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The Ramones named #2 band of all time
January 10, 2002 4:28 PM   Subscribe

The Ramones named #2 band of all time by Spin magazine, following the Beatles at #1. I think we all can agree to disagree about the vailidity of the yearly Grammy nominations, but when given a little more time, you'd think that the editors of Spin could come up with something better than placing The Smiths at #21, or Fugazi at #31. In other news, Bruce Springsteen was left off the list.
posted by padjet1 (91 comments total)

 
I know there are Fugazi fans out there, but ahead of The Who (#39) or Pink Floyd (#49)?

Spin doesn't have their Feb. issue online yet, so I was unable to find a full list.
posted by padjet1 at 4:32 PM on January 10, 2002


It's Spin, what do you expect? Lists like this are usually full of shit. I wonder if an honest "all time" anything list is possible.
posted by rathikd at 4:38 PM on January 10, 2002


No, they're not. Because music critics - moreso than other cultural critics - are full of it, and themselves.
posted by owillis at 4:44 PM on January 10, 2002


I like the Ramones and all, but the #2 placement really feels like a sympathy vote.

They were an influential band, and their allure was due in part to the fact that they didn't know how to play their instruments, etc. When punk first "broke" in the late 70's, wasn't the lack of musical ability (or experience) a hallmark of a punk band?

Heh - maybe Spin placed them that high to get people talking, and generate interest in their mag.
posted by xena at 4:45 PM on January 10, 2002


Interesting list and pretty good overall, but I have some bones to pick. I have no problem whatsoever with The Ramones at #2(the greatest punk band ever deserves no less) but The Who should have been in the Top 10 at least, without their original innovations both punk and metal would not exist. On top of that Rage Against the Machine and Massive Attack make the list but not the Replacements?! The Replacements were not only the best American band of the 1980's but probably the last great prefix-free not pretensions rock-n-roll band were ever likely to see. And Springsteen should definitely be on the list as well, Born to Run and Darkness on the Edge of Town stll hold up as classic albums 20-odd years down the line.

And quite frankly, the Smiths don't even belong on the list. Anyone both vegetarian and celibate has no place in rock and roll.

But on the plus side, Metallica, Sly and the Family Stone, Black Sabbath, The Stooges and yes even my boys in Skynyrd seem to be getting there critical due, finally.

This thread will probably rapidly become a brawl, but the issues cover did say "guaranteed to start fights!"
posted by jonmc at 4:47 PM on January 10, 2002


I agree. Spin is one of the worst rags out there. This is hard to compile anyway, we can all rate what we've heard but who has actually seen most of these bands in person (I think you'd be hard pressed to find anybody who has) and what makes a "best band", live performance or studio albums? Nice to see Nirvana in the top five though.
posted by dig_duggler at 4:49 PM on January 10, 2002


SPIN minus Bob Guccione Jr. = crap like this.

I subscribed for the first 5-6 years religiously to this mag and I have yet to find anything as interesting or as cutting edge since.

I dont think that anyone who works there now even knows who the Replacements are.
posted by tsarfan at 4:54 PM on January 10, 2002


I dont think that anyone who works there now even knows who the Replacements are.

And it's a damn shame cos just about every critic's darling today not to mention platinum-sellers like Green Day, the Goo Goo Dolls, and the Strokes all pretty much lifted their whole style from the 'Mats.(as they'd all be the first to admit)
posted by jonmc at 4:58 PM on January 10, 2002


Husker Du?
posted by Ty Webb at 4:59 PM on January 10, 2002


I haven't seen the list, but according to the article, Husker Du has a prominent placement on the list. Long overdue recognition for the most important band of the 80s. The Huskers paved the way for every post-punk band with metal guitars *with* melodies and intelligent, thoughtful lyrics to boot. Those indebted include: Nirvana, Rage, At the Drive-In to name a few. Heck, even the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame named their "Turn on the News" one of the 500 songs that shaped rock and roll. Kudos to Spin for representin'.
posted by Vek at 4:59 PM on January 10, 2002


Is VU on the list?
posted by machaus at 5:00 PM on January 10, 2002


jonmc, Green Day lifted their style from the Descendents, not the Replacements.

