Top Ten Classic Rock Albums of All TimeThese are simply the albums that have defined rock and roll. No frills. Here we go:
The Top Ten
This album defines rock and roll in its entirety. Saying this deserves number three is like saying Kanye West doesn't have an ego. This is THE album, this is THE best compilation of songs and themes all woven into one record. It speaks life, and all the things that can drive you insane. The songs below.
Speak to Me - Communication
Breathe - Work
On the Run - Anxiety/Travel
Time - Time
The Great Gig in the Sky - Death
Money - Greed
Us and Them - War
Any Colour you Like - Drugs/Choice
Brain Damage - Insanity
Eclipse - The whole album summarized into this final tune
I would say that almost everyone knows this album even if their not Pink Floyd fans. The album cover is recognized by everyone and songs like money, us and them, brain damage/ eclipse are still played on classic rock stations. If you have not listened to this great album I suggest you do. I promise you you won't regret it. - Windowstcm1988
This really wasn't even a question. If we're talking about best album ever, Dark Side wins it no matter what. It flows so well, it could honestly be just one song. Every song is good in its own way, and I can't just listen to one tune off of this album, I have to listen to the whole thing. It is also really deep and very thought provoking. If you've never listened to this album, get some high-quality headphones, and just listen to the song in the dark. Nothing compares to it. - lavillaof2112
Without a doubt it is timeless it will be long after we are all gone.V 64 Comments
This is seriously the best album of all time, 1 it has stairway to heaven. It's become very fashionable to knock Stairway, but the reason it's overplayed is because it's so GOOD Simply one of the epics of rock. and it also contains classics Black Dog, Rock an Roll, not to mention the other ones that are all so completely overlooked, Going to California, Misty Mountain Hop, When the Levee Breaks, etc. The Drums are incredible, especially on When the Levee Breaks, Four Sticks, and Black Dog. The variety is amazing too, going from heavy rock (black dog, four stix) to beautiful acoustic songs (going to California, the battle of evermore). John Bonham's powerful drumming, John Paul Jones's keyboards and thundering bass, Jimmy Page's incredible acoustic and electric guitar work, and Robert Plant's amazing vocals(going to California black dog and rock and roll are the best examples of Robert's singing) all come together into the best 8 songs ever stuck together and packaged. It's sold 38 ...more
I love Led Zeppelin so much, but no album comes close to Dark Side. Don't even try to convince me to put this above Dark Side. However... I love this album! Black Dog is a great hard rocker, and Rock and Roll goes back to rock music's roots. The Battle of Evermore is a great folk-rock song that is often overlooked because of the overplayed, overrated Stairway to Heaven. Misty Mountain Hop is really good, and then Four Sticks, which is OK. Going to California, the best song on the album, in my opinion comes next, followed by the finale, When The Levee Breaks, an incredible blues song. - lavillaof2112
What an absolutely beautiful album. I have it at 6 with LZII being Led Zep's best. My thinking behind it is Four Sticks being only a decent tune and with only 8 tracks it puts IV at 7 great tracks while II has 8 great tracks and the very entertaining Moby Dick only solidifying it's rank. However, 99% of rock bands would trade their entire career to make just 1 album as good as Led Zeppelin IV. Black Dog is probably their best ever track. Rock and Roll is classic rock at its finest. Stairway to heaven is a beautiful track that takes the listener on a ride through Zep's gushing song writing and inspired countless musicians on a journey to write something great. Misty Mountain Hop is the secret weapon on this album, a foot stomping gem. Going to California delivers on how well of an acoustic sound they had. When the levee breaks delivers on how big and right down nasty their tone as a unit was. Bonham's drum tone is mind blowing in Levee, maybe the best drum tone of anything in rock. ...more
God visiting Earth.V 39 Comments
If not for this album, the others would not be. Sgt. Pepper broke the mold and became the model for others to follow. This should definitely be number one. It has it all - hard rocking songs, as well as great ballads.
With this album The Beatles proved that you can be famous by writing and recording whatever experimental music you want, if you do it talented you would succeed. The message of album for other bands was "come on guys, there ain't no need to write cheap 3 accorded songs to become famous, go on do whatever you like! " I see that most people voted for the Dark Side of The Moon, but in fact without Sgt Pepper that won't be Pink Floyd at all!
