Jeff IMed me with an interesting question.
What band, in your opinion, took the sharpest nosedive between albums?
That is, Album A is fantastic. You listen to it over and over, and can’t wait for the follow-up. When that follow-up comes, you have to check and double-check the cover to make sure it’s the same band, because it’s so awful.
For me, I would have to say the largest disparity is between Ultra Vivid Scene’s Joy: 1969-1990 album, one of the few albums I consider “perfect”, to Rev, which is just dull and plodding.
Jeff says he doesn’t count The Stone Roses first album and second albums because he likes The Second Coming. Me, I don’t. I count it.
Other notorious cases:
- Uncle Green: You -> What an Experiment His Head Was
- Sugar: Copper Blue -> File Under Easy Listening
- The Sugarcubes: Life’s Too Good -> Whatever the second album was called.
- Voice of the Beehive: Let it Bee -> Honey Lingers
- There are a few good tracks on Go Bang! by Shriekback, but it’s still a long way down from Big Night Music
- Whatever you think of the Bolshoi’s first album, Friends, it’s still miles above Lindy’s Party
- The Pursuit of Happiness: Love Junk was not junk. The next one was.
Some of those are “sophomore slump”s. Some are a band just running out of steam. Some are maybe bands that barley had one album in them, much less two. The middle category, where the band has been going very well and then suddenly hits a brick wall are, I think, the most interesting.
What say you, readers? What albums are the musical equivalents of Alien3 to you?