Friday, April 28, 2017

The Year 1984 Albums Calendar and Rankings

1984, now looking at it, was not all that great of a year, I guess for ALBUMS for my taste. It was it seemed a good year for SONGS. It was amidst the MTV craze and 80's singles. Friday Night Videos, icons like Michael Jackson, Prince, Madonna, Huey Lewis, Springsteen, Wham!, Duran Duran, The Police, Phil Collins..80's icons and huge names that were known for songs and their videos.

The top 40 on Sunday mornings, and cassette tapes. I bought my 1st tape as a little kid in 1983 and 1984. Weird Al's album In 3-D namely. And often at the Great American Music store in the Highland Village store.

But as time as gone by and looking at Albums, 1984 has some very good albums, like what I consider my favorite Pat Metheny record in First Circle and my favorite U2 album in The Unforgettable Fire.

Rush's Grace Under Pressure is an album I do enjoy a lot, but I guess I don't see it greater than most of their classic catalog (Caress of Steel-Presto). But it's a great record, thus par for their course. And given the quality of the albums from 1984, it places quite high.

And Prince, I bought Purple Rain on tape and it was such a big deal and rival to Michael Jackson and Thriller then, even though the release dates were like 18 months apart.

But I was a sports kid, so 1984 was most remembered by me for that, but as a year, compared to other years from the 80's, I'm thinking it may not compare. But then again, I suspect a lot of the mid to late 80's albums were not too different.

That also being said, I do have a soft spot for 80's pop, and I included some albums with some of those songs. Also early Metal albums, Thrash, NWOBHM, Prog and Soundtracks.

1. Pat Metheny Group - First Circle
2, Rush - Grace Under Pressure
3. U2 - The Unforgettable Fire
4. Marillion - Fugazi
5. Prince and the Revolution - Purple Rain OST
6. "Weird Al" Yankovic - In 3-D
7. Fates Warning - Night on Bröcken
8. Van Halen - 1984
9. Iron Maiden - Powerslave
10. Queensryche - The Warning
11. Metallica - Ride the Lightning
12. NRG - No Reasons Given
13. Marillion - Real to Reel
14. King Crimson - Three of a Perfect Pair
15.Bruce Springsteen - Born in the USA
16. Duran Duran - Arena
17. Wham! - Make it Big
18. XTC - The Big Express
19. David Gilmour - About Face

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Van Halen - 1984
rel January 9, 1984

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Various Artists - Footloose (Original Soundtrack)
rel January 31, 1984

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Simple Minds - Sparkle in the Rain
rel February 6, 1984

The Sentinel
Pallas - The Sentinel
rel February 13, 1984

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Queen - The Works
rel February 27, 1984

The cover for "Weird Al" Yankovic in 3-D features "Weird Al" Yankovic's upper torso protruding out of an askew box with a wooden frame. The title is written in mock three-deminsional font. The sky and a yellow floor are featured in the background. This is a direct connection to evilness, seeing as there is a message in one of the songs on the album called"nature trail to hell" which has a backwards message saying that satan eats cheese whiz, also connecting cheese to evilness too.
"Weird Al" Yankovic - In 3-D
rel February 28, 1984

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David Gilmour - About Face
rel March 5, 1984

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Marillion - Fugazi
rel March 12, 1984

Dire Straits - Alchemy Dire Straits Live.jpg
Dire Straits - Alchemy: Dire Straits Live
rel March 16, 1984

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King Crimson - Three of a Perfect Pair
rel March 27, 1984

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Laura Branigan - Self Control
rel April 2, 1984

A watercolor painting of a snake with two heads that has the names of the songs from Reckoning written on it, with a large white square in the upper-left corner that has "R.E.M." written in it
R.E.M. - Reckoning
rel April 9, 1984

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Rush - Grace Under Pressure
rel April 12, 1984

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Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking
rel April 30, 1984

INXS - The Swing
rel April 1984

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The Bangles - All Over the Place
rel May 23, 1984

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Clannad - Legend [TV Soundtrack]
rel May 1984

Bruce Springsteen - Born in the U.S.A.
rel June 4, 1984

Prince and the Revolution - Purple Rain
rel June 25, 1984

Dio - The Last in Line
rel July 2, 1984

The Time - Ice Cream Castle
rel July 2, 1984

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Sade - Diamond Life
rel July 16, 1984

The artwork depicts an electric chair on a dark and ominous background being struck by lightning flowing from Metallica's pointed logo on top. The title is written in smaller white capital letters at the bottom.
Metallica - Ride the Lightning
rel July 27, 1984

Metal Church - Metal Church
rel July 1984

New Edition - New Edition
rel September 28, 1984

Survivor - Vital Signs
rel August 1984

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Iron Maiden - Powerslave
rel September 3, 1984

Mercyful Fate - Don't Break the Oath
rel September 7, 1984

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Queensryche - The Warning
rel September 7, 1984

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Fates Warning - Night on Bröcken
rel September 1984

