Debut albums which became their own phenomenon outside the rest of their catalogue

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Not talking about debut albums that are their best (though they may well be) nor those that are particularly different from the rest of their catalogue, but rather those which capture an inextricable something which makes these albums classics in their own right. It's something which cannot be captured or duplicated since it comes from a place of not knowing what it is. They come from artists who clearly have the talent but don't quite know how to harvest it. A lot of these are not recorded professionally which adds to their charm. As a result, if they're good, these albums sometimes don't even really feel like a part of their catalogue as a whole, and often people discovering them have no interest in the rest of their work.

Anyway, the main example I thought of here was The Orb's Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld, which still stands as a singular piece of work, not only in how it essentially invented an entire genre but also in how it felt so boundless. Like anything could happen. Subsequent albums were more focused and I'd contend some of them are better but Ultraworld glides along so well because it's so open and unfocused.

Some others off the top of my head:

Faust - one of the strangest albums ever made in my estimation, created by a bunch of young, inexperienced German dudes locking themselves in a house for 6 weeks and only coming out when they'd created some deeply weird shit. Not exactly conditions you can easily reproduce.

King Crimson In the Court of the Crimson King - even the band themselves claim they don't know how this came together so well. They suggested some presence was in the room with them. That presence wasn't quite there on the follow-up (still good, but not special like this one), nor on the dozens of imitators. Prog bands seemed to have a much easier time dissecting Yes than whatever this is.

Animal Collective Spirit They've Come, Spirit They've Vanished - though its just Avey & Panda (it was later retconned into an AnCo album) I think it's often considered their debut. The synth tones and recording itself is utterly insane in a lot of ways and the songwriting spirals all over the place. It's an embryotic vision of a band which tries to capture an embryotic sound. Personally I think parts of this are so obnoxious that the entire album is borderline unlistenable but some people consider this one of the greatest albums ever made.

Aphex Twin SAW 85-92 - this one is debatable (all his 90s stuff has some magic in it) but the combination of RDJ's youth & cheap recording equipment capture this feeling of someone who is not quite anchored to this Earth. Gah, this all sounds so pretentious. But you know what I mean. Apparently the 'woozy' quality of the recording is somewhat attributable to his cat fucking around with the tapes. Perhaps the greatest feline contribution in the history of recorded music.

Saint Etienne Foxbase Alpha - again, debatable, but they never really did anything like this again did they? Somehow this album captures the pure excitement of 90s dance music without quite knowing what it was supposed to be exactly. Stereolab meets New Order or whatever. Even the cover is iconic in a way that's hard to pin down.

Elvis Costello My Aim is True - why is this album so good? I can't quite figure it out, it's steeped in bar rock and 50's influences but still captures the efficiency of New Wave somehow. His singing isn't the best but he owns it. It's clever but also regressive somehow. Of course after this he'd get a real ass-kicking New Wave band and he'd never sound the same.

Nick Lowe Jesus of Cool - speaking of. obviously Lowe was around before this, but this concept of doing mutant versions of radio hits resulted in an album unlike anything he'd done before, and certainly nothing he would do after. It's the sort of concept that would not work a second time around. In this case I think it's very much his best album.

Soul Coughing Ruby Vroom - I think all 3 albums they did are fantastic but something about this one, created when their sound was just "how do we fit all these weirdo elements together". One of those albums which shouldn't work but really does. There's something oddly romantic about it - they just sound like drifters trying to make something cool, as opposed to their other two where they had a sound and real influences and all that.

Honorable mention to Trout Mask Replica, obviously not a debut but it is something very much along those lines :)

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:30 (two weeks ago) link

3 feet high & rising

I'm ANTIFA and I vote. (Austin), Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:33 (two weeks ago) link

Um, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn?

