My 5 Favorite Albums of All-Time

This summer, as I studied and traveled around the UK, one of my good friends from the study abroad program decided to ask everyone about their five all-time favorite albums. And, as someone who always has headphones in and loves writing about music, I thought this was a great question; however, simultaneously, I also hated the question for similar reasons. I am always listening to old and new music, but I often struggle with picking my favorite bands — let alone my favorite albums from those bands. So, as I reflected over the music that I’ve fallen in love with recently and that I have consistently enjoyed, I settled upon this list of five great albums. 

  1. 1. “1” - The Beatles

    1 was The Beatles’ first compilation album that was available on only one CD, and while this album features almost all of the band’s top hits and singles, this album was one of my first introductions to The Beatles’ music. This album brings back memories of growing up and dancing around our childhood home, and it features some truly great music as well. 

    Iconic Songs: “All You Need is Love” and “Help!”

    Don't Overlook: “Day Tripper” and “Come Together”

  2. 2. “MTV Unplugged in New York” - Nirvana

    Personally, I have always loved stripped-back and live versions of songs and albums because I feel as though they are more intimate and emotionally raw. I have grown up around Nirvana’s music, and this album offers a unique insight into the realities of what this band was like.  

    Iconic Song: “Come As You Are” and “The Man Who Sold the World”

    Don't Overlook: “All Apologies” and “Lake of Fire”

  3. 3. “Guero” - Beck

    Beck is another artist that I have constantly listened to throughout my life, but I have recently begun to listen to his music more frequently since I saw him perform live in concert. As I’ve explored his extensive discography, this album speaks out to me because I love the blend of alternative rock and electronic elements, and the combination of English and Spanish lyrics is done exceptionally well on this album.

    Iconic Songs: “Girl” and “Go It Alone”

    Don't Overlook: “Que’ Onda Guero” and “E-Pro”

  4. 4. “Good News for People Who Love Bad News” - Modest Mouse

    In high school, when I first truly began to get into listening to music 24/7 and I fell in love with discovering new artists, Modest Mouse made their way into almost all of my playlists. As both a sentimental album and an exploration of indie rock and alternative elements, Modest Mouse, and this album in particular, perfectly encapsulate the beginning of my passion for music.

    Iconic Songs: “Float On” and “The World at Large”

    Don't Overlook: “The View” and “The Good Times are Killing Me” 

  5. 5. “Melophobia” - Cage the Elephant

    As I wrote in another article, Cage the Elephant has consistently been my go-to answer for, “What is your favorite band?” While I discovered Cage the Elephant around the same time as Modest Mouse, I have loved a greater majority of their discography, and being able to see them live (now three times) has greatly increased my appreciation of their music and their creative processes. As my favorite band, it is hard for me to pick a favorite Cage the Elephant album, but Melophobia is such a strong, iconic, sentimental, and on-brand album that it eventually became a clear choice.  

    Iconic Songs: “Come A Little Closer” and “Cigarette Daydreams”

    Don't Overlook: “It’s Just Forever” and “Take It or Leave It” 

Although the advent of streaming platforms has somewhat detracted from listening to albums in full, I continue to enjoy exploring a band’s entire discography and I love seeing how bands choose to format, order, and create their albums. For me, the process of choosing my favorite albums has encouraged me to think about the music that has defined my life, and I have been better able to realize the genres and types of music that I have consistently appreciated.


Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6