I agree Sgt. Peppers is the best of all time. Followed closely by Beach Boys Pet Sounds. Third Love Forever Changes is right up there. So is Velvet Underground Loaded. The Beatles Rubber Soul is also up there. That is my top 5. I have more but not now.
The latest re-mix makes this album sound more like a true rock albumV 23 Comments
10 songs of pure rock and roll. Malcolm Young's rhythm is heavy and unmatched. I don't think anyone ever hit the strings harder than him in his day. Maybe the greatest riff guitarist of all time. Angus Young's leads are flawless and brilliant leaving you wanting more and more. Johnson's vocals are that of a confident front man in his prime which is stunning in itself as his 1st album with an already established band. This was in the prime years of AC/DC and every single track is instantly noticed after the 1st few notes. The drums and bass offer a rock steady backbone to the plethora of guitar brilliance. The tone both Angus and Malcolm have in the Back in Black track is enough alone to put them in the Rock Hall of Fame. Throw in the rest and it's a world class rock song. You shook me all night long is just a sexy song and displays amazing song writing front to back. Hells Bells is a bit darker than anything else on this album, but man is it killer or what? It's definitely adds some ...more
Rock at its purest and most rauccous, Back in Black is AC/DC's most cohesive album, as well as maybe its most important, as it showed the world that the band has a future despite the tragic death of its legendary original lead singer, Bon Scott. Brian Johnson's pipes filled the part nicely, doing Scott plenty of justice and serving as the voice of the band's most famous song, this album's title track.
This one of AC/DC's best albums. Some of the best songs are on this one. If you dislike this, you suck. This album made over $22,000,000 in sales and it reached #1 on the top charts. And whoever said AC/DC is least skilled and least creative, well, AC/DC has more talent than you have in one fingernail.
What a great album! The guitar sound production is awesome. All the songs are essentials rock anthemsV 28 Comments
What the hell! How can this be so low. It at least deserves to be in the top 5 if not the first position. Come one guys, this is a classic.
So the story is I was looking through my dads old record collection. I liked some really bad pop music back then. I found this album, hesitant to play it, I put it on, and as soon as the needle touched the record and I heard the first crackle, I cried for as long as I could. Quite embarrassing I know, and then I put on side 3, followed by side 4. I was then in a pool of tears. To this day I don't know why, but I listen to the record every night, right before I go to sleep. Sorry this was long by the way
I love this album, but honestly, it's a bit overrated. I think Wish You Were Here and The Wall should switch places.
By far the best album of all time! - ShugaRoyV 23 Comments
I can't believe this album is so high but I couldn't be more pleased! This album and band are amazing. Tom Sawyer, Red Barchetta, YYZ, Limelight and Vital Signs are amazing. The Camera Eye and Witch Hunt are great too.
Inventive and groundbreaking, this album re-defined rock and created a genre of its own, stepping away from 70s prog and reaching the perfect mix between great songwriting and intricate and fabulous playing.
Rush North America's best Been Around by far they are amazing bands to see live and they are totally awesome
Sublimely supremeV 15 Comments
Roger Daltrey's scream at the end of the instrumental section in won't get fooled again is the moment rock music came of age (said someone). Everything since has been anticlimax.
Roger Daltrey's scream marks the pinnacle of classic rock. Nothing before that moment had so well captured the essence of rock and roll, and nothing after it matched the primal nuance of rock's earlier days. Surrounding this singular moment is rock and roll at its very finest.
Baba O'riley, Behind Blue eyes, Won't get fooled again, need I say more? This album represents one of the greatest rock groups at their best. It contains some of the greatest rock tunes and some of the greatest rock ballads as well. This album has every band member performing at their best and most rocking. It deserves top 3 for sure.
The album bridged heavy classic rock guitar with a modernized use of synthesizers. Some of Townsends best writing. This is The Who matured beyond teenage angst. Not a bad song on the album.V 8 Comments
Who would think that Rock and Opera would be the perfect combination?
Queen did, and the result is unique.
Each song perfectly matches the next one, and ends with the best song ever, Bohemian Rhapsody.
