Tonight in Seattle:  

Oh geesh, another top list -- this time, the Top 100 Indie Albums

These top lists can be amusing at best, exasperating at least, and sometimes they may you think, or in this case, remind you to go pick up a CD or two you might need to round-off your collection.

In that spirit, I present: Blender Mags Top 100 Indie Records of All Time:

100 The Shaggs - Philosophy Of The World
99 Dream Syndicate - The Days Of Wine And Roses
98 Palace Music - Viva Last Blues
97 The Mekons - Rock 'N' Roll
96 TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
95 The Dismemberment Plan - Emergency & I
94 Half Japanese - Greatest Hits
93 Big Black - Atomizer
92 Dead Kennedys - Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables
91 The Chills - Kaleidoscope World
90 Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam
89 Art Brut - Bang Bang Rock & Roll
88 Daniel Johnston - Yip/Jump Music
87 Wolf Parade - Apologies To The Queen Mary
86 Flipper - Album - Generic Flipper
85 The Clean - Anthology
84 Beat Happening - You Turn Me On
83 The Misfits - Walk Among Us
82 The Embarrassment - Heyday 1979-83
81 The Vaselines - The Way Of The Vaselines
80 Feist - The Reminder
79 Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
78 The 13th Floor Elevators - The Psychedelic Sounds Of The 13th Floor Elevators
77 Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
76 Le Tigre - Le Tigre
75 Galaxie 500 - Today
74 The Fall - 50,000 Fall Fans Can't Be Wrong
73 Meat Puppets - Up On The Sun
72 The Mountain Goats - We Shall All Be Healed
71 Stereolab - Refried Ectoplasm
70 Mudhoney - Superfruzz Bigmuff Plus Early Singles
69 Nick Drake - Pink Moon
68 Descendents - Milo Goes To College
67 Hüsker Dü - New Day Rising
66 Young Marble Giants - Colossal Youth
65 Various Artists - No New York
64 Cat Power - The Greatest
63 Nirvana - Bleach
62 The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms
61 LCD Soundsystem - LCD Soundsystem
60 Sufjan Stevens - Illinois
59 Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
58 Built To Spill - There's Nothing Wrong With Love
57 Bikini Kill - Pussy Whipped
56 Archers Of Loaf - Icky Mettle
55 Bad Brains - Bad Brains
54 Unrest - Imperial F.F.R.R.
53 Smashing Pumpkins - Gish
52 Bright Eyes - Lifted Or The Story Is In The Soil, Keep Your Ear To The Ground
51 Interpol - Turn On The Bright Lights
50 Rilo Kiley - More Adventurous
49 Spoon - Kill The Moonlight
48 Mission Of Burma - Vs.
47 Green Day - Kerplunk
46 Franz Ferdinand - Franz Ferdinand
45 Fugazi - Repeater
44 Various Artists - Wanna Buy A Bridge?
43 Black Flag - Damaged
42 Brian Eno - Another Green World
41 Modest Mouse - The Lonesome Crowded West
40 New Order - Power Corruption & Lies
39 Pavement - Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain
38 The Strokes - Is This It
37 Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Fever To Tell
36 Elliott Smith - Either/Or
35 Liz Phair - Exile In Guyville
34 Superchunk - On The Mouth
33 The Shins - Oh, Inverted World
32 Neutral Milk Hotel - In The Aeroplane Over The Sea
31 Guided By Voices - Bee Thousand
30 Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
29 Violent Femmes - Violent Femmes
28 The Magnetic Fields - 69 Love Songs
27 M.I.A. - Arular
26 Belle And Sebastian - If You're Feeling Sinister
25 Sebadoh - III
24 The New Pornographers - Mass Romantic
23 Yo La Tengo - Painful
22 Meat Puppets - Meat Puppets II
21 The Modern Lovers - The Modern Lovers
20 The Hold Steady - Separation Sunday
19 Sleater-Kinney - Dig Me Out
18 Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures
17 The White Stripes - White Blood Cells
16 Slint - Spiderland
15 X - Wild Gift
14 De La Soul - 3 Feet High And Rising
13 Hüsker Dü - Zen Arcade
12 Dinosaur Jr - You're Living All Over Me
11 Minutemen - Double Nickels On The Dime
10 The Smiths - The Smiths
09 Big Star - Third/Sister Lovers
08 My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
07 The Velvet Underground - The Velvet Underground
06 Arcade Fire - Funeral
05 Pixies - Surfer Rosa
04 R.E.M. - Murmur
03 The Replacements - Let It Be
02 Sonic Youth - Daydream Nation
01 Pavement - Slanted And Enchanted

Hoo boy. There's no way we're ever all gonna agree on a list like this... and I see some great mentions, some questionables.  Mostly though, I want to hear what you all think. Who got robbed? Who got unfairly honored? Let the imaginary analysis begin.... and be sure to check out Stereogum (who gets the hat tip), as the readers' comments there are pretty damn interesting.

