It’s been almost a year since I posted the first of my top 20 album reviews! My first post was dedicated to the brilliant debut album Attack of the Grey Lantern by Mansun (No, not Hanson or Marilyn Manson), but reading back over it now and the whole piece feels undercooked. Paul Draper and co deserved better but hey, I was just starting out, finding my feet, feeling my way. Maybe I’ll re-write it one day and get it up to scratch.
Over the course of the series I found my reviews getting more detailed. I procrastinated and spent more time on them, chipping away at each instalment between lessons, on a train, in countless cafes, on Sunday mornings in the million and one homes I’ve had over the past twelve months. The process began in China, while some posts were written in Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, The Netherlands, England and rural Scotland. Finally bringing the series to a close, the last couple were polished off in Northern Spain. Looking back on it all, it’s certainly been a journey!
Looking at my list now, I feel satisfied with the final selection. There were so many tough decisions to make and it still feels odd that when push came to shove I was unable to find a place for Bowie, Springsteen or The Stones. There were also near misses for Tracy Chapman, R.E.M. The Libertines, Pet Shop Boys, The Stone Roses, The Bluetones,Wilco, Led Zeppelin and Belle & Sebastian. It’s probably worth pointing out that some albums on the list sneaked in ahead of others purely for sentimental reasons. They were the right records at the right time, soundtracking key periods of my life. They burrowed themselves into my heart and head, demanding not to be left out. In the end, all I could do was obey.
Special thanks goes out to the people of Reddit who have come to LL in ever-increasing numbers throughout the series. With the site closing in on fifteen thousand views, your support has been nothing short of energising!