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Now That’s a Concept (Album)

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What exactly is a concept album? One definition is, “Where all musical or lyrical ideas contribute to a single overall theme or unified story.” For many years people have cited Frank Sinatra’s In The Wee Small Hours of The Morning, a work of sustained and concentrated sorrow about the end of a love affair as the first ever concept album. It maybe a concept album, then again it may not, which is why we’ve picked Frank Sinatra’s Come Fly With Me as the first of 25 albums spanning 50 years that are all true to the definition.

Johnny Cash made a number of concept albums and the first was Ride This Train. He along with a number of other country artists over the years explored the idea of thematic albums, Marty Robbins’s Gunfighter Ballads from a year earlier could have qualified, as could Willie Nelson’s Red Headed Stranger from 1975, but we decided to go with the Man in Black as he did more than any other country artists to make the genre his own.

Including Ray Charles’s Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music may seem like a case of stretching the envelope somewhat, but it was conceptual in that he took traditional country music and gave them an R&B and Blues twist, it’s a concept to us! Jimmy Smith did the same in a jazz vein for Sergei Prokofiev’s classical work, Peter and the Wolf.

There is little argument that when Prog Rock came along towards the end of the 1960s then its purveyors took the concept album to new heights. The Moody Blues, Rick Wakeman, Genesis, Camel, Alan Parsons, Pink Floyd and Vangelis, all made more than one concept album so picking which one to include proved a challenge – no doubt some off you will disagree.

The Who’s Tommy is often said to be the first rock Opera, but the Pretty Things and their SF Sorrow was earlier. We decided to stick with The Who, because it is just so brilliant, and frankly ground-breaking. Folk music is the polar opposite of Prog and The Who, but on Fairport Convention’s 7th album they got stuck into a concept to produce a fabulous record. John “Babbacombe” Lee was a Victorian murderer who was condemned to death but reprieved after the gallows failed on three occasions to work properly – now that’s a story!

Both David Bowie and Elton John have had careers that have lasted longer than almost any other solo performer from the late 1960s and early 1970s, it’s perhaps no surprise that having reinvented themselves on more than one occasion that they have embraced the art of the concept album. Both of them chose subjects that explored their own alter-egos – and both did it brilliantly.

Motown as a label is not known for embracing the concept album but when two of their finest artists did, they did so in separate but a totally unique fashion. Marvin Gaye’s album concerned his break up with his wife, and as she got all the royalties from the record, which is why he called it, Here, My Dear. Stevie Wonder’s Journey Through The Secret Life of Plants is based on the book of the same name by Peter Tompkins and Christopher Bird. It is a fascinating concept and includes one of Stevie’s less well known, but no less beautiful ballads, ‘Send One Your Love’.

Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds is outstanding, a sustained work based on H.G. Well’s futuristic book, which has had a life in many different ways, but it has only been able to achieve this through the strength of the music. One of its best-known songs is ‘Forever Autumn’, written by Jeff Wayne, Gary Osborne and Paul Vigrass. The original melody, written by Wayne in 1969, was a jingle for a Lego commercial that Vigrass and Osborne, who sang the original jingle, then added the “forever autumn’ lyrics to and included on their 1972 album Queues; Justin Hayward from the Moody Blues sings it on War of The Worlds.

If the 1970s was the hey-day for the concept album it has continued to attract artists to the idea when they are looking to make a bigger statement than perhaps they feel is possible through individual songs. Originally intended as a follow-up for Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Relax’, Slave to the Rhythm was instead given to Grace Jones by its producer and co-writer, Trevor Horn – it’s pop music as high art.

For Thrash Metal’s Metallica their Master of Puppets was their first album for a major label and it is outstanding, as is Radiohead’s OK Computer, which their label at the time thought un-commercial, but their prescient view of consumerism proved hugely popular. It’s not hugely dissimilar territory to that explored on U2’s Zooropa in 1993 that topped the charts in countries around the world.

