Perfect Albums Thread -

Kelpy Goyim
The Mars Volta's De-loused in the Comatorium. Its extremely experimental, is about a real life death of a muse, is full of lore, follows a distinctive narrative, not to mention that pretty much each arrangement is daunting to even vetted musicians. Could be compared to Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here in that it's easily understood to be a complete concept album. And shit on me if you like but it also gives me the feels.

Fuck. I was beaten to it on posting Pixies' Surfer Rosa and the Mars Volta album above.
I'd throw in Doolittle by Pixies as another perfect or near-perfect album.

Some others: - though depends on your taste I suppose.

Beatles' White Album.
NIN's Downward spiral
Radiohead's The Bends (i prefer it to OK Computer but only by a hair)
Muse's Showbiz
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Here's an underrated gem

The Mountain Goats - All Hail West Texas

It's lo-fi acoustic shit: this guy used to record albums on a boombox before getting a record deal and bandmates. I never get tired of listening to this record, it has a vibrant youthfulness and spontaneity while also being extremely well written. 10/10 would recommend

Soundtracks for the Blind - Swans
Blacksta, Heroes, Low - David Bowie
Eldorado, Time - Electric Light Orchestra
Days of Future Passe, In Search of the Lost Chord - Moody Blues
Raise! - Earth Wind & Fire
Downward Spiral, The Fragile - Nine Inch Nails
Bundles - Soft Machine
The Powers that B/Bottomless Pit - Death Grips
Mothership Connection - Parliament
Remain in Light, Speaking In Tongues - Talking Heads
Maggot Brain - Funkadelic
Floating Into the Night - Julee Cruise
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me Soundtrack
Meddle, Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd
Kind of Blue, Bitches Brew - Miles Davis
Thembi - Pharoah Sanders
Ascension, A Love Supreme - John Coltrane
Electric Ladyland - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Congratulations - MGMT
FutureSex/LoveSounds - Justin Timberlake

uhhh ill probably think of a few more later, im not really much of a person places perfect ratings on a pedestal

ScamL Likely

This was an attempt at only listing one album by each of these bands/artists based on which one I found to be the most cohesive as an entire album.

Bowie - Reality (lots of other things I could list but Reality feels like it's a somewhat overlooked part of his late career)
Steely Dan - Aja (I have more of a soft spot for The Royal Scam, but Aja is the better album on the whole)
Billy Idol - Cyberpunk (I know it was hated when it came out, but as someone who has no connection to that time period I found it to be great for what it is)
Mr. Bungle - California
Fantomas - Delirium Cordia
Genesis - The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (Selling England by the Pound would be a close second)
Arthur Brown - The Crazy World of Arthur Brown
Queen - Innuendo (runner up: The Miracle, third place: The Works)
Simon & Garfunkel - Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme
Paul Simon - Graceland
Supertramp - Crime of the Century
Talking Heads - tied between Remain in Light and Little Creatures
The Stranglers - La Folie (I really enjoyed Feline and The Gospel According to the Meninblack too, but La Folie is more solid as a whole)
New Dreams Ltd. - Sleepline (probably the apex of "traditional" vaporwave to me, as inherently dumb as the idea of categorizing vaporwave into a "tradition" is)
Dog Fashion Disco - Adultery