Ty, get with the program. I suggest starting off with "New Day Rising".
posted by Vek at 5:01 PM on January 10, 2002


Vek,(with all due respect to Milo and the boys) then how come Billy Joe's side project Pinhead Gunpowder does a (not half bad) cover of the 'Mats's "Achin' to Be" ?

And you're right Husker Du do absolutely belong on the list. Bob Mould is one of the best rock songwriters of the last 20 years.

As I'm typing this, I thought of another glaring omission. Where the hell is Alice Cooper? The grandaddy of all shock-rock from Marilyn Manson to Eminem deserves some credit, huh!
posted by jonmc at 5:06 PM on January 10, 2002


Lists such as these are always going to generate debate. But they do serve the purpose of hyping up the latest issue and getting people interested long enough to pay for a copy of the magazine. Remember, most of us consider ourselves to know what good music is and all we end up doing is reading a few pages and thinking to ourselves 'that guy doesn't know jack shit'. Think about it. It's pretty funny really.
posted by skinsuit at 5:08 PM on January 10, 2002


oh, and what about Scritti Politi? are they on the list?
posted by machaus at 5:10 PM on January 10, 2002


jonmc, a cover does not an necessarily influence make. That branch of the rock and roll tree goes something like Descendents -> Green Day -> Blink 182. The 'Mats to me were more punk in attitude than actual sound (drunken live shows aside). See "Androgynous " or "Unsatisfied". Besides, if we use the cover song test, they did Kiss' "Black Diamond" which is a rock song, so... nevermind.

Also, please note that Grant Hart (whose solo career has been overshadowed by Mould) wrote half of the Huskers output. Props where props are due.
posted by Vek at 5:18 PM on January 10, 2002


...and how could I forget the title of "Let It Be". Tip of the cap to the undisputable #1 the Beatles.
posted by Vek at 5:19 PM on January 10, 2002


I love CNN's subhed:
a list guaranteed to spark debate among rock fans over whether The Ramones are better than Led Zeppelin or why Husker Du is ranked higher than Pink Floyd.

Not from me.... But I also believe these lists are meaningless except to the people who compose them. How can anyone objectively say that, for example, Public Enemy made better or worse music than The Clash? It's ridiculous.
posted by emptyage at 5:21 PM on January 10, 2002


jonmc, a cover does not an necessarily influence make.

True Enough, but in the case of Replacements/Green day I think there is an influence. Listen to Billy Joe's vocals on "Good Riddance" and just about all of Tre's drumming.

Plus, you're entirely correct that the 'Mats were not a punk band. Like I said in my initial post, they were "prefix-free" rock in the tradition of the Stones, MC5,and the Faces with a good helping of the Beatles and Big Star thrown in for melody. Not to mention Paul Westerberg's voice one of the few truly unmistakable voices in rock history. This unpretentious devotion to rock-nroll virtues without splitting off into some subgenre is one of the reasons they are my favorite band.

And lastly, yes Grant Hart definitely gets props from me.
posted by jonmc at 5:27 PM on January 10, 2002


and yes these lists are ridiculous but it sure is fun arguing about them though.
posted by jonmc at 5:28 PM on January 10, 2002


...music critics - more so than other cultural critics - are full of it, and themselves.

More than bloggers? Great God!
posted by y2karl at 5:40 PM on January 10, 2002


These types of lists will continue to suffer as long as we look at them from the perspective of bands being better or worse than one another. That's too subjective to calculate effectively. Bands should be gauged by their influence on music, not by their popularity in record sales. This list does a decent job of ranking bands by their influence on the rock industry. They just need to change the word "best" to "influential".

I may not like Nirvana, but I can't deny their role in turning grunge mainstream. You have to look at these things objectively without getting upset over your favorite indy band not being listed.
posted by johnjreeve at 5:41 PM on January 10, 2002


Rock on, jonmc, rock on! I will check "Good Riddance". I can't listen to "Left of the Dial" and not wonder why Westerberg has never been given proper credit for his tremendous songwriting talents. Oh well, let them eat cake (and listen to Lenny Kravitz)! In the meantime, this discussion has made me thirsty, I'm going home to spin some wax. (Oh, and speaking of the MC5, those guys defined the punk attitude in the mid to late 60s before there was a name for it. Good call.)
posted by Vek at 5:41 PM on January 10, 2002


Does anyone have a link to the actual list?

