2)Fugazi, Steady Diet Of Nothing: After The Argument started to grow on me around 2005, I wanted to try the rest of the Fugazi catalogue because I went to the Prindle site and he gave every single album of theirs a 9 or 10...I tried In On The Kill Taker and didn't like but two or three songs, and then tried this, and forgot every note of it, and then didn't listen to the rest of the Fugazi catalogue until maybe a decade later when Alpha Hammer told me to finish them (I think.) Now I'm relistening to it, and aside from those cool harmonic ping noises in "Reclamation," I'm going to forget every note of it again, save *possibly* for one or two of the faster numbers like "Steady Diet" or "Latin Roots," but that's a snowball's chance in hell. Sure, the band rocks, and I'm sure few other rock bands took shots at the Gulf War, but they're just so damn colorless and the songs don't stick in my mind afterwards. A shame--1991 was my favorite year in rock!
3)Gentle Giant, In A Glass House: Mediocre. I like the tense riff that opens "The Runaway" a bit, though not the whole length of the song, and the fast "proto-disco" part of "Way Of Life" sticks out as well. "Experience" would be done better mood-wise by the similar, but superior, "His Last Voyage" two years later, and the title track is okay but hits a similar mood as "Mobile," also from two years later and also better. The two brief ballads are completely worthless, IMO--"A Reunion" is about as slight as Genesis' "For Absent Friends" (and even less memorable than that) and I was baffled at how many reviews singled out "An Inmate's Lullaby" as a great highlight of the album (and FYI, I still check all the forgotten prog review sites--Vintage Prog, Gnosis, ProgressiveEars, Giant Progweed, Progressive World, Sea Of Tranquility, the New GEPR (ugh) and--sorry, Matt!!--Ground & Sky.) It starts out sounding like Bjork's Vespertine in 1973 with these icy tinkles, then turns into Kerry Minnear making dumb vibraphone noises, but this is no "Edge Of Twilight"! I'm not sure how to tell this apart from other Gentle Giant albums, the story about the record label not releasing it in America doesn't make it better, and the truth of the matter is I'm not sure much of anyone really did come up with an intriguing argument for it. Whatever--at least it doesn't have "So Sincere."
4)Neutral Milk Hotel, On Avery Island: What I thought the first time still holds--this is clearly a warmup for a better album, and we got the better album. That said, OAI shouldn't really be written off or forgotten (and I did forget most of it, that's why I'm relistening)--it still SOUNDS just like In The Aeroplane, the songs are just slightly second rate in comparison--"Song Against Sex" was better when it was rewritten as "Holland 1945," but "Naomi" is a beautiful song in its own right, "April 8" and "Three Peaches" are lovely dark tunes with acoustic guitars that strike a darker mood than anything on ITAOTS, and pardon me if I say that "Three Peaches" is actually BETTER than "Oh Comely," because the verse melodies are kinda similar there! Aren't they? None of the reviews seemed to think so (and reviews of this album, BTW, if you look them all up like I did, are all over the place.) "Where You'll Find Me Now" and "You've Passed" are worth a listen to, and I don't even feel like ripping on Mangum for the dumb 13 minute musique concrete piece that drones repetitively at the end. Mangum's singing is also a little less overblown and whatever he's singing ABOUT didn't catch my ear, but I also don't have to put up with Anne Frank or "semen stains the mountaintops" or "as we learned what our bodies are fooo-ooor." If ITAOTS gets a B+ this gets a B.
5)Stereolab, Emperor Tomato Ketchup: I listened to this one about a decade before listening to anything else from their catalogue because I saw Prindle gave it the 10 (it has surprisingly few reviews online, BTW) and someone sent me the lovely "Cybele's Reverie," which for many years would be the only song I'd listen to from this album. I did the rest of the catalogue and picked out about two hours' worth of music I'd like to keep, told myself that the five lovely dreampop songs that opened Peng! (is ANYONE with me on that?) were bound to be my favorite Stereolab moment, and relistened to this album just to be safe. Well, it's really damn good and I'm embarrassed as hell to have forgotten great songs such as "Metronomic Underground" (danceable and justifies all eight minutes, what a groove!), "Tomorrow Is Already Here" (glorious dreampop, like a Yo La Tengo shimmering piece crossed with Tortoise post-rock mood--and John McEntire had a lot to do with this album, which I'd forgotten), "Slow Fast Hazel" (perfect autumnal strings and organs), "Motoroller Scalatron" (organ march! organ march! Farfisa? Vox?), "The Noise Of Carpet" (the only "rocker" here, but it's good!), "Spark Plug," "OLV 26"...really no bad ones at all, maybe "Percolator" comes close to annoying but not really. Very impressive in its diversity and lack of weak songs--I could see myself picking up a CD of this someday. As for the rest of their catalogue, relistening to it's not really a priority right now. But I'm ashamed I forgot this, it's good!