I recently heard MGMT’s new album Congratulations and was unimpressed. Oracular Spectacular was a fascinating debut filled with some great songs (“Kids” and “Time to Pretend”). Sometimes it’s hard to follow up great debuts with another great record. Here’s a list of some of my favorites.
Elvis Costello – This Year’s Model. Boosted by the Attractions on the follow-up to My Aim is True, the music finally matches Costello’s nastiness.
R.E.M. – Reckoning. Reckoning takes away the murkiness of Murmur resulting in an album full of Byrds fueled college rock.
The Band – The Band. Another terrific set songs on the follow-up to Music from Big Pink. Doesn’t contain the “big hit” (ie – “The Weight”) but “Rag Mama Rag” and “King Harvest Has Surely Come” are undisputed classics.
Ryan Adams – Gold. Heartbreaker Ryan Adam tried to be a modern Gram Parsons. (Emmylou Harris even guests on one of the tracks.) On Gold he attempted to take on The Rolling Stones circa Exile, and despite his prolific tendency, he’s never bettered Gold.
The Pogues – Rum Sodomy & The Lash. Red Roses For Me is good rowdy fun, Rum Sodomy & The Lash proved the Pogues were more than just Irish folk music on speed.
What are your favorite follow-ups?