirty and distorted and the vocals are all
fucked-up with some sort of vocal effect I don't know the name of. Also,
the drumming will make you refuse to believe that a human played the
incredibly complex fills, polyrhythms, snare rolls and all sorts of other
technical shit.
Ahhhh so good, this album rules.
5The Beatles
Abbey Road

How do you pick just one Beatles album? Well, I did it. Here's why Abbey
Road is the best: It flows. The tracks are each distinct yet seem to naturally
follow from one another like no other Beatles album. Also, Paul's bass
player is phucking phenomenal on Abbey Road and Ringo Starr keeps his
bullshit to a minimum.
But 'A Day In The Life' from Sgt. Peppers is their best song so....
4Godspeed You! Black Emperor
Slow Riot For New Zero Kanada

Post-rock has become probably my favourite genre, all things considered,
and this is the album that started it all. It's only got two tracks. One is an
instrumental piece that builds to a roaring crescendo before suddenly
dampening to a restrained whisper of sound. The other is music set to an
interview with a man named Blaise Bailey Finnegan The IIIrd. Good ol' BBF3
has a quite pessimistic, apocalyptic outlook on the future of the world. He
comes off as kind of rambling and crazy, but relateable in some strange
way. The band uses the tone of his speech to inspire the music which the
speech is arranged around.
3Jaga Jazzist
What We Must

What We Must is in a three-way tie (the other two being Kid A and Lift Your
Skinny Fists Like Antennaes To Heaven by Godspeed You! Black Emperor)
for the most stunning, beautiful, and, frankly, the best album of our modern
era of music. In many ways, this is the perfect post-rock album, mainly
because it isn't strictly a post-rock album. There are elements of jazz in this
music which help to separate it from a genre which has become a little bit
monotonous and predictable (sometimes).
Every instrument on this record is played with palpable emotion and true
talent; one almost feels as if the musicians are in the room playing live.
What's more is that this band, more than most others I have ever listened
to, sounds like one cohesive unit when they play. Whether that's a result of
the various members' tight relationship or fantastic production doesn't
really matter; the result speaks for itself.
Also, the songs are all beautifully crafted. The first song in particular, All I
Know Is Tonight, is a masterpiece of song-writing with several beautiful
themes and a quite remarkable build-up. The interwoven musical passages
and breath-taking use of quiet/loud juxtaposition make this song in
particular (and the record in general) a truly moving musical experience. I
love everything about this album. Each time I give it a spin, the music
demands my full attention. Sometimes, I might read or think about stuff
while I listen to music, but not with What We Must. It is such an emotional
piece of music and it's subtle complexities demand the listeners' full
Kid A

I have no idea what to say about this album. It's haunting beauty and
other-worldliness is impossible to explain with words.
Also, Motion Picture Soundtrack is the best album closer ever.
1Pink Floyd
Wish You Were Here

Well duh, I'm a Floyd fanboy till the day I die. Yeah yeah. If I had included
multiple albums by the same artist there'd be like seven of their albums
Anyway, this album. It rules. There are five songs, and any one of those
five songs would be the best song on any album is was on. Except this
one, cause they're all on it. Get it?
Shine On You Crazy Diamond is 26 minutes combined, and is split into nine
parts. Parts one through five open the album, and parts six through nine
close it. The first five parts combine to form one "song" I guess and it is my
all time favourite. I love Gilmour's distinct guitar tone snd the way it fades
into this song. The solos are brilliant and restrained. Richard Wright's
keyboards are atmospheric but immense and Water's bass playing in
combination with Mason's drumming carry the song through at a perfect
medium-slow tempo. Also, it's an ode to estranged founding band member
Syd Barrett who allegedly appeared during this recording of this album in
this studio and then mysteriously vanished.
I could go on and on about how awesome this album is, but my broken
wrist is starting to hurt and this time wasting activity has achieved it's
purpose. I hope you enjoyed my random ramblings.
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