Concept Albums

Guttersnipe

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Ever get into them? For some bands, there are songs where you can just listen to the music and not miss a thing. Then there are ones with a story behind them. Finally, there are ones that are just a fraction of a larger story. Such songs, more often than not, belong to genres called known as ptogressive rock or progressive metal. My favorite bands that release concept albums often are notably Rush and The Mars Volta. The Who and Pink Floyd have a few. A band called Coheed and Cambria is one I listened to frequently throughout my teens. Literally every song of theirs is like a chapter of a sci-fi narrative called by frontman and writer Claudio Sanchez he calls The Bag.Online.Adventures. There are even comic books that portray the story. I am a total nerd so I read most of them.

If you do get into concept albums and analyze their contents, which are your favorite?
 

HareBrain

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The best: War of the Worlds (Jeff Wayne), Thick as a Brick (Jethro Tull), the Pink Floyd ones.

The worst: First Quest the Music, a soundtrack to a supposed D&D adventure. (Did anyone else ever own this?)

Terrible but somehow still fond of it: Music from The Elder (Kiss)
 

Finch

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Concept albums were often considered , at the time, to be pretentious. In truth , it was not true . It was an attempt to move a way from the singles market . lots of albums were a just a collection of singles . The idea predates the word . It is the norm in classical music . Frank Zapper was producing albums like The Gran Wazoo and Hot Rats and the Stone's , Their Satanic Request, long before the classification of Concept album existed.
 
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pyan

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Ah yes, happy hours spent with this one:

 

pyan

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Don't forget the mighty Rick Wakeman, either!


(in two parts)

 

Stephen Palmer

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I love a good concept album, the best ones are the first - Sgt Pepper - then any of the Yes ones, and of course War Of The Worlds.
 

farntfar

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Wakeman did Journey to the centre of the earth before Six Wives.
Tull used to insist that Thick as a Brick was not a concept album, just a collection of songs, but I don't think many of us believed them, but Warchild counts I think.

Snowgoose by Camel came straight from the book by Paul Gallico. I only read the book after listening to the album with headphones in a dark room .
 

pyan

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CupofJoe

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Not your typical Concept album but I have to mention Alice Cooper's The Last Temptation
I love the energy and the story.
The CD album came with a mini-comic and I went out and got the full series.
Wish I had bought the vinyl as that came with a full-size comic!
 

Foxbat

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Wakeman did Journey to the centre of the earth before Six Wives.
Tull used to insist that Thick as a Brick was not a concept album, just a collection of songs, but I don't think many of us believed them, but Warchild counts I think.

Snowgoose by Camel came straight from the book by Paul Gallico. I only read the book after listening to the album with headphones in a dark room .
I recently read an interview with Ian Anderson where he referred toThick As A Brick as a kind of anti-concept album. His original idea was to blast away the self-importance that sometimes follows in the wake of the genre. Whatever the reson, I really like Thick As A Brick and consider it one of Tull’s finest (I even joined the dots in the newspaper to see who Fluffy the duck was playing with):)
 

M. Robert Gibson

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One of my favourites from more recent times is The Astronaut by Wax Fang

In fact, it's probably one of my favourites of all time, and yes I'm aware that all time includes everything that's ever been written and everything that is going to be written. (y)
 

Toby Frost

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I suppose Octagonacology by Doctor Octagon would be a strange psychadelic rap concept album. Do albums count if they convey a particular sense without telling one long story, like OK Computer by Radiohead or Lovage by Lovage?

I think Diamond Dogs by David Bowie started off as a retelling of 1984, but he couldn't get the rights.
 
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