This album showed the world that damn near anything can be rock if you just do it right. Freddie was the greatest front man of all time, and what he and Brian and the rest of them did on this album completely changed not just rock, but everything that played on the radio because it showed that the world would listen to great music regardless of genre.
The diversity on this album is incredible, featuring charleston (Seaside Rendevous, Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon) Metal, (Death on Two Legs, The prophets song) Folk ('39), opera/rock/whatever the hell you want to classify Bohemian Rhapsody as. Point is, this album does everything. If you're looking for an album suggestion, this is the one.
Six words... EVERTHING ON THIS ALBUM IS AWESOME...V 11 Comments
Easily Deep Purple's best album, Machine Head features a wide variety of sounds, from the explosive Highway Star, to the surprisingly groovy Lazy, to the classic riff to rule all other riffs, Smoke on the Water.
Machine head is a milestone in the history and development of rock music & an album which has influenced countless groups and musicians for 42 years. There is no competitive album.
All the albums that are better for a position is just below the machine head
The best album in hard rock, with the perfect songs ever
If you don't like Highway Star you don't like rockV 9 Comments
This album actually contained the blueprint of heavy metal. Beginning with wailing air-raid sirens, ozzy's demented howling, sweeping power chords of Iommi along with the crushingly heavy team of geezer butler and bill ward the band made this album worthy of the apocalypse. I am still stupefied by this Sabbath sound ever since I listened to this album 20 years ago ; although I feel it should not be classified here as it is a genre defining album... giving birth to the genre of heavy metal.
Most unique sound out of all the above artists. This band has influenced all the heavier bands I listen to today. This should definitely be in the top of this list
Why Is Back In Black Higher Than This? Seriously Back In Black Is A Great Album But Not As Good As Paranoid
This album had the biggest influence for my love of music. My number 1.V 9 Comments
So many good songs on this album, from Purple Haze, Hey Joe, Foxy Lady, Manic Depression, Fire, and The Wind Cries Mary. The best of all time, no doubt. Never has an album had such a great list of songs!
One of the most influential albums ever recorded. The best debut album as well.
An absolute classic that has stood the test of time. Perhaps "standing the test of time" should be a category. In my opinion, this should be in the top 2.
fantastic.V 5 Comments
Led Zeppelin II is probably my favorite album out there. Individually, each track is strong, but not the best per say. But Led Zeppelin II is not album made to showcase any track in particular, and this becomes apparent when you listen to the whole album through. "Heartbreaker" is great, "Living Loving Maid" is great, but the way they sound back to back on a record just can't be beat. Led Zeppelin IV is great as well, but there are a few weaker tracks, thus putting II higher in my ranks
This was a very tough choice, but overall I think this the best Led Zep album, just barely beating Led Zeppelin IV. This album contains some of the best writing the band ever put forth, including maybe the best all around guitar work in rock history.
Bee-like psychedelic breakdown right from the get-go, music only becomes better throughout
This is n.ONE rock album.V 6 Comments
The Beatles are the band that every other band looks to as the archetype. They were the original classic rock band that all the other classic rock bands bow to. Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, the Doors, the Eagles, the Rolling Stones, etc, etc - they all looked to the Beatles as their idols.
To address a topic addressed by another comment - yes, back in the day they called them "pop" - but they also referred to the Rolling Stones, the Who, and Led Zeppelin as pop as well. Back then the word "pop" literally meant "popular" - and literally everybody from Frank Sinatra to Janis Joplin to James Brown were all considered "pop. " To say that the Beatles sounded more "pop" than Led Zeppelin makes no sense in the context of the time period...
The Beatles don't need to sound like Zeppelin because the Beatles pioneered the musical sounds that Led Zeppelin employed. The definition of "Classic Rock" is album oriented rock & ...more
In my humble opinion this album is a masterpiece. No contemporary musical opus is perfect and sadly that's a fact. However, what makes a good album might be a single unforgettable track supported by a load of nearly but not quite tracks. What makes a great album is perhaps two or three awesome tracks. But with the exception of two pointless fillers, namely Octopus's Garden & Maxwell's Silver Hammer, this album is faultless musically, lyrically & production wise. A veritable tsunami of sound and harmony is there, timelessly set in stone, to engulf all fortunate past & future audiences emotions. It will forever be a mystery to me how four undereducated working class youths ever managed to conceive and deliver such a level of musical genius.