Please tell me that KISS are up there.
posted by spunkster at 5:58 PM on January 10, 2002


spunkster- praise jesus, they are(#32)
posted by jonmc at 5:59 PM on January 10, 2002


I know there are Fugazi fans out there, but ahead of The Who (#39) or Pink Floyd (#49)?

Generational shift among the ink-stained wretches? Irresistible critical punts against human jukebox reunion concerts? Whatever the cause, I expect to see the classic rock faves decline in stock in this kind of list in years to come.
posted by crunchburger at 6:12 PM on January 10, 2002


Only 32? wow. love em or hate em - they did a lot for/to rock & roll. they were the first (i'm sure someone will find something to prove me wrong here...) to go totally over the top with theatrics, they made live albums de rigueur, not to mention all the kiss memorabilia, the kiss army...
posted by spunkster at 6:13 PM on January 10, 2002


More than bloggers? Great God!

Even worse than bloggers. So you know how bad they must be.
posted by owillis at 6:15 PM on January 10, 2002


jonmc, as far as the Smiths goes, they do belong, Morrissey's solo stuff however is best left unlistened to. Johnny Marr was the true musical force in that band.
posted by tj at 6:15 PM on January 10, 2002


Is Eugene Chadbourne on the list? Probably not. Those Spin bastards!
posted by mrhappy at 6:16 PM on January 10, 2002


couple things:

here's the full list.

I like the Ramones and all, but the #2 placement really feels like a sympathy vote.

You're right. If Layne Staley (finally) kicks the bucket in 2002, I'd venture to say you'd see a similar list next year, but with Alice in Chains [mis]placed on it somewhere. Now, don't get me wrong, the Ramones were legendary, but I don't know if they are #2 kind of legendary.

I have a real problem with The Doors not being anywhere on that list and a bigger problem with Outkast (among others) beating Pink Floyd.
posted by jerseygirl at 6:27 PM on January 10, 2002


jerseygirl-no offense but the Doors may be the most overrated group of all time. Actually the most glaring omission upon further review is, the great man himself Frank Zappa.

owillis-of course music critics are fulla shit, that's why wre having so much fun savaging them here.
posted by jonmc at 6:41 PM on January 10, 2002


Jerseygirl just beat me, but here it is anyway...

1. THE BEATLES
2. RAMONES
3. LED ZEPPELIN
4. BOB MARLEY & THE WAILERS
5. NIRVANA
6. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC
7. THE CLASH
8. PUBLIC ENEMY
9. THE ROLLING STONES
10. BEASTIE BOYS
11. THE VELVET UNDERGROUND
12. SLY AND THE FAMILY STONE
13. U2
14. RUN-D.M.C.
15. RADIOHEAD
16. THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE
17. SONIC YOUTH
18. AC/DC
19. THE STOOGES
20. METALLICA
21. THE SMITHS
22. PATTI SMITH GROUP
23. N.W.A.
24. KRAFTWERK
25. THE SEX PISTOLS
26. PEARL JAM
27. GRATEFUL DEAD
28. R.E.M.
29. BLACK SABBATH
30. PAVEMENT
31. FUGAZI
32. KISS
33. PRETENDERS
34. RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE
35. FELA KUTI & AFRIKA 70/EGYPT 80
36. DAVID BOWIE AND THE SPIDERS FROM MARS
37. BLONDIE
38. BAD BRAINS
39. THE WHO
40. GRANDMASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE
41. NEW ORDER
42. HUSKER DU
43. GUNS N' ROSES
44. OUTKAST
45. THE BEACH BOYS
46. MASSIVE ATTACK
47. LYNYRD SKYNYRD
48. KORN
49. PINK FLOYD
50. RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS
posted by BarneyFifesBullet at 6:47 PM on January 10, 2002


Korn? uhhhh. no. And not to disrespect, but why is Bob Marley number four? I mean, he should definitely be on there but I don't know about being that high.
posted by dr_emory at 6:50 PM on January 10, 2002


People voting in the poll at jesseygirl's link, voted overwhelmingly (47%) that the doors were the biggest omission.
posted by jgilliam at 6:52 PM on January 10, 2002


oh but bob was that high....
posted by spunkster at 6:54 PM on January 10, 2002


all the time
posted by spunkster at 6:55 PM on January 10, 2002


A few others deserving consideration (or at least honorable mentions):

Dead Kennedys
Joy Division (probably more deserving than New Order)
Luna
Ministry
Sugarcubes
Spiritualized/Spacemen 3
Stone Roses
Jesus and Mary Chain

Others?
posted by cleetus at 6:56 PM on January 10, 2002


Uh, who is #35?

