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Greatest Albums Of The 70s: 30-17

From Magazine to Buckingham Nicks, our great 70s countdown continues...

Our Greatest Albums Of The 70s, numbers 30 to 17.

30) REAL LIFE Magazine (Virgin, 1978)

This was the album that prompted the NME to dub Magazine singer Howard Devoto “the most important man alive”. He had that messianic aura, while the music had the requisite gravity and heft, even if it’s usually Magazine’s third LP, The Correct Use Of Soap, that gets the plaudits. Real Life signalled the shift from punk to post-punk, the moment the scene switched its gaze from tower blocks to more cerebral matters and started experimenting. Although with its glacial keyboards and discordant musicality, it rather posited Magazine as a displaced prog band, even a latter-day Roxy Music.

What they said at the time: “Magazine shut down once and for all any Buzzcocks comparisons. A commercial, quality rock album with deceptive depths.” Sounds

29) EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY Rod Stewart (Mercury, 1971)

Remembered by Rod as “all the planets aligning”, his third solo album proved the sand-and-glue vocalist was also a master interpreter (from the tough soul of I Know I’m Losing You to the country-blues of That’s All Right), and no slouch as a songwriter. Every Picture was a critical and commercial slam-dunk at the time, but as Rod’s standing has dropped with every Great American Songbook it’s cited less in pub debates. Which is a shame.

What they said at the time: “[With] his fantastic ability to interpret tunes and to wail… Stewart once again weaves a musical web of knowing. His best here is every tune.” Billboard


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