Billy Idol - Cyberpunk (I know it was hated when it came out, but as someone who has no connection to that time period I found it to be great for what it is)
Supertramp - Crime of the Century
Holy shit, someone else who likes Cyberpunk. Also forgot to mention Crime of the Century. I do feel its an all around excellent album, but I actually personally prefer Breakfast in America.
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Perfect Albums I Can Think Of (Albums I'll Gladly Listen to From Beginning to End):
  1. The Beatles - Abbey Road
  2. The Rolling Stones - Exile on Main St.
  3. Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon
  4. The Smiths - The Queen is Dead
  5. Bob Dylan - Highway 61 Revisited
  6. The Stooges - Raw Power (David Bowie Mix)
  7. Todd Rundgren - Something/Anything?
  8. Public Enemy - It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
  9. Beastie Boys - Paul's Boutique
  10. Aerosmith - Rocks
  11. New York Dolls - New York Dolls
  12. The Stone Roses - The Stone Roses
  13. Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures
  14. Bruce Springsteen - Born to Run
  15. Nirvana - Nevermind
  16. Guns N' Roses - Appetite for Destruction
  17. Suede - Suede
  18. Liz Phair - Exile in Guyville
  19. Sly & the Family Stone - There's a Riot Goin' On
  20. The Who - Who's Next
  21. Jason & the Scorchers - Lost and Found
  22. The Clash - The Clash (UK Version)
  23. Oasis - Definitely Maybe
  24. Ice Cube - Death Certificate
  25. The Band - The Band
  26. Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti
  27. Prince and the Revolution - Purple Rain
  28. Funkadelic - One Nation Under A Groove
  29. De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising
  30. OutKast - Squeakerboxx/The Love Below
  31. Elton John - Captain Fantastic and the Dirt Brown Cowboy
  32. Radiohead - OK Computer
  33. Meat Loaf - Bat Out of Hell
  34. Arcade Fire - Funeral
  35. Eminem - Marshall Mathers LP
  36. Ramones - Rocket to Russia
  37. The Wedding Present - Seamonsters
  38. Sleater-Kinney - The Woods
  39. McCarthy - I Am the Wallet
  40. Beat Happening - You Turn Me On
  41. U2 - Achtung Baby
  42. Tool - Aenima
  43. Chuck Berry - The Great Twenty-Eight
  44. Refused - The Shape of Punk to Come
  45. Nation of Ulysses - The 14-Point Program to Destroy America
  46. Genesis - Selling England by the Pound
  47. AC/DC - Back in Black
  48. John Lennon - John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band
  49. Run-DMC - Raising Hell
  50. Thin Lizzy - Jailbreak
  51. Electric Light Orchestra - A New World Record
  52. Iron Maiden - Powerslave
  53. David Bowie - The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust
  54. Cheap Trick - Cheap Trick
  55. The Slits - Cut
  56. Mott the Hoople - All the Young Dudes
  57. Derek and the Dominos - Layla
  58. Michael Jackson - Off the Wall
  59. Rod Stewart - Every Picture Tells A Story
  60. T.Rex - The Slider
  61. Discharge - Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing
  62. Husker Du - New Day Rising
  63. The Replacements - Let It Be
  64. Dead Boys - Young, Loud and Snotty
  65. Black Flag - My War
  66. Talulah Gosh - Backwash
  67. The Dentists - Some People Are On the Pitch They Think It's All Over It Is Now
  68. The Kinks - Village Green Preservation Society
  69. The Flatmates - Potpourri
  70. Alice Cooper - Killer
  71. Depeche Mode - Violator
  72. Pixies - Doolittle
  73. Lady Gaga - The Fame
  74. Marshall Crenshaw - Marshall Crenshaw
  75. Big Star - Radio City
  76. Faces - A Nod is as Good as a a Blind Horse
  77. Beck - Odelay
  78. Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
  79. The Wildhearts - Earth vs. the Wildhearts
  80. Turbonegro - Apocalypse Dudes
  81. Lee Harvey Oswald Band - Blastronaut
  82. Blur - Parklife
  83. Pulp - Different Class
  84. Alice in Chains - Dirt
  85. Metallica - Master of Puppets
  86. Slayer - Reign in Blood
  87. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
  88. Rush - Moving Pictures
  89. Neil Young - Everybody Knows This is Nowhere
  90. Manic Street Preachers - Everything Must Go
  91. Roxy Music - Country Life
  92. My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
  93. A Tribe Called Quest - The Low End Theory
  94. Supergrass - I Should Coco
  95. Yes - The Yes Album
  96. Future Sound of London - Lifeforms
  97. The KLF - White Room
  98. Aphex Twin - Selected Ambient Works '85-92
  99. The Orb - The Orb's Adventures Beyond the Ultra World
  100. Pet Shop Boys - Behavior
EDIT: Honorable mentions
  1. Motorhead - Ace of Spades
  2. Judas Priest - Screaming With Vengeance
  3. Massive Attack - Blue Lines
  4. Primal Scream - XTRMNTR
  5. The Housemartins - London 0 Hull 4
  6. Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
  7. Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Just Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
  8. The Long Ryders - Native Sons
  9. Minor Threat - Complete Discography
  10. ABBA - Gold: Greatest Hits
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Dutch Courage

Curious Onlooker
True & Honest Fan

Miles Davis - A Tribute to Jack Johnson (Columbia Recods, 1971)

One of those albums where every second is great.