Queens of the Stone Age’s, Songs for the Deaf has as its concept a drive from Los Angeles to Joshua Tree while tuning into radio stations along the way, a clever idea, brilliantly executed. Green Day decided to produce a rock opera, inspired by the work of The Who among others and their American Idiot follows the life of Jesus of Suburbia – now that’s a concept!

And so is Quincy Jones’s Back on the Block, recorded as the 1980s were coming to an end. It is an audacious concept that traces the lineage of jazz to rap. To achieve this it includes guest appearances by some of the biggest names in Black Music. Chances are this may have passed you by…don’t let that happen, it is a masterpiece.

We’ve selected a track from each of the 25 to introduce you ton those albums that you’re unfamiliar with. These are in order of release, not from best to worst!

We would love to hear your suggestions as to what you think we should have included.…

 

1. Frank Sinatra Come Fly With Me (1958)

2. Johnny Cash Ride This Train (1960)

3. Ray Charles Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music (1962)

4. Jimmy Smith Peter and The Wolf (1965)

5. Moody Blues Days of Future Passed (1967)

6. The Who Tommy (1969)

7. Fairport Convention Babbacombe Lee (1971)

8. David Bowie The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972)

9, Rick Wakeman Six Wives of Henry VIII (1973)

10. Genesis The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (1974)

11. Camel The Snow Goose (1975)

12. Elton John Captain Fantastic and The Brown Dirt Cowboy (1975)

13. Alan Parsons Project Tales of Mystery and Imagination (1976)

14. Marvin Gaye Here My Dear (1978)

15. Jeff Wayne War of the Worlds (1978)

16. Stevie Wonder Journey Through The Secret Life of Plants (1979)

17. Pink Floyd The Wall (1979)

18. Vangelis Soil Festivities (1984)

19. Grace Jones – Slave to the Rhythm (1985)

20. Metallica Masters of Puppets (1986)

21. Quincy Jones Back on the Block (1989)

22. U2 Zooropa (1993)

23. Radiohead OK Computer (1997)

24. Queens of the Stone Age Songs for the Deaf (2002)

25. Green Day American Idiot (2004)

103 Comments

103 Comments

  1. Jamie Buckingam

    November 28, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Did everything you could to not mention The Beatles and Pepper – good for you, you made your stand…how dumb! Now its for sure nobody will take what you say with any meaning or seriousness. YA BIG DUMMY!

    • uDiscover

      November 28, 2014 at 5:42 pm

      Jamie…we assume everyone owns that already 🙂

      And is it a concept album?

      • Gilbert

        June 15, 2015 at 7:50 pm

        I own no Beatles recording so your comment that everyone owns that already (Beatles/Pepper) is erroneous.

      • Diane

        June 28, 2016 at 8:26 pm

        John Lennon didn’t think it qualified as a concept album. He said that other than the first and last songs ,that the rest could have been in any order and it wouldn’t have made any difference. I’m not saying I agree with him, but it was his album . . . .

    • Mikko

      November 29, 2014 at 12:11 pm

      I would respectfully say that Sgt. Pepper is only partly a concept album. Even the Beatles themselves admitted that they dropped the ball on the concept and just got on with recording unrelated songs that had little to do with the theme. In fact, as innovative as the Beatles were, they never could sustain a true “concept album” as defined above.

  2. Henke

    November 28, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    The Wall, sure…but I’d rather see Dark Side or Wish You Were Here IF were talking Floyd.

  3. Will Topper

    November 28, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    Some top albums in there. And well done for not mentioning the Beatles! 🙂

  4. Andy Neilson

    November 28, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers – Southern Accents.

    Although somewhat flawed – originally supposed to be a double album, it had to be issued as a single LP after Tom Petty broke his hand punching a wall in frustration at its progress – it is still one of the band’s best.

  5. Keith

    November 28, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    where’s the Kinks Village Green Preservation Society and Pretty Things SF Sorrow?