Jimmy Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne Mary-Anne (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:33 (two weeks ago) link

^^^ ah yeah great example there

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:40 (two weeks ago) link

Ministry - With Sympathy

Mr. Snrub, Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:42 (two weeks ago) link

Yerself Is Steam

Noel Emits, Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:46 (two weeks ago) link

Thread title seems self explanatory but first paragraph of the OP confuses the shit outta me tbh.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:47 (two weeks ago) link

I'm pretty dense tbf

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:47 (two weeks ago) link

The Red Crayola - Parable of Arable Land

Creature Catcher (Live) (morrisp), Thursday, 16 June 2022 17:59 (two weeks ago) link

(think I disagree about SAWI... feels like SAWII is the album that "became its own phenomenon"?)

Creature Catcher (Live) (morrisp), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:00 (two weeks ago) link

Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) fits, I think.

feed me with your chips (zchyrs), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:01 (two weeks ago) link

Velvet Underground and Nico

NoTimeBeforeTime, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:04 (two weeks ago) link

B&S - Tigermilk(?)

Creature Catcher (Live) (morrisp), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:06 (two weeks ago) link

It’s kind of funny cause the first Aphex Twin I ever heard after reading the hype was SAW 2 and I was very disappointed. Then the “On” single and remixes came to my radio station and that’s when I became a believer.

Antifa Sandwich Artist (Boring, Maryland), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:06 (two weeks ago) link

The Lexicon of Love?

mr.raffles, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:06 (two weeks ago) link

Debating with myself whether Slanted & Enchanted fits or not.

feed me with your chips (zchyrs), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:08 (two weeks ago) link

Jesus and Mary Chain -- Psychocandy. Not my favorite record of theirs by a long shot but it was definitely a phenomenon and they never made another album even remotely like it.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:10 (two weeks ago) link

yeah I hesitated to mention Aphex here b/c a lot of his music manifests this half-lucid inner-mind quality which you rarely hear captured. SAW2 has a lot of those qualities but something that strikes me about 85-92 is there are spots where he's trying to do some kind of acid or techno music but winds up producing something far weirder. SAW2 is more focused I guess. but yeah same difference right

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:11 (two weeks ago) link

Thought of another one -- DJ Shadow Endtroducing

feed me with your chips (zchyrs), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:18 (two weeks ago) link

nor those that are particularly different from the rest of their catalogue

I think this is the part that's throwing me.

Debut albums that are outliers in an artist's catalog but DID NOT precede a stylistic shift?

They come from artists who clearly have the talent but don't quite know how to harvest it

i get this

often people discovering them have no interest in the rest of their work.

and this.

I'm thinking of this as something like, debuts that could have been one offs but the artist actually went on to have a career afterwards?

not questioning the thread premise sorry just seeking clarification.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:27 (two weeks ago) link

Also, you mention Trout Mask Replica instead of the actual debut album, Safe as Milk, which would easily have fit the bill.

Jimmy Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne Mary-Anne (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:30 (two weeks ago) link

like i can think of a bunch of these that tick all the boxes other than "not particularly different from the rest of their catalog"

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:32 (two weeks ago) link

A very clear one here for me is the Violent Femmes s/t; of course there is the obvious fact there are millions of people who know songs from this by heart and have no idea the Femmes put out any other records, but it's more than that -- this is just a kind of blast from nowhere, and neither the Violent Femmes nor anybody else ever made a record that really sounds like it or does what it does.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:32 (two weeks ago) link

I think frogbs is saying the question is about debuts which are not merely different from the rest of the band's catalog, but which have some kind of ineffable SOMETHING ELSE which even if the band did not exist beyond that record would make them classics by a one-and-done band, and a very different band from the band that actually existed.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:36 (two weeks ago) link

Stone Roses début was my first thought, and I don't even particular like the band.

joni mitchell jarre (anagram), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:39 (two weeks ago) link

Much clearer, thx.

"Picturesque Matchstickable Messages from the Status Quo"

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:40 (two weeks ago) link

Suicide's début too.

joni mitchell jarre (anagram), Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:41 (two weeks ago) link

if they hadn't nearly replicated it on tyranny & mvtation i'd say boc's debut is a sui generis blend of hippie hipster metal.