Robyn Hitchcock - I Often Dream of Trains
rel September 1984

A black-and-white photo of a castle with the album and artist name written in dark crimson banners above and below it
U2 - The Unforgettable Fire
rel October 1, 1984

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Sheena Easton - A Private Heaven
rel October 2, 1984

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Hall and Oates - Big Bam Boom
rel October 12, 1984

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XTC - The Big Express
rel October 15, 1984

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Wham! - Make it Big
rel October 23, 1984

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Deep Purple - Perfect Strangers
rel October 29, 1984

Duran Duran - Arena
rel November 12, 1984

Madonna - Like a Virgin
rel November 12, 1984

Kool and the Gang - Emergency
rel November

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Don Henley - Building the Perfect Beast
rel November 19, 1984

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Marillion - Real to Reel
rel November 1984

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Toto - Dune
rel December 1984

Cardiacs - The Seaside
rel 1984

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Michael Hedges - Aerial Boundaries
rel 1984

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Steve Morse - The Introduction
rel 1984

NRG - No Reasons Given
rel 1984

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Pat Metheny Group - First Circle
rel 1984

Thinking Plague - ...A Thinking Plague
rel 1984

Mew: 2017 North American Tour (August)

August 13th in St.Paul at The Turf Club.

The show back in 2015 was magical. Very excited for this one!

Aug 3 New York, NY
Aug 4 Brooklyn, NY
Aug 5 Wsshington, DC
Aug 7 Philadelphia, PA
Aug 8 Boston, MA
Aug 10 Toronto, ON
Aug 11 Detroit, MI
Aug 12 Chicago, IL
Aug 13 St.Paul, MN
Aug 15 Denver, CO
Aug 16 Salt Lake City, UT
Aug 18 Vancouver, BC
Aug 19 Seattle, WA
Aug 20 Portland, OR
Aug 22 San Francisco, CA
Aug 24 San Diego, CA
Aug 25 Santa Ana, CA
Aug 26 Los Angeles, CA

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Record Store Day 2017 Video

came out okay, a tad rushed since I made this today between going back to my apt and work after the doctor.

oh and I do have some footage from the day, I likely will only share some of, and likely only FB. Some of it sadly, did not come out too well.

Rush - Cygnus X-1 Book 1-2 12"
Emerson Lake and Palmer - Brain Salad Surgery 7"
Meshuggah - I (2014 Special Edition)
Marillion - Incommunicado/Going Under U.K 7"
2011 Record Store Day Mascot/Toy
The Mars Volta - Frances the Mute (Unofficial, 2015  180g 2 LP)

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Year 1997 Albums Calendar and Rankings

1997, a very memorable year for a number of things. I think 1st and foremost, it was in a lot of ways, the peak of my love for Dream Theater and the long wait for their 1st full-length album since becoming a fan.

Falling Into Infinity took forever to come out, and I remember being at Best Buy where I was working at the time, and while I enjoyed it, I was a little underwhelmed with such high expectations.

To compare, earlier in the year, Fates Warning had released A Pleasant Shade of Gray, which I remember really liking, but also not looking at Fates Warning as good as my favorite bands like Rush and Dream Theater. But as I came to realize, it was a masterpiece, and their greatest masterpiece.

I do recall being really sad though as learning both Joe DiBiase and Frank Aresti had left the band and being incredibly depressed about that, along with Kevin Moore's departure from Dream Theater not that long before also hitting me hard. And oddly enough, it was not long after I became a fan of both bands.

Anyway, looking at the rest of 1997, Soundscape's album Discovery I enjoyed when I heard it, but in truth, became more of a fan in the subsequent years. Pain of Salvation's debut album Entropia I didn't hear then but years later; but it has become one of my favorites of theirs, debut albums, and progressive metal albums, etc.

Royal Hunt, Savatage, Angra's live album, Big Wreck, The Tea Party, Mew's debut, Godspeed, Devin Townsend's debut, etc..a lot of good stuff or artists who put out albums early in their careers of course. A lot of Prog Metal as the mid and late 90's it was being made in large numbers, and on my radar. And frankly, while much of it sounded a lot like Dream Theater, it seemed still enjoyable and unique in some ways. I dunno, it didn't seem as watered down as it became and has been the last 10 or 15 years. But maybe some of that has to do with nostalgia.

I think 1997 was a year that was in the midst of a lot of terrible mainstream music, and got looked down on by the prog scene, but maybe has aged relatively well over the last 2 decades.