    • Gilbert

      June 15, 2015 at 7:54 pm

      Where’s Marillion, P’Cock, and Deyss?

    • Gilbert

      June 15, 2015 at 7:58 pm

      Where’s Marillion, Deyss and P’Cock?

  6. Bruce Cratty

    November 28, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Red Headed Stranger-Willie Nelson!

  7. Nick

    November 28, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    In what world do we fucking live in, that we can’t mention pepper?

  8. Jack Deckard

    November 28, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    I rather see Klaatu – Hope on the list than Captain Fantastic.

  9. Jack Deckard

    November 28, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    I rather see Klaatu – Hope on the list than Captain Fantastic.

    • Sait

      June 29, 2016 at 1:06 pm

      I’d put that on top of the list.

  10. Bonz

    November 28, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    You left out Rush’s 2112, and Frank Zappa’s Joe’s Garage Acts 1, 2 and 3.

    • Mikko

      November 29, 2014 at 12:20 pm

      2112 is not a full concept album, just the “2112” suite. They have actually done better thematic concept albums since then, where all the songs are related to a specific theme, such as Power Windows (power), and Roll the Bones (chance). Even their most recent effort, Clockwork Angels, is a more mature, sustained work, that paints an entire environment and tells a complete story.

      That’s not to say that 2112 wasn’t a breakthrough album for them, since it turned around their fortunes and renewed their focus, but it doesn’t qualify as a concept album.

  11. Daniel C

    November 28, 2014 at 6:25 pm

    YOU GUYS DIDN’T PUT QUEENSRYCHE OPERATION MINDCRIME ! WHY? ????

    • ed holland

      January 23, 2015 at 6:13 pm

      one of the BEST

  12. Craig Bishop

    November 28, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    Of all the metal albums to include, you went with Master of Puppets. Hardly a concert album!
    You really missed the boat on this one. Operation Mindcrime by Queensryche and Scenes From A Memory by Dream Theater are two quintessential examples of concept albums that should be on any serious list.

  13. Nigel

    November 28, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Alice Cooper, the rock master of concept albums. Pick any one from ‘Welcome to my Nightmare’, ‘Brutal Planet’, ‘The Last Temptation’ or ‘Along Came A Spider’. Personally it would Welcome To My Nightmare’ but Brutal Planet a very close second (Warning: It’s very loud!).

    • Swifty

      December 2, 2014 at 2:14 am

      Or his “Goes To Hell” or “From The Inside”.

  14. alain

    November 28, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    What about iron Maiden seventh son of a seventh son?

  15. George

    November 28, 2014 at 7:28 pm

    How about “Astral Weeks” by Van Morrison ?

  16. elisdad44

    November 28, 2014 at 7:49 pm

    Tommy does not trump SF Sorrow in any universe! So you lost me there!

  17. Bert

    November 28, 2014 at 7:50 pm

    Vangelis best was Albedo 0.39
    Where is Rush 2112???

  18. AParmar

    November 28, 2014 at 7:57 pm

    Dark side of the moon was a concept album, one of the best. A kind of blue by miles davis another great concept album. DJ Shadow’s Entroducing another decent concept. What about bitches brew by Miles Davis?

  19. Dr Zoidberg

    November 28, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    Marillion’s Misplaced Childhood

  20. Lubo.

    November 28, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Even if a definition of what is and what isn’t “concept” is somewhat loose… can someone explain which is the concept in Master of Puppets? I own that album for 20 years, haven’t noticed any yet.

  21. Geoffrey Holland

    November 28, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    I really get tired of the “you missed …” or “where is…” comments on lists like these.

    Make your own list if you disagree with this one. Or word your comment more politely, like “here’s a few good ones that didn’t make it”.

