Tuesday, 25 February 2020
5 Music Albums that changed the Music Industry
Some bands become immortal because they put out a song that no one can resist singing in their head while some write music that no one might have expected. Here are a few albums that changed the course of the music industry.
1. Radiohead’s In Rainbows
In Rainbows shook the music industry's very infrastructure. They simply announced on their official site, "the new album is finished, and it's coming out in 10 days." With that , Radiohead completely invented a new promotional cycle in the digital age. Ever since In Rainbows arrived in everyone's inbox simultaneously and listeners experienced those torrid first notes of "15 Step" together, many artists have tried to "pull a Radiohead," with Beyoncé and U2 succeeding in delivering their music in a similar manner. The album's "pay-what-you-want" offer that allowed diehards, casual fans and curious listeners to put their own value on music was just another step forward in questioning how the music business does business.
2. Run DMC Self-Titled Album
This was the first classic hip-hop album that anyone remembers. This was the breaking point where the buoyant post-disco rhythms and future-shocked electro were introduced which ended up dominating the genre's first five years on record. The Hollis, Queens crew did nothing short of reinventing the still-new style in their own image: hard, raw, in your face and catchy enough to challenge anything else in pop. The rap-rock fusion "Rock Box" stands as a foundation-ally transformative moment for American culture itself, while the earth-shaking one-two punch of "Sucker MCs" and "It's Like That" presented grandstanding to complex social realism. The album is minimal and stark, but was revolutionary for that time.
3. Michael Jackson’s Thriller
It is hard to imagine the present-day musical landscape without “Thriller”, which changed the game both sonically and marketwise. The album's courageous blending of pop, rock and soul would completely change the scene in radio. They introduced guitar solo in what was considered pop at the time and lot of elements from different genres were added up to spice up the sound of the songs in the album. The album's fun, cinematic videos attracted even more audience and forced MTV to incorporate black artists into its playlists. Its promotional strategy, which led to seven of its nine tracks being released as singles, raised the bar for what, exactly, constituted a "hit-laden" LP. It broke records, showing just how far pop could reach: the biggest selling album of all time, the first album to win eight Grammys in a single night and the first album to stay in the Top 10 charts for a year. This was truly game changing.
4. Black Sabbath’s First Album
When Black Sabbath released their self-titled debut in 1970, they didn't think they were starting a movement. But their sludgy take on psychedelic-blues and incorporating catchy riffs in songs, it became the core of what's now known as metal — whether modified by "thrash," "prog" or even "glam." Part of the influence lies in the way Tony Iommi's guitars were tuned down, the result of a freak accident that resulted in him shearing off two of his right hand's fingertips and having to play with their tenderness in mind. That contributed to a doom-filled atmosphere that was only enhanced by frontman Ozzy Osbourne, who was still refining his "prince of darkness" persona, and song titles grasping toward signifiers of evil. The album proved inspirational to generations of musicians, who used Black Sabbath's ideas of rock & roll making it faster, slowing it down even more, adding orchestral flourishes — to create not just a genre, but a musical movement.
5. The Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Sgt. Pepper's wasn't the first album to blend rock music with high art, but it was probably the first time that musicians of the Beatles' stature and popularity decided to turn their back so completely on what had made them famous. It was the first time the Beatles were free of the responsibility of being the Beatles. The irony is that no other album cemented them so firmly in the public's mind. The Beatles as a whole defined an era inspiring many generations and song writing that still inspires the current crop of artists.
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