70. Rusted Root: When I Woke
I used to be a theater kid, and I did three plays with a choreographer who used to play this during stretches. I didn’t think much of it at the time. I thought it sounded rather like African music. It’s filled with percussion, yes, but it just shows my ignorance. I didn’t know anything about world music then, though. This album starts off with five or six very good tracks, but gets kind of boring at the end. I still tend to listen to it fairly often. “Ecstasy” is just too good a song to ignore.
69. Sticky Fingers: The Rolling Stones
This is one of the Stones’ finest efforts. “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking?” is one of my favorite songs, and is also featured in every cocaine scene of every movie, ever. Seriously, pay attention to what song is playing during scenes where characters are doing cocaine. Every time.
68. Eminem: The Slim Shady LP
In eighth grade or so, “My Name Is…” was playing all over the radio and MTV, and for some reason I decided I liked it. So one night my dad takes my sister and myself to The Wherehouse (is that even a franchise, or was it a local shop in my town?), where we are given some money to buy one CD each. In the car, he asks what we bought. I show him the cover, carefully covering the “Parental Advisory” label with my thumb. My sister, who was in fourth grade or so, is aware that it was a naughty album and tells both my mom and dad as soon as we got home. They demand to see it and—if you’re familiar with the track listing, you’ll understand why—are suitably shocked. I am driven back to The Wherehouse, where I am instructed to return the album. The clerks give me the edited version. What’s funny about the edited version is that the only swear word they delete is the “F” word, and also names of drugs. However, the names of drugs are filled with the sound of someone using the drugs. I remember a mention of pills censored with the sound of pills being cascaded onto a table. Incredible censoring, guys.
67. The Beatles: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Like their final two albums, this one is also overrated, but perhaps not as much. It really isn't as amazing as people seem to think. From everything I've read (and it's been a lot), it did seem to have a huge impact on the world. But it's not even close to being their best album, despite what all the hippies say.
66. System of a Down: Toxicity
Fans of actual hardcore will scoff at me when I say System of a Down pushes the limits on how hardcore I like my music, but I'm not really concerned what fans of actual hardcore think. System of a Down rock hard in a way that is not too intimidating, and the singer's voice is incredibly unique. They're also not profane, at least not too profane, which is nice with this type of music. I used to play guitar with a guy who had figured out how to play every song on this album by ear. I don't like it that much, but it's a pretty damn good album and easily worthy of a place on this list.
65. The Violent Femmes: The Violent Femmes
I saw The Violent Femmes play live about four or five years ago. It was fun. I remember the bass player had a single-string bass that was played by pulling a stick to change the amount of pressure on the string. I don't really know how to describe it. Their debut album is the only one with which I am familiar, and I don't feel a particular urge to explore further. Why mess with success?
64. The Rolling Stones: Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out!
Despite being a live album, this is my favorite Rolling Stones record. That might be a giveaway for what's not coming later, but I don’t really care. The performance of "Stray Cat Blues" is perfect.
63. AFI: Black Sails in the Sunset
When my great-grandpa gave me his guitar ten years or so ago, I rushed to a computer to print off some tabs and learn to play some stuff. The very first song I played? "God Called in Sick Today." A stupid and somewhat insulting title, yes, but a nice riff for a beginner, and the beginning of a long and epic journey for me.
62. Sublime: 40 Oz to Freedom
What I like about Sublime is that they're a good mix of punk and reggae, but lean towards reggae. Usually, a band that mixes punk with another genre favors punk, but not Sublime. They are a reggae band that throw in some punk flavor every once in a while. "Badfish" is my favorite Sublime song, and there are plenty of other gems here, as well.
61. The Velvet Underground: Loaded
The rest of the album is pretty good, but there are really only two songs that are necessary to mention. Completely avoiding hyperbole (seriously, this time), "Sweet Jane" and "Rock & Roll" are two of the best rock songs ever.