    • M McKeaney

      February 12, 2016 at 3:15 pm

      Maybe you missed the last line of the article: “We would love to hear your suggestions as to what you think we should have included.…”

  22. Anastasia Nakis

    November 28, 2014 at 8:28 pm

    Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band
    The Magical Mystery Tour

    • Mikko

      November 29, 2014 at 12:28 pm

      Sgt. Pepper as a concept only works for the first two songs, and then they drop it until the reprise: there is nothing unifying them to a theme or story.

      The same can be said about Magical Mystery Tour. The songs might be connected by a flimsy plot in the film, but none of them work as a unit on the album. They are still a disparate collection of songs–very good songs, mind you, but not thematically related.

  23. Jose

    November 28, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    With all respect to the artists in that list but… where’s Jethro Tull??? Thick As A Brick and A Passion Play are great albums. Green Day is there but not Jethro Tull? I like Green Day too, but I can’t believe they’re there and not Jethro Tull… maybe just to fit a punk-rock band? Wow… so cool then… :-/

  24. music is magic

    November 28, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Kate Bush: Hounds Of Love (particularly the 7th Wave) was a mesmerizing, lyrical journey.

  25. Nick

    November 28, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    Savatage – Streets and W.A.S.P. – The Crimson Idol maybe?

  26. Scott Glazer

    November 29, 2014 at 12:07 am

    Nice list!
    Compiling my own, I’d find a place for Spirit – “The Twelve Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus”. It’s truly an all time great rock “concept” album.

  27. dave

    November 29, 2014 at 3:57 am

    Zappa Joe’s garage

    • Kevin

      August 26, 2016 at 1:38 am

      Yes, but also “you are what you is”

  28. eddie patton

    November 29, 2014 at 4:48 am

    Small Faces: Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake.
    Horslips” The Book of Invasions, A Celtic Symphony.

  29. steve rodgers

    November 29, 2014 at 5:00 am

    Just because ‘Tommy’ is on there shouldn’t exclude ‘Quadrophenia’. The Eagles ‘Desperadoes’ is missing also.

  30. Cajun Mark

    November 29, 2014 at 6:13 am

    you missed on a few of these too
    Booker T and the MGs–728 MacLemore Ave…( recreation of Abbey Road)
    Marvin Gaye –What’ Going On
    John Coltrane–A Love Supreme

  31. Rob Miller

    November 29, 2014 at 9:47 am

    Well said Geoffrey Holland!!!

    🙂

  32. Martyn Wilson

    November 29, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    Marillion should be in there somewhere, Brave or Marbles maybe? Genesis Lamb Lies On Broadway too?

    • Mikko

      November 29, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      The Lamb is on their list at number 10….

  33. Curt Prolix

    November 29, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    Seriously? Thick As A Brick isn’t even on here? It should be number 1. They set out to make the ultimate concept album with it, and succeeded.

    • Brian Last

      June 8, 2016 at 9:32 am

      Totally agreed. TAAB and Passion play were played as one song live

  34. Mister LJ

    November 29, 2014 at 2:43 pm

    I think this list confuses albums that have a strong theme throughout with concept albums. TO me a concept album is like a movie- each song tells a piece of an overall narrative. The Wall is a perfect example of this, as is Tommy..
    Master of Puppets and OK Computer both deal with strong themes, and the songs have a certain likeness and feel, but they do not (in my opinion) tell a story that progresses from start to finish.

  35. Sam Samociuk

    November 29, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    jon Anderson and Olias of Sunhillow, great prog concept. Some of those on the list may have a theme for some of the music but full concepts are different, surely?

    • Tim Hughes

      June 12, 2016 at 11:12 pm

      Damn straight…

  36. JOHN McMULLEN

    November 29, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    EXILE ON MAIN STREET IS A GLARING OMISSION HERE!!

  37. Nelson'stheman

    November 29, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    What about my favorite “Hotel California” ?

  38. R. M. Callaway

    November 29, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    While maybe not the greatest country concept album, Waylon Jennings’ “White Mansions ” deserves mention.

