The next installment of ‘100 songs to listen to before you turn twenty.’
41) Simon and Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits - Simon and Garfunkel - A collection of Simon and Garfunkel’s most iconic tracks. A duo that formed in the late 1950’s, they have truly stood the test of time, with their music still being immensely popular with younger generations today. They sing in beautiful harmonies, with typically quite simple arrangements, using instruments such as acoustic guitar and piano. Generally, their music can be described as folk rock. Lyrically, the duo are exceptional, with them even writing a song about the patron saint of musicians, Cecilia. The melodies are fluid and intricate, and the balance of instruments and vocals is perfect.
Notable songs: Cecilia, El Condor Pasa, Mrs Robinson
42) Shepherd Moons - Enya - An album from the early nineties, carrying on in Enya’s distinct style. Without a doubt, it is Enya’s voice that sets her apart from other musicians; her singing is truly ethereal; it almost seems to float within the music itself. Enya harks back to her Irish roots, and you can certainly hear celtic and folk influences, though the album itself is classed as new age music. Everything about Enya’s music flows...there is nothing sharp or jarring. Everything is congruous and relaxing, and it is well worth a listen.
Notable songs: Caribbean Blue, Lothlorien, Afer Ventus
43) Some People Have Real Problems - Sia - The fourth studio album from the idiosyncratic Australian artist Sia. This offering is another soulful work, covering the highs and lows of life, all interwoven with a flux of Jazz. Sia’s vocals really cut you to the core, making you feel whatever pain or sorrow she is trying to express, and with this same voice, she can also exalt you to feelings of joy and security. Lyrics are interesting, and memorable too, with Sia using the idea of an ‘Electric Bird,’ for example. The arrangements are lovely, with absolutely lush horn sections, and truly divine bass lines. This is somewhat different from her latest pop-focused efforts, but this album is arguably one of Sia’s finest.
Notable songs: Soon We’ll Be Found, Electric Bird, Buttons
44) Electra Heart - Marina and the Diamonds - Marina’s second album, and an ambitious one at that. Marina takes on the task of creating a concept album, exploring female tropes, and embodying them through song. Marina has since said that this was in many ways, a form of catharsis as well as an exploration of the female stereotypes. Once again we see inventive and intelligent lyrics, combined with heavenly vocals and gorgeous instrumentations.
Notable songs: Fear and Loathing, Teen Idle, Valley of the Dolls
45) Stationary Traveller - Camel - An album from a Prog-rock band that formed in the 70’s, this album is a truly mature and innovative work. Their melodies and guitar solos are truly heartfelt and can bring you to tears, especially with the dynamic, expression-rich vocals. Again, this is another concept album, telling the story of someone trying to get over the Berlin Wall from East Berlin to West Berlin. As such, the album is very politically charged.
Notable songs: Long Goodbyes, Stationary Traveller, Cloak and Dagger Man