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Recommended CDs: Popular Music > P

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

 imageartist/title (release year), memo
 King Tubbys Meets Rockers UptownAugustus Pablo/King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown (1976)

A collaboration between Augustus Pablo, a producer and melodica player, and King Tubby, an engineer and the originator of dub. An instrumental reggae/dub classic that features Augustus Pablo's 'Far East' sound with the melodica melodies in minor keys, and King Tubby's exquisite mixing/sound treatment. The title track is a dub version of Jacob Miller's 'Baby I Love You So'.
Very good!Pacific StreetThe Pale Fountains/Pacific Street (1983)

An acoustic-oriented guitar pop band. This 1st album is great. The sound is like works of A&M Records (Burt Bacharach, for example).
 Discover AmericaVan Dyke Parks/Discover America (1972)

2nd album. Tropical-flavored works featuring some covers of Trinidadian music/Calypso, played on steel drums.
 Mothership ConnectionParliament/Mothership Connection (1976)

Featuring George Clinton. A masterpiece of P-Funk.
 Suck on the PastelsThe Pastels/Suck on the Pastels (1983-1985)

The indie rock band formed with Stephan Pastel (guitar, vocals) in Glasgow, Scotland in 1982. The band was influential in the Glasgow-based guitar pop movement called "anorak". A compilation that includes their early tracks released from 1983 to 1985 (singles on the Rough Trade and Creation labels, BBC sessions). Guitar pop influenced by The Velvet Underground. The performance and singing are naivete and have a distinctive flavor. Features "Baby Honey", "Something Going On" and "Million Tears".
 Crooked Rain, Crooked RainPavement/Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain (1994)

The US indie rock band, Pavement's second album. One of the leading bands of the 'lo-fi' movement in the early 1990s. Melodic and song-oriented sound with noisy distorted guitar, like anorak/grunge guitar pop such as Teenage Fanclub and Dinosaur Jr. Wobbly performance. Includes a hit song 'Cut Your Hair'.
 TenPearl Jam/Ten (1991)

The American rock band formed around the ex-members of Green River and Mother Love Bone: Stone Gossard (guitar) and Jeff Ament (bass). The debut album. Following Nirvana's 'Nevermind', the hit of this album put grunge/alternative rock into the mainstream. Orthodox and melodic sound based on the 1970's hard rock and heavy metal.
 Music From the Penguin CafeThe Penguin Cafe Orchestra/Music From the Penguin Cafe (1976)

England's ambient music group led by Simon Jeffes. The debut album released on Brian Eno's 'Obscure' label. Unique sounds based on the style of classical chamber music using string instruments, with the elements of contemporary/experimental music and minimalism. The executive producer is Brian Eno.
 Basket of LightPentangle/Basket of Light (1969)

A British folk-rock group of five members formed in around 1967, Pentangle's third album (#5 on the UK album charts). Pentangle's most pop-oriented and commercially successful album. Folk rock with an eclectic mix of traditional British folk, ballads, blues, jazz, and medieval music elements. Features female singer Jacqui McShee's cool, pure and high vocals, and complex, entangled baroque-style twin guitars of Bert Jansch and John Renbourn. All the insturments are acoustic, including sitar, double bass, glockenspiel, hand drum and banjo. Includes singles, "Once I Had a Sweetheart" and "Light Flight" (used as theme for BBC's TV drama "Take Three Girls"). "Sally Go 'Round the Roses" is a cover of a hit song by The Jaynetts, the US girls R&B group. Produced by Shel Talmy (known for his work with The Who and The Kinks). The 2001 remastered CD includes four bonus tracks.
 The Modern DancePere Ubu/The Modern Dance (1978)

An experimental rock band led by David Thomas (vocals) and formed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1975, Pere Ubu's debut album. The band is named after "Père Ubu", the protagonist of "Ubu Roi", a surrealist play by French writer Alfred Jarry. Avant-garde and art-oriented garage punk featuring synths, saxophone, and tapes. One of the post-punk/new wave masterpieces in the late 1970s. Includes single tracks, "Street Waves" and "The Modern Dance". Recommended to those who like Can, Captain Beefheart, Wire, Public Image Ltd., and the Feelies.
Good!Super ApeLee "Scratch" Perry & the Upsetters/Super Ape (1976)

One of the most important figures in Jamaican dub/roots reggae, Lee "Scratch" Perry's masterpiece. An established dub classic filled with pleasure of sound processing.
 Discography: The Complete Singles CollectionPet Shop Boys/Discography: The Complete Singles Collection (1985-1991)

Electro-pop like Eurodance/Eurobeat. Elegant and cynical. Includes No. 1 hit on the UK and US charts "West End Girls".
 Damn the TorpedoesTom Petty and the Heartbreakers/Damn the Torpedoes (1979)