  39. Graeme

    November 29, 2014 at 8:11 pm

    Unsurprisingly, i’ll have to be the only one to bring the entire genre of hip hop to the muso crowd, but Deltron 3030 is easily one of the mightiest concept albums of all time. Seriously.

  40. peter parisius

    November 30, 2014 at 2:18 am

    Genesis – ‘The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway’,

    followed by Frank Zappa’s ‘Broadway The Hard Way’

  41. Charlie

    November 30, 2014 at 2:28 am

    Time-ELO

    • Diego

      June 8, 2016 at 6:09 pm

      Not just Time; how about El Dorado??

  42. The Midnite Rambler

    December 1, 2014 at 3:56 am

    A few others for your consideration: The Kinks< "Lola vs. Powerman and the Money Go Round,"
    "Village Green Preservation Society,", "Arthur," Lou Reed, "Berlin" The Who, "The Who Sell Out," "Quadrophenia," Bruce Springsteen, "Born To Run" The Beach Boys, "Pet Sounds"…

  43. Swifty

    December 2, 2014 at 2:09 am

    I’m sitting here reading this while listening to Tubular Bells, and can’t help wondering why it’s not on the list.

  44. Paul Corby

    December 8, 2014 at 10:34 am

    I am always championing a Canadian record that few heard and even less people “got “. It is Hauntario by an Alberta band called The Wheat Pool. It is about a couple who ruin their relationship by travelling from a failed Toronto lifestyle back to their Alberta home, where the economy has gotten worse. The character development and subtlety of POV is novelistic and the music is superb.

  45. Joe

    February 4, 2015 at 7:41 am

    My favourite concept album of all time – The Wall – made it on the list, as did a good few others that I like, but plenty of my other staples didn’t.

    Willie Nelson’s Red Headed Stranger is musically and thematically brilliant, telling the tale of a renegade priest who kills his unfaithful wife and her lover in the old west. I was surprised it was only mentioned as a possible concept as it seems to me to be the epitome of a concept album!

    Ry Cooder’s Chavez Ravine weaves a social and political narrative of corruption, subjugation and upheaval in the tale of how Dodger Stadium came to occupy the American-Mexican suburb of Chavez Ravine at the expense of its residents.

    I also love Cooder’s My Name Is Buddy which narrates the journey of an Oaky and his new-found socialist friend across depression era America, charting social phenomena such as Sundown Towns and union trials and tribulations, all played out through the eys of a cat and mouse! (Cooder’s Election Special and his work with The Chieftains on San Patricio are also excellent concepts).

    A notable mention must also be made to The Decline by NOFX which is an 18 minute piece de resistance single track EP on the theme of social and political decline.

    Thanks for the article, I always enjoy reading about concept albums.

  46. Steve

    February 5, 2015 at 9:38 am

    Terry Allen – Juarez. Generally overlooked (which is why I mention now) but seldom bettered Terry in the world of Americana.

    I like lists .

  47. Steve Fox

    February 17, 2015 at 6:57 am

    Three biggest selling “concept albums “in my viewpoint are Quadraphina, by the Who – The wall by Pink Floyds and Jesus Christ Superstar soundtrack.

  48. Loren

    April 3, 2015 at 5:30 pm

    AND THE KINKS????

    – Village Green preservation society (1968)
    – Arthur (1969)
    – Lola vs powerman (1970)
    – Preservation Act 1 & Preservation Act 2 (COMPLETE) (1973 & 1974) —- SUBLIME

  49. loren

    April 3, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    – My Favourite Concept Album- [COMPLETE] “Preservation Act 1 & Act 2”.
    Ray Davies Thanks!

  50. marcos

    April 3, 2015 at 5:38 pm

    – My Favourite Concept Album- [COMPLETE] “Preservation Act 1 & Act 2”.
    Ray Davies Thanks!

