Bands whose most iconic record is their first one, but which is also stylistically an outlier in their catalog

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Inspired by The Feelies thread and Crazy Rhythms of course

The one that comes to mind immediately is the first Futureheads record (the self-titled), which still feels rather unique to me - every other album they did feels like generic British pop

frogbs, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:26 (one year ago) Permalink

justice seems to fit this requirement quite well i think.

mark e, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:34 (one year ago) Permalink

I'm not sure if it's their most iconic, but Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take out the Trash is my favorite Replacements album so it's iconic for me! And less debatably an outlier.

Loud guitars shit all over "Bette Davis Eyes" (NYCNative), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:35 (one year ago) Permalink

HMM. Good and tough question. My immediate thought was Scritti Politti but that first album really only fits the second of the two criteria.

The Flautist of Flatus (Old Lunch), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:37 (one year ago) Permalink

jonathan richman probably fits -- that first modern lovers record is probably his best known, but he never made anything like it again.

tylerw, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:38 (one year ago) Permalink

in a lot of cases it's arguable. particularly when you have lineup changes. so for instance a lot of people would argue that the first king crimson record is their most iconic one, but aside from their second record they don't really have any other records that sound like that. and there are people who would argue for _piper at the gates of dawn_ as the most iconic floyd record, though of course they're always going to be shouted down by the dsotm folks...

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:40 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah if not for "In the Wake...", KC would fit perfectly here. As much as Crimson has bounced around stylistically I think it's pretty clear that their debut was led & directed mostly by Ian McDonald; it's not really until LTiA that Fripp takes the reigns. Lizard and Islands obviously still fit into the old Crim sound but

frogbs, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:43 (one year ago) Permalink

but...a lot of those bits are holdovers, or imitations.

Sorry, hit submit post too soon

frogbs, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:43 (one year ago) Permalink

Andrew W.K., kinda. Pearl Jam perhaps? Depends how much seems like a big difference in sound/style.

REM don't fit since they have several iconic records and sounds , but interestingly they start out with two releases (Chronic Town and Murmur) that are close to their most canonized work, but don't really sound like what came after (or each other really).

tales of a scorched-earth nothing (Doctor Casino), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:44 (one year ago) Permalink

The answer to this almost has to be someone who made a huge splash out of the gate and then veered off into a less popular left field because of market pressures or personal issues or whatever. X-Ray Spex/Poly Styrene?

The Flautist of Flatus (Old Lunch), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:45 (one year ago) Permalink

I guess I could see the Moody Blues fitting on here, though you'd have to skip Go Now (which everyone does anyway). It's amazing to me how much of Days of Future Passed is taken up by the silly orchestration when you actually listen to it, cuz you don't really remember any of that stuff at all.

frogbs, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:51 (one year ago) Permalink

Bloc Party?

Evan, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:51 (one year ago) Permalink

Lilys

Evan, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:53 (one year ago) Permalink

Gang Of Four

sleeve, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:53 (one year ago) Permalink

Sun Kil Moon

Evan, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:54 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't think Television ever got as jammy as they did on "Marquee Moon" on their next two albums?

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:56 (one year ago) Permalink

Patti Smith?

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:57 (one year ago) Permalink

dEUS, 'Worst Case Scenario'. Still the quintessential dEUS album. After that they shifted to more traditional song-writing real quick.

Le Bateau Ivre, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:58 (one year ago) Permalink

Ride, maybe?

MarkoP, Thursday, 2 March 2017 17:59 (one year ago) Permalink

Velvets are maybe the quintessential example. Nico's voice and Cale's viola are two of the most distinctive elements on the first album. Neither reappears in their catalogue.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:02 (one year ago) Permalink

Ride seems like a stretch...

Evan, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:02 (one year ago) Permalink

Jesus & Mary Chain

circa1916, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:16 (one year ago) Permalink

Lupe Fiasco

Whiney G. Weingarten, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:21 (one year ago) Permalink

Jesus & Mary Chain


I was so disappointed when I listened to their other albums.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:27 (one year ago) Permalink

Dream Syndicate

enochroot, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:28 (one year ago) Permalink

good call there

sleeve, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:29 (one year ago) Permalink

Velvets are maybe the quintessential example. Nico's voice and Cale's viola are two of the most distinctive elements on the first album. Neither reappears in their catalogue.

There's viola on "Lady Godiva's Operation" and "Here She Comes Now".

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:43 (one year ago) Permalink

Ulver, maybe?

jmm, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:48 (one year ago) Permalink

There's viola on "Lady Godiva's Operation" and "Here She Comes Now".

Whoa, got me there.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:53 (one year ago) Permalink

I do feel like the viola is more prominent on a lot of VU & Nico, and the album is also unique in their catalogue in terms of the mix of styles, but, yep, I definitely forgot about those.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:54 (one year ago) Permalink

Devo?

