The Top 10 Concept Albums of All Time

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gweiss27

To suggest Tom Waits is better than Zappa's Joe's Garage is just flat out irresponsible. To completely omit DT's Scenes From A Memory and Rush's 2112 is borderline criminal. Without them, this entire list has practically no merit (but they did list Joe's Garage, The Lamb, and Mindcrime). And to the deranged gentleman who suggested that 2112 is not a concept album... you sir, should never be allowed to listen to music again.

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h1wystr

Chefgnb~ I agree 110% with SPIRIT's "12 Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus"....In my TOP 5 Albums of All Time, probably #3.

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johnnycnote

I thought of a rock opera years before Townshend did! I was in 5th grade in '68, and we'd just learned what an opera is. I was already heavily into rock (especially psychedelic) and thought "why not use modern music instead of classical, like The Rolling Stones". I then adapted "The Marriage of Figaro" to use "Paint it Black", "The Citadel", "2000 Light Years from Home", and some Electric Prunes and Yardbirds.

But not being able to do notation and with tape recorders being way out of reach from the average 11 year old, I was unable to take the idea further. Then one day I saw "Tommy" in a store and had heard about it on the radio, and I thought "dammit, he stole my idea"! I wasn't concerned with technicalities like the fact I was in Florida and The Who was in the UK.

Anyway, I'm sure I'm not the only person who's thought of a "rock opera", but I like to think I am . . .

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redstrat8

I'M GONNA WRITE A ROCK OPERA -TAMMY -TOMMY'S DEAF DUMB AND BLIND SISTER HA HA

jefffos

I'd pick Quadrophenia before Tommy...

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mikeyesfan

I agree with a of them except for not having Yes on the list their album Close to the Edge or Tales from Topographic Oceans. That and the guy who said about Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon is right or the one everyone forgets from them Meddle.

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daveotr

No "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"?
No "Scenes from a Memory"?

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guitarladd

No "Sgt. Pepper" is strange since it has always been touted as the first concept album. Of course, Lennon always said that it was just a collection of songs and the whole concept thing was Paul's idea. And really there isn't much of a concept, except for the Sgt. Pepper song at the start and the Sgt. Pepper reprise. A Day In The Life would be a good ending for a concept album if the whole album was about the guy who "blew his brains on in a car".

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nmccarthy001

Yes, it's a very good list and, of course, you can't get everyon'e favorite into the top 10. However, there are a couple of glaring omissions, namely S.F. Sorrow, which The Pretty Things released in 1968. Arguably one of the very first concept albums. Rush, Yes and Gentle Giant notwithstanding, we're also forgetting Bowie's 1992 classic: The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars.

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tlogar

2112...how does that get left off the list?

benficacraze

It's not a concept album but this is a great list honestly

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loral

Do you even know what a "Concept Album" is????

Maybe read this defintion on Wikipedia, where they even list "Carass of Steel" and "2112" both as concept albums:

A concept album is a studio album where all musical or lyrical ideas contribute to a single overall theme or unified story. In contrast, typical studio albums consist of a number of unconnected songs (lyrically and otherwise) performed by the artist.

Hard to believe Dream Theater is not mentioned or Styx' Paradise Theater

benficacraze

Yeah, I'm aware of what a concept album is, and 2112 isn't one. The second side is pretty unrelated, and I can't speak for Caracas of steel since i haven heard it. And I hope you do realize that Wikipedia is a very unreliable source but if you want to use them as a source, I'll do the same; "The album is sometimes described as a concept album although the songs on the second side are unrelated to the plot of the suite. " that's from the 2112 wiki page. How come it isn't always considered one? And it's not your list so naturally, it'll be different from your list. Whose to say what an LP is to be considered if not the individual listening to it?so I say, 2112 isn't a concept album.

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Rogerw58

Although I agree that some of these albums are masterpieces, you have forgotten one of the greatest concept albums of all time. Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" So what if the Floyd have two in the top 10. They've earned it!!

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guitarladd

Actually both "Wish You Were Here" and "Animals" should be on this list also, but then the Floyd would kind of dominate the list with four albums. They are better than most of the things on this list, but then I'm a big Floydhead, who isn't. Is there anybody who doesn't like Pink Floyd? Punk rockers I guess.

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BAMstutz

I would add The Who - Quadrophenia and Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea.

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guitarladd

Neutral Milk Hotel? How about my concept album "Guitarladd Goes Insane" it's incredible. LOL

Veinstainedheart

Joshua Estelle

I can relate to zen arcade because i was THE disenfranchised suburban youth

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yynek82

ever hear of a way cooler sub-genre progressive group putting out a still radio-wave playing concept album with a bunch of numbers in it?...2112, RUSH, alex lifeson, neil peart, geddy lee?!!!! hellooooooooooooooooooooooo

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gypsydd

So 2112, epic

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aerosmith1

Good list, but what about judas priest, "Nostradamus" and even the coheed and cambria saga

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chefgnb

What about Spirit, The 12 Dreams of Dr. Sardonocus? Now that was a concept album!

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crowbarr66

Alice Cooper had a couple great ones (Alice Cooper Goes To Hell and From The Inside). I figured at least one would have made the list.

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amonamarth325

where's Nightfall in Middle-Earth by Blind Guardian?? i know its not a "classic" album, but it is one of the best concept albums i have ever heard, plus it has some great guitar work in it. Paradise Lost by Symphony X deserves to be mentioned as well

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dimebag68

So Tom Waits made #6 on the concept album list but Dream Theater's ( scenes from a memory ) never even gets mentioned? This is GUITAR World right? That is laughable....props on the Queensryche mention though.

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dkarda

Abso-freakin-lutely! Scenes is better than half of these in every way a record can be. Dream Theater gets dismissed/overlooked way too often.

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strangemood

I agree. Where is Dream Theater? Also, Where is Rush? They became true rock legends because of their concept albums.

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