  51. Jorgen

    May 6, 2015 at 11:37 am

    2 albums are missing here, both masterpieces: The Kinks: “Arthur” and The Pretty Things: “S.F. Sorrow”. They are much better than most albums on the list …

  52. QuiqueJm

    May 6, 2015 at 11:45 am

    Encuentro a faltar álbumes como:
    The Dark Side of the Moon
    Tubular Bells
    Thick as a brick
    The Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
    Berlin
    Joe’s Garage
    In the Court of the Crimson King
    Tales from Topographic Oceans

  53. edmhorv

    May 6, 2015 at 11:45 am

    Probably you don’t know The Flower Kings and their Stardust We Are album.

  54. Krapp

    May 6, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    What about Emerson, Lake and Palmer (Tarkus, Pictures at an Exhibition) and Kayak (Merlin, Nostradamus)

  55. Grob

    May 6, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    * Snow (Spock’s Beard)
    * The Power and the Glory (Gentle Giant)
    * Testimony, Sola Scriptura, ?, or One (Neal Morse)
    * Blows Against the Empire (Jefferson Starship)

  56. Lars Falk

    May 6, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    Sadly missing Saga’s concept album Generation 13. A true work of art.

    • John Blair

      July 8, 2015 at 1:32 pm

      I agree. A very underrated album.

  57. Carlos,

    May 7, 2015 at 12:11 am

    Green day? that stupid band in this list… ???? well…. better close this page….

  58. Joel

    May 7, 2015 at 7:38 am

    IQ – Subterranea (who’s story is so good there is a now film being made of it)
    I also agree with the missing Marillion albums, Brave and Misplaced Childhood.

  59. Ralph

    June 15, 2015 at 11:46 pm

    For me definitely Marillion with Brave. Masterpiece! Misplaced childhood, clutching at straws an marbles also, but Brave should be on top.
    And what about IQ with Subterranea…
    Other suggestions I’ve read I can relate to as well, but these should definitely replace some on the list!

  60. John Blair

    July 8, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    An OK list. I’d suggest that there are better concept albums than most on this list and some aren’t concept albums (Master of Puppets?, Zooropa?).

    Captain Fantastic deserves to be on this list as does Ziggy Stardust, The Wall (although I prefer Dark Side Of The Moon), The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway and War of The Worlds. I’d replace Six Wives of Henry VIII with The Myths and Legends of King Arthur (awesome album) and The Snow Goose with Nude (my all time favourite album).

    No Misplaced Childhood and no Sentinel (Pallas – it’s loosely about the fall of Atlantis)?

  61. Rick

    July 8, 2015 at 2:33 pm

    Jethro Tull, Thick as a Brick has to be on this list; that is one glaring omission; although I am pleased to see that Camel made the cut as Snowgoose is excellent …

    • Frank

      February 11, 2016 at 12:03 am

      Don’t forget Passion Play.

  62. Sam

    July 9, 2015 at 12:06 am

    Pet sounds and Smile ???

  63. Python

    July 9, 2015 at 6:06 am

    You have to know that whenever a “Best whatever of whatever” List comes up it’s going to get nasty.
    Firstly I have to say my idea of a concept album is that it has to be an entire story from start to finish without any space between songs. This may not need to be the case perhaps. Just my feelings on it as I grew up with the likes of Yes, ELP, Genesis, Jethro Tull, Rick Wakemans ‘Journey To The Centre Of The Earth” etc. To me those are true concept albums. I just cant get my head around Sinatra or anyone of that era doing a concept album. Do all the songs progress from one to the next as a story?

  64. Edwin

    November 15, 2015 at 9:26 pm

    How can Queensryche Operation: Mindcrime not be here?

  65. Daniel

    December 30, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    “Music From The Elder” by Kiss could be in the list.
    And so Operation: Mindcrime by Queensryche.

