Editors Choice: Desert Island Discs – Our Top 5 Albums by Darren Uddenberg
November 3, 2008, 4:05 pm
Filed under: Music | Tags: , ,

[By Darren]

As you know, XeNonX generally covers gaming news from all over the world, every once and awhile though us bloggers actually get off our butts and do something…you know in the outside world. This world unfortunately is a loud and busy place that often times is best drowned out with headphones (Sony brand of course). So we at XeNonX thought of compiling a list of or favorite go to albums, our top 5 (or 6, Ryan 🙂 ) picks of ALL time! These are the albums we just can’t get enough of. We hope you listen to our personal opinions. that you’ve grown to trust, and give a little of your time to listen to our favorite artist’s. I like to think of these choices as our ‘desert Island discs’. Hit the jump for the first of the lists (mine).


[Darren’s Picks]

A Fine Frenzy (Alison Sudol) – One Cell in the Sea

Have you ever had one of those nostalgic halcyon days? Fall has stripped the leaves off the trees, the wind blows your hair back and there’s this electricity in the air, all of this reminding you just how beautiful the world really is. Press my previous sentence into a 14 track compact disc and you would be holding A Fine Frenzy’s Debut Album “One Cell In The Sea”. Before this album I had nearly given up on finding music that could get any emotional response out of me, oh how happy i was when i stumbled upon it through Amazon’s popular titles list. The tracks, from the beginning of the CD to the end, have this incredible equality and unity to them which helps define the collection as a true album and not just three singles slapped in between filler songs. A true masterpiece by an up and coming artist, perfectly suited for the fall season. Need I say More?

Bright Eyes – I’m Wide Awake It’s Morning

“I could be a Famous singer if i had someone else’s voice, but failures always sounded better lets fuck it Up boys, make some noise” – (Bright eyes – Road to Joy)

I think the quote above sums up how I feel about Bright Eyes’ music, and more appropriately this album. A must listen!

Ray Lamontagne – Trouble

I can not stress enough just how much you, the reader, needs to hear this album. “Trouble” is the debut album by Ray Lamontagne, a shy introvert with a masterpiece collection of songs that are the “Hyde” to his “Jekyll” personality. The subtle folky music contrast’s Ray’s ability to powerfully deliver his vocals with masterful skill even behind his softy spoken voice. A true artist in a sea of musicians.

Death Cab for Cutie – Plans

Death Cab’s “Plans” is an incredible album filled with Poppy indie hits that’re a must have for any bleeding heart romantic. Contrast to the many folk albums in my top 5, this album or more importantly this band has an amazing ability to perform their songs with masterful precision. Wether live or in the studio Death Cab For Cutie perform their songs note for note every time. If your curious about these guys, this is the album to listen to.

Sufjan Stevens – Seven Swans

Ever tripped out on acid? Or walk across a river of water with jesus? Me neither! but every time i hear Sufjan Steven’s album “Seven Swans”, i’m convinced I have indeed done said things. Sufjan’s music is truly unique and his voice well suited for the style. There is a fearlessness to this music and “Seven Swans” sounds like Stevens is  experimenting with incorporating a more poppy sound into his eclectic dark folky music he is known for.

[Ryan’s Picks]

AC/DC – Back In Black

Back in Black was AC/DC’s first album after the death of long time lead singer Bon Scott. This album has some to most of AC/DC’s best songs ever written, and possibly some of the best rock songs ever composed. Songs like Back in BlackYou Shook Me All Night Long and Hells Bells are still used as stadium rock today, and are still constantly on the radio. This is definitely one of the best rock albums of all time, and in my eyes, one of the best ever.
Notorious B.I.G. – Ready To Die

Notorious B.I.G.’s “Ready To Die” is truly a classic rap album. Juicy is recognized as one of the greatest rap songs in history and for great reason. Other songs such as Big Poppa and Who Shot Ya are still great songs to listen to and really set a foundation for rap and hip-hop to become successful. I personally like Biggie more than Tupac, for those who were wondering.

Bob Marley And The Wailers – Legend

Legend is a compilation of Bob Marley And The Wailers’ greatest songs. Honestly, I don’t think there is a single person in the world who can listen to Bob Marley’s music and not be inspired, or at least smile. Three Little Birds and One Love are incredible songs that send nothing but good vibes, and songs like Get Up, Stand Up have powerful meaning. I could sit here and basically run through the whole album and tell you that I love every single song. Reggae would be nothing today if it wasn’t for Bob Marley.
Van Halen – Van Halen

No avid rock listeners album collection is complete without Van Halen’s self titled first album, Appropriately named, it was Van Halen’s first album, and also their best.Unchained, Runnin’ With The DevilIce Cream Man and Fell Your Love Tonight are just a few of the masterfully composed songs on the album. Who can forget the insane guitar solo, Eruption by none other than Eddie Van Halen? The reasons above should tell you why this album definitely deserves a spot in my top 5.
The GameDoctor’s Advocate

