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The White Album turns 50 this year, an iconic work from our regions best-loved band. You may have noticed the celebrations taking place throughout summer and across the city, putting emphasis on how influential this album, in particular, has been for everything that came after it.
It’s obviously a must have, especially if you’re a Scouser. And that got us thinking – what else should every Scouser have in their record collection?
It would be rude not to include the album of the hour, or the past 438,000 hours, at it’s own birthday party. The White Album is arguably The Beatles’ most mature album that turned them from boys into men. With ballads such as Blackbird and George Harrison’s While My Guitar Gently Weeps the tone of this album is unlike any other from the band. But, this collection isn’t soft at the core as it features The Beatles’ heaviest track, Helter Skelter, showing that this album has still got it at 50.
We know it might seem like cheating by having two albums by the Fab Four on this list, but, even though we are celebrating The White Album, this cannot be ignored. Sgt Pepper’s Lonley Hearts Club Band is not only one of the best and more influential albums from our region, but one of the best and most influential albums of all time. The Beatles took a real left turn that solidified them as true artists and contributed to even creating the Hippy/Psychedelic movements of the late 60s and beyond.
Much like many bands and artist from the region, and many of this list, these guys are still going strong, literally just returning from a few shows in the US. Ocean Rain is definitely the bands most accomplished and critically acclaimed album featuring classics such as The Killing Moon and Silver. A Bunnyman album is a must in any capacity, with any album, but if you ask us, this is the one.
Albums aren’t as much of journey as they used to be, mainly down to the fact that they don’t have as many tracks to tell the story as they used to. Well, Franke Goes To Hollywood’s iconic LP has 18 tracks for you to get immersed in. Singles such as Relax and Two Tribes helped elevate the album to number one with over 1 million copies sold. This is not just one for the album collection, but a classic for all you vinyl lovers out there too.
The first of our Indie masterpieces, The Zutons second album was released in 2006 and is still as relevant today as ever. Amongst hits such as Why Won’t You Give Me Your Love, Oh Stacey we have one of the biggest songs of the 21st Century, Valerie. The track went on to be covered by the late, great Amy Winehosue and producer, Mark Ronson, that give it a new lease of life. However, you simply cannot beat the original, and here we have it.
Indie-Pop at it’s best, The La’s self-titled album is chocked full of bangers. Each one catchier than the next, these guys prove that simplicity done well is unbeatable. The break out hit is clearly, There She Goes, but each track on here is equally as infectious and makes for one hell of a driving playlist.
Sgt Pepper’s kick started a movement into a hallucinating hippy era, and OMD’s debut did the same for a wave of Synth Pop bands from the region, and the rest of the UK. Although the bands biggest hit is Enola Gay, it wasn’t included on the original release. You can get it on the US version, but we think that there is something special about owning the original, an album that rubs shoulder with synth pioneers such as Kraftwerk.
Although the Synth Pop band’s second album, Listen, was their highest charting, we chose the Self Titled debut as your must have as it contains the bands biggest single, I Ran (So Far Away). The video for this single was certainly as impactful as the song itself, showcasing the bands unmistakable hairstyles to full effect. Influenced by OMD, proving their right to be on the list, this is a Synth Wave feast that actually sounds as current in todays music scene as it dead when first released.
Released in 2002, The Coral were the soundtrack of a generation, especially through movies with their lead single, Dreaming Of You. Coming from the bands debut album, everything about them has become iconic: their sound (of course), the album cover, their image and even the name. The album isn’t just a one trick pony either, with other stand out tracks such as Spanish Man and Shadows Fall, amongst others.
Simply an Indie masterpiece, A Guide To Love, Loss And Desperation is the debut album from the flagship LIPA band, The Wombats. Hits such as Let’s Dance To The Joy Division and Moving To New York were written whilst the band were at university in the city, using their time here to make them the band they are today. This album is fun, poignant and unbelievably, nostalgic as it’s now OVER 10 YEARS OLD!
This is one to snap us back up to present day. There is a lot on this list from the 60s, through to the 90s, but we still have amazing, young artists pulling up trees today. MiC Lowry are an incredibly high achieving, Soul-Pop group and have been from such a young age. 2016 saw them tour the world supporting Justin Bieber, arguably the biggest artist in the world at the time on his biggest world tour for his biggest album yet! Our boys went out there with nothing but an acoustic guitar and their own voices. Expect even more to me as their careers progress and their sound just gets better and better.
Not strictly a Scouse band, the late Viola Beach are cherished by all of us in the North West as the Warrington based 4 piece tragically died in a car accident back in 2016. The self-titled, posthumous album was the bands debut that rocketed to number one in the UK album chart in celebration of these 4 boys lives and talent…and because it’s so bloody good of course. The album is a must have in your collection for the hit singles and to keep these boys alive through their music.
Another debut from what has become an iconic Merseyside band. The Farm are known for their work with the local community and often fuse their two loves, and our cities; football and music. This album was released in 1991 and received critical acclaim across the globe. It features the bands two biggest hits, All Together Now and Groovy Train, which is precisely why this is the LP from the group you have to have in your collection. The band work hard to bridge gaps in the city, most recently forming The Justice Collective and releasing the charity single, He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother, which got Christmas Number 1 and raised money, and awareness, for those affected by the Hillsborough disaster (another single to add to the collection).
The 90s is back – in fashion, music and our culture in general. You won’t find a more 90s album than the debut from Liverpool Alt outfit, Space. Recorded in our very own Parr Street Studios, the album was in the top 5 of the album charts when it was released, brilliantly encapsulating the sound of a generation through singles such as Neighbourhood and Money/Kill Me. If you don’t know about this sound already, then prepare to have you mind opened as the group fuse Funk, Techno, Indie and even a little Hip Hop to create that unmistakable sound.
Our final LP on the list is another that brilliantly sums up the sound of a generation and the hay day of the Northern, British, and most notably, Liverpudlian, music phenomenon that swept the nation in the mid 90s. All Change, by Cast, is a Brit-Pop tour de force and was released in 1995 becoming Polydor’s host successful ever debut album. The band broke into the top 10 in the charts and even went platinum and with songs like Sandstorm, Alright and Walkaway it’s no surprise.
Whether we get you streaming, downloading, buying the CD or adding to your trendy vinyl collection, these are the songs you should be listening to and the pieces you should own, showcasing what we do best on Merseyside.
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