This list, like most, is obviously made to annoy people and make them respond.Otherwise, why bother publishing it at all if Spin doesn't get publicity out of it?

Massive Attack is more influential than Floyd? heh

That's why I hear 30 minute blocks of Massive Attack on the radio all day, every day.
posted by BarneyFifesBullet at 7:00 PM on January 10, 2002


Others?

How about Dylan?
posted by jonmc at 7:03 PM on January 10, 2002


Here's my missing list: Minutemen, Bad Brains, The Pogues, Talking Heads, Replacements, and X. If they have David Bowie on there, why not Brian Eno and Bob Dylan? Sorry, but Bowie and Patti Smith are not "bands."
posted by machaus at 7:04 PM on January 10, 2002


Here's my missing list: ... Bad Brains ...

psst. hey. look at #38.
posted by jerseygirl at 7:07 PM on January 10, 2002


Ugh. I'm allergic to this kind of shit. Spin's writers write as if their opinions are not opinions at all, but rather empirical truths derived from some sort of experiment. Plus, they do this kind of list every year and it's never consistent. Has Grandmaster Flash somehow become "greater" since last year?

But, people (myself included) have always been suckers for lists and tabular data...
posted by yalestar at 7:10 PM on January 10, 2002


#38...oops
posted by machaus at 7:12 PM on January 10, 2002


1. Dave Matthews Band
2. (possibly) The Beatles

Well ok, so pretty much all of you will disagree with me on that. I think it's pretty bad that DMB isn't in the top 50. They're one of the best bands I've ever come accross; they do everything right (with the exception of their last album, "Everyday"). In my opinion, they at least need to be ahead of Radiohead. But then I am one of those people who Really Does Not Like Radiohead. At All.
posted by tomorama at 7:14 PM on January 10, 2002


1. Dave Matthews Band
2. (possibly) The Beatles


well I just spit water all over my monitor, anyone else react similarly?
posted by jerseygirl at 7:32 PM on January 10, 2002


Tomorama: Dave Matthews Band. Greater than the Beatles. Um. I'd almost suspect you were trolling.

Jerseygirl: No spit takes, just the knowledge that God Himself is looking at Tomorama and shaking His head in dismay.

I think SPIN is trying to factor in how well certain bands have aged, too. I mean, yeah, Floyd comes in 30-minute rock blocks, but 30+ years of being overplayed on classic rock stations will tend to diminish anything of its power. The fact that the Beatles' music, even after almost 40 years, still sounds fresh is amazing - and, thus, warrants their #1 position. This law of diminishing returns would also explain why the Stones and the Who are as low as they are.

I love the Ramones. God bless 'em for being #2. While bands like Fugazi have not sold nearly as many albums as people ranked below them, they still have a tremendous amount of influence.

What I don't get, though, is U2's high rating. I swear, SPIN has been fellating Bono et. al. all year long, and I have no idea why. Never mind the fact that during U2's heyday in the '80s, SPIN routinely made fun of them. How about the fact that All That You Can't Leave Behind may be the most self-derivative, soulless and banal record released in the last five years? By anyone? I'm trying to figure out if I'm the only one who feels that the hype and praise delivered to U2 is horribly unwarranted. The terrorists have indeed already won.

Eh, it's just fun to bitch. :)
posted by solistrato at 7:35 PM on January 10, 2002


Oh man I have to counter that last post about Dave Matthews *shudder*.

The real number one band should be:

1. Ween
posted by greasepig at 7:43 PM on January 10, 2002


Well, I certainly like DMB more than the Beatles. But the Beatles have been far more influential.
posted by kindall at 7:48 PM on January 10, 2002


Milli Vanilli.

End of discussion. To quote my friend Pedro, "there is no confusion here."
posted by Sinner at 7:48 PM on January 10, 2002


I love Bob Dylan like nothing else, but I can definitely see why he's not on the list for best band. He hasn't had a decent band (until now) for 35 years, and even in the 60's you could say that the only major, world-changing influence The Hawks had was on The Band..

