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Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

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Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 9:56 am

It's hard to make a perfect album, but sometimes you get the feeling that an act could have nailed it simply by dropping off an ill-considered or "filler" track.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:03 am

I'm actually fond of it, but for all the wrong reasons: The Ringo royalties gimme "Act Naturally" is a jarring detour into the pedestrian from the otherwise otherworldly HELP.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58Amodaf-g8

I've read that the Beatles would throw these in purely for Ringo's bank account, and of course they were under tremendous pressure to deliver singles and albums to Capitol at a ridiculous pace.

So I certainly don't blame them, but it's kind of a clunker.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby scratch » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:08 am

christopher_robin wrote:It's hard to make a perfect album, but sometimes you get the feeling that an act could have nailed it simply by dropping off an ill-considered or "filler" track.


Judging by the anguished postings by Forons who can't understand why people still buy music in commercial formats (like "albums") it would seem that there is some sentiment that practically everything other than mega-hits and music included in viral videos qualifies as "filler."

Or consider Beggar's Banquet, one of my four or five favorite Rolling Stones albums. Though I don't consider it "dubious" as far as good music, Sympathy for the Devil sticks out on an album that otherwise conceptually hangs together fairly consistently.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:15 am

I would call Soundgarden's 1994 psychedelic-tinged hard rock opus "Superunknown" a perfect album but for "Kickstand."

It's a mundane song with a jarring opening that wouldn't sound at all out of place on Soundgarden's lesser albums (all of them), but here it's just a huge buzzkill.

Jolts me right out of the slow-building, taut, muscular, rushing sonic landscape that album forms.

"Kickstand, you got loose and I threw up
Kickstand, you got the juice to fill my cup"

On the album with "Fell On Black Days" and 13 other classics. Jeez!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8qcqXuZTcg
Last edited by christopher_robin on Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:18 am

We might all just be sick of "Sympathy." I thought it was amazing when I discovered it at age 12 or so -- I'll never forget that moment.

"Beggars" has no dogs, in my opinion. My favorite Stones record, although "Let It Bleed" is a close contender.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby Kenneth Burns » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:30 am

"The Lady in My Life." Maybe the canonical example of what you're talking about.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:32 am

"Baby Be Mine" and "The Lady in My Life" were the only tracks from "Thriller" that were not released as singles!
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby Kenneth Burns » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:36 am

George Strait's "Ocean Front Property" is a superb album in a genre not known for superb albums, except for the bummer Jimmy Buffett pastiche "Without You Here."
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:24 pm

Checking into that George Strait.

...

As a disco-friendly single and thematic cornerstone of the album (before Bowie failed to obtain the rights from Orwell's estate) I get why 1984 made the cut, but to my ear it's the weakest song on "Diamond Dogs", an album that's otherwise a masterpiece from start to finish.

Maybe if they had nixed the violins?
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby minicat » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:29 pm

The mostly aimless jam "Revelation" on Da Capo by Love. Of course, it's half the LP -- but that's exactly the problem with it.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby brentron909 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:34 pm

I just had an argument with my wife about this, but I think "Money" totally kills the mood on Dark Side of the Moon

*ducks*
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby Kyle Motor » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:37 pm

christopher_robin wrote:I'm actually fond of it, but for all the wrong reasons: The Ringo royalties gimme "Act Naturally" is a jarring detour into the pedestrian from the otherwise otherworldly HELP.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58Amodaf-g8

I've read that the Beatles would throw these in purely for Ringo's bank account, and of course they were under tremendous pressure to deliver singles and albums to Capitol at a ridiculous pace.

So I certainly don't blame them, but it's kind of a clunker.


1. Ringo made more money for singing a song? How does that work? He didn't write it, he just sang it. Were there singing royalties I'm unaware of?

2. The clunker on Help! is Lennon's "It's Only Love".
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby Stebben84 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:37 pm

brentron909 wrote:I just had an argument with my wife about this, but I think "Money" totally kills the mood on Dark Side of the Moon

*ducks*


I would agree with you on that one.
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby minicat » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:38 pm

3. Act Naturally is not on the American/Capitol version of Help! (so Capitol can't be blamed for that...)
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Re: Dubious tracks on otherwise great albums

Postby christopher_robin » Tue Jan 08, 2013 1:52 pm

Kyle Motor, I know we've had our differences in the past, so I'm going to look past your petulant tone (maybe you can work on that?), and gently advise that you do some research on "performance royalties" as a working musician who presumably sells records. This is basic stuff.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royalties# ... _royalties

So yes, Ringo received additional compensation any time he sang a song.
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