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:55 (one year ago) Permalink

^^ thread winner.

mark e, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:57 (one year ago) Permalink

Dan Deacon - Spiderman of the Rings

flappy bird, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:58 (one year ago) Permalink

The Telescopes

(their early singles and first album immortalized them as shoegaze also-rans but virtually nobody cares about their '00s forays into post-rock and noise/drone)

ridiculously dope soul (unregistered), Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:58 (one year ago) Permalink

De La Soul?

Gavin, Leeds, Thursday, 2 March 2017 18:59 (one year ago) Permalink

I'd say Wire too - Pink Flag is the only one you could describe as a straightforward punk record. I wanted to say The Clash as well for the same reason but I don't think you could argue against London Calling as being their most iconic album.

Gavin, Leeds, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:03 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't think you could describe "Pink Flag" as a straightforward punk record tbf.

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:08 (one year ago) Permalink

A punk record, for sure.

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:08 (one year ago) Permalink

So, yes, fits the thread.

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:09 (one year ago) Permalink

Moby Grape? Debut is definitely iconic, second album was a sharp stylistic detour...but I'm not that up on their later records.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:11 (one year ago) Permalink

Rober Miles is the perfect example of this. A huge crowdpleaser hit with Children and a similar sounding debut album, but everything he did since is completely left field: IDM, jazz and psychedelic rock.

Siegbran, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:23 (one year ago) Permalink

Pavement. They dropped most of the Fall and VU aping after Slanted & Enchanted (not counting the eps)

duped and used by my worst Miss U (President Keyes), Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:28 (one year ago) Permalink

Wire is a stupid answer, and most of these are heavily debatable at best

imago, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:30 (one year ago) Permalink

License to Ill
The Great Adventures of Slick Rick
Critical Beatdown
Loc-Ed After Dark
All For One
Cypress Hill
Breaking Atoms
Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde

Οὖτις, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:33 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't think slight developments or polishing that may have been achieved by the second album really qualifies an artist for this thread.

Evan, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:33 (one year ago) Permalink

Illmatic

flappy bird, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:34 (one year ago) Permalink

Where's that NV post

imago, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:34 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't even know if it was NV

But basically - "Specific-purpose ILM anthology threads basically turn into lists of everyone's favourite bands"

Stop bending the rules to suit whichever signifiers of your awesome tastes you want to list. Every entry here from now on should require a written justification

imago, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:43 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't know where you get the idea that this a place where people discuss music

ultros ultros-ghali, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:52 (one year ago) Permalink

Basehead, maybe.

Otherwise, Fleetwood Mac, in contention. Feelies maybe (inspiration for this thread, but I discovered them via Good Earth). Men Without Hats maybe, since nobody stuck around for Pop or the later stuff. Patti Smith, Pavement, etc. all had great albums down the road.

dlp9001, Thursday, 2 March 2017 19:53 (one year ago) Permalink

Does Buzzcocks' "Spiral Scratch" count?

Mark G, Friday, 3 March 2017 16:51 (one year ago) Permalink

how is the futureheads 1st album that much different than the 2nd one? (other than having better songs)
Their first album still feels unique to me...short, Zoloish phrases, cool a capella bits, big early XTC influence. Nothing about their subsequent albums made me want to hear them again.

― frogbs, Friday, March 3, 2017 7:54 AM (two hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I think News & Tributes is pretty underrated and whether you like it or not is not the point, listen to this and say it's a "radical departure" from the XTC influenced modern indie they did on the first album

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8M8sqFuLidw

blonde redheads have more fun (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Friday, 3 March 2017 16:55 (one year ago) Permalink

honestly this is the rare thread where I'm not sure I buy any example that's been given

blonde redheads have more fun (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Friday, 3 March 2017 16:56 (one year ago) Permalink

(though bathory i will take your word for)

blonde redheads have more fun (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Friday, 3 March 2017 16:57 (one year ago) Permalink

good call on Snoop

xp

Οὖτις, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:03 (one year ago) Permalink

Snoop is probably the only good answer so far.

nomar, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:17 (one year ago) Permalink

No, Moby Grape def otm too

Bernie Lugg (Ward Fowler), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:19 (one year ago) Permalink

Eurythmics In The Garden probably fails to be iconic. But I find it sublime and the input of Can/Blondie members and Conny Plank make it pretty different to more mainstream later stuff.

D.A.F's Die Kleinen Und Die Bosen is probably not iconic either nor their first lp but is pretty fantastic so more people should be aware of it. It's just teh first lp on Rough Trade innit?

Clock DVA's Thirst was the first vinyl lp cut by that version of teh band but I think has some preceding cassette releases. Later band is pretty different.