The Beatles are the best rock band ever, the comment below mine says they are pop comparing them to Led Zeppelin (ironically he didn't write correctly the band's name). Led Zeppelin is heavier than The Beatles, but than doesn't means that The Beatles aren't classic rock... this guys have many songs that were considered heavy and every song of them is rock!
Many people label them as pop. That's bad because they were the band that made better rock!
By the way, this album is perfect because all its songs rock! - rock2metal
Greatest album by the Best Band ever!V 13 Comments
While the whole album is great, it must be said that the title track is one of the most incredible chapters in the history of rock, lyrically and instrumentally.
One of my favorite albums ever, many great rock songs. Joe Walsh and Don Felder on dual guitars, what more could you ask for.
I love every single song on that album it is amazing and it really shows how the band changed when Joe Walsh joined.
THE perfect album.V 4 Comments
I agree, this is one of the best albums ever!
For sure, one of the best! Every single song is awesome!
When they been at their worst they did the best... Among my top three Albums!
Deserve to be in the top 10!V 9 Comments
A MASTERPIECE! The most brilliant album ever recorded, in the entire history of music. Wish you were here, where every song is one of the greatest songs ever... Simply mind-blowing
This album should be higher up. From the epic Shine On You Crazy Diamond to songs like Wish You Were Here and Have a Cigar, this album is awesome in every way. - matty925
It should be number 2. Exceptional music. Outstanding in every aspect. Definitively has to be ranked higher, much higher.
Best Floyd album. Classic. Better than Dark Side.
How did the Eagles beat anything Floyd has done?
Played so often on my turntable that is sounds like it has no highs left. Still amazing to listen to.
Why is Moving Pictures before 2112? That's like saying Justin Bieber could sing for Nirvana! Or saying that he could even sing in the first place!V 1 Comment
One of the very best albums of all time, plays like a greatest hits album... Not a dud to be found
By far greatest band ever put together
Simply amazing especially the song Peace of mind!
For me... Boston is all about this album, and the follow up Don't Look Back. Like someone on this thread mentioned... Not a dud to be found... While the later albums are not bad at all, I felt that Tom Scholz chose to recycle a lot of riffs and melodic phrasings. Too many later songs of Boston sounded similar.
Anyway... I love this album and can never get bored of it.
This is a far better album than Machine Head. It's more intense and the songs are more daring. Not surprising considering in the line-up's first album together and they were still unknown so were more free to stamp the songs with whatever direction they wanted. Child In Time on its own would be worth the album price, but the whole thing is full to bursting with loud, intense raw power. By the time Purple came to do Machine Head, they were more cautious and had more pressure on them after the lackluster Fireball. Deep Purple In Rock showed what a band could do without any shackles.
I had been playing drums as a young guy (started pre-teens, about 10 years old)... I would turn 13 May of the year this came out - 1970, joined my first really good local Rock Band that winter as well... No other album (and all the above are amazing, and greatly influenced me as well), but, no other album, music, drummer, influenced my Hard Rock playing ability more than Deep Purple, Ian Paice, and this album... I had Heard "Hush" years earlier, great, great stuff, but this album and line-up just blew me away for years to come!... Long Live "DP"
The greatest heavy rock album of all time by in my opinion, the most underrated band in the last forty years. This album set the bar, never surpassed, rarely equalled.
Machine Head has 3 medicore songs: Maybe I'm a Leo, Lazy, Never Before
In Rock has only one mediocre song: Living Wreck
And that's all. This album is totally overshadowed by Machine Head... - somekindofaguy
The most mind blowing, slit your wrists album off all time, mellow to mental institute.
Crap, should've voted for this! This is my all time favorite album!
Great album. Floyd at it's finest.
Headphones are a must :) If not, dogs in your house is always interesting during the song...V 5 Comments
Best live album ever
Best live album ever! Enough said!
Listen to this and you won't bother with the studio versions any more
This is the album that turned me on to rock n' roll.V 4 Comments
Great Later stuff by an ICONIC Band!
My introduction to Deep Purple. Still my favourite album.
