On #NationalAlbumDay I thought I'd be self indulgent just like many of the purveyors of those classic concept albums.
Jethro Tull's 'Thick as a Brick' and Yes' 'Tales From The Topographic Oceans' may have marked the lowest ebb of the 70s 'concept album' backlash, being described at the time by hacks as self-indulgent w*** and worse. But, dare I say it, many have stood the test of time, especially when contrasted to the present day download culture more geared towards instant stand-alone tracks.
What makes a coherent album concept? 4Hero's Marc Mac said earlier today on 'Zuckerworld' network:
"Before iTunes, Spotify and download culture “the album” was a means for artist to present a coherent musical journey, often conceptual and could be experimental. Knowing the audience had a start point (needle hits side one) the journey begins and an endpoint. I always loved the constraints of not skipping a track. Making and album was no joke."
Here's a gallery of a few favourites of mine, some blindingly obvious and others less celebrated...
Mouse-over for captions...