Top Five Drug Addled Albums Of All Time

The Con

Maia Banks here’s the (abbreviated) list you asked for: the 5 Top Drug Addled LP’s of all time. The rules are are as follows: “being merely eccentric while swathed in outlandish clothing fails to qualify. Having done an epic amount of street powder while getting handjobs in the groupie van is not enough. Hell, Steven Tyler claims to have spent $3 million on cocaine over the years, but would Aerosmith have sounded one iota different if they’d been straight edge? It’s the same reason Mötley Crüe doesn’t warrant space on this list. Sure, they snorted live ants (actually, that was Ozzy) and mainlined Jack Daniel’s to stave off epic boredom, but their music would have been exactly the same steaming pile of hair regardless.

No, to make this list, the music on a given album has to bleed chemical influence while also leaching a very specific brand of desperation and/or madness. The vocals, the rhythm, the melody–all have to be drenched in reverb, compression, and frighteningly altered states that could not have been recorded any other way. Except through a blind leap into the void.

And sometimes madness itself is that chemical.

Roll it, pour it, cook it, crush it, or just get stone-cold crazy; the needle will drop into the groove either way.

But excess is never enough. There also has to be undeniable beauty. And there is. Every single album on this list is a remarkable document, and warrants repeated listens over the course of a lifetime.

Also, no reggae allowed.”

(from an article by Sean Boudoin the

So here we go:

5. After Bathing at Baxter’s – the Jefferson Airplane.

You cannot record an acid trip. The Airplane tried and served up this wonderful, heroic failure of an album. The melodies start and get lost somewhere after first 10 seconds and the drumming may or may not be in time. Talk about a glorious mess! This may tell you more about me than you care to know but Baxter’s is my favorite Airplane album bar none.

4. Maggot Brain – Funkadelic

Acid + the early 1970’s + George Clinton’s fractured but brilliant vision + Eddie Hazel on guitar + Detroit = this stunning masterwork. Eddie Hazel and Clarence White are tops on my list of guitar players you’ve probably never heard and that’s a shame so get off your lazy ass.

3. Land Speed Record – Husker Du

Far far from their best but it’s a perfect live document of a band that covered a lot of the country on their early tours fueled by a lot of speed. Actually I’m still not sure how I feel about this album as I’ve bought and sold it numerous times.

2. The Complete Dial Sessions – Charlie Parker

Specifically Sessions 2 and 3 recorded in Hollywood in 1946. Bird was unable to find any heroin in post war LA and began to go through ‘Cold Turkey’ withdrawl. Shortly after these sessions, Bird was admitted to Camarillo State Hospital in Ventura County for treatment of Heroin addiction and alcoholism. You can hear the anxiety and fear in each of the man’s solo’s. A truly horrifying document of a junkie who happened to be the greatest jazz player in the 20th century trying to keep his sanity intact.

1. White Light/White Heat – The Velvet Underground

The title track is a playful little ditty extolling the virtues of Crystal Meth, more shocking today then it was then considering the Meth epidemic sweeping across the country – and things only get more intense and weird from there. For those who wonder what ‘tweaking’ is like put all 17 minutes of Sister Ray on repeat and listen to it for two days straight with no sleep.

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