1. Fates Warning - A Pleasant Shade of Gray
2. Soundscape - Discovery
3. Pain of Salvation - Entropia
4. Dream Theater - Falling into Infinity
5. Savatage - The Wake of Magellan
6. Pat Metheny - Imaginary Day
7. Royal Hunt - Paradox
8. Marillion - This Strange Engine
9. Magellan - Test of Wills
10. Big Wreck - In Loving Memory Of...
11. Enchant - Time Lost
12. Angra - Holy Live
13. Godspeed You Black Emperor! - F♯A♯∞ (1995-1997)
14. Ocean Machine - Biomech
15. Eternity X - The Edge
16. Conditioned Response - Pavlov's Dogs
17. The Tea Party - Transmission
18. Mew - A Triumph for Man
19. The Flower Kings - Stardust We Are
20. Galactic Cowboys - The Horse that Bud Bought
21. Yes - Keys to Ascension 2
22. Live - Secret Samadhi
23. dredg - Orph [EP]
24. Faith No More - Album of the Year
25. MagellanMusic - A Strange Traffic of Dreams
26. Incubus - S.C.I.E.N.C.E.
27. The Quiet Room - Introspect
28. Tiles - Fence the Clear
29. IQ - Subterranea
30. Queensryche - Hear in the Now Frontier

Daft Punk - Homework
rel January 20, 1997

Niacin - Niacin
rel February 13, 1997

Live - Secret Samadhi
rel February 18, 1997

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Charlie Haden and Pat Metheny - Beyond the Missouri Sky
rel February 25, 1997

h - Ice Cream Genius
rel February 27, 1997

Marillion - This Strange Engine
rel March 9, 1997

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Queensryche - Hear in the Now Frontier
rel March 25, 1997

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Conception - Flow
rel April 1, 1997

Mew - A Triumph for Man
rel April 1, 1997

Tiles - Fence the Clear
rel April 15, 1997

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Dark Tranquillity - The Mind's I
rel April 21, 1997

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Fates Warning - A Pleasant Shade of Gray
rel April 22, 1997

Angra - Holy Live
rel April 25, 1997

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Stratovarius - Visions
rel April 28, 1997

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The Flower Kings - Stardust We Are
rel April 1997

Ozric Tentacles - Curious Corn
rel May 1, 1997

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Magellan - Test of Wills
rel May 6, 1997

Fish - Sunsets on Empire
rel May 9, 1997

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Toad the Wet Sprocket - Coil
rel May 20, 1997

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No-Man - Dry Cleaning Ray
rel May 1997

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Blackmore's Night - Shadow of the Moon
rel June 2, 1997

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Faith No More - Album of the Year
rel June 3, 1997

The Gathering - Nighttime Birds
rel June 6, 1997

Ween - The Mollusk
rel June 24, 1997

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Galactic Cowboys - The Horse that Bud Bought
rel July 15, 1997

Ocean Machine - Biomech
rel July 21, 1997

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Spastic Ink - Ink Complete
rel August 12, 1997

Voivod - Phobos.jpg
Voivod - Phobos
rel August 12, 1997

A dark maroon cover with a small rectangular black-and-white photograph of a water tower in the center.
Godspeed You Black Emperor! - F♯A♯∞ (1995-1997)
rel August 14, 1997

The Tea Party - Transmission
rel August 19, 1997

Pain of Salvation - Entropia
rel August 21, 1997

The God Thing cover.jpg
Vanden Plas - The God Thing
rel September 5, 1997

Eternity X - The Edge
rel September 7, 1997

Incubus Science.jpg
Incubus - S.C.I.E.N.C.E.
rel September 9, 1997

The Tories - Wonderful Life
rel September 9, 1997

Wake of the magellan.jpg
Savatage - The Wake of Magellan
rel September 15, 1997

Buena Vista Social Club - Buena Vista Social Club
rel September 16, 1997

Dream Theater - Falling into Infinity Album Cover.jpg
Dream Theater - Falling into Infinity
rel September 23, 1997

Royal Hunt - Paradox (front).jpg
Royal Hunt - Paradox
rel September 23, 1997

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The Apples in Stereo - Tone Soul Evolution
rel September 30, 1997

Enchant Time Lost.jpg
Enchant - Time Lost
rel September 1997

IQ album cover Subterranea.jpg
IQ - Subterranea
rel September 1997

Big Wreck - In Loving Memory Of...
rel October 7, 1997

PMG - Imaginary Day.jpg
Pat Metheny - Imaginary Day
rel October 7, 1997

In-Flames Whoracle.jpg
In Flames - Whoracle
rel October 15, 1997

Porcupine tree coma divine.jpg
Porcupine Tree - Coma Divine: Recorded Live in Rome
rel October 1997

Yes - Keys to Ascension 2
rel November 3, 1997

Jane's Addiction-Kettle Wistle.jpg
Jane's Addiction - Kettle Whistle
rel November 4, 1997
Image result for martyr - Hopeless Hopes
Martyr - Hopeless Hopes
rel November 7, 1997

Self - Feels Like Breakin Shit.jpg
sElf - Feels Like Breakin' Shit
rel November 1997

Conditioned Response - Pavlov's Dog
rel 1997

dredg - Orph [EP]
rel 1997

MagellanMusic - A Strange Traffic of Dreams
rel 1997

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan - En concert à Paris
rel 1997

The Quiet Room - Introspect
rel 1997

Soundscape - Discovery
rel 1997

Sinkadus - Aurum nostrum
rel 1997