Thus Sang Freud, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:45 (two weeks ago) link

right - they have a sui generis quality to them. to use The Orb as an example, in the beginning they weren't really anything yet, so they were just generating this sound on the fly using whatever and whoever was around. by U.F. Orb they had a higher budget, some experience, and an idea of who they were. it has the sound but not the spontaneity and openness because you can't really recapture that once you "know what you're doing".

like a film example would maybe be Clerks, it's such an odd film because Kevin Smith had no clue how to write or properly shoot a film but rather some vision of what a film could be. so it's full of weird decisions that no other director would make, which makes the movie unique and special in a way his later ones aren't. even if they're all cut from the same cloth

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:51 (two weeks ago) link

DEVO may qualify to be part of this rather exclusive gang ?

mark e, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:52 (two weeks ago) link

Also, you mention Trout Mask Replica instead of the actual debut album, Safe as Milk, which would easily have fit the bill.

― Jimmy Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne Mary-Anne (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, June 16, 2022 1:30 PM (twenty minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

true, TMR just comes to mind because it's a "start from nothing and break all the rules" album from the ground-up, which is what a lot of this are even if only by accident

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:53 (two weeks ago) link

Marquee Moon? Freak Out?

I personally would argue that the Faust and King Crimson debuts fit perfectly into their oeuvre, though I can see someone preferring them to the later work.

Halfway there but for you, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:54 (two weeks ago) link

DEVO may qualify to be part of this rather exclusive gang ?

― mark e, Thursday, June 16, 2022 1:52 PM (fifty seconds ago) bookmarkflaglink

was thinking of mentioning them for the Hardcore Devo stuff, which ticks a lot of these boxes. had Devo never gotten a deal and the Hardcore tapes were just "discovered" some decades later I imagine it would've been a big "holy shit everyone needs to hear this right now" sorta phenomenon

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 18:58 (two weeks ago) link

personally would argue that the Faust and King Crimson debuts fit perfectly into their oeuvre, though I can see someone preferring them to the later work.

― Halfway there but for you,

Would say exactly this about "Clerks"

It does everything you say except stand apart from the larger body of work. So I'm lost again lol

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:01 (two weeks ago) link

I was thinking of albums like Marquee Moon and Pink Flag, which are "phenomena" in themselves (at least in the rock-crit / fan world) – but they don't really fit the bill of "artists who clearly have the talent but don't quite know how to harvest it"; "not recorded professionally," etc. They're more in the realm of "fully-formed aesthetic statements."

Creature Catcher (Live) (morrisp), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:02 (two weeks ago) link

well I guess these albums don't have to tick all the boxes, it's more a general idea that I hope I'm communicating somehow lol. like I would argue Pink Flag counts mostly cuz it deconstructs things in a way that more experienced artists would never think to do. they obviously had a vision there though.

Would say exactly this about "Clerks"

It does everything you say except stand apart from the larger body of work. So I'm lost again lol

I think it does! Like sure it's got the same sort of humor as his other movies, and in fact some of the same exact characters, but last time I watched it I was struck by how unabashedly strange it was. So many shots are clearly framed incorrectly, the style of humor bounces all over the place, there's virtually no plot, it's full of weird inexperienced actors who bring their own style of chaos to the film. You feel like you're watching someone's home movie. His later films aren't exactly like that, in fact it seemed the more he "knew what he was doing" the worse his movies got

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:16 (two weeks ago) link

don't worry, pretty sure i'm the only one confused

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:18 (two weeks ago) link

Licensed to Ill

OG Bob Sacamano (will), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:25 (two weeks ago) link

Every single debut album by a famous band will be in this thread

imago, Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:26 (two weeks ago) link

Well that's not true, just run thru some famous bands in your head - many don't fit

Creature Catcher (Live) (morrisp), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:30 (two weeks ago) link

yeah like eg Neil Young’s debut doesn’t really fit the parameters as laid out imo

OG Bob Sacamano (will), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:32 (two weeks ago) link

REM Murmur possibly?

