I’ve gotten away from listening to full albums.

When I was a teenager, I’d eat, breathe, sleep, sweat, and piss a new cassette tape from a band I was into for weeks. I’d carry it with me on the go and play it on my Walkman, and when I got home I’d pop it into the stereo and crank it up.

I suppose it’s the extremely short attention span I’ve cultivated over the years, but I don’t even listen to albums as a whole anymore. And I hate that about myself. When’s the last time I listened to Led Zeppelin III all the way through? Black Sabbath’s Master of Reality? Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of the Moon? I can’t even remember.

I even have a turntable and a sizable collection of vinyl, but I don’t play it. It’s a whole “thing” to hook it up and I don’t ever feel like fucking with it. I’ve got a ton of CDs as well.

And yet here I am listening to all of the songs I love as well as introducing myself to new artists song by song.

That changes now. I’m currently listening to Alice Cooper’s Lace and Whiskey, which was released just a couple of days before I was born in May of 1977.

I’m a moderate fan of Alice. I’m more so a fan of him as a personality and a fan of his body of work and presence in music as a whole than I am any individual album or song. I’ve never before listened to this album, and that’s why I chose it.

I’m approaching the final track, and I’ve really enjoyed the experience. I’d forgotten the joys of hearing songs woven together into a cohesive full-length work, just letting the music play and enjoying it. Shame on me. I should’ve known better.


  1. There are certain albums I’m convinced were meant to be listened to in order. The latest one I noticed this on was Phoenix’s Ti Amo album. Another one is Arcade Fire’s Everything Now. And PATD’s Pretty Odd album for sure. And Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s. I love albums like that. Tells a story.

  2. Most of them are. After about the mid-60s. Popular music was single-oriented prior to that. 70s-90s was very Album-oriented. Now it’s kind of reverted back to singles. But all of those albums in between work best as albums even if there’s a lot of good singles from them

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