Monday, February 20, 2017

The Best Albums of 1987


Every two months we will be taking a look back at great albums of years gone by - and we are incredibly excited to share with you the first year, which happens to be celebrating its 30th anniversary: 1987. And what a year it was! Not only did Sarah and I choose & rank our Top 15 (10 was just not enough), but we enlisted the help of several of our regular contributors and a couple of new ones. Everyone selected a track from each album on their list, and they are all collected on a killer Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page (unfortunately there are a few albums not available on Spotify - we encourage you to locate those elsewhere). If you'd like to share your own 1987 favorites, please comment below. Sarah and I will be back at the end of the week with a list of our honorable mentions. Oh yeah, stay tuned to see which year is coming next!

To purchase any of the featured albums - please click here 

Bret Helm
Life on this Planet | Audra

15. Bel Canto - White-Out Conditions
14. Pieter Nooten and Michael Brook - Sleeps with the Fishes
13. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
12. Shelleyan Orphan - Helleborine
11. Lowlife - Diminuendo
10. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
09. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
08. The Psychedelic Furs - Midnight to Midnight
07. Love and Rockets - Earth, Sun, Moon
06. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
05. The Sound - Thunder Up
04. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
03. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
02. Jane's Addiction - s/t
01. U2 - The Joshua Tree

Sarah Quarrie
Life on this Planet

15. Pulp - Freaks
14. The Wedding Present - George Best
13. Lowlife - Diminuendo
12. Wire - The Ideal Copy
11. Public Image Ltd - Happy?
10. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
09. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
08. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
07. Dead Can Dance - Within the Realm of a Dying Sun
06. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
05. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
04. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
03. Love and Rockets - Earth, Sun, Moon
02. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
01. Siouxsie and the Banshees - Through the Looking Glass

Ron Marrs
New Orleans, Louisiana

15. Live Skull - Dusted
14. Death in June - Brown Book
13. Area - Radio Caroline
12. U2 - The Joshua Tree
11. Terrence Trent D'Arby - Introducing the Hardline According to Terrence Trent D'Arby
10. INXS - Kick
09. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
08. Jane's Addiction - s/t
07. Pet Shop Boys - Actually
06. Midnight Oil - Diesel and Dust
05. R.E.M. - Document
04. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
03. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
02. Guns 'N Roses - Appetite for Destruction
01. Opal - Happy Nightmare Baby


Kari Niebell
San Diego, California

15. Flesh for Lulu - Long Live the New Flesh
14. Pet Shop Boys - Actually
13. Skinny Puppy - Cleanse Fold and Manipulate
12. Front 242 - Official Version
11. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
10. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
09. The Tear Garden - Tired Eyes Slowly Burning
08. The Psychedelic Furs - Midnight to Midnight
07. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
06. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
05. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
04. Public Image Ltd - Happy?
03. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
02. Love and Rockets - Earth, Sun, Moon
01. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me


Rob Clark
Rockford, Illinois

15. Nitzer Ebb - That Total Age
14. Lyle Lovett - Pontiac
13. The Housemartins - The People Who Grinned Themselves to Death
12. Warren Zevon - Sentimental Hygiene
11. R.E.M. - Document
10. David Sylvian - Secrets of the Beehive
09. The Replacements - Pleased to Meet Me
08. The Art of Noise - In No Sense? Nonsense!
07. Negativland - Escape From Noise
06. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
05. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
04. U2 - The Joshua Tree
03. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
02. Steve Earle & The Dukes - Exit 0
01. John Hiatt - Bring the Family

Jason Jones
Okinawa, Japan

15. The Psychedelic Furs - Midnight to Midnight
14. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
13. Love and Rockets - Earth, Sun, Moon
12. INXS - Kick
11. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
10. Prince - Sign o' the Times
09. R.E.M. - Document
08. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
07. George Michael - Faith
06. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
05. Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra
04. Public Image Ltd - Happy?
03. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
02. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
01. U2 - The Joshua Tree


Sierra Anna Jones
Okinawa, Japan

15. Skinny Puppy - Cleanse Fold and Manipulate
14. Sad Lovers and Giants - The Mirror Test
13. Pink Turns Blue - If Two Worlds Kiss
12. Dead Can Dance - Within the Realm of a Dying Sun
11. NON - Blood & Flame
10. The Psychedelic Furs - Midnight to Midnight
09. Fleetwood Mac - Tango in the Night
08. Public Image Ltd - Happy?
07. Death in June - Brown Book
06. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
05. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
04. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
03. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
02. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
01. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands


John Magness
Uttoxeter, England

15. George Michael - Faith
14. 10,000 Maniacs - In My Tribe
13. Jennifer Warnes - Famous Blue Raincoat
12. Aztec Camera - Love
11. Robbie Robertson - s/t
10. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
09. The Cars - Door to Door
08. Thomas Lang - Scallywag Jaz
07. Pet Shop Boys - Actually
06. Van Morrison - Poetic Champions Compose
05. U2 - The Joshua Tree
04. The Psychedelic Furs - Midnight to Midnight
03. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
02. Pink Floyd - A Momentary Lapse of Reason
01. Bruce Springsteen - Tunnel of Love


Hannah Marrs
New Orleans, Louisiana

15. Pulp - Freaks
14. Sonic Youth - Sisters
13. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
12. Dinosaur Jr. - You're Living All Over Me
11. Death in June - Brown Book
10. Love and Rockets - Earth, Sun, Moon
09. Opal - Happy Nightmare Baby
08. R.E.M. - Document
07. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
06. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
05. Jane's Addiction - s/t
04. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
03. Pixies - Come On Pilgrim
02. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
01. 10,000 Maniacs - In My Tribe

