Rock albums that sound good on your system?

Often, you put in a rock album into your S$10,000 system and the music, though enjoyable, just sounds harsh, grating, boomy and forward. Aside from several of my Pink Floyd albums, the rest of my rock CDs just sound bad. Are there any good rock recordings out there?
Rths---the following sound good in my opinion on CD....
Led Zeppelin The Complete Studio Recordngs (box set)
Yes-all their remastered albums.
Rush-all their remastered albums.
Van Halen-all ther remastered albums
Supertramp-all their remastered albums
Jeff Buckley-Grace and my Sweetheart The Drunk
Roxy Music-all their remastered albums
The Doors-Complete Studio Recordings (box set)
Radiohead-OK Computer and The Bends
PJ Harvey-Songs From The City,Songs From The Sea(great album from 2000)
Steely Dan-their complete remasters('98 onwards)
David Bowie-the recent remasters
More recently the very great At The Drive In-Relationships Of Command (heavy but intelligent).
Also Tortoise-Standards (jazz meets rock meets electronica)
The list imho goes on and on but depends on what you consider "Rock" and what music you like and consider well recorded..........
I play LP's and most rock sounds awesome!!
I would be hard pressed to think of more than 3-4 rock LP's I have that don't sound great.
Try Neil Young Comes a Time and Al Stewart's Year of the Cat. Both have excellence sonics.
Rths> You might try doing a search on this topic since it has been discussed before. Also Audio Asylum has a thread on this subject. Here's a few for starters

The Who - Who's Next
Little Feat - Waiting For Columbus (a live album that sounds fabulous)
Led Zeppelin I
Robin Trower - Bridge of Sighs
Spirit - 12 Dreams of Dr Sardonicus
Boston's first album
Steely Dan - Aja (most of their's are good)
Doobie Bros - Toulouse St & what Were Once Vices... (I've not seen them listed anywhere else but they sound good on my system)

Another that I have not seen listed anywhere is Black Sabbath's first 3 albums. I've listened to these guys since their debut. I spent many years in "mid-fi" which did them justice. I now have quite a revealing system and I think they sound great. Black sabbath w/o the grundge. Some may not like it. It is quite different. I think it sounds great.

Try Aerosmith "Toys in the Attic", and "Rocks". The Cult "Electric", Led Zep II, AC/DC "Highway to Hell", and "Back in Black" are also good. But man, get a poor rock recording, you might as well listen to am radio!
Yeah, it seems the better I make my system, the worse some of my favorite albums sound. However, there are some goodies out there for rock fans:

1) Genesis - A Trick of the Tail - sounds great, the bass line at the opening of Squonk will blow you away.

2) Little Feat - Waiting for Columbus - this was mentioned by another 'Gonner, and I concur. I also had the privilege of attending the show at Lisner Auditorium way back when - and I made sure I brought along my bag o' reds. One warning - the CD omits the gem "Don't Bogart Me", ya gotta buy the vinyl to get the whole enchilada.

3) Camel - The Snow Goose and A Live Record - I *really* dig Camel, and these two albums are VERY well recorded. Strongly recommended.

4) The Other Ones w/Bruce Hornsby - I forget the title, but it is a FABULOUS 2 CD live recording. The opening of St. Stephen brought tears to my eyes the first time I heard it, and I'm getting weepy even now [smile]. Buy this CD, NOW!

5) John Fogerty - Premonition - I'm a big CCR fan, and Fogerty is in *fine* form on this one. Kenny Aronoff's drumming is magnificent. If you're partial to DVDs and 5.1 sound, buy the DVD instead of the CD, you will not be disappointed.

6) Bela Fleck - Live Art - Not really rock, but this is such a well-recorded live album that I figgered I'd mention it anyway. And just how many fingers *does* Victor have on his hands, it ain't humanly possible to play like that. [big smile]
I mostly listen to vinyl and my favorite rock recordings are:
King Crimson:

Larks Tongues in Aspic
Three of a Perfect Pair.


Soon Over Babaluma,
Ege Bamyasi,
Future Days,
Saw Delight,
Rite Time.

These are the best examples that sound superb in my analogue rig:
J.A. Michell GyroDec MK!V,
Incognito RB300, Lyra Helikon,
ARC PH3 SE(upgraded)fed directly to the amp with monoural volume controls.

There are a bunch more of Genesis, Yes, Zep, FZ, Hendrix MFSL(Electric Ladyland) -- superb!, ELO, ELP, Marillion, 10cc...

I will aim to upgrade to Orbe that is able to "tighten up" some extraneous softness of GyroDec with extra-heavy platter and different clamp and increase imaging as well.
Power supply from Orbe brings also a lot.