OG Bob Sacamano (will), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:35 (two weeks ago) link

is there not already a thread on artists who arrived fully formed and then fell off a bit? this is a very similar scenario

maf you one two (maffew12), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:36 (two weeks ago) link

dizzee - boy in da corner

oscar bravo, Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:38 (two weeks ago) link

Big Pink doesn’t seem to really, either. Phenomenon? Def. Their best? Arguably. But (for me) it’s hard to separate it from s/t.

OG Bob Sacamano (will), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:39 (two weeks ago) link

is there not already a thread on artists who arrived fully formed and then fell off a bit? this is a very similar scenario

― maf you one two (maffew12), Thursday, June 16, 2022 12:36 PM (five minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

i think of this more like "if the artist hadn't made anything after their debut it would still be regarded with mystery and wonder (as it is today)"

SAW I totally works for this, SAW II is very enmeshed in what i think of as the established rdj sound by that point

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:43 (two weeks ago) link

i think i also agree with murmur

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:43 (two weeks ago) link

is there not already a thread on artists who arrived fully formed and then fell off a bit? this is a very similar scenario

― maf you one two (maffew12), Thursday, June 16, 2022 2:36 PM (three minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

idk about that, like I wouldn't say Pink Floyd arrived fully formed with Piper, nor did they "fall off" exactly...I mean sure their next 5 or so weren't as good, but last I checked Floyd made some pretty classic albums after that. and yet Piper is just sorta off on its own little island with its own contingent of very dedicated fanatics who think their popular albums are "boring"

frogbs, Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:45 (two weeks ago) link

i think the implication here is that the follow-up work isn't necessarily worse and may in some cases be better but the singularity of the debut is never followed up on

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:47 (two weeks ago) link

i think bands that had sudden lineup shifts after the debut are like maybe too-easy answers for this question, much as piper is still kind of a perfect answer

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Thursday, 16 June 2022 19:48 (two weeks ago) link

In The Garden. The one lp by the band I really love backed by band that is rotating members of Can and Blondie doing something i hear rooted in Britfolk rock stuff with a major psychedelic tinge.

Later stuff is ok but this is phenomenal. Especially when the cd version replaced teh earlier tinny sounding version

Horseflies Human Fly
is something special I think they continued with something far less special and more mainstream.

Stevolende, Friday, 17 June 2022 16:35 (two weeks ago) link

"anything else as good", or as wild and freewheeling anyway. xp to me

There for In The Garden, yes!

Noel Emits, Friday, 17 June 2022 16:37 (two weeks ago) link

somebody had alread mentioned Yerself Is Steam which I thought had been recorded by the band actually became a band. Different players going into the studio at different times and overdubbing. Soundtracking sub aquatic film footage from what I remember.

Would love to know how Sounds Familiar had teh record before it really came out or got much publicity. So I didn't know really what it was just taht it looked really interesting. So i got it and listened to it quite a bit at the time. Coloured vinyl tripped out sound.

I think the Caribou Vibration Ensemble live cd sounds pretty similar to those first 2 mercury Rev lps.

Saw them a few times when they first hit the UK too. Think I caught the last few dates of a tour they'd started out supporting Ride on.

Live sets around the era are pretty cool too. Spotify used to have a couple up

Stevolende, Friday, 17 June 2022 16:42 (two weeks ago) link

by the band before they actually became a band. I don't think they had played live at the time or anything. Wasn't their 2nd gig supporting Dylan?

Stevolende, Friday, 17 June 2022 16:44 (two weeks ago) link

thread reminded me I've never bothered to listen to that first Ted Leo record

it would fit, but I'm not sure anyone has ever heard it

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:26 (two weeks ago) link

Every single debut album by a famous band will be in this thread

― imago, Thursday, June 16, 2022 3:26 PM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

Pearl Jam

Meatloaf

Björk

What can I say? When you're right, you're right

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:30 (two weeks ago) link

don't forget Rush

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:35 (two weeks ago) link

Gris Gris / Dr John

I thought about this one cause it def appeals to people who have no real interest in his other work, it is singular for sure and goes somewhere his other records don't.