Menacing, heavy, melodic, brooding, intelligent... Etc...
Why the heck isn't this top ten! This should be #1! But #95! What the hell! I was going to vote for Joshua Tree, thinking this would already be up there and Tree would need the vote a comment, but I see the Beatles best album and greatest of all time at 95. Shame. I don't like this list- mostly because of this albums poor placement.
Revolver is surprisingly underrated, "Taxman", "And Your Bird Can Sing", "Eleanor Rigby", and "Yellow Submarine" all come from this album, and are some of the greatest Beatles songs of all time, if not some of the greatest SONGS of all time. - Mousike
Best Beatles album, best rock album, best album ever. - TheFrodo
Really amazing album and one of my first CD purchase in college. I listened this over and over.V 4 Comments
Since the Beatles and Led Zeppelin, nobody had such an enormous impact on music. This album didn't just kill hair metal, it made alternative metal popular, which has been 98% of rock for the last 25 years... rock will never be same after this
How is this not in top 10? By far one of the most important and successful albums in music history let alone rock history!
Maybe because I'm from the younger generation of rock fans; but this should be in the top 10.
Just got one word "NIRVANA"V 12 Comments
My favorite album of all time. The End is the greatest song ever. It takes you on a poetic trance. Lost in a Roman wilderness of pain. Weird scenes in the gold mine. You can almost go into a meditation on those lines. Take the highway to the end of the night. Along with the amazing sounds of the Doors. The west is the best, and the doors are the best.
From acid rock, flamenco, opera, the blues, raga, and jazz woven into one by a jazz drummer, blues/flamenco guitarist, classical/ blues and psychedelic keyboardist, and legendary front man and poet The Doors is raw yet sleek dark, dangerous and enlightening at the same time. Simply the best.
Break on Through, Light My Fire, The End, End of The Night, Soul Kitchen, Crystal Ship, Twentieth Century Fox, Alabama Song, Back Door Man, I Looked At You, Take It As It Comes. This is Number One.
Why isn't it in top 5...
"Break on Through"
"Light my Fire"
"Take It As It Comes"
"Twentieth Century Fox"
and pretty much everything else on this album is flawless...
Only 42. No, no, no. One of the finest rock album produced ever. Should be among the first 20.
Led Zeppelin - The Doors - Janis Joplin - Love - Neil Young all on top. The first 6 Led Zeppelin albums should be in the top 30!
This is the greatest album in the Zep collection. It shows everything they could do at the very best. Songs like Kashmir, In My Time of Dying, Trampled Underfoot are just all-time hits
The bucks stops here.V 3 Comments
GREAT BAND AND SONG-BUT ANGUS YOUNG WAS AC/DC
Great prog rock album that should be higher on this list
It should be on the list. And You And I is a great song and so is Close To The Edge.
Best album in the top 40
Progressive rock album NÂş1 should be in top ten classic rock albums.V 1 Comment
How on earth did The Beatles have not one, but two albums ahead of this. I am a huge classic rock fan and this is at least top ten, deserves top five, and should probably be top three. And no hate towards Rush, Moving Pictures is amazing, but no way both Moving Pictures and 2112 are ahead of this.
Better then 99% of the albums on this list. Not a single bad song on the album. They all rock and still to this day this album owns its relevance even in the newest generation.
The Beatles above this? Not a chance. Even my 13 year old daughter agrees with this. When it comes to rock, no one exemplifies the total package more than early Guns N' Roses. Period. This is the greatest ever made.
Get higher like AxlV 13 Comments
Amazing Album. Yorke's voice is at it's best here. This is like 'The Dark Side of the Moon' of the nineties. I do think that 'In Rainbows' is extremely underrated however and should be above this but OK Computer is brilliant.
This is surely better than dark side of the moon and any Beatles album I don't know why it's at no. 34
Great album from a great band. This actually won the Grammy and sits on No 32 on this list, 'am quite surprised that an album with iconic songs like Airbag, Paranoid Android, Karma police, Lucky is languishing in 32 on an all time best rock album list...