An American singer/songwriter, Tom Petty's third album released under the name of the Heartbreakers (#2 on the US album charts). Roots-oriented American rock influenced by Bob Dylan, the Byrds and the Beatles. Includes "Refugee", "Here Comes My Girl", "Even the Losers" and "Don't Do Me Like That". Recommended to those who like Bruce Springsteen or Dire Straits.
 Tango: Zero HourAstor Piazzolla/Tango: Zero Hour (1986)

Astor Piazzolla is an Argentine tango composer and bandoneón player. Based the traditional tango, he created a unique style called "nuevo tango" with elements from jazz and classical music. This is a recording with his quintet (violin, piano, guitar and bass) in 1986, in New York. Piazzolla said "This is absolutely the greatest record I've made in my entire life". "Tanguedia III" is a piece for the movie "Tangos, l'exil de Gardel/Tangos, the Exile of Gardel" directed by Fernando E. Solanas. "Milonga del Angel" is one of his famous pieces. "Michelangelo '70" is a re-recording of his 1970 masterpiece. Produced by Kip Hanrahan (American Clave label).
 From the Album of the Same NamePilot/From the Album of the Same Name (1974)

A scottish pop band formed in 1973 in Edinburgh, by the former Bay City Rollers members, David Paton (vocals, bass) and Billy Lyall (keyboards, vocals), Pilot's debut album. A good pop album in the soft rock style, strongly influenced by the Beatles in the late 1960s. Features catchy melodies, high-tone vocals, and beautiful sound production by the producer Alan Parsons. The singles, "Just a Smile" (#31 on the UK charts) and "Magic" (#11 on the UK charts. #5 on the US in 1975) are excellent tunes. Released on CD in 1990. The 2009 remastered edition includes four bonus tracks. Recommended to those who like the Beatles at the later stage, Paul McCartney and 10cc.
Very good!The Piper at the Gates of DawnPink Floyd/The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (1967)

1st album featuring Syd Barrett (vocals and guitar). Psychedelic pop.
 The Dark Side of the MoonPink Floyd/The Dark Side of the Moon (1973)

A long seller album. A product of studio works by use of sound effects.
 Surfer RosaPixies/Surfer Rosa (1988)

A noisy guitar pop band from Boston. 1st album. Produced by Steve Albini.
 Rid of MePJ Harvey/Rid of Me (1993)

The eponymous three-piece band led by an English singer-songwriter PJ Harvey (guitar, vocals, cello, violin, organ), with Rob Ellis (drums, percussion, vocals) and Steve Vaughan (bass), PJ Harvey's second album (#3 on the UK album charts). Emotional alternative rock/punk blues with dark pathos and heavy, brutal sound merging the elements of UK blues rock such as Led Zeppelin and US indie rock such as Pixies. The controversial sound production by Steve Albini, featuring noisy guitar and drums at a high sound pressure level, in which PJ Harvey's vocals are buried. Includes singles, "50ft Queenie" (#27 on the UK charts) and "Man-Size". "Highway 61 Revisited" is a cover (beyond recognition) of Bob Dylan's famous song. Recomended to those who like alternative rock/grunge such as Pixies and Nirvana, and Patti Smith and the like.
 MusikPlastikman/Musik (1994)

An English-born, Canadian-raised electronic musician/DJ, Richie Hawtin's second full-length album under the alias Plastikman. Ambient/minimal-oriented introspective acid techno influenced by early Detroit techno and acid house. Simple and stoic sound with few tones, using Roland TB-303 (bass) and TR-909 (drum) synths. Almost nothing but rhythms and sound effects, and melodies are thin. Beautility like buildings with exposed skeletons.
 If I Should Fall from Grace With GodThe Pogues/If I Should Fall from Grace With God (1988)

The band formed by an Irish punk and drunken vocalist, Shane MacGowan in 1982 in London. The third album produced by Steve Lillywhite. Pop-oriented sound fusing punk with traditional Irish folk music. Features the good Christmas song 'Fairytale of New York' (#2 on the UK charts. A duet with Kristy MacColl). Recommended to those who like The Clash.
Good!Outlandos D'amourThe Police/Outlandos D'amour (1978)

Punky reggae beats. 1st album. Includes "Roxanne".
 SynchronicityThe Police/Synchronicity (1983)

Includes a smash hit "Every Breath You Take". The last album.
 YThe Pop Group/Y (1979)

Avant-garde sounds mixing punk, free jazz, funk, dub and so on. 1st album. Co-produced by Dennis Bovell. Includes "She Is Beyond Good and Evil" (not included in the original LP) and "We Are Time".
 For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder?The Pop Group/For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder? (1980)

This 2nd album is recommended too. More political and funky than the 1st.
 Lust for LifeIggy Pop/Lust for Life (1977)

