Top 10 Music Albums Recorded in a Very Short Time

Metal_Treasure
What should be taken into account?
1) how short was the recording time? (there's a big difference between 12 hours and 12 days)
2) album quality (a bad album recorded in 2 days isn't an achievement)
3) difficulty of the songs on the album
4) importance of the album

The Top Ten

1 Machine Head - Deep Purple

The story of this album can make a great action movie plot. Deep Purple's masterpiece was recorded in the early Dec 1971 - the recording time was shortened by EXTREME circumstances that ruined Deep Purple's plans:
1) singer Ian Gillan contracted hepatitis and was advised to spend the next few months recuperating. Gillan ignored the doctor's advice but the recording began a bit later than planned
2) the song "Smoke on the Water" partly describes what happened next - Deep Purple went to Montreux, Switzerland, to record this album at Montreux Casino. The band arrived there on Dec 3, but on Dec 4, the Casino caught fire during Frank Zappa's concert because a fan fired a flare into the roof and the Casino burned down
3) Deep Purple moved to a theater nearby and began recording with a Mobile Studio unit but they were quickly evicted because the neighbors flooded the police station to complain about the noise the band made
4) the band moved to a hotel where they walked across ...more - Metal_Treasure

As Ian Gillan wrote in the lyrics to "Smoke on the Water", they "didn't have much time":
"We all came out to Montreux
On the Lake Geneva shoreline
To make records with a mobile
We didn't have much time" - Metal_Treasure

2 Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath

According to Tony Iommi, it was recorded in a single day (Oct, 16 1969) and the session lasted 12 hours. It was mixed the next day.
Iommi said:
"We just went in the studio and did it in a day, we played our live set and that was it. We actually thought a whole day was quite a long time, then off we went the next day to play for £20 in Switzerland." - Metal_Treasure

3 Kind of Blue - Miles Davis

It was recorded in only two days - on March 2, 1959, and on April 22, 1959.
One of the best selling jazz album of all time, one of the most influential albums of the 20th century, and it is also widely regarded as his greatest work. - Metal_Treasure

4 Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin

According to Jimmy Page, it took 36 hours spread out over several weeks. He thinks it was recorded in 36 hours because they paid for recording time of 36 hours.
I guess they entered the studio when a song was completely ready to be recorded.
Just to remind you, most of the songs on this album were covers (uncredited or credited). - Metal_Treasure

5 Ramones - Ramones

Their debut album was recorded over 7 days. A very influential album. - Metal_Treasure

6 Bob Dylan - Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan's debut album was recorded in 2 days - November 20 and 22, 1961. - Metal_Treasure

7 The Clash - The Clash

The Clash debut album was recorded over three consecutive weekends. - Metal_Treasure

8 Kill 'Em All - Metallica

Metallica's debut album is a very influential album that was recorded in 17 days, from May 10-27, 1983, but I don't know if they recorded every day.
17 days is pretty good for this album because its sound was very different from everything made before and there were some experiments - for example, James guitar/amp needed to be altered and "customized", etc., to get the sound we know. Experiments of this type also include more time to test the new sound. - Metal_Treasure

9 White Light / White Heat - The Velvet Underground

It was recorded in two days - some tracks were recorded in one take completely live - Metal_Treasure

10 Another Side of Bob Dylan - Bob Dylan

His 4th album was recorded and mastered in a single session, technically over 2 days because they started before midnight but finished after midnight.
This isn't his best album but still ("Mr. Tambourine Man" was part of the recording session but was left off the album). - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 Please Please Me - The Beatles

Um... Wikipedia says it was recorded from 4 September 1962 to 11 February 1963 - Metal_Treasure

10 hours to make this album, versus 110 hours to make "A Day In The Life".

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