But it is SO MASTERFUL, i mean no fucking way was the guy who made this not gonna have a decades-long career in music.

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:36 (two weeks ago) link

gris gris is a great answer

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:43 (two weeks ago) link

The first Peter Gabriel album kind of fits this - stylistically all over the place, stands apart from his catalogue while being very much of it (not to mention that two of his best known songs are on it), and somewhat overshadowed by later works.

the classic emerson lake & palmer line-up (Matt #2), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:49 (two weeks ago) link

I think the things that make it great are deliberate and repeatable, otherwise yes. xp

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:50 (two weeks ago) link

frogbs, ok, i hear ya re: Clarks

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:53 (two weeks ago) link

*Clerks

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:53 (two weeks ago) link

has anyone mentioned prefab sprout and swoon?

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:54 (two weeks ago) link

"Cochin Moon" is Hosono's one of these & not a debut

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 17:57 (two weeks ago) link

and again too great a "masterpiece" to qualify anyway

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 18:00 (two weeks ago) link

Barenaked Ladies' "Gordon".. massive hit in Canada at least. Then they tried to be serious for a bit. Then goofy again but it was..uh... yeah

Nice new
Stereogum #1s series article about "One Week" out today: https://www.stereogum.com/2190488/the-number-ones-barenaked-ladies-one-week/columns/the-number-ones/

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 17 June 2022 18:06 (two weeks ago) link

Is Gris Gris really that different than most of Babylon?

Cabernet Frank (PBKR), Friday, 17 June 2022 18:08 (two weeks ago) link

"Cochin Moon" is Hosono's one of these & not a debut

― The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, June 17, 2022 12:57 PM (twenty-three minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

I think his actual debut works though, it's clearly within his style but also unlike any of his other solo albums, plus most of the reviews are like "there's something about this but I can't say what"

frogbs, Friday, 17 June 2022 18:24 (two weeks ago) link

a certain hosonissance

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 17 June 2022 18:31 (two weeks ago) link

Is Gris Gris really that different than most of Babylon?

― Cabernet Frank (PBKR), Friday, June 17, 2022 2:08 PM

Yeah totally, Gris Gris has this incredible sense of exterior space, it's a guided tour through a mythical landscape that only exists in the collective imagination, like the Disneyland Railroad Grand Tour. And where does Rebbenack position himself? He's the tour guide, not the bandleader. He's a peripheral figure giving a kind of commentary as we move between stations. With "Babylon" he brings it indoors and situates himself at the center of the ensemble.

re: "Hosono House" it's actually the one of the only albums of his, maybe the only album of his that doesn't interest me much. So idk

The 25 Best Songs Ever Ranked In Order (Deflatormouse), Friday, 17 June 2022 18:49 (two weeks ago) link

has anyone mentioned prefab sprout and swoon?

― in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Friday, June 17, 2022 10:54 AM (one hour ago) bookmarkflaglink

oh this is perfect

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Friday, 17 June 2022 19:10 (two weeks ago) link

think it satisfies basically every criteria of the op

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Friday, 17 June 2022 19:11 (two weeks ago) link

Badly Drawn Boy, "The Hour of Bewilderbeast"

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 17 June 2022 20:15 (two weeks ago) link

The album that immediately jumps to my mind is the Neu! debut. They could have called it day afterwards and it would still absolutely stand as one of the greats. Sure, the members were all experienced in other groups is beforehand. But nobody was making music quite like Neu! before Neu! It seemingly sprung out of nowhere fully formed as an artistic statement. Negativland alone basically created a new genre.

Agree fully with the Bristol bands' debuts.

The Ghost Club, Friday, 17 June 2022 20:19 (two weeks ago) link

Meet the Residents, maybe

WmC, Friday, 17 June 2022 20:38 (two weeks ago) link

In The Garden

good one

even the birds in the trees seemed to whisper "get fucked" (bovarism), Friday, 17 June 2022 23:07 (two weeks ago) link

Crazy Rhythms is a good one.

