music

Ranked: Every Album by The Cars

Ranked: Every Album by The Cars

The Cars have been one of my favorite bands since around the time I transitioned from middle school to high school, which was the mid-90s, perhaps an odd time to become a fan of 80s New Wave. Nevertheless, I would listen to them obsessively on my Walkman cassette player and later on my Discman—so super cool, I know! Or rad! Or whatever we were saying back then. Anyway, after Ric Ocasek’s unfortunate passing this September, I revisited those Cars albums and decided to rank them in order of my personal favorites, because I’ve already done the same with so many other favorite bands, including my favorite of all time, Tom Petty, so why not The Cars? With that said, let’s go!

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Ranked: Every Replacements Album

Ranked: Every Replacements Album

Okay, we need to get one thing straight right away: there’s no chance in hell I can rank these albums from least to best because I love them all in different ways and their two best albums really are so neck-and-neck that a photo finish result would be useless to determine the all-time champ. Instead, these are ranked in order of which Replacements albums mean the most to me, or which ones I go back to more than the others. In that way, I was able to slightly differentiate these into a more cohesive and organized list. Again, I love each dearly, so I present these with all the sincerity I can muster. Let me know which one is your own favorite!

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My Own Personal Joshua Tree: Giving Thanks to the Music and Memories of Bus Rides to School

My Own Personal Joshua Tree: Giving Thanks to the Music and Memories of Bus Rides to School

My experience with music was a mixed bag as a child. In the years after my parents divorced when I was three, my mom began listening to more country music, which in the 80s was becoming aggressively hokey and pop-oriented, and I heard a lot of it on the car radio driving around. Despite this, I was able to sneak in some time watching MTV after elementary and I became enamored with videos by the likes of Joe Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, The Cars, The Cure, Dire Straights, Men at Work, and others, but as things began shifting more toward metal and hip-hop as the 90s neared, my access to MTV grew increasingly restricted. Like Sting once sang, I wanted my MTV, but no dice.

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Ranked: Every Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Album

Ranked: Every Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Album

From so-so to legendary, because there are no “bad” Tom Petty albums!!

My number #2 band always fluctuates between The Replacements, Tom Waits, and Ryan Adams, but my overall #1 ever since I was a little kid has always been and will always be Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. TP has a knack for crafting that 3 minute rock song that is both radio friendly (well, back when radio mattered) and also tells a story. That’s what I love about the band the most: their storytelling, little fictions that speak to realities. With guitars. Really loud guitars. Sometimes soft ones, too. All good stuff. Enough chit-chat. Here’s my ranking, from passable to great.   

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