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Recommended CDs: Popular Music > H

      Good! Recommended
      Very good! Highly recommended  (This rating is on webmaster's personal taste.)

 imageartist/title (release year), memo
 14 Friendly Abductions: The Best of Nina HagenNina Hagen/14 Friendly Abductions: The Best of Nina Hagen (1996/1978-1985)

A German singer and actress born in 1955 in East Berlin, known for her ever-changing singing with various styles (guttural bass voice, shout, high-pitched soprano like opera, and yodel), and her activities in punk/new wave scene from the late 1970s to the early 1980s. A compilation which includes her early recordings, 14 tracks from an EP and albums (Nina Hagen Band's and her solo works). The lyrics are German and English. Includes singles, "TV-Glotzer" (a cover of "White Punks On Dope" by The Tubes, with German lyrics), "African Reggae", "My Way" (a punk cover of Frank Sinatra's famous song), "Smack Jack", "Zarah", "New York New York", "Universal Radio" (Universal Dance Mix), and "Spirit In The Sky". "New York New York" and "Zarah" are electronic dance tracks in Euro-disco style, produced by Giorgio Moroder. "Wir Leben Immer Noch" is a cover of "Lucky Number" by Lene Lovich, with German lyrics.
 Pelican WestHaircut One Hundred/Pelican West (1982)

The new wave band featuring Nick Heyward (guitar, vocals), Haircut One Hundred's debut album. British pop of good quality, with danceable Latin/funk rhythms. Produced by Bob Sargeant.
 Rock'n Soul Part 1Daryl Hall & John Oates/Rock'n Soul Part 1 (1973-1983)

The blue-eyed soul duo who had produced lots of smash hits in the late 1970s and the early 1980s, Daryl Hall & John Oates' best compilation. Lots of good pop songs influenced by Philadelphia soul. Features "Sara Smile", "She's Gone", "Rich Girl", "Kiss on My List", "Private Eyes", "Say It Isn't So" and others. If Todd Rundgren were Mac OS, Daryl Hall might be Microsoft Windows (?).
 TwistedHallucinogen/Twisted (1995)

An electronic musician/producer from England, Simon Posford's solo project, Hallucinogen's debut album. An established classic in the goa trance/psychedelic trance genre. Spacy dance music rooted in acid house and acid trance. Not so ethnic and religious. More inorganic and techno-oriented sound than general goa trance music. Recommended to techno listeners who like Hardfloor and the like. Features "LSD" and "Shamanix". The last track "Solstice" contains a hidden track (an ambient version of "Angelic Particles").
 Two Steps from the MoveHanoi Rocks/Two Steps from the Move (1984)

Finland's heavy metal band formed with Michael Monroe (vocals) and Andy McCoy (guitar) in Helsinki in 1980. Their 1984 album (the U.S. debut). Pop-metal inspired by the 1970s glam-rock. They influenced Guns N' Roses and later hair-metal bands such as Skid Row. Produced by Bob Ezrin (Alice Cooper, Kiss). Includes a single "Up Around the Bend" (a cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival).
Good!Pills 'N' Thrills and BellyachesHappy Mondays/Pills 'N' Thrills and Bellyaches (1990)

The club/dance-oriented rock band from Manchester, Happy Mondays' third album. Greatly influenced by house music and rave culture. Danceable beats at lazy tempos. The DJ Paul Oakenfold joined in arrangement, production and mixing.
Good!TB ResuscitationHardfloor/TB Resuscitation (1993)

1st album. Innovative sounds making the best use of TB-303 (Roland bass synths). A masterpiece of techno-house/acid-trance from Germany.
Good!DeluxeHarmonia/Deluxe (1975)

A Krautrock (German experimental/progressive rock) group formed in the rural village of Forst, Holzminden, Lower Saxony, West Germany, as a collaboration between Michael Rother (guitars, keyboards, vocals) of Neu! and Hans-Joachim Roedelius (keyboards, vocals) and Dieter Mobius (synthesizer, Nagoya harp, vocals) of Cluster, and had worked in the mid 1970s. The second album featuring Mani Neumeier of Guru Guru on drums. Comfortable electronic music in the ambient style, combining synths and keyboards with live instruments, such as guitar, drums, and Nagoya harp. "Deluxe (Immer Wieder)" and "Monza (Rauf und Runter)" feature vocals. "Monza (Rauf und Runter)" is a rock tune Neu!-like style. The last track "Kekse", which features sound effects like natural sounds including frogs croaking and birds chirping, is a good idyllic piece filled with an euphoric sense, as if to waft like smoke, or to melt in nature. Produced by Harmonia and Conny Plank. Recommended to those who like ambient electronic music, such as Cluster and Brian Eno.
Good!The Secret Life of Harpers BizarreHarpers Bizarre/The Secret Life of Harpers Bizarre (1968)