That said, this quote

"these groups had to have a roof-raising, history-changing sound, presence or hairstyle."

Pretty much shows you the credibility the list as a whole has.
posted by Hildago at 7:56 PM on January 10, 2002


Uh, who is #35?

A legendary African msuician. What Bob Marley is to Jamaica, Fela is to Africa. Wheteher he belongs on the list is open to debate, but he is terrific.
posted by jonmc at 7:56 PM on January 10, 2002


you could say that the only major, world-changing influence The Hawks had was on The Band..

Umm, how about the Jayhawks, Wilco, Beechwood Sparks, the Bottle Rockets and basically the entire alt.contry/No Depression genre?
posted by jonmc at 8:08 PM on January 10, 2002


Oh come on. This list is surely a joke.

Pearl Jam? Red Hot Chili Peppers? Taste aside, why aren't The Smashing Pumpkins on there? They always seem to get the 'most definitive rock group of the 90s' caste. What happened?

And Nirvana at #5? Hahahahahaha. Okay, I get the joke now :)
posted by wackybrit at 8:14 PM on January 10, 2002


Each and every one of us would have a remarkably different list from any other one. And Spin's list is no more or less valid than yours, whoever you are. It's just that Spin gets to publish theirs in their magazine, and you get to just bitch about it.

If it matters to you, make your own list and post it on your website. It is fun to bitch about irrelevant things, but this Spin list is so beyond mere irrelevance, it's embarrasing to read this thread.
posted by ZachsMind at 8:18 PM on January 10, 2002


Korn? What, praytell, are these editors smoking?
Same with RATM, Outkast, etc. I like Rage (well, early Rage), and I like Outkast, but greatest of all time? Please.

Kraftwerk certainly earned its place though.

I would have loved to have seen:
Front 242
Depeche Mode
Einsturzende Neubauten
Ministry
The Pixies
Skinny Puppy
posted by sigma7 at 8:20 PM on January 10, 2002


Lists are lists, ya know? I can name at least 30 bands that I think are better than these -- and I hope you all have 30 more that aren't on my list. The urge of the canonical is disturbing.

But back to the idea of the suckiness of Spin... this magazine was honestly biblical to me in college. I looked forward to every issue. Celia Farber's AIDS articles, William Vollman's meanderings, Charles Aaron's lists -- nothing now competes with the writing from that time.

Oh, and if it were so simple for me to call this nostalgia. Simply doing this list seemed unthinkable 10 years ago. This is so... Rolling Stone.

Now, Guccione -- who wasn't the greatest part of Spin, but he surrounded himself with great writers and editors -- is off to unleash the worst parts of his personality in Gear.

I remember a letter to the editor in Spin circa 1992 that tried to define "alternative" (this was when we were still obsessed with definitions; remember tedious debates about defining "postmodern"?). The scribe wrote "alternative is the classic rock of tomorrow."

I can't believe my 20-year-old naivete disagreed at the time.


posted by rex at 8:23 PM on January 10, 2002


I mean, yeah, Floyd comes in 30-minute rock blocks, but 30+ years of being overplayed on classic rock stations will tend to diminish anything of its power. The fact that the Beatles' music, even after almost 40 years, still sounds fresh is amazing - and, thus, warrants their #1 position.

The Beatles have been overplayed for almost 40 years.That yeah yeah yeah shit got old a long time ago.The Beatles recordings are dated, you can tell they were recorded long ago.Not a bad thing, though.Hey, I always dug the Beatles.Especially Rubber Soul and the White Album.

I dig Floyd more, though, and Dark Side, Wish You Were Here and Animals sound like they were recorded yesterday.

BTW, as far as rap goes, I always thought Run DMC had more pull than Public Enemy. Early Run DMC, anyway.
posted by BarneyFifesBullet at 10:11 PM on January 10, 2002


Waits...Tom Waits?

Paging Mr Waits! You have a phone call at the front desk!

Oh and I definitely agree on the Pixies. I also agree that it's silly to argue about it. Fun though. What about Bauhaus by the way?
posted by Kafkaesque at 10:26 PM on January 10, 2002


The Pixies were a big omission for sure, and where is Fishbone? The English Beat? The Specials? The Police?