The second solo album (#28 on the UK album charts) in collaboration with David Bowie, following the previous "The Idiot". More aggressive and rock-oriented than "The Idiot". "Sixteen", "Some Weird Sin", "The Passenger" and "Neighborhood Threat" are cool. "Tongiht" is a beautiful love song composed by David Bowie. The title track "Lust for Life" is a song used in the opening of the movie "Trainspotting".
 Box FrenzyPop Will Eat Itself/Box Frenzy (1987)

An early instance of the rock bands that introduced samplings and hip-hop into the sounds.
 PortisheadPortishead/Portishead (1997)

One of the Trip Hop groups from Bristol. 2nd album. Melancholy sounds with dub/hip-hop beats. Not danceable, but cool.
 Frosting on the BeaterThe Posies/Frosting on the Beater (1993)

An American alternative rock group, the Posies' third album. Beautiful melodies and vocal harmonies influenced by the 1960s British pop and power pop. Hard sound featuring grungy distorted guitars. Includes 'Dream All Day'. Produced by Don Fleming.
Good!Steve McQueenPrefab Sprout/Steve McQueen (1985)

The melody lines by Paddy McAloon (guitar and vocals) are excellent. 2nd album. Produced by Thomas Dolby.
 Photos of GhostsPremiata Forneria Marconi/Photos of Ghosts (1973)

The third album (English version) by the Italian progressive-rock band Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM). Released from the Manticore label managed by Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Pete Sinfield from King Crimson wrote the English lyrics and produced the two tracks. Subtle and exquisite prog-rock based on baroque/pre-classical music with idyllic, cheerful tones. Effectively using acoustic guitar and flute.
 The Sun SessionsElvis Presley/The Sun Sessions (1976/1954-1955)

A compilation album of early recordings by Elvis Presley, an American singer/actor who became one of the pioneers of rockabilly and rock & roll with mixing rhythm and blues with country music in the 1950s. Includes the tracks recorded in 1954-1955 at the studio of the Sun Records, an independent record label, before he debuted in the major label RCA Records. Includes singles, "That's All Right" (a cover of blues singer Arthur Crudup's song), "Good Rockin' Tonight" (a cover of Roy Brown's jump blues song), "You' re A Heartbreaker", "Baby Let's Play House" (a cover of Arthur Gunter's blues song), "Mystery Train" (a cover of Junior Parker's blues song), "I Forgot To Remember To Forget", and others.
 Elvis' Golden RecordsElvis Presley/Elvis' Golden Records (1956, 1957)

A collection of his early singles, such as "Love Me Tender" and "Jailhouse Rock".
 PretendersPretenders/Pretenders (1980)

Featuring Chrissie Hynde (vocals and guitar). 1st album. No. 1 on the UK album charts. Includes "Kid" and cover of the Kinks' "Stop Your Sobbing".
 The Pretty ThingsThe Pretty Things/The Pretty Things (1965)

The UK rock band led by guitarist Dick Taylor, who was an original member of the Rolling Stones in the early days. The debut album plus six bonus tracks (five single tracks and one demo recording). The sound is more aggressive, punkier and rawer than the early Stones. Features smash hits, "Don't Bring Me Down" and "Honey, I Need". A freakbeat/garage punk classic.
 S.F. SorrowThe Pretty Things/S.F. Sorrow (1968)

A British rock band formed in Kent, England in 1963, The Pretty Things's fourth album. A masterpiece of melodic British psychedelic rock including strings, winds, sitar, organ and chorus, which is different from their early garage rock style. The first "rock opera" album released before the Who's "Tommy" (1969). A concept album which consists of a song cycle about the life of the main character Sebastian F. Sorrow. Produced by Norman Smith, who worked with The Beatles and Pink Floyd.
 ScreamadelicaPrimal Scream/Screamadelica (1991)

A mixture of old-fashioned '60s-ish rock and acid-house style dance beats.
 ParadePrince and the Revolution/Parade (1986)

A masterpiece of contemporary funk. Popular and avant-garde. Includes "Kiss".
Very good!Sign O' the TimesPrince/Sign O' the Times (1987)

I think this album is the greatest work of the US rock in the late 1980s. Highly recommended.
 Procol HarumProcol Harum/Procol Harum (1967/2009)

An English rock band formed in London in 1967, Procol Harum's debut album (#26 on the UK album charts). Blues rock strongly influenced by R&B, but its sublime music featuring the combination of two keyboards, Gary Brooker's piano and Matthew Fisher's Hammond organ, and based on baroque/classical influence, had a great influence on the 1970s progressive rock and symphonic rock. The debut single "A Whiter Shade of Pale" (#1 on the UK charts. #5 on the US) is a famous song known for its organ like J. S. Bach's instrumental pieces and soulful vocals (not included in the UK original LP, but included in the US original LP and reissues). The 2009 digitally remastered edition (Onward Music Limited) has 11 bonus tracks, including "A Whiter Shade of Pale" and the second single "Homburg" (#6 on the UK).
 ExperienceThe Prodigy/Experience (1992)

