10 Rock Albums That No One Was Asking For


Metallica Load Back

Fans don’t really know what they want until you give it to them. Even if you knock it out of the park on your first try, there are going to be just as many people getting upset when your next album doesn’t sound exactly like the last one did. It’s never easy to gauge what fans want, but not too many people can claim to have expected these.

Among all of the well known artists on this list, every single one of these albums came right the hell out of nowhere, either catching fans off guard with how different it sounded or being completely off the mark from what the band was usually known for. While some of these may have led to pleasant surprises later down the road, the reaction at the time to these albums was normally ice cold, with the fan’s either hating them or just not knowing what to make of them at the beginning.

Though some of them have managed to age like fine wine, some of these experiments should have just been left on the cutting room floor, operating more as an interesting idea than something that should have landed on a slab of vinyl. It’s every artist's right to thrill the audience and give them what they don’t know they want, but there are also more than a few times where the fans would prefer something a little more than what we got here.

10. Cut the Crap - The Clash

It would have been perfectly acceptable if the Clash decided that they would call it a day after Combat Rock. The band had taken their sound as far as they wanted to at the time, and the idea of continuing on with a version of the Clash without Mick Jones just felt wrong. Joe Strummer was persistent though, and the Clash Mark 2 stepped up to the plate with one of the most placid punk albums ever made.

Even though you can hear Joe trying desperately to hold things together on this record, blending the Clash's angry sound with mid ‘80s synths just doesn’t work on this record, containing some of the more unnecessary songs the band would ever write and Joe’s most uninspired lyrics like on Dirty Punk and Fingerpoppin. After two people were brought in to replace Mick, the songs still feels like the band is at half capacity, especially on some of the synth heavy tracks where it sounds like the electronic assistance is out of sync with the rest of the instruments.

There might be a few salvageable songs on here like This is England, but even Joe seemed to be regretful of the album later on, never including any songs on their greatest hits albums and leaving the Clash legacy on a whimper rather than a bang. Mick Jones may have had his own thing going on now, but this is what Big Audio Dynamite would have been if it were played by someone with no musical experience.

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