KORN? That was a joke right?
posted by mantaray at 10:33 PM on January 10, 2002


I was all prepared to be outraged, but the fact that they have the Velvet Underground toward the top (really should be higher - definately above the Ramones), and at least mention Fela Kuti gives them a certain amount of credence. At least someone there has an understanding of music that goes beyond Rolling Stone and MTV.

Glaring omissions? Captain Beefheart, and/or the Mothers of Invention.
posted by aladfar at 10:46 PM on January 10, 2002


Korn SUCKS (listen from when underground sensation to made-for-radio music). I want to know where the heck Springsteen went? Mr. Voice of the Working Class himself.
posted by jmd82 at 11:26 PM on January 10, 2002


I'm glad to see sonic youth up there, but anyone who knows shit about music knows that without them, Nirvana would never have been. But the Ramones, Clash, Fugazi and Bad Brains (and, oh yeah, the pisstols)? I'm honestly surprised. Happily, eerily surprised. I dunno. But no Sham 69? wtf? And i third or fourth or seventh or whatever the Pixies nomination. I almost think any band should not be on there if they've only been around for less than 5 years. They're just trendy right now. And i coyly have to admit that i'm psyched that the Beastie's are finally getting their due over Beck. That shit made me sick for years.
posted by Ufez Jones at 11:28 PM on January 10, 2002


does anyone else think that seeing Nirvana between P-Funk and Bob Marley is a little... amusing?
posted by tj at 12:34 AM on January 11, 2002


and one more thing.. Kraftwerk???? I love thier stuff, but let's face it it, it's VERY much in a niche... although if you're going for a purely, they had no known influences other than machines that go 'ping!' sort of thing, then ok.
posted by tj at 12:38 AM on January 11, 2002


Well, spin mag. has proven they are a tin-eared bunch of dipshits with their tiny little feet firmly planted in the shifting sands of 'what up?', with little or no knowledge or appreciation for the real bedrock stuff, since they are probably all 12 years old. I say this not giving a living damn what they think or say since they have no authority, class or taste, much less creditibility. To exclude The Byrds, CSN&Y, and The Eagles shows me that they are idiots. In my humble opinion...
posted by Mack Twain at 1:32 AM on January 11, 2002


They missed The Byrds, The Kinks, The Band, Can, Pere Ubu, Roxy Music, Big Star.
posted by dydecker at 5:07 AM on January 11, 2002


my favourite band is better than your favourite band.

but i can't take any best-of list seriously if it doesn't include the shaggs
posted by nylon at 5:30 AM on January 11, 2002


sjc, I'm not going to get on my U2 horse here, but can you really disagree that U2 belongs that high on a list which has the following criteria:

The criteria for the 50 greatest were that "these groups had to have a roof-raising, history-changing sound, presence or hairstyle." In addition, "they also had to clearly influence today's music in undeniable ways" and "had to be bands that we care about deeply."

Seems to me that 12 may be too low. Also, a word of advice. You lose the audience you're trying to persuade when you say idiotic things like: "All That You Can't Leave Behind may be the most self-derivative, soulless and banal record released in the last five years? By anyone?"
posted by pardonyou? at 6:12 AM on January 11, 2002


Mr Happpy:

Eugene Chadbourne lives in my neighborhood and his daughter is our babysitter. Thought you might think that was cool.

Green Day sounds nothing like the Descendents. Except they both played(ed) melodic punk. Which means they both learned their shit from the Ramones, who learned their shit from bands like Lovin' Spoonful.
posted by glenwood at 6:28 AM on January 11, 2002


They're just trendy right now. And i coyly have to admit that i'm psyched that the Beastie's are finally getting their due over Beck. That shit made me sick for years.

What the hell does Beck have to do with the Beastie Boys?
posted by glenwood at 6:29 AM on January 11, 2002


I second the nomination for Can.

I'd also like to thrown in Iggy & The Stooges.

And if it weren't for Kraftwerk, there would be no 80s retropop (bands like Information Society got into music precisely because of Kraftwerk and their ilk), no breakdance-electro, no experimental electronic noodling that is considered avant-garde (Pan Sonic, Autechre, and I would venture to say Haujobb as well). For their influence in pushing what is considered "music" forward so much, I consider them to have justly earned their place on the list.