Three Imaginary Boys (maybe??)

no one wants to twerk anymore (will), Friday, 17 June 2022 23:48 (two weeks ago) link

spongehead's "potted meat spread"?

massaman gai (front tea for two), Saturday, 18 June 2022 06:58 (two weeks ago) link

Is that a Bloomsday reference?

Ride into the Sunship (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 18 June 2022 14:36 (two weeks ago) link

The KLF's Chill Out (1990) springs to mind. Probably because the OP mentioned The Orb. Technically the band had released several singles and a couple of albums before that, but Chill Out was the first album credited to the KLF.

It was very influential but it's also an aberration. The KLF's next album was totally different, and most of the ambient music that followed from other musicians had beats, whereas Chill Out is mostly beatless. I have the impression it was intended as a throwaway joke that wasn't expected to age well, but it still holds up.

Gang of Four's Entertainment - specifically the guitar sound - is the first thing I think of when I think of UK post-punk. Not just Gang of Four but UK post-punk in general. I haven't heard a single thing the band released after that. They were so angry! Pere Ubu's Modern Dance is similar but with US post-punk-albeit-very-early-post-punk. When I think of US post-punk I immediately think of David Thomas going ahahahaha as if someone had dropped an ice cube down his back.

Ashley Pomeroy, Saturday, 18 June 2022 20:43 (two weeks ago) link

Modern Dance certainly was its very own fire escape experience when it first materialized. so unknown to many of us in boondocks beyond CLE (aside from a glimpse on a comp). But later there was this, which I never saw on CD, and no doubt if I'd heard the EP first oh shit (we haven't talked about EPs here, come to think of it) Must admit xgau nearly nailed it, as he could still do then:

Terminal Tower: An Archival Collection [Twin/Tone, 1986]
Side one is the long unavailable Datapanik in the Year Zero EP, itself comprising two indie singles and a compilation cut and as powerful a sequence as side one of Dub Housing nevertheless. Side two collects the kind of oddments that rarely cohere on LP, yet here the outtakes and B sides and stray singles come together as a record of David Thomas's slide or progress from willed optimism to blessed whimsy. In short, this is a gift from God--a third Ubu album from the former Crocus Behemoth's pre-God period. A-

dow, Saturday, 18 June 2022 21:41 (two weeks ago) link

Also, Music From Big Pink was its own kind of experience, like getting lost in the cornfield in the evening sun, and coming across a fallen scarecrow with pulsating kandy leaking out: there's a steady cadence, but they've just kept working it and packing and feeding the levels, as if the Dead could have brought something of their psychedelic overbudget studio expeditions to, say, Workingman's Dead. Also fitting this thread, The Band and some later tracks worked in their own terms, but never again like this.

dow, Saturday, 18 June 2022 21:52 (two weeks ago) link

Not psych in the overt weirdo sense, but mind-expanding in the syncretic writing, arranging, performing and production (incl. recording, sequence of tracks et.), together and separately (though mostly the former).

dow, Saturday, 18 June 2022 21:58 (two weeks ago) link

Terminal Tower was the first Ubu I heard, in 1989 or so. The early albums — The Modern Dance, Dub Housing, and New Picnic Time — were all out of print at that point, I think; at any rate, my local record store didn't have them. I saw the video for "Waiting For Mary" (from the then-new Cloudland) on MTV's 120 Minutes and liked it, but didn't feel like it was nearly as interesting as the TT stuff, so I didn't buy that. It wasn't until 1999 or so that Thirsty Ear reissued DH, NPT and a few others and I grabbed them.

but also fuck you (unperson), Saturday, 18 June 2022 22:00 (two weeks ago) link

^^and those were all spun off from a 'complete early years' box issued by GEFFEN of all people (who kept The Modern Dance and Terminal Tower reissues for themselves)

https://www.allmusic.com/album/datapanik-in-the-year-zero-box--mw0000181969

I remember seeing it on the shelves at Best Buy in my early CD-buying days in '97.