This deserves to be much higherV 3 Comments
If I were on a desert island American Beauty would be with me every song is so nice I love box of rain but all the song are great started listening to when it came out... I play piano still get tingling feeling at end of box of rain other albums would be... exile on main street... whos next... aqualung...led4...a space in time ten years after
Greatest American band of all time, and this is the one that combines all the reasons they are that band. Blues, ballads, rock and roll and everything in between.
This is top 5
Top Ten all-time album. No question
The Best of the Stonesâ€"a â€śSamplerâ€ť with at least six distinct â€śstylesâ€ť.
Pure class from the Stones.
Not a bad cut on it. This is the best Stones album ever. It has variety with the tender "Wild Horses", then real blasters like "Bitch" and then and extended Jam with a perfect groove to start it "Can't you hear me Knockin'".
One of the most powerful live albums ever recorded, play this album loud and you will feel like your really there.
Arguably the best live rock album!
Nothing says classic rock like finding this record in your basement after your parents said they got rid of their record collection a few years ago and this is the one your Dad refused to let go of. Add that to his stories of the first time he saw Kiss live when he was like 11, and the second time and third time too, and one of those times these guys named Judas Priest opened for them and he didn't really understand them at the time because he was too obsessed with the hottest band in the world. Ladies and Gentlemen...
This is not only one of the best rock albums ever made, but one of the best albums in the history of music. It is credited as being the first progressive rock album. It will blow your mind.
Awesome album highly underrated.
Personally, I'd rank "Red" in this place.
This Is The Main Album That Introduced Rock Music Fans To Progressive Rock Back In 1969.Outstanding Musicanship On A Album That Featured Greg Lake And Ian McDonald Who Would Leave This Band To Start Emerson,Lake And Palmer And Foreigner.
Pure rock n roll!
This should absolutely be way higher. This is ridiculous. Rolling Stone has your #1 (Pink Floyd 'Dark Side of the Moon') at #43 and this album at #35. So, there's that.
Without this album Pink Floyd, Queen, the Clash, and most of rock after 1973 wouldn't have existed.
Pink Floyd would have existed without this album, but Queen probably wouldn't have.
Not a bad song on this album.V 1 Comment
An album 95% finished when he died, that showed the new direction Jimi was heading. An excellent album.
This is better then Back In Black and every other album on this list (Other than the Queen ones)
This is AC/DC at their finest. BIB is a close second however, HTH just rocks more
Bon Scott is the greatest - ACDC-
The original bad boys at their songwriting best, with a few of the best rock songs of all time on the track list. Gimme Shelter and You Can't Always Get What You Want generally come to mind first, but the entire album is great.
One of the all time greatest. The songs on here have some of the best songwriting the Stones have ever done, as well as some of their most iconic songs. The key tracks on here include "Gimme Shelter", "Monkey Man" and "You Can't Always Get What You Want"
Top 3 of all time-defined what rock and roll is and will forever be timeless music.
Simply great rock.V 1 Comment
Ass kickin american rock n roll! CCR is up there in the MT. Rushmore of Rock Icons! Is number 10 on my list!
My first Lp
7 hit singles on one album... This is definitely Leppard's equivalent to Michael Jacksons Thriller
It is so far a head for me as my favorite album that I can't actually think what would be second, Incredibly powerful and moving album-not for the faint hearted.
You may think this is the finest pearl.
If you haven't listened to this LP...DO IT
Unique! A masterpiece
One of my top ten albums of all time
Should be top 10
One of the best - every song is solid
Should be number 1. No questions about it
Eric Clapton and Duane Allman, what else to say
Why is this hear
This album rocks from beginning to end.
Should be in top 20
Agreed under rated. It come a little later than many ofthe classic albums but doesnâ€™t rock any less.V 1 Comment
Related ListsTop Ten Classic Rock Songs that Deserve More Play Time Top 10 Classic Albums of All Time Most Overrated Classic Rock Albums Top Ten Classic Rock Album Covers that Would Be Great Metal Album Covers Top Ten Best Live Albums by Classic Rock Bands
6 years, 351 days old
Top Remixes (33)
2. Live at Filmore East - The Allman Brothers
3. Aqualung - Jethro Tull
2. Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band - The Beatles
3. Back in Black - AC/DC
2. Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band - The Beatles
3. Led Zeppelin IV - Led Zeppelin
View All 33