#706 The Human League – Dare

As Pulp were the sound of Sheffield in the 90s, The Human League (I always forget there’s a ‘the’) were the sound of Sheffield in the 80s. Dare was their third album, the one where singer Phil Oakey took over the reins as main songwriter and turned this slightly experimental electronic outfit into a commercial … Continue reading #706 The Human League – Dare

#1266 Silver Apples – The Garden

Silver Apples are an entirely unique entity, there’s no one else that sounds quite like them and that’s a rare thing in the world of ‘popular’ music and should be cherished. Not that Silver Apples achieved much popular success in their late ‘60s heyday, when a series of misfortunes befell their second album Contact, following … Continue reading #1266 Silver Apples – The Garden

#492 Eurythmics – Ultimate Collection

I can only assume that the person who decided to start this otherwise not-far-off-perfect ‘greatest hits’ compilation with a new song that no one had ever heard of and you’ll forget as soon as it’s over, must be called either Annie or Dave. That said, the video for it is pretty cool, and was clearly … Continue reading #492 Eurythmics – Ultimate Collection

#646 Herbie Hancock – Head Hunters

A classic crossover jazz album, fusing funk, soul and electric synths with improvisational jazz. Head Hunters was the first jazz album to sell over a million copies. It’s not too hyperbolic to suggest that it changed the face of jazz. That, on its release in 1973, it lit the path for a new direction in … Continue reading #646 Herbie Hancock – Head Hunters

#666 Heldon – Electronique Guerilla

This is Heldon’s debut album, and arguably their best. It’s 1974 French electronic space rock with Fripp-ish guitar sonics and Nietzschean tracts recited by its brainchild. Richard Pinhas’ philosophy lecturer. If that doesn’t turn you on, then look away now. It is of course, brilliant. Pinhas released this, at the age of 22, on his … Continue reading #666 Heldon – Electronique Guerilla

#1404 Vangelis – Albedo 0.39

This is Vangelis’ fourth studio album, released in 1976. It’s electro-prog, if that genre even exists, or ‘space rock’; a concept album themed around space physics and the reflection of light. Specifically, the reflection of light from a planet, its albedo. The explanation on the back cover sleeve defines this: "The reflecting power of a … Continue reading #1404 Vangelis – Albedo 0.39

#6 Abba – The Visitors

This is Abba’s eighth and final studio album and, although not as commercially successful as their preceding ones, it really is very good. There’s no Dancing Queen or Winner Takes it All on here, but that’s okay because they’d already written those perfect pop songs. What we do have is a little darker, a bit … Continue reading #6 Abba – The Visitors

#995 Pet Shop Boys – Introspective

Listening to this, it’s 1988 all over again, which is rather a nice thought: everything was so much simpler back then. Late 80s was the Pet Shop Boys’ “Imperial phase” - a term first coined by Neil Tennant but now used to describe any pop star at the height of their commercial and creative ascendance. … Continue reading #995 Pet Shop Boys – Introspective

#1103 Queen – Hot Space

This is Queen's least good non-soundtrack album (respectfully ignoring Made in Heaven). It’s the one usually dismissed or derided by critics. And it’s understandable. Buoyed by the success of Another One Bites the Dust, featuring John Deacon’s grungy-funk bassline and semi-spoken word (ie ‘rap’) lyrics, as well as their second no 1 hit single collaboration … Continue reading #1103 Queen – Hot Space