RL> I didn't know M&M's had the red color back then. Also I forgot about the omossion of Don't Bogart. I miss that one.
The regular albums are great, but the XRCD2 versions of "Brothers in Arms" by Dire Straits and "Hell Freezes Over" by Eagles are truly outstanding. Other great regular cds are SuperTramp's "Crime of the Century", "who's Next" (mentioned above), "Baja Sessions" by Chris Isaak, and Queen's "hits vol 7".
Neal Young: Harvest Moon
Eric Clapton: Unplugged - Reptile
Bob Dylan: Essential
The Neville Brothers: Yellow Moon
Chris Isaak: Heart Shape World
Jimi Hendrix: The Blues
Joe Jackson: Big World - Night and Day - Heaven and Hell
Bob Marley and the Wailers: All the new reissues
Talking Heads: Remain In Light - Stop Making Sense - Little Creatures - Speaking in Tongues - Naked
Roxy Music: Flesh and Blood - Avalon
The Beatles: Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band - Abbey Road
The Rolling Stones: Let It Bleed - Sticky Fingers (Bob Ludwig reissue)
steely dan
talking heads
todd rundgren
elvis costello

Some of the very best recorded CD's are not secular. Try
DC Talk, the Newsboys or a soft rocker like Michael W. Smith. Not only will you be amazed at the recording quality
but you might even be able to feel good about the message.
Hi Folks !A few Current Albums to consider that sound wonderful are 1. AIR-10'000 Hertz Legend Some say Prog Rock in disguise.Art Rock may be a better description.From acoustic parts to full blown Electronics with deep bass,Moog etc..Beck makes a couple appearences.Will test your system with more sounds than any recording I've heard.This album is a Masterpiece and the most interesting Album I've heard in a while.2.A close 2nd is Radiohead Amnesiac.Ditto most of above 3.Sigur Ros -Agaetis Byrjun from Iceland.A Beautiful Haunting Album, Mellow but Heavy[An old Hippie term]Guitar played with a violin bow!And the Voices!I first heard all of these on Morning becomes Electic Show.All are archived.Posters Ben Campbell and Marakanetz would probably Love all three as they don't seem to be into commercial crap and are into very engaging music.All 3 are available on vinyl and sound great in both formats.Must have's for Floyd/Art Rock,Prog Rock Fans!Hope you enjoy,from an Old Music Obsessed Guy.My .02 for something NEW !
Jd-I have numbers 2 and 3 on your list and wouldn't disagree with your sentiments.....
Dylan, "Good As I Been To You"
Dire Straits, "On Every Street" (actually, any Dire Straits)
Talking Heads, "Stop Making Sense"

The Dylan is truly an incredible recording, musically and sonically. Better sound recording, IMHO, than any of his others.
All George Thorogood CDs sound very good on my highly revealing system, and I especially like his Anthology-- a two CD set. GT and the Delaware Destroyers do ROCK. GT may be a "throw back" or dinosaur, but if he's a dinosaur he's a T-REX.

ZZ Top also is excellent on good systems, and I like "One Foot in the Blues", and "Antenna". And the newly re-mastered CCR CDs are also very good-- they were done using JVC's K2 20 Bit Super Coding system. Rock On! Craig
Try James Newton Howard and Friends on Sheffield. An audiophile classic. Probably out of print, but maybe you can find it.
Stone Coyotes, "Born to Howl" - see the review at "Church of the Falling Rain" and "Situation Out of Control" are also good.

Los Lobos, "How Will the Wolf Survive," "Kiko," and "The Neighborhood" are all very good.
For Rlwainwright, try Camel's "The Gods of Light, (Live 73-75) It's got the live version of Snow Goose and was bootlegged directly from the soundboard. It beats the first Snow goose silly. Other Good Albums:
Days of the New (1 & 2, 3 is more compressed)
Frank Zappa: You Can't Do that on Stage Anymore, Vol 2
Steve Winwood's Boxed Set (Mostly Traffic music)
Blind Faith's 2 disc remastered set released last year
Klaatu's first 2 albums released on 1 cd
Emerson, Lake & Palmer: Brain Salad surgery (remastered)
Dire Straits: Brothers in Arms
Rush: 2112 and Chronicles

Records to stay away from
Any Jefferson Airplane and Starship unless remastered
Heart: Dreamboat Annie (way too bright)
Paul McCartney - "Unplugged - The Official Bootleg" The best sounding LP I own
Roger Waters - "Amused To Death" The 2nd best
Steve Miller - "Born 2 B Blue"
Sting - "Ten