Thursday, September 06, 2012

Rolling Stone's Top 100 Albums of the 80's - # 1 – The Clash - London Calling

Continuing the series on the Top 100 Albums of the 80's.  Or at least the ones I have....
Continuing to work backwards,we've finally reached the Top:

# 1 - The Clash - London Calling

Released in the US in January 1980, London Calling just barely makes the cut for "Best Of The 1980's".  But, as RS notes:  with London Calling, "the Clash stormed the gates of rock convention and single-handedly set the agenda — musically, politically and emotionally — for the decade to come."  Allmusic calls it "a remarkable leap forward, incorporating the punk aesthetic into rock & roll mythology and roots music" and "a stunning statement of purpose and one of the greatest rock & roll albums ever recorded"

Interesting trivia:  On the original vinyl pressing, the hit "Train In Vain" is not listed on the album cover.  At the time, I presumed it was because the Clash didn't want to acknowledge "selling out".  According to Wikipedia, the real story is "because the track was added to the record at the last minute, when the sleeve was already in production".  "Train In Vain" was the Clash's first Top 40 hit in the US, reaching #23.  They would only have one subsequent Top 40, with 1982's "Rock The Casbah" which reached #8.

My "London Calling" story:  In the spring of 1980, when I was a Junior in college, my girlfriend's roommate worked at the school newspaper (editor, or assistant editor, or something).  She recruited me as a photographer, and I finally relented.  One of my forst time in the paper's offices,I noticed a copy of new Clash album sitting on a desk.  Apparently it had been sent to the school as a review copy, but they didn't do record reviews (foolishly, I didn't offer to step into that role!).   She said I could have it, SCORE!.  And I still have it.  Probably the best album I ever got for free (as a promotional copy, rather than a gift).


Anonymous said...

A way overrated album. Best of the 80s? Ahead of REM, U2, and Graceland, just to name a few? I don't get this one. Top 100, sure. But not number 1. Not even top 10.

LSqrd said...

Well, that's always the thing with these lists. They're based on people's opinions. In this case, the editors of Rolling Stone.

Thanks for sharing your opinion, too!

Maybe my next project should be to create MY list....