Jason DeWolfe Barton

15. Bathory - Under the Sign of the Black Mark
14. Celtic Frost - Into the Pandemonium
13. Metallica - Garage Days Re-Revisited
12. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
11. Echo & the Bunnymen - s/t
10. Destruction - Release from Agony
09. Sixth Comm - Content with Blood
08. Death in June - Brown Book
07. Cabaret Voltaire - Code
06. Coil - Gold is the Metal (with the Broadest Shoulders)
05. Dead Can Dance - Within the Realm of a Dying Sun
04. The Housemartins - The People Who Grinned Themselves to Death
03. For Against - Echelons
02. U2 - The Joshua Tree
01. The Durutti Column - The Guitar and Other Machines

Jesse Deitermann
Saturday Night Music Club

15. The Sisters of Mercy - Floodland
14. The Cult - Electric
13. Sonic Youth - Sister
12. R.E.M. - Document
11. My Bloody Valentine - Ecstasy
10. Bel Canto - White-Out Conditions
09. INXS - Kick
08. The Mighty Lemon Drops - Out of Hand EP
07. The Smiths - Strangeways, Here We Come
06. The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
05. Depeche Mode - Music for the Masses
04. The Wedding Present - George Best
03. The Essence - A Monument of Trust
02. The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
01. U2 - The Joshua Tree

Here's a breakdown of the albums that made it onto the most lists: The Cure (9), The Smiths (9), The Sisters of Mercy (8), Depeche Mode (7), Echo & the Bunnymen (7), The Jesus and Mary Chain (7), U2 (7), Sinead O'Connor (6), Love and Rockets (5), The Psychedelic Furs (5) and R.E.M. (5)




If you're a vinyl enthusiast, check out our feature on the Spin Clean Vinyl Record Cleaning Machine (click image below)

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Friday, February 17, 2017

Planet Rotations #224

In the age of digital music, we tend to skip through albums, listening to one or two tracks - missing some of the deeper cuts that may be brilliant. We are huge fans of the album format, and love to experience the entire collection the way the artist intended. Listening to one or two songs is like randomly reading a few chapters of a book and expecting to understand the completed work. Like all music lovers, we love to share what we're listening to and discover some new things from friends.

This week Sarah and I both chose to highlight 6 albums each that we played in full - the first 2 rows are mine, the second 2 are hers. You'll also notice a Spotify player at the bottom, which features a song from each album. This is an ongoing playlist that you can follow directly on Spotify. Please put your own lists in the comments below, or interact at the Life On This Planet Facebook or Twitter. 


(text version below image)

Bret's 6
Suede - Bloodsports
The Psychedelic Furs - World Outside
The Church - Starfish
Morrissey - Your Arsenal
Smashing Pumpkins - Siamese Dream
Nirvana - Nevermind

Sarah's 6
Elbow - Little Fictions
New Order - Republic
U2 - All That You Can't Leave Behind
Pixies - Head Carrier
Rose Elinor Dougall - Stellular
Starsailor - Love is Here

Listen to our ongoing Spotify Planet Rotations Playlist!

If you're a vinyl enthusiast, check out our feature on the Spin Clean Vinyl Record Cleaning Machine (click image below)

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

'Love' Songs. Valentine's Day Mix: Part 3

Welcome to Part 3 of our Valentine's Day 'Love' Songs Mix! Love songs come in all forms - some are your basic kind, some are about lost love, and others are a weird, stalker-ish obsessive kind of 'love.'

In this installment, Sarah and I each chose 6 songs - make sure to scroll down to the bottom to tune into our ongoing Valentine's Spotify playlist. If you missed any of the previous parts, you can start at the beginning right here.


Bret's 6

R.E.M. - You are the Everything
From the album Green (1988)
"You are here with me. You have been here and you are everything"

Siouxsie and the Banshees - The Last Beat of My Heart
From the album Peepshow (1988)
"Never to be torn apart. Close to you till the last beat of my heart"

Concrete Blonde - Lullabye
From the album Bloodletting (1990)
"You were meant to be together - like a fog around a mountain, forever and ever"

Lily Allen - Chinese
From the album It's Not Me, It's You (2009)
"I don't want anything more than to see your face when you open the door"

Sinead O'Connor - The Wolf is Getting Married
From the album How About I Be Me (and You Be You)? (2012)
"Your smile makes me smile. Your laugh makes me laugh. Your joy gives me joy. Your hope gives me hope. And the sun's peeping out of the sky, where there used to be only grey. The wolf is getting married and he'll never cry again"

Majical Cloudz - Silver Car Crash
From the album Are You Alone? (2015)
"I am always perfect when I'm holding onto you. And I know love is worth it, I am in perfect love with you"


Sarah's 6

Annie Lennox - Love Song for a Vampire
From Bram Stoker's Dracula soundtrack (1993)
"For there is in all the world no greater love than mine"

Lamb - Gorecki
From the album Lamb (1996)
"Gonna love you until the seas run dry, I've found the one I've waited for"

The Magnetic Fields - The Book of Love
From the album 69 Love Songs (1999)
"But I love it when you read to me and you can read me anything"

Moby - Love Should
From the album Hotel (2005)
"Oh my love, you always leave me surprised"

The National - Slow Show
From the album Boxer (2007)
"You know I dreamed about you for twenty-nine years before I saw you"

Wild Cub - Thunder Clatter
From the album Youth (2013)
"I hear it call in the center of it all - You're the love of my life"

Listen in on Spotify


If you're a vinyl enthusiast, check out our feature on the Spin Clean Vinyl Record Cleaning Machine (click image below)

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