|The Stone Roses – The Stone Roses (1989)
Our long trip through the eighties finally comes to an end with an album that definitely pointed the way for the direction rock music would head towards into the ’90s, or at least British rock music. I mean this album is so highly regarded in British music circles that in 2006 NME declared it the greatest British album of all time. I’ll start off by saying it’s not, but it’s still very good nonetheless.
Being from Manchester in the late eighties, The Stone Roses couldn’t help but get lumped in with the whole “Madchester” scene, which was defined by much more dance-oriented music than what you’ll find on this debut. You can see traces of that acid house sound spilling over into some of the songs, especially on the song “Fool’s Gold”, but for the most part this album is all about guitars and poppy songwriting.
Guitarist John Squire creates a pretty unique blend of guitar sounds that combines plenty of acoustic guitars, with a whole lot of psychedelic sounds that made for a sound that was vintage and forward-thinking at the same time. Ian Brown’s laid-back vocal approach makes for a nice foil to the band’s kaleidoscope of colorful sounds, with there being no shortage of catchy melodies. It’s really one of those albums where it’s hard to pick a stand-out track because they’re all so damn tasty.
I’ve always thought of The Stone Roses as the album that in some ways planted the seed for what would eventually would become Britpop, as it heralded a return to a more classic British songwriting approach. In fact, I bet if you listened to this album without knowing anything about it, you’d probably think it came out in the mid-nineties.
Favorite Tracks: “She Bangs The Drum”, “Waterfall”, “I Am The Resurrection”