The pop group of Warner Bros. Records. The imaginative pop of superior quality, with orchestration and sound effects, like soundtracks. This 3rd album is their masterpiece. Produced by Lenny Waronker.
 Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible MusicsJon Hassell/Brian Eno/Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics (1980)

A collaboration between American contemporary music (minimalist) trumpeter, Jon Hassell and Brian Eno. Experimental ambient music featuring Jon Hassell's distinctive style of playing trumpet with a husky sound like a sobbing, percussions in the ethnic-music style, such as congas, ghatam (a pot-like instrument in South India) and handclaps, and Brian Eno's synthesizer. Like a soundscape in a tropical rainforest of high temperature and high humidity.
 The Rotters' ClubHatfield and the North/The Rotters' Club (1975)

Along with Caravan and Soft Machine, one of the representative bands from the art-rock scene in Canterbury, England. The peculiar style of progressive rock with pop melodies and jazzy improvisation. The members are: vocalist/bassist Richard Sinclair (ex-Caravan), guitarist Phil Miller (ex-Matching Mole), drummer Pip Pyle (ex-Gong, Delivery) and keyboardist Dave Stewart (ex-Egg). The second album.
 Space RitualHawkwind/Space Ritual (The Space Ritual Alive in Liverpool and London) (1973)

An English rock band known as a pioneer of space rock, led by Dave Brock (guitar, vocals) and formed in 1969 in London, Hawkwind's fourth album (#9 in the UK album charts). A live album (double LP) recorded in Liverpool and London in 1972. Space rock by the band including saxophone and flute, and featuring distortion guitar, electronic sounds and effects. The concept including sci-fi lyrics is in the prog-rock style, but the sound is filled with the feeling of trance and euphoria, and it is closer to loud psychedelic rock, garage punk, and krautrock than prog-rock and hard rock. The thick and melodic bass line by Lemmy (after leaving the band, he formed Motörhead) is impressive. The digital remastered edition was released in 2007.
 DE9: Closer to the EditRichie Hawtin/DE9: Closer to the Edit (2001)

An English-born, Canadian-raised electronic musician/DJ, also known for his works under the alias Plastikman, who had been active in the Detroit techno's second wave in the early 1990s, and had leaded minimal techno since the mid-1990s, Richie Hawtin's mix album. Created by sampling, cutting, splicing over 100 tracks (house/Detroit techno/minimal techno sound sources from Baby Ford, Carl Craig, Basic Channel, Stewart Walker, Thomas Brinkmann, his own works including Plastikman, and others), and re-editing them into 53-minute, 31-track pieces. Accessible minimal techno. Danceable and funky, but it has a substantial chill-out effect, so it is suitable as BGM for desk works. All the tracks (MP3 files) of this album can be listened to at SoundCloud for free.
Good!Penthouse and PavementHeaven 17/Penthouse and Pavement (1981)

The electro-pop trio that grew out of Human League, Heaven 17's debut album. A masterpiece of danceable electro-pop. Includes "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang".
 Blank GenerationRichard Hell and the Voidoids/Blank Generation (1977)

An American punk rock band, formed in New York City in 1976 and fronted by Richard Hell (vocals, bass), a former member of the Neon Boys, Television and the Heartbreakers, Richard Hell and the Voidoids' debut album. Art punk featuring sharp and edgy guitars. One of the New York punk classics. The looks and nihilism of the Voidoids influenced British punk bands such as Sex Pistols. The U.S. rock band Minutemen was influenced by the style of the Voidoids. Robert Quine's distinctive, avant-garde guitar playing in the punk-jazz style was inherited by later No Wave.
Good!UnrestHenry Cow/Unrest (1974)

An English avant-garde rock group formed in 1968 in Cambridge, Henry Cow's second album. A masterpiece of avant-garde rock including fierce free improvisation, electronic sound, noise and chamber music ensemble, and blending rock with contemporary music. Recorded by Tim Hodgkinson (organ, alto saxophone, clarinet, piano), Fred Frith (stereo guitar, violin, xylophone, piano), John Greaves (bass, piano, voice), Chris Cutler (drums) and Lindsay Cooper (bassoon, oboe, recorder, voice). This album features the elements of chamber music ensemble, because a bassoonist/oboist Lindsay Cooper joined the group. "Ruins" (composed by Fred Frith) is a masterpiece of avant-garde chamber rock in a suite form. Recommended to those who like Soft Machine, Frank Zappa and King Crimson.
Good!100 LbsHerbert/100 Lbs (1996)

A British electronic musician, Matthew Herbert's first album released on the Phono label in 1996 under the name of 'Herbert'. Includes 11 tracks originally released on vinyl as his first three ep's. Experimental and danceable tech-house with lots of digital sampling sources. The digitally-remastered CD was reissued in 2006 with a bonus CD which features rarities, b-sides and unreleased tracks.
Good!Striking It RichDan Hicks and His Hot Licks/Striking It Rich (1972)

