One thing that’s always irked me about new artists is when they decide to self title their debut album. There’s nothing inherently wrong with self-titling your first album since, after all, in most cases it’s supposed to present you to the world and establish your name but I’ve always interpreted it as a lack of effort and creativity.
Even if it’s something as simple as naming your album after one of the tunes, at least it beats just calling it Taylor Swift. In her defense, not everyone is blessed with such an awesome birth name that screams superstardom so she’s an exception to the rule. Heck, even Leona Lewis, who probably had zero involvement in the production of her highly successful debt album besides providing the gorgeous vocals at least had the common courtesy to call it “Spirit”.
With that, I present my unordered list of what I consider some of the coolest album titles I’ve ever heard because they’re clever, funny, or simply amusing in some kind of way.
- Sugar Ray — Lemonade and Brownies
- New Radicals — Maybe You’ve Been Brainwashed Too
- Collective Soul — Hints, Allegations and Things Left Unsaid
- Modest Mouse — We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank
- Oasis — Definitely Maybe
- Queens of the Stone Age — Songs for the Deaf
- Elton John — Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player
- Britney Spears — Oops! …I Did it Again
- Xscape — Traces of My Lipstick
- Radiohead — Pablo Honey
- Soundgarden — Superunknown
- Death Cub for Cutie — We Have the Facts and We’re Voting Yes
- The B-52s — Wild Planet
- Public Enemy — Fear of a Black Planet
- Public Enemy – How You Sell Soul to a Soulless People Who Sold Their Soul?
- Salt and Pepa — A Salt With a Deadly Pepa
- PJ Harvey — Rid of Me
- Ultra Nate — Grime Silk & Thunder
- Everything But the Girl — Amplified Heart
- Peaches – Impeach My Bush
- Aimee Mann – @#%&*! Smilers
- Army of Lovers – Massive Luxury Overdose
- Senses Fail – Life is Not a Waiting Room
- Yoko Ono – Yes, I’m a Witch
- Fastball – All the Pain Money Can Buy
- M.I.A. – Piracy Funds Terrorism
After wasting two hours of my life watching the insipid popularity contest that was the MTV Video Music Awards, I remembered why it is I’m slowly bit surely becoming more and more disillusioned with the state of popular music these days and the drivel they’ve been playing on the radio as of late.
Having been a member of eMusic for a week or so now, I’ve come to notice how much stuff gets overlooked in favor of such nonsense like “Fergalicious” or “Buy U a Drank”. Mind you, I too can appreciate popular catchy tunes like “Makes Me Wonder” and “The Way I Are”. It seems to me however, that even the tune with the most ridiculous lyrics still gets tons of attention when there are artists out there who can in fact write catchy tunes that actually have something to say.
Unfortunately, it’s these artists that are poorly marketed and thus fall under the radar and release an album that fails to sell as well as it should, like M.I.A. for example. Instead, the Billboard charts remain dominated by what’s on popular radio and the latest tune that keeps getting played over and over incessantly (I’m looking at you “Big Girls Don’t Cry”).
I wonder if perhaps this so-called sales slump the industry is currently in doesn’t have something at least partially to do with the fact that popular music in general well, it sucks. I do honestly think these labels need to go out and hunt down some good independent talent.
But there boys and girls lies another issue. For one, I’ve kept tabs on the music industry long enough to know that major labels are mostly manipulative money hungry corporations who dictate what you can and can’t release and thus stifle creativity. And that’s why so many artists who were once on major labels and had talent have gone the way of doing things on their own terms, even if that means sacrificing exposure and large sales (Aimee Mann for example).
Thus, I implore you to seek out the hundreds of musicians and singers out there who are doing their thing not necessarily for the sake of worldwide fame and money, but because they actually have a passion for music and have something to say. Just like many major label artists, I’m sure you’ll come across some indie band or something that well, they make it obvious why they remain an obscure act but for every “dud”, there’s a gem among the others that have lost (or never had) their luster.
And by all means keep supporting the major labels. Oftentimes talented artists do come along that manage to gain the acceptance of radio (Alicia Keys, Outkast) while not being some manufactured garbage. I say find a happy balance, you’ll be amazed at what you’ll come across.
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