Albums that became heralded as masterpieces years after release

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by BryanA-HTX, Mar 17, 2017.

  1. mikaal

    mikaal Forum Resident

    Hunky Dory surely, given those incredible songs were "out there" compared to most everything else written by....24 year olds in 1971!!!
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  2. Mylene

    Mylene Forum Resident

    Pretty sure it was reviewed as a masterpiece in NME back in 1971.
    chrisblower likes this.
  3. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    at least half of it, at least to me.

    quite possibly the single most over-rated album in rock history, and i have never ever been able to figure why it is so lauded, i really just don't get it.
    timind and Jim B. like this.
  4. Tanx

    Tanx Forum Resident

    Washington, DC
    I'm a lifelong fan, too, and pay no attention to general hysteria.

    Lodger is one of my favorites, but it's not even close to a masterpiece.

    I've considered Diamond Dogs a masterpiece in its scope and execution for many years, and I certainly have heard fans agree, including on this forum. "Sweet Thing/Candidate" is often cited as one of his best songs, period. DD wasn't well received by the critics initially. Does every critic call it a masterpiece now? No, but I have often read it cited as such; I agree with that opinion; and that's why I put it on the list.
    NorthNY Mark likes this.
  5. Tristero

    Tristero Forum Resident

    I regard Diamond Dogs as something of a cult classic. Fans who love it will defend it to the death, but other more casual Bowie fans wouldn't necessarily cite it as one of his top accomplishments, while many regard it as a disappointment compared to the albums that preceded it. It has always drawn a mixed reaction.

    For a sense of how Diamond Dogs ranks among fans, here's the Rate Your Music page. It falls in the lower half of his 70s output here.

    David Bowie discography
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  6. Xabby

    Xabby Forum Resident

    Galicia (Spain)

    I did not appreciate this album well in the seventies because (to me) sounded too commercial. Now that many commercial current music is so poor I consider it a masterpiece.
    BryanA-HTX likes this.
  7. DTK

    DTK Forum Resident

    I think DD is where Bowie began to get really interesting. The Ziggy phase brought some incredible songs, but there was so much posturing, the music is so...hyper. Hunky Dory is an overrated record imo (I know, pre Ziggy).
  8. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    Critical favourites since day one...but no one new they existed.

    Uh huh. Lousy argument. Just because 10 people heard those albums in the early 70s, and they all said it was great, doesn't mean masterpiece status is now conferred.
    Come on.
  9. Now Jelly Rolls in the Street

    I understand your defence of the album. But on most Bowie-rating lists it seems to come about half-way down. Christgau gives it a C+ and Scaruffi gives it 6/10. All but two reviews on wiki give it mid-way in terms of stars. Only two reviewers rate it and I kind of wonder about their ability to place it in a serious context. I certainly don't feel enough people rate it to give it masterpiece status.

    Personally, for me it was a mess. The lyrics are sub-Burroughs and show that doesn't even really understand Burroughs. He hadn't even read Burrough before someone suggested the Burroughs/Bowie interview . The narrative comes across as a naive version of The Wild Boys, not even up to pulp sci-fi standards, which is a shame as he could write such good songs. He lost Ronson which partly accounts for the lack of musical direction, and this is the album where he first forgot how to write tunes, instead opting for those rambling half-spoken narratives with a theatrical background music backdrop. The album was his way of saving the ambitious but ill-conceived 1980 Floor show – a hodgepodge of poor to middling ideas where the concept was let down by just about everything.
  10. Summer of Malcontent

    Summer of Malcontent Forum Resident

    Likewise any of Nick Drake's albums. All the Velvet Underground albums. They had their aficionados, of course, but they weren't recognized as cornerstone works for a long time..

    Scott 4, which was a big commercial miss at the time.
  11. wildstar

    wildstar Forum Resident

    ontario, canada
    If those 10 people (but obviously it was more than that) all wrote for Rolling Stone, Billboard etc... and all gave them glowing reviews, that means nothing? When the subject of this thread IS "CRITICAL STANDING AT THE TIME" as compared to critical standing now.

    Talk about a lousy argument....

    Come on.

    PS - also Big Star had broken up after the first album but got back together to play (by special request) the first (and only) 'Rock Writer's Convention'. The response was so overwhelmingly positive, that they reformed to record the second album.

    I suppose that doesn't mean anything either? I'm sure they were specifically requested to perform because the vast majority of those attending the rock writer's convention DIDN'T think they were brilliant.

    No. 1 Record/Radio City


    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017
  12. Pancat

    Pancat Senior Member

    Still EU. For now.
    Joy Division? Seriously? Both their studio albums were instantly (and deservedly so) praised to the rafters by critics as masterpieces.
  13. Now Jelly Rolls in the Street

    I think you are saying is that he was trying to move into new directions, and I can't disagree with that.
    DTK likes this.
  14. Forum members did a great job of naming about ten I had in my head and making me think of others

    But did I miss:

    Manassas-Stills debut?

