I don’t think I play any pop album of the last 20 years all the way through anymore, with the possible exception of Jagged Little Pill.
And really, there aren’t that many albums that demand you play them all the way through, which is a good reason for Michele to call for titles:
Perfect end-to-end means not skipping any songs. It means every song fits snugly with the song before it and the song after it and it all just flows like some magical musical journey.
And truth be told, I tend to skip “Ironic,” which would seem to eliminate Alanis’ magnum opus from this particular Pantheon. (“The Lemon Song” puts Led Zeppelin II out of the running.)
More or less obvious choices: Abbey Road, Dark Side of the Moon, Pet Sounds, Sinatra’s In the Wee Small Hours.
Slightly-muddled choice: Benefit, the third Jethro Tull album, which flows a little better in its UK release; but the US version contains the minor single “Teacher,” which I’d hate to be without. (The CD version reproduces the British LP plus four bonus tracks, “Teacher” among them.)
Another slightly-muddled choice: T. Rex’s Electric Warrior, which is so goofy you almost have to listen to it twice just to satisfy yourself that yes, you really did hear that.
A choice which surprises even me: Twelve Angry Months by Local H, the anti-Pet Sounds, a chronicle of the end of a relationship, thirty pissed-off days at a time. I don’t know whether to commiserate with the guy or slap him upside the face and tell him to snap out of it already, which tells me that he’s gotten the emotional aspects down cold. And the single, “24 Hour Breakup Session,” is the best rewrite of the Kinks’ “All Day and All of the Night” since the Doors hacked up “Hello, I Love You.”