Album Rewinds

Given the test of time and the wisdom of hindsight, how do significant albums from the past sound and play today? Our critics take a second look from a fresh perspective

Warren Zevon’s Exciting ‘Excitable Boy’ @40

With songs like “Werewolves of London,” “Lawyers, Guns and Money” and the title track, it was not only his greatest work but a singer-songwriter classic.

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Rod Stewart’s Unequaled Masterpiece

Gasoline Alley, his second solo album, showcased an artist who excelled at both rollicking rock ‘n’ roll and tender, emotive ballads

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Joni Mitchell’s ‘Court and Spark’: A Significant Pivot

Her 1974 best-seller was adorned by a sophisticated sonic sensibility that would define her career from that moment forward.

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Traffic’s ‘Mr. Fantasy’ Album @50

In the hands of a lesser group than Traffic, the various musical styles represented on ‘Mr. Fantasy’ may well have been a mishmash.

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Steppenwolf’s Debut Album: Heavy Metal Thunder

If the album had given us nothing more than “Born to Be Wild,” it would still be a classic. But there was a lot more to the mostly Canadian band’s first LP.

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Queen’s A Night at the Opera: Wonderfully Uneven

Their fourth album was “a showy spectacle that revels in its bombastic production” and gave us “Bohemian Rhapsody.” It’s also an indisputable classic.

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Argent’s Masterful, Underrated Debut: From Z to A

Out of the ashes of the Zombies came their keyboardist’s new band, Argent. Their debut album is one of rock’s most underrated of all time.

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Elton John’s ‘Madman Across the Water’ Revisited

He was everywhere in 1971 but still hadn’t quite found his way. Then he released the first album that defined his singular gifts.

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The Sex Pistols’ ‘Never Mind the Bollocks’ @40

They only released one album but it sparked a musical revolution. We look back at a punk-rock game-changer four decades after its release

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Love’s Brilliant ‘Forever Changes’ @50

The deeper complexity and nuance that had lurked under the surface came to the forefront in the L.A. band’s classic 1967 third album.

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