Back to the thread topic: Rickie Lee Jones? Pirates has it's cult, but her debut was embraced in a way far and way from the rest of her catalogue.

"in a way far and Away", even...

Meat Puppets s/t.

Stevolende, Sunday, 19 June 2022 19:12 (one week ago) link

I remember seeing it on the shelves at Best Buy in my early CD-buying days in '97.

Prior to the 1997 Datapanik box, in 1989 Rough Trade put out CD reissues of everything from Dub Housing through Song Of The Bailing Man, including the two live albums (360 Degrees Of Simulated Stereo and One Man Drives While The Other Man Screams). The cover art on these reissues emulated then-current Apple Macintosh desktop screens. I don’t know why The Modern Dance wasn’t part of this reissue program, and Terminal Tower was licensed to Twin/Tone (and impossible to find on CD).

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Sunday, 19 June 2022 21:37 (one week ago) link

don't worry, pretty sure i'm the only one confused

(You're not.)

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Sunday, 19 June 2022 22:54 (one week ago) link

Not a debut but Confusion is Sex seemed to have its own reputation separated from the rest of Sonic Youth discography

It is a debut album tbf.

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Sunday, 19 June 2022 22:55 (one week ago) link

s/t was a mini lp until it was lengthened with bonus tracks. It was released by Branca's label then the same German one that put out Confusion IS Sex . & the Kill Your Idols e.p.

Stevolende, Sunday, 19 June 2022 23:12 (one week ago) link

I was just trying to work out if that meant it was widely available. I got the Kill YOur idols e.p. then Confusion is Sex in Rough Trade after seeing the Venue show. So not sure if that meant they had things the rest of the country did or not.

Stevolende, Sunday, 19 June 2022 23:15 (one week ago) link

I thought the <25 min-long s/t was always considered an EP but the usually credible Mustang site does say "[ t ]hough considered an EP by some, the band have always referred to it as the first album".

http://www.sonicyouth.com/mustang/lp/ep1.html

No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Sunday, 19 June 2022 23:36 (one week ago) link

Little Dragon

Gorillaz

Both predict how they would form their signature sound but are very moody and different from their subsequent albums.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Tuesday, 21 June 2022 11:07 (one week ago) link

I might have understood the prompt erroneously.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Tuesday, 21 June 2022 11:09 (one week ago) link

I wasn't sure if anybody had said Meat Puppets s/t before me but it does seem to create its own thang which may have been picked up on people afterwards but is moved away from by the band. II seems a lot more clearly produced and overtly countryesque. The jazz/psych/grunge thing which had them being compared to ballroom scene bands when it was reviewed in the British press was not something they stayed with in the studio at least. maybe they were just continually morphing thanks to acid and things. I guess that SF comparison is there for a lot more of their music but the amateurish improvisatory grunge thing gives way to them showing they have chops if they need them far more clearly and they soon get a lot more rockish, like 4 lps or so later or something.
I guss the thing is doing their own thing and also doing it to country classics first heard from the Sons of the Pioneers etc, doing similar things to tracks from South pacific for hardcore Dead Kennedys audiences is also a really god trick. Not sure what timespan those 2 were over though. Assume the grungier bits might be understood by hardcore crowds but the anti genericism might not be.

Stevolende, Tuesday, 21 June 2022 11:28 (one week ago) link

The first 3 puppets records were like 3 different bands, none of which they ultimately continued as IMO. Traces of all three remained but their long haul persona was basically Huevos. (Of course they still play tracks from II and UotS).

Actually with the addition of keyboard dude they are in a major new shift to their sound currently

Anyway

Pups

covidsbundlertanze op. 6 (Jon not Jon), Tuesday, 21 June 2022 13:19 (one week ago) link

I remember seeing it on the shelves at Best Buy in my early CD-buying days in '97.

heh -- I BOUGHT the first two Pere Ubus at Best Buy in summer '98.

Malevolent Arugula (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 21 June 2022 13:34 (one week ago) link


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