A decade ago, I wrote a series of entries ranking my favorite albums from 1985 to 2004. My collection has expanded greatly since then, particularly in the last five years. So I wanted to see what has changed in 10 years.
1996 was my final year in college, a year before I would earn the kind of disposable income that would go into building a music collection. While the Favorite 10 of 1996 remains mostly unchanged, the extended list includes many more discoveries I couldn’t afford to hear at the time.
Soundtrack, William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet
Soundtrack, Robotech Perfect Collection
Asylum Street Spankers, Spanks for the Memories
Various Composers, Gay American Composers
Original Cast Recording, Rent
Marilyn Manson, Antichrist Superstar
Everything But the Girl, Walking Wounded
Shawn Colvin, A Few Small Repairs
Robin Holcomb, Little Three
Other favorites from the year:
Midnight Oil, Breathe
Dead Can Dance, Spiritchaser
Emmylou Harris, Portraits
Kronos Quartet, Howl USA
Yen Town Band, Montage
Neutral Milk Hotel, On Avery Island
Aphex Twin, Richard D. James Album
Sleater-Kinney, Call the Doctor
Café Tacuba, Avalancha de Exitos
I could actually add more titles from Wilco, Helmet, Gillian Welch, DJ Shadow and Amuro Namie to the extended list, but I haven’t lived with them as long as the ones I’ve already added.
I owned the Richard D. James album at one point. It was a promo from the student newspaper, but I was such a neophyte with EDM that I couldn’t make heads or tails of it. As it turns out nobody could really make heads or tails of it.
The original extended list didn’t include Lore because it had already fallen victim to a collection purge. I rediscovered the album after the death of Padraig Duggan.
Avalancha de Exitos was the first album by Café Tacuba I would encounter, but I wouldn’t purchase it till many years later. I borrowed it from a friend and liked it. But I stayed away from it because it’s a cover album of music of which I had no reference.