This album has just way too many great songs to name here so I’m going to just flat out give you my reason. Albums like this are the only reason rap/hip-hop is still alive. Beats are crazy, rhymes and metaphors/similes The Game uses are always clever and stay true to his west-coast style, and overall make for one hell of an album that make you want to just bob your head and roll around in a 64′ Impala with the top down. Rappers like The Game, T.I. and Ludacris are the only reason I still listen to mainstream hip-hop.
Honorable Mention

Jurassic 5 –  Power In Numbers

Jurassic 5 is a rap group of 4 incredibly talented MC’s with old school flavor. The reason I gave you this description is because most of you probably don’t listen to Jurassic 5, and it’s a damn shame. Some of the brightest rappers in the business today yet rediculously terrible “rappers” like Soulja Boy can somehow manage to brainwash the public into listening to garbage like his. The ONLY reason I could not put this album up there is because it’s just not popular enough. It’s personally probably my absolute favorite album, but I can’t really put it up there.
Soulja Boy, please, for the love of god, stop making music. You’re ruining it for everyone.
[Anthony’s Picks]

Oasis – (What’s The Story?) Morning Glory

A lot of people are down on Oasis nowadays, personally I can’t see why. Yeah, their later albums are not as good as their older stuff, but with their new album (Dig Out Your Soul) I think they’re back to the their best, but that’s besides the point. One of the main reasons this album is in my top 5 is because it was the first album I ever bought, of course sentimentality does play a part in my list but I want to stress that this album still holds up. With great tracks like: ‘Don’t Look Back In Anger’ and ‘Wonderwall’ and of course the title track, it’s hard to see why people don’t like Oasis. It might be a little derivative of their debut but it still provides some of the best songs of the 90’s and proudly sits atop my list.
The Smiths – The Very Best Of…

Choosing a band’s greatest hits might seem like a cop out to many people, but to choose one album from The Smiths back catalog would be too hard. I was turned onto the music of The Smiths (and Morrissey) by an unlikely source, stand up comedian/actor/presenter Russell Brand. As a massive Smiths fan himself, Brand would often play their music on his (now defunct) BBC Radio show. His constant ramblings about Morrissey and The Smiths intrigued me and made me pick this album up. All I can say is, oh my god! This is the qunitesential indie/alt. rock of the 80’s, and believe me the music and lyrics hold up today. If you want music that is not only entertaining, but intelligent then it is the music of, Manchester’s most famous sons, The Smiths that you need. I guess if I had to choose one album it would be ‘Strangeways Here We Come’ but I urge new listeners to pick this up first for a more fulfilling musical experience.
Eminem – The Marshall Mathers LP

A little different to my other picks but there is logic to my madness. Eminem’s lyrics on each of the tracks on this album are insane! I don’t like much rap and this is where Eminem has triumphed, he showed rap in a new light and brought in a new demographic. The mix of great beats and crazy, yet catchy, lyrics make this one of my favorite albums. The pop-rap of today makes a mockery of artists like Eminem, especially his older stuff.
Michael Jackson – Thriller

How surprised I was to find that my fellow editors had not included the highest selling album of all time, Michael Jackson’s Thriller in their top 5 (or 6). Every song on this album is amazing and of course it boasts anthems like ‘Beat It’, ‘Thriller’ and of course ‘Billie Jean’. How could anyone not like this album? The thing is they couldn’t, it’s just too good. Whatever your age, sex, race or whatever else you can’t not appreciate the masterpiece that is Thriller.
So there you go. Three editors, three lists, sixteen recommended albums. A lot of these will be known to the masses but for those who haven’t heard some of them I urge you to check them out.
Happy listening! Please feel free to add your own lists in the comments box at the bottom of this post.

4 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Here’s my Playlist as well

Darren’s “Celebrity” Playlist Vol.1 4:56pm
Here’s my Retort to Alison sudols fantastic Online playlist.a great listen before bedtime.Enjoy!

Nude – Radiohead
To Be Alone With You – Sufjan Stevens
I’d Rather Be Lost – Hayley Sales
Wayne Andrews, The old Bee Keeper – the Prize fighter Inferno
Cocoon – Bjork
Winning a battle, Losing a War – The Kings of Convenience
Think of You – A Fine Frenzy
Country Mile – Camera Obscura
Lesson Learned – Ray Lamontagne
To Build a Home – The Cinematic Orchestra
I Will follow you into the dark – Death cab for cutie
Lover i don’t have to love – Bright eyes
I don’t know what i can save you from – The Kings of convenience
Lion’s Mane – Iron & Wine
Invisible Cities – Hayley sales
I Just Might – Monster-0
First day of my life – Bright eyes

Comment by Darren Uddenberg

oh and i would honorably mention Hayley Sales debut cd Sunseed! that would have been the next album if it was over 5.

Comment by Darren Uddenberg

Nice, you worked Daemon’s band into the playlist. Monster-0 FTW! Need to get both of their albums. No meney yet though, just ordered R2.

Comment by Anthony Barlow

i didn’t do that intentionally either, thats just a really good song.

Comment by Darren Uddenberg

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