Time for a bit of Italy.
Don't worry, not italian music (not yet...): Italian music journalism and critics' choices. Some years ago I started writing for a rock magazine called Il Mucchio Selvaggio, a rather venerable one in Italy. At that time Il Mucchio was a weekly mag (today, it's monthly) and had a great insert called Classic Rock, about, well, classic rock. The central pages of it were occupied by historical charts. Top 10 punk albums, Top 10 blues albums, Top 10 indie-rock albums, and so on. It was the end of the Nineties: Napster, P2P, iTunes (and Spotify, of course) were just dreams in some brilliant and geeky minds. And in my mind, too. I daydreamed the chance of listening to those albums, quickly, easily, without having to rob a bank for buying all the cds. Exactly what I can do right now, thanks to Spotify.
Some days ago I dared to take a look in the deepness of my closets, and I found the full collection of Classic Rock inserts. So... 2 + 2 = 5... a new Spotirama series was born! Periodically, I will create Spotify playlists from Classic Rock charts. Rock critics from Il Mucchio are very good. Trust me. I'm not one of them. :o)
So, let's roll.
From Classic Rock #1: Punk '77 - I dieci album fondamentali
Here's what Eddy Cilia wrote about it (awful english translation is mine):
"Some things happened in the october of 1977...
In UK Sex Pistols, after the 4th scandalizing single (Holidays in the Sun), published their first (and only) true lp, Never Mind the Bollocks. It changed rock music, forever. At the same time, X-Ray Spex got out the schizoid Oh Bondage Up Yours. In France, it was the debut of brilliant Metal Urbain. In the U.S., first album for Stiv Bators' Dead Boys. And in Italy? On the newsstands, local music aficionados found a new magazine, bizarrely named with the title of a western masterpiece by Sam Peckinpah (Il Mucchio Selvaggio = The Wild Bunch), with Neil Young on the cover, 32 pages, homemade design. It featured blues, country, folk. And punk? The only clue something important was happening in rock territory was an ad page, bought by RCA, to promote - among the others - Ramones' Leave Home.
Since then, Il Mucchio Selvaggio, abundantly made amends for that incredible underestimation of punk. Since 1980, it started promoting loudly every important new act. Never forgetting that in music - like in chemistry - nothing starts from nothing: you can't understand the present and imagine the future without knowing the past. This monthly feature, that begins in this publication, is meant to give young readers an easy tool to get the basis of history of rock (and not only rock). And to give expert readers a nice recall, some thorough examinations and the chance to get angry for the exclusions in the charts we will regularly compile. No problem, we're all national football team's managers.
We liked the idea to start from the year of birth of Il Mucchio. Punk quickly burned its revolution, melting with other sounds, evolving in hardcore or decaying in a way that finally showed its reactionary nature. Just few albums from the contemporary punk scene deserve the ink used to write about them. But classics are classics. And... well... actually 1977 began in '76 and ended in '78. Following punk, even the good one, is something different. We'll talk about it, later."
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10 Pivotal Albums
Adverts - Crossing the Red Sea With the Adverts (Anchor, 1978)
Buzzcocks - Singles Going Steady (United Artists, 1979)
Clash - The Clash (CBS, 1977)
Damned - Damned Damned Damned (Stiff, 1977)
Dead Boys - Young, Loud and Snotty (Sire, 1977)
Richard Hell & the Voidoids - Blank Generation (Sire, 1977)
Ramones - Ramones (Sire, 1976)
Saints - I'm Stranded (EMI, 1977)
Sex Pistols - Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols (Virgin, 1977)
10 Albums More
Generation X - Generation X (Chrysalis, 1978)
Jam - In the City (Polydor, 1977)
Patti Smith Group - Radio Ethiopia (Arista, 1976)
Stranglers - Rattus Norvegicus (United Artists, 1977)
Wire - Pink Flag (Harvest/EMI, 1977)
X-Ray Spex - Germ Free Adolescents (EMI, 1978)
The Spotify Playlists
* In the lite playlist I added three songs from Sham 69's Tell Us the Truth, taken not from the original album but from a collection available on Spotify.