  66. Gerry

    December 30, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    Rick Wakeman – Journey To The Centre Of The Earth,
    Tony Carey – Planet P Project (Pink World)

  67. Krzysiek

    December 30, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    How can there not be a Division Bell?!

  68. Claudio Lopes

    January 15, 2016 at 2:44 am

    Where “Tubular Bells” 1973 Mike Oldfield debut? And the 1969 “Odessa”, double album from The Bee Gees?

  69. Angrangh

    January 19, 2016 at 12:21 pm

    Awful.

    There’s no Kaddish by Towering Inferno, no Divine Punishment by Diamanda Galas, no Not Available by The Residents, no Mmale and Ffemale by Datach’i, as well as many more great concept albums.

  70. M McKeaney

    February 12, 2016 at 3:22 pm

    Pet Sounds may have been one of the most influential concept albums of the mid-sixties. Also, Running on Empty — an album about life on the road, recorded live on the road — What a concept!

  71. Matt Watson

    February 20, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    I would have thought that The Who’s “Quadrophenia” should have been up there along with “Tommy”. Also surprised that “2112” from Rush didn’t make the list….maybe the second half disqualified it, eh?? Along with Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”…what about “Animals”, “Meddle”, ” Wish you were here”, seems like most of Floyd’s albums ARE concept albums …(Thanks to Roger Waters)…I guess you have to draw the lines somewhere…

  72. Artur Costa

    February 21, 2016 at 11:49 am

    1 monstrous missing: Jethro Tull Thick as a Brick, and Passion Play too

  73. Angus Scrimm

    March 16, 2016 at 6:42 pm

    Newcleus Jam on Revenge was one of the best Hip Hop concept albums ever.

  74. Kevin Carroll

    April 15, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    Many outstanding selections and suggestions. Here are a few of my recommendations for your consideration: Vangelis – Heaven and Hell, Jean-Michel Jarre – Oxygene, Brian Eno – Ambient 2: The Plateaux of Mirror, Mike Oldfield – Tubular Bells, Alan Parsons Project – I Robot. Enjoy!!

  75. Jeff Nielson

    April 16, 2016 at 1:44 am

    You left out Tomita’s Planets and The Bermuda Triangle… Two of the all time best synthesizer albums, especially classical music on synthesizer.

  76. Germán

    April 16, 2016 at 8:40 am

    Where are Mike Oldfield, Yes, Emerson,Lake & Palmer, Gentle Giant, King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Jean-Michel Jarre…?

  77. Michel Lefebvre

    June 8, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    L’heptade? …et si on avait une cinquième saison??: Harmonium / Power and the Glory? Three Friends??: Gentle Giant /Today’s empires, tomorrow’s ashes: Propagandhi?

  78. John Johnson

    June 13, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Blows Against The Empire

  79. Norma Stitz

    June 29, 2016 at 4:03 am

    XTC – Skylarking

  80. John

    June 29, 2016 at 9:13 am

    I love how subjective the discussion of music is. There are so many great albums on this list and so many that could easily be on the list…….The Beach Boys “Pet Sounds”, Billy Thorpe’s “Children of the Sun, Revisited”, Brian Wilson’s “Smile”, just off he top of my head and current musical emotion. No list is perfect for everyone but any list that promotes the
    ought and discussion is great. This one certainly does that.

  81. Sait Ayasli

    June 29, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    If “WHO -Tommy” finds a place in the list, Jesus Christ Superstar should be on top.

  82. Stan Caldwell

    June 30, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    Randy Newman’s Good Old Boys. One of the truly great underappreciated, subversive records of the 1970s. complete with a photo of Huey Long on the back cover to tie it all together. Priceless.

  83. Kevin

    August 26, 2016 at 1:40 am

    Jethro Tull. Thick as a Brick has to be one of the top concept albums of all time.

  84. James A Woronow

    July 26, 2017 at 4:44 am

    Strange Days, how the hell could you leave that out? Music and lyrics are about as tight and other worldly as you can get

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