Gun Club's Fire of Love? less psychedelic than later stuff more straightforward though there is jazz and other otherness in the ramalama. The one lp loved by psychobillies and the one most lauded I think. I've always preferred Miami myself.

Stevolende, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:20 (one year ago) Permalink

do any of the vanilla fudge's subsequent records really sound like their first? i don't really care for the vanilla fudge so i can't really say myself.

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:22 (one year ago) Permalink

well I thought of all the rap ones I posted at least the Pharcyde would get some nods of agreement

Οὖτις, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:24 (one year ago) Permalink

maybe "black noise" by fm? nash the slash quit right after it, and even when he rejoined their sound had gotten a _lot_ more radio friendly...

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:25 (one year ago) Permalink

The Fiery Furnacese, like many of the bands/artists mentioned itt, have no release that could even charitably be considered "iconic".

― “Remember,” he says, “Noddy Holder is a gangster.” (contenderizer), Friday, 3 March 2017 01:21 (sixteen hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

blueberry boat is the best album of the last twenty years

an uptempo Pop/Hip Hop mentality (imago), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:25 (one year ago) Permalink

As a Lilys super fan, I maintain Lilys is also a perfect answer here.

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:25 (one year ago) Permalink

blueberry boat is the best album of the last twenty years

― an uptempo Pop/Hip Hop mentality (imago), Friday, March 3, 2017 12:25 PM (forty-eight seconds ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

too proggy

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:26 (one year ago) Permalink

No, Moby Grape def otm too

I don't think they changed too much stylistically on the 2nd album, it just wasn't as good and was a bit over-produced.

Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:28 (one year ago) Permalink

I kinda refuse to believe that the Lilys most iconic album is the one that's been out of print for ages, resulting in me never having heard it. To me their most iconic release is the one that actually got widespread distro - Better Can't Make Your Life Better

Οὖτις, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:28 (one year ago) Permalink

As far as I can tell, everyone seems to want to remember Lilys as a shoegaze classic first and a band that went on to do other things (indie rock phase, Kinks phase, etc) second, despite the overall availability of the LPs. I could be wrong but the first record seems to have made the biggest lasting impression over the other phases the band went through.

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:36 (one year ago) Permalink

if you're going to call _in the presence of nothing_ the most iconic lilys album might as well go all the way and call _loveless_ the most iconic lilys album.

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:37 (one year ago) Permalink

psssh they were better at capturing the spirit of the Isn't Anything composition style than most of the other imitators at the time that were merely infatuated with the guitar effects on Loveless.

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:39 (one year ago) Permalink

That's why they're mistaken for having no original ideas on that record, because they actually ~understood~ the magic MBV had beyond "Oh I get it! Be loud and bend the strings! It's so easy!"

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:43 (one year ago) Permalink

All that being said, Eccsame the Photon Band is my favorite. I wish it got more credit for being as unique as everyone accuses the debut of NOT being.

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:45 (one year ago) Permalink

does Suicidal Tendencies s/t count?

waht, I am true black metal worrior (Neanderthal), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:45 (one year ago) Permalink

Eels sorta counts. First album they are a brit-award winning alt-rock trio, then immediately becomes a mr e solo act.

Frederik B, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:48 (one year ago) Permalink

Suicidal Tendencies is a pretty good example, IMO

sleeve, Friday, 3 March 2017 17:52 (one year ago) Permalink

That's why they're mistaken for having no original ideas on that record, because they actually ~understood~ the magic MBV had beyond "Oh I get it! Be loud and bend the strings! It's so easy!"

― Evan

that doesn't make them not copycats, that just makes them good copycats. _eccsame_ is what really highlights that.

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Friday, 3 March 2017 17:54 (one year ago) Permalink

Not many hardcore bands made iconic albums, but Black Flag and Suicidal Tendencies did. A lot did follow the pattern of putting out one LP of loud fast stuff, then changing around 1985 to slow and sludgy, or metallic thrash, or psychedelic. TSOL, JFA, Die Kreutzen, DRI, Corrosion of Conformity might all apply, though I can't recall how many HC albums each made, and they're not exactly iconic bands.

juggulo for the complete klvtz (bendy), Friday, 3 March 2017 18:00 (one year ago) Permalink

True, I just feel they should get more credit for showing songwriting skill that actually makes them respectable equals more than just a cheap knock off. Kind of like how there are lots of John Fahey imitators but there are also those that are able to successfully capture the spirit beyond the surface similarities.

xp

Evan, Friday, 3 March 2017 18:02 (one year ago) Permalink

i kind of think of that record in terms of... safe as milk. safe as milk is a great album, right now the second-best-known captain beefheart record (hell it might even surpass _trout mask replica_ one day). but it's not an original record; it's just a really great white blues record. having said that, i wouldn't go so far as to call captain beefheart a "respectable equal" of howlin' wolf on the basis of _safe as milk_. knockoffs will always trail behind originals in my book.

increasingly bonkers (rushomancy), Friday, 3 March 2017 18:07 (one year ago) Permalink

xpost: I'm not a huge fan of In The Presence of Nothing, but it's definitely the record that put lilys on the map, without question. "Better" had the hit in England, but in the US it was a bust, and nothing else they did ever made a splash. Love them, not a huge fan of their first album, but it's definitely an outlier that was iconic for the band. So good choice.

dlp9001, Friday, 3 March 2017 18:08 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't think they changed too much stylistically on the 2nd album, it just wasn't as good and was a bit over-produced.

