Ok, so, (like you) I do a lot of listening to music. I ask a lot of questions, and listen to more music. I can shake the realization that there was some kind of marker in late 1979, and early 1980, when the Clash released London Calling. It appears as this midpoint in rock history. That record kind of heralded everything that had happened before it and forecast everything that has happened since, in one moment. And that is easily profound, but, this list is not about London Calling.
This list recognized that marker and chronicles the most relevant, vital (pick your adjective) records since then. Because, if this marker exist, other than in my mind, what came before it is covered, ad nauseum. And, what has come out since may be covered, but certainly not in this context. So, this is what I am doing here. This is my take on the most impressive records since 1980. Your cheers, jeers and comments are welcome and encouraged."
"It is such a cliche now that I have tried to exorcise myself from belief that this is the most profoundly important record of the modern rock era. FAIL. 15 years on it still reveals new discovery. It's simply a juggernaut of a record."
"The most purely significant invention of the last 32 years is the fact hip-hop exists and predominates our consciousness. So, it's with a certain degree of irony that even a record this perfect crashes the Public Enemy, 1988-and since-party."
"Ok, here it is, and with no resignation or consternation. PE was the last relevant conscious rap act and what allowed Dre, Eminem and Kanye the luxury of being so decidedly not conscious. Its more than that but I'm limited regarding characters."
"Am I being cavalier to resign the monolith out of the top 3? No. Maybe. I do not withhold from Nirvana their legacy. It's infinite and well documented. However, and in fact, I'd be willing to bet the principles would be more than willing to accept this placement."
"LA hip hop. What is it? It is the realization of its station. It's the acknowledgment of gangtsa culture and the awareness a legacy has been afforded to wallow in it. It's strife, but born of malaise from fighting the same losing battles, and so decadence, and this is its most strident moment."