Massive Attack? Again, I like 'em but... they're not *that* influential.
posted by sigma7 at 7:31 AM on January 11, 2002


"Influence" is the key word here. You may dig the Pixies but their sound didn't change the way musicians create and perform. At the same time, Kiss altered the popular landscape, and it makes sense to have them here, although similar justification could be made for leaving them out of the Hall of Fame (and let's not digress into that right now).

Based on industry impact, the Ramones and Nirvana deserve their placements--the Ramones altered the rock landscape, period, while Nirvana singlehandedly caused sales and radio airplay to change its sound from late-80s nu-metal to grunge.
posted by werty at 7:45 AM on January 11, 2002


Looks like out of the fifty bands listed, only three have female members. Sigh. Nothing new from a magazine dripping with the Guccione vibe.
posted by acornface at 7:53 AM on January 11, 2002


Kiss was and is a huge cultural phenomenon, and Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park is one of the finest films ever made, but influential? Who cites Kiss as an influence? The Pixies, on the other hand, were hugely influential throughout the 90s. They still should be, IMHO. In fact, I hereby decree that from this day forward every single band who dares to make music should strive to sound exactly like the Pixies.
posted by whuppy at 8:00 AM on January 11, 2002


And as long as we're talking "influential," where the hell are The Buzzcocks?!?
posted by whuppy at 8:01 AM on January 11, 2002


What the hell does Beck have to do with the Beastie Boys?

For the longest time, when anyone would talk about influential people in the nineties, you would hear Beck this, beck that, started the true "alternative" blah blah blah, which is wholly untrue. Without the Beasties, Beck would not have made his music, and even if he had, the whole world wouldn't care. And, yes, I'm talking 'check your head" and later beasties.
posted by Ufez Jones at 8:16 AM on January 11, 2002


pardonyou?, I'd tend to agree with sjc in regards to the latest U2 album; it's rather soulless and feels very plasticky. But, I do think they deserve a high ranking on whatever list-of-the-month comes along, as U2 has gone from some of the best commercial rock of the 80s and 90s to playing the Super Bowl. Plus, Bono's real first name is Paul, another plus.

A problem, perhaps, with many of these newer lists (VH1's 100 Greatest Haircuts) is that the music nowadays has no time to ferment, to age, to gain maturity. Take another look at that list, and you'll see some artists whose commercial popularity has occurred only within the past 10 years or so. While I don't purport to suggest that new music is automatically garbage, or not the "greatest", I'd like to put forth the notion that a lot of the deeply influential music dates back to bands like the Beatles, the Stones, the Who, Floyd, and the like... in order words, roughly pre-1980.

You'll notice that that time period almost coincides with the birth of MTV. MTV has arguably changed the landscape of music in modern culture, and also explains why Guns 'N' Roses is #43 (for god's sake, man!) By the time the music is mature, everything has moved on - and generally to something by another band. Why? Because that previous band is no longer cool, and thus, gets less airplay. I put the tag on this to radio (which in a majority of cases just blasts unlistenable tripe, unless you're blessed with a good station - outside of college), Viacom (MTV, VH1, CMT, MTV2....), and the listening public (if you ignore Britney Spears, or Train (please!), they'll just go away.)

For instance, I also do enjoy DMB a lot (save Everyday, icky pop), but their lasting impression remains to be seen. I think about R.E.M., still one of my faves; they too were influential, but their successors are, for the most part, unoriginal (Radiohead exempted.) The legacy of the group ends up being a series of great-to-good albums, and a lot of imitators with one-hit-wonders. Kinda like... well, almost any "influential" band.

Everyone will disagree with this list in some fashion. That's by design, to foster discussion (MeFi ahoy!) and also sell magazines. SPIN hasn't been worthwhile in many years, but it has a cheap cover price and is great birdcage liner.
posted by hijinx at 8:26 AM on January 11, 2002


I love crap like this.

Run-DMC above Hendrix. The Smiths above Patti Smith.

Hardee har har har.

The greatest band of all time is The Queers.

Not really, but it's as defensible a position as ranking the Beastie Boys ahead of the Velvet Underground. And I really really like the Beasties.