― Return of the Flustered Bootle Native (Tom D.), Friday, March 3, 2017 12:28 PM (thirty-six minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I thought it was a pretty big shift; out went the 3-guitar attack and five-part harmonies, in came sped-up vocals, throwaway novelties, ornate horn and string arrangements, backwards tapes, and Arthur Godfrey introducing a sleepy Skip Spence singing over a swing orchestra.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Friday, 3 March 2017 18:13 (one year ago) Permalink

That said, I don't really think of post-Cale VU as weird and droney, except maybe for "Murder Mystery".

"What Goes On", man

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Friday, 3 March 2017 23:02 (one year ago) Permalink

Suicide.

yugi ex, Friday, 3 March 2017 23:07 (one year ago) Permalink

Nas may be the best answer on here so far.

o. nate, Saturday, 4 March 2017 02:45 (one year ago) Permalink

Kate Bush, The Kick Inside.

a self-reinforcing downward spiral of male-centric indie (katherine), Saturday, 4 March 2017 02:47 (one year ago) Permalink

JAMC strikes me as a good answer. Feelies too.

henry s, Saturday, 4 March 2017 02:50 (one year ago) Permalink

I didn't think The Kick Inside was more iconic than The Dreaming or Hounds of Love, although I guess "Wuthering Heights" is a pretty iconic song.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Saturday, 4 March 2017 02:56 (one year ago) Permalink

Oasis

Siegbran, Saturday, 4 March 2017 10:02 (one year ago) Permalink

ban everyone

an uptempo Pop/Hip Hop mentality (imago), Saturday, 4 March 2017 10:05 (one year ago) Permalink

Surely there can't actually be that many actual examples of this. Imago is right, this often feels like people just listing the usual bands that crop up on these threads 'cuz they can't think of any actual examples. And no, Fleetwood Mac isn't a correct answer. Or Steely Dan.

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Saturday, 4 March 2017 10:13 (one year ago) Permalink

The Damned

palko, Saturday, 4 March 2017 10:14 (one year ago) Permalink

There probably are a lot of examples of this, but nobody cares because the band became completely obscure after the change. Something like The Bravery for instance.

Frederik B, Saturday, 4 March 2017 11:14 (one year ago) Permalink

Elastica (ducks)

attention vampire (MatthewK), Saturday, 4 March 2017 12:51 (one year ago) Permalink

There probably are a lot of examples of this, but nobody cares because the band became completely obscure after the change. Something like The Bravery for instance.

I would question how iconic the first album is in this case.

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Saturday, 4 March 2017 13:38 (one year ago) Permalink

"What Goes On", man

I'll withdraw my offhand VU suggestion if no one agrees but I don't hear this song as all that weird and droney. It seems like a pretty straightforward upbeat rock tune to me, based on a variation on a standard 3-chord progression, at least compared to something like "Venus in Furs".

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Saturday, 4 March 2017 13:54 (one year ago) Permalink

I would question how iconic the first album is in this case.

― My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), 4. marts 2017 14:38 (twenty-five minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

It's definitely their 'most' iconic one, though...

Frederik B, Saturday, 4 March 2017 14:05 (one year ago) Permalink

Ha, OK

My Body's Made of Crushed Little Evening Stars (Sund4r), Saturday, 4 March 2017 14:08 (one year ago) Permalink

five months pass...

Casket Girls - first one is their best

Week of Wonders (Ross), Thursday, 24 August 2017 05:39 (eight months ago) Permalink

A lot of shoegaze/proto-shoegaze bands could go here (some, like Ride and JAMC, have been listed already).

Plenty of second wave techno too, e.g. LFO.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Thursday, 24 August 2017 11:27 (eight months ago) Permalink

blood sweat & tears, obv.

Thus Sang Freud, Thursday, 24 August 2017 12:30 (eight months ago) Permalink

five months pass...

There's a thread of albums that are 20 years old, and I've seen a bunch of recognition for stuff that is turning 30.

But we all seem to have agreed to let 2017 go by without acknowledging that Velvet Underground & Nico turned 50.

I'm walking on Sondheim (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 12 February 2018 21:26 (three months ago) Permalink


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