An acoustic band featuring female backing vocals and violin. Pop and very cool sound based on jazz/country/folk. Features 'I Scare Myself' and 'Canned Music'.
 HawaiiThe High Llamas/Hawaii (1996)

The British pop band formed by ex-Microdisney member Sean O'Hagan (known as Brian Wilson freak. He joined Stereolab's album 'Emperor Tomato Ketchup') in London in 1991, the High Llamas' second full album. Unique electro/orchestral pop featuing winds, strings, Moog synths, Banjo and others. The sound is like the Beach Boys' "Pet Sounds" and "Smile" with Van Dyke Parks. 29 tracks in total (77 minutes).
 The Miseducation of Lauryn HillLauryn Hill/The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998)

An American female R&B singer/actress also known as a vocal member of hio-hop group the Fugees, Lauryn Hill's solo debut album. A spiritual and melancholy sound with mixing rap, soul, reggae, and R&B. A smash hit album which sold 12 million copies worldwide and won five Grammy Awards such as Album of the Year and Best R&B Album. Includes "Lost Ones", "Doo Wop (That Thing)", "Ex-Factor" and "Everything Is Everything". A masterpiece of the 1990s contemporary R&B/neo-soul.
 ImmunityRupert Hine/Immunity (1981)

An English musician known for his producing of the Fixx, Tina Turner, Howard Jones and others, Rupert Hine's third solo album. Synth pop/new wave with catchy song melodies, a gloomy atmosphere, and elaborate, paranoiac sound production. The sound is like Peter Gabriel's solo works at the same period. A hidden gem of the 1980s synth pop. The guest musicians are Phil Collins (drums), Marianne Faithfull (back vocals) and others. The 2001 digitally remastered CD includes two bonus tracks.
 Live Through ThisHole/Live Through This (1994)

An alternative rock band featuring female singer/actress Courtney Love (vocals, guitar), Hole's second album. Noisy guitar rock (grunge) influenced by power pop and punk. Simple and raw sound like Sonic Youth. In those days Courtney Love had been married to Kurt Cobain, Nirvana's vocalist/guitarist/songwriter. Includes hit singles "Doll Parts", "Violet" and "Miss World".
 ButterflyThe Hollies/Butterfly (1967)

The British pop group, the Hollies' seventh album. Released when Graham Nash (vocals, guitar) was the leader. A psychedelic pop album inspired by the Beatles at the time. Full of folk-oriented pop songs with beautiful melodies and harmonies.
 The Buddy Holly CollectionBuddy Holly/The Buddy Holly Collection (1956-1983)

The American singer/songwriter known as one of the pioneers of the 1950s rock & roll, Buddy Holly's comprehensive best-compilation album that includes his 50 songs (a set of 2 CDs). He recorded lots of melodic pop songs and had a great influence on the early Beatles, Elvis Costello and many other musicians. A unique vocal style called "hiccup". Includes "Rock Around With Ollie Vee", "Brown Eyed Handsome Man" (a cover of Chuck Berry), "That'll Be the Day", "Words of Love" (the Beatles covered), "Not Fade Away" (the Rolling Stones covered), "Everyday", "Peggy Sue", "Maybe Baby", "Rave On", "Well...All Right", "Think it Over", "It's So Easy" and others.
 Make You Shake ItHuman Body/Make You Shake It (1984)

Zapp family's vocal group, Human Body's debut album. Features three male vocalists, Billy Beck (ex-The Ohio Players members) and two P-Funk members (ex-Parliament, Funkadelic and others), Ray Davis and Larry Hatcher. The three electro-funk tunes with synth bass are good, but the highlights are the soul ballads in mid/slow tempos, featuring authentic vocals without talk box. Produced by Roger Troutman (Zapp) and Billy Beck. One of great soul albums in the 1980s.
 Dare!The Human League/Dare! (1981)

The synth pop band formed in Sheffield, England in 1977. After the two synth players Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Marsh (they formed the British Electric Foundation and Heaven 17 later) left the band, the vocalist/songwriter Philip Oakey made two high school girls Susanne Sulley and Joanne Catherall join the band as vocalists and produced this third album. Electro pop in the New Romantic style. Pop-song oriented sound called "Electric ABBA". A blockbuster hit that features "The Sound of the Crowd", "Love Action (I Believe in Love)", "Open Your Heart" and "Don't You Want Me" (#1 on the US and UK charts).
 New Day RisingHüsker Dü/New Day Rising (1985)

A three piece band from Minneapolis, the US. Featuring Grant Hart (drums, vocals) and Bob Mould (guitar, vocals). Post-hardcore punk with melodic songs.

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