And howsabout the Modern Lovers, just for the tune "Roadrunner"?
posted by BitterOldPunk at 8:56 AM on January 11, 2002


Please ignore the link above. The website the band used to have has been co-opted by a gay porn site. Sorry for the misleading link -- that'll teach me to check first.

You can find the band The Queers here.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 8:58 AM on January 11, 2002


A connection between Beck and the Beastie Boys is the use of The Dust Brothers as producers. They produced 1989's "Paul's Boutique" for the Beasties, and worked on "Odelay" with Beck.

I can't stand any kind of rankings or "best of all-time" lists like this. I find them meaningless, and used mostly as a way to get publicity. What I do enjoy is anytime ordinary people, critics, or artists simply list their favorite tunes of the moment, of the year, or of all-time, etc. But the ranking stuff is just pointless.
posted by CosmicSlop at 9:25 AM on January 11, 2002


Vek,
Sorry, I wasn't clear. Husker Du? as in "why the hell aren't Husker Du in the top 10?"
posted by Ty Webb at 10:18 AM on January 11, 2002


hijix, I can understand and appreciate your very reasonable description of ATYCLB as "rather soulless and feels very plasticky" (although I disagree). Where sjc lost credibility is when he described it as "...the most self-derivative, soulless and banal record released in the last five years ... by anyone." That's false under any measure.
posted by pardonyou? at 10:38 AM on January 11, 2002


Ah, pardonyou?, thanks for the clarification. I think Train wins that award.
posted by hijinx at 11:24 AM on January 11, 2002


Without the Beasties, Beck would not have made his music, and even if he had, the whole world wouldn't care. And, yes, I'm talking 'check your head" and later beasties.

Hang on.. the Beastie Boys are just a white attempt at a rap group. They might have been innovative in a number of ways.. but 'alternative'? They're rap.
posted by wackybrit at 11:45 AM on January 11, 2002


Who cites Kiss as an influence?

A short list:

- Van Halen (discovered by Kiss' Gene Simmons)
- Garth Brooks
- Lenny Kravitz
- Stone Temple Pilots
- Cheap Trick
- Alternative rock bands such as the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Lemonheads, and Dinosaur Jr
- Everyone else on the Kiss tribute album
- Mailyn Manson and other spooky rock bands like Cannibal Corpse and Pantera
- Motley Crue and every other band that wore makeup in the late 1980s

...Plus a lot of other bands that would make you laugh at me for mentioning them, like Bon Jovi and Skid Row, who despite their lack of critical acclaim sold an awful lot of records over the years.
posted by werty at 11:57 AM on January 11, 2002


It's true.

Besides The Beatles, Zep and Hendrix and maybe the Stones, Kiss started more people in music than anybody else.

Not to mention, The Kings themselves, Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley.
posted by BarneyFifesBullet at 12:08 PM on January 11, 2002


A bit late to the paty, but...

"You may dig the Pixies but their sound didn't change the way musicians create and perform."

The Pixies definitely have their place in the hearts (and ears) of musicians from the 90's "I'll-Turn-It-Off" (alternative) genre. Hard to imagine most of the edgy, mope-rock from that time without 'em (this includes Smashing Pumpkins).

Speaking of the Punkin's, where the hell is Corgy-boy's fave band, Cheap Trick? Bun E. Carlos & company must get their due...
posted by shecky57 at 1:54 PM on January 11, 2002


For a music magazine to leave out bands like the Doors or the Replacements (who each have a laundry list of classic tunes and albums) from their ridiculous attempt at comedy like this list is not only lazy, sloppy, and uneducated, but more importantly... telling.

I hereby deem Spin magazine officially dead.
posted by tsarfan at 3:36 PM on January 11, 2002


Umm, how about the Jayhawks, Wilco, Beechwood Sparks, the Bottle Rockets and basically the entire alt.contry/No Depression genre?

I would have thought they drew their influence from The Band, rather than The Hawks. Semantics, I know, but anyway it's Music from Big Pink rather than Nashville Skyline that was important, which is why I can see how Dylan isn't on the list. But I'm not an expert on this era and genre or anything, so I could be wrong.
posted by Hildago at 4:44 PM on January 11, 2002


korn?!??? freaking korn? what the fuck?
korn got in and The Doors and Jane's Addiction didn't?
Idiots.
posted by juv3nal at 9:06 PM on January 11, 2002


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