High-speed breakbeats-style techno sound. High-pitched vocal samples. 1st album. Includes hits "Charly" and "Everybody in the Place".
Good!Music for the Jilted GenerationThe Prodigy/Music for the Jilted Generation (1994)

An English electronic dance music band, The Prodigy's second album (#1 on the UK album charts). Dark, heavy and aggressive hardcore techno with adding elements of big beat and electro-industrial. Includes four single tracks, "One Love" (#8 on the UK charts), "No Good (Start the Dance)" (#4 on the UK charts), "Voodoo People", and "Poison". "Their Law" features Pop Will Eat Itself. Recommended for those who like Orbital, Underworld, The Chemical Brothers and Atari Teenage Riot. Re-released in 2008 as "More Music for the Jilted Generation" (2 CDs), including remastered and bonus tracks.
 The Fat of the LandThe Prodigy/The Fat of the Land (1997)

The 3rd album. Rock-oriented techno/electronica/dance music. Heavy, brutal and aggressive, but cool sounds. Includes 'Breathe' and 'Firestarter'.
 A Secret WishPropaganda/A Secret Wish (1985)

A synth-pop band from Germany. Featuring the vocalist Claudia Brücken. The first album released on ZTT Records, England. Art-oriented synth pop in an industrial-techno style. The first single "Dr. Mabuse" is a song inspired by the film directed by Fritz Lang. "Sorry for Laughing" is a cover of Josef K. Produced by S. J. Lipson. Mixed by S. J. Lipson and Trevor Horn. Former Police drummer Stewart Copeland, Heaven 17's vocalist Glenn Gregory, Japan's David Sylvian (writing lyrics), Yes' guitarist Steve Howe guest.
 All of This and NothingThe Psychedelic Furs/All of This and Nothing (1980-1988)

An English rock band formed by Richard Butler (vocals) and his brother Tim Butler (bass) in London in 1977, the Psychedelic Furs' compilation album (14 tracks in total). Includes their major songs in the 1980s. Art rock-oriented new wave influenced by David Bowie and The Velvet Underground. Featuring Richard Butler's distinctive hoarse voice and use of saxophone. The band played gloomy post-punk in the debut album "The Psychedelic Furs" (1980), but then they had also made pop hits such as "Pretty in Pink" (#43 on the UK charts), "Love My Way" (#42 on the UK charts) and "Heaven" (#29 on the UK charts). Includes singles, "Sister Europe", "Dumb Waiters", the 1981 original version of "Pretty in Pink" (the 1986 re-recorded version was used as the title song for the 1986 film of the same name and reached #18 on the UK charts), "Love My Way", "Heaven", "The Ghost in You", "Heartbreak Beat", and "All That Money Wants" (a single recorded for this compilation).
 It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us BackPublic Enemy/It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988)

A radical rap group from the US. Noisy and hardcore.
 Metal Box/Second EditionPublic Image Limited/Metal Box/Second Edition (1979)

John Lydon's post-Sex Pistols group. Dubby bass lines by Jah Wobble. Music after the "death of rock". 2nd album.
Good!The Flowers of RomancePublic Image Limited/The Flowers of Romance (1981)

Radical beats. Metallic sounds of guitar. John Lydon's vocals are like chant. 3rd album.
 Dance ManiaTito Puente and His Orchestra/Dance Mania (1958)

An American timbales player and Latin musician of Puerto Rican descent, born in New York in 1923, often called as "The king of the timbales" and "The king of Latin music", Tito Puente and his orchestra's best-known and best-selling album. Performed by his big band with piano, saxophones, trumpets, percussions, timbales, vibraphone and marimba. A masterpiece of pop and dance-oriented salsa/Latin music based ond afro-cuban jazz and mambo. The lead vocalist is Santos Colón. The lyrics are Spanish. The 2009 "Legacy Edition" is a two-CD set including all the tracks of "Dance Mania" and "Dance Mania Vol.2" (1960) and 21 bonus tracks.
 Different ClassPulp/Different Class (1995)

An English alternative rock band led by Jarvis Cocker (vocals, guitar) and formed in Sheffield in 1978, Pulp's fifth album (#1 on the UK album charts). Melodic Britpop influenced by glam rock (David Bowie, Roxy Music), disco and new wave. Includes singles, "Common People" (#2 on the UK charts), "Sorted for E's & Wizz" / "Mis-Shapes" (double A-sided single. #2 on the UK charts), "Disco 2000" (#7 on the UK charts), and "Something Changed" (#10 on the UK charts). "Common People" is a famous tune which is representative of the mid-1990s Britpop movement. Produced by Chris Thomas. "Deluxe Edition" (2 CDs) including B-sides, demos and rarities was released in 2006.

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