I first heard this in my late teens, and came to it as a rock listener, not a jazz listener (which perhaps alters my perspective of the album, but doesn't diminish its brilliance)

You don't need any context to get right into it from the very beginning, but here's some context for the uninitiated:

Davis was 45 when this album was released, and at the apex of his commercial career. Long acknowledged as one of the most brilliant jazzmen in history (Coltrane, Parker, Ellington, and Armstrong were his only real competition), Davis was growing restless as the late 60's approached. He resented most rock music (in his autobiography, he offered props to only two rock musicians: Jimi Hendrix and Jerry Garcia, In contrast, he, aptly, referred to Steve Miller as a 'non-playing motherfucker' and the insult was in the 'non-playing' part), but he was seduced by the sound of electric instruments and was aware that the best selling jazz albums barely sold a tenth of what very mediocre rock albums sold.

He was absolutely convinced that he could make a great "rock" album, and in fact he ultimately made two great ones, the double-LP Bitches Brew (1969; it instantly became the biggest selling jazz album in history) and this, which was the soundtrack for a short film on the life of controversial black boxer Jack Johnson. Prior to these albums, he had been inching his way toward rock music, introducing an electric bass on his brilliant Miles in the Sky (1966) and giving it a very prominent role on his funky, borderline-fusion In a Silent Way (1968 )

Naturally, these rock-leaning moves were seen as selling out by egghead jazz traditionalists, who see Davis as a lost cause. Nascent rock critics were flattered that such a renowned name had made albums that their jazz-ignorant minds could wrap around.

Bitches Brew was the culmination of this phase; it literally could be called a rock album or a jazz album. It singlehandedly invents what was called "Fusion" in the 70's, a genre of garbage that never approached its inspiration. It was controversial, and frowned upon in many quarters, but generally was met with accolades. At this time, Davis was frequently sharing the bill with Grateful Dead, Santana, and other rock bands at the Fillmore East and West.

Jack Johnson however, for my money, beats Bitches Brew hands down. It is even more rock than Bitches Brew was, but it is still undeniably jazz; no limp, wet-noodle fusion here.

Need convincing? Okay, start playing the linked song, the well-titled "Right Off", and see if you aren't won over in the first few beats. That's Billy Cobham on drums, providing an almost metal-ish swing, John McLaughlin slashing through with guitar, and Micheal Henderson gallumphing along on bass. Miles makes the perfect entrance, with a single blat on his trumpet to punctuate the whole extended intro. From there, he is all boxer, bobbing and weaving, ducking and jabbing, taunting and cajoling, laughing despite some blue, and then launches into long, technically complex arpeggios to deliver some knockout punches. This is what fusion should have sounded like, but the fusion that followed (including McLaughlin's) took the wrong lessons away.

The flipside, "Yesternow", was rather succinctly but correctly described by Robert Christgau as "mood music for a vacation on the moon", but that sells it short. Insofar as it is mood music, credit Herbie Hancock's atmospheric keyboards. However, as mood music, it is too edgy; the swagger of "Right Off" is replaced with a pensive, paranoid, lonely sound that demands attention even when you try to let it settle in the background. It ends on an aggressive and defiant note (with Henderson possibly cribbing a fragment of the bassline of "Dark Star" as a motif)

This came out at the height of the Black Power movement, of which Johnson has always been a sort of totem. In a way, it is the most explicitly black album Davis had made up to this point; his next would be the first real critical stumble of his career, the funk-riff heavy On the Corner (1972). That is a great album too, in retrospect. Sly Stone would have dreamed of rhythms like what is on On the Corner. But the critics got off the bus with that release in fairly nasty fashion, ending Davis' rock flirtation period and Black Power period. He went into self-imposed (and drug-induced) exile for the rest of the decade.

Jack Johnson? A fucking brilliant album with every note worth hearing.
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check my rims

Both of these albums I can listen to all the way through, shuffled, only a couple songs at a time, etc. and they're still some of the best albums I've ever listened to. I like others more, but these are definitely the most "perfect" in that they never falter.