Hmm... they did touch on a lot of the major indie albums in the world... but right away I notice that the Bright Eyes album they list SHOULD BE Fevers and Mirrors before it should be Lifted. And it should be higher on the list. Also, the Neutral Milk Hotel album should be higher up.

The Meat Puppets at #22? And #73? What the eff? The Hold Steady are awfully high too. And I totally love Pavement most any moment of the day... but they have two albums on there... perhaps they should narrow it down to one. And Beat Happening should be higher. And... ok, I have a bunch more suggestions.... I'll stop there.

I was just happy to see 69 Love Songs and Exile in Guyville represented. But puzzling that the Smiths ranks so high, and yet no mention of the Cure... or even early U2? The Rilo Kiley also seems a bit forced. I don't hate Rilo Kiley or anything, but c'mon now.

Personally, I also would have included The Worst You Can Do Is Harm, but then, you all know my biases in that area...

"That kinda sounds like Japanese."

"Not to someone who speaks Japanese."

Thanks Chona -- that was indie-tastic!

haha great video

plenty of good albums on there
Arcade Fire-Funeral is my personal fav at the moment

also MIA. cause i get to shoot her friday

Arcade Fire's "Funeral" beat out MBV's "Loveless"?

boo.

That video is awesome! ! ! ! Thanks for posting Chona!

The Rilo Kiley also seems a bit forced. I don't hate Rilo Kiley or anything, but c'mon now.

Dana, you take that back!

Though I would have chosen The Execution of All Things. To me, that album is perfection.

I'm going to create a list of the top 100 best things to categorize and list! I'm sure Spin Magazine would publish it...

Nada Surf's Let Go is my favoritest musical experience of all time! LIST IT, BABY! Its missing...so unfair.

@imaginary stella -- you're so meta and you don't even know it!

(1) Lists like this should not exist.
(2) Blender, of all mags, should not be making said list.
(3) I hate the word "indie" anyway.
(4) Now that I've seen the list, how do I make its memory go away?

hmmm. Its not that I think this list is a poor attempt at quantifying. It just seems that its way too difficult to rank the 100 greatest indie releases of all time. I completely agree with the Fevers and Mirrors bit, though. Also, Modest Mouse at 41?

Is it just me or, should this list be "Blender's Best Guess at What Pitchfork would say are the Top 100 Best Indie Albums. We Think."

And, yes, I hate trying to quantify this kind of thing, but, God, aren't those all, more or less, pretty obvious? And, is it just me or is there a serious late 90's/early 00's bias on there?

Oh, and Flipper, DKs, Descendents are on there but no Clash, Ramones or Sex Pistols? WTF? They're obviously not excluding punk from the list, so what gives?

I agree with the Grim. And Erik, try listening to Missy Elliot's "Get Yer Freak On" over and over. Tends to get most anything out of my head.

it's like philosophy you guys!!

it's like philosophy you guys!!!!

The order is meaningless and there are some very questionable inclusions and exclusions, but there are an awful lot of great albums noted there. Anyone who didn't already know this kind of music backwards and forward could do worse than listen to some of the albums on this list.

And I don't care what 'indie' means.

I agree with Randy (@18) ... the utility of the list might be just to make a good list of albums most people should hear ... but beyond that I don't think it means a darn thing "best"-wise.

to back up the conversation a touch. the sex pistols put out their one official release on EMI. the ramones put out the bulk of their work on MCA/CBS. the clash put out their records on epic and sony/columbia.

taking nothing from the artists and all respect due, each of those was/is a "major" record label.

as an aside, joe strummer's solo stuff would have been nice to see up there. and i would have chosen 13 songs instead of repeater for fugazi.

I'm in agreement that the list shouldn't be looked at as one better than another, just that people feel better attaching numbers to things so one makes sure there are actually 100 there.

And yes, a list of this sort in preposterous.......

My only real issue is that I don't think you should list anything that's been out in the last 12 months (Feist) because there's not enough perspective.

I'd offer up Team Dresch's 'Captain My Captain'

I honestly cannot distinguish what exactly is "indie" from this list. A little bit of every rock genre imaginable, plus most were released on major labels....

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
Type the characters you see in this picture. (verify using audio)
Type the characters you see in the picture above; if you can't read them, submit the form and a new image will be generated. Not case sensitive.