    Hollies- Evolution ?

    Don't know if this one is on people's radar, but I nominate: Poco - Good Feeling To Know

    • [​IMG]
    Hadean75, Davmoco and trumpet sounds like this.
  15. You're right about the Christgau reviews, et al. Diamond Dogs did receive many mediocre tags upon its release. Yet, it was exceptionally reviewed by Q and Select magazines in the 1990's, as well as a stellar, rare 9/10 review from Pitchfork just last year. The album has aged quite well in many people's opinions. Whether one personally likes it or not, I think that this album does fall under the once-universally-reviled/now-widely-appreciated category of this thread.

    Masterpiece status? In 1974, definitely not in the wake of Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane. Today? With Bowie's career in full retrospective and the state of masterpiece albums released today? Well, maybe. It's close enough to be a point of debate here.

    Interesting thread.

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  16. citizensmurf

    citizensmurf Forum Resident

    Black Sabbath-Paranoid
    Bill Why Man likes this.
  17. Summer of Malcontent

    Summer of Malcontent Forum Resident

    Well, that's an inane demand. What album has ever had unanimous reviews?

    But it's a matter of historic record that Never Mind the Bollocks was immediately critically acclaimed in certain quarters. The NME voted it the fourth best album of the year in 1977; number three for Sounds. A handful of hysterics in the tabloids doesn't count for much against the weight of opinion from the UK's leading music magazines.

    'Anarchy in the U.K.' topped John Peel's Festive 50 (a BBC listener's poll of the greatest records of all time) in 1978, 1979 and 1980 It came in at number two in 1981 but was back at the top in 1982, after which the list became strictly a 'best records of the year' affair. This made it the 'Stairway to Heaven' for the next generation. It was an instant classic, just like the album.
    SinnerSaint likes this.
  18. Roger Thornhill

    Roger Thornhill Forum Resident

    Ilford, Essex, UK
    I guess it depends on how you define "a long time" but I wouldn't say it was true of the Velvet Underground.

    VU & Nico made #13 in the first (as far as I know) of NME's top 100 albums. Loaded was #64, and White Light, White Heat was at #89. Writers Best Of Lists....
  19. TheSeldomSeenKid

    TheSeldomSeenKid Forum Resident

    I went through this entire thread, but unless I missed it in a prior post, I cannot believe no one listed this album, as it seems to be one of the best examples of this Topic Title(I think even in the UK it was not highly regarded, although maybe a few Posters from the UK can verify, but read due to the travel ban to the US, that this album was not a big seller or critics top choices in the US-same for 'Arthur').

  20. Bananas&blow

    Bananas&blow Forum Resident

    This album absolutely does not fit in this category. This album took a year or two to catch on but once it did it created a phenomenon and for a few year GNR was absolutely one of the biggest bands in the world. It did not become heralded as a masterpiece later, it was recognized as that within 2 years of it's release and the public ate it up. It sounds as gloriously grimy and raw and perfect to this day.
    Bill Why Man likes this.
  21. Bananas&blow

    Bananas&blow Forum Resident

    Prince - Dirty Mind. I'm sure it got some airplay but now is definitely considered one of his finest.
  22. Bananas&blow

    Bananas&blow Forum Resident

    Agree with LZ III but Hysteria was massive initially and it only grew in stature. Felt like just about all 12 tracks ended up on the radio in the first few years. If anything this album has lost stature over time and the over-production and choruses sound overly similar with repeated listenings. Think this was the first CD I ever bought and it was very popular at the time.
  23. Mickey2

    Mickey2 Well-Known Member

    Bronx, NY, USA
    I'd probably add Nick Drake to that same category (nobodies who became "geniuses" long after the fact).
    Chemguy likes this.
  24. Price.pittsburgh

    Price.pittsburgh Forum Resident

    Speaking from a U.S. perspective,
    I was a Leppard fan since March 83 and road out the entire Pyromania experience on Mtv through early 84.
    I waited patiently for Hysteria for over 3 years.
    It was a success upon release but the single Women flopped.
    Animal did well in the fall of 87 and the title track became their first U.S. top 10 in early 88.
    The album was doing well with the tour support and videos.
    But compared to Pyromania at this point it was a major disappointment.
    Then they released Pour Some Sugar On Me and it skyrocketed the album to the top and it sold all summer like crazy.
    Love Bites followed then Armageddon It then Rocket in early 89.
    But of the 7 singles released, the first 3 had no blockbuster impact and the final 3 after Sugar were over a year after the album's release.
    For almost a year Hysteria in 87 and the early parts of 88 was not a smash.
    Once it became a smash they kept playing the earlier singles again as well.
    NorthNY Mark likes this.
  25. SinnerSaint

    SinnerSaint Music is Life

    SF CA US
    Yeah; that's why i went w/"Platinum" status & "public acceptance" in my reply.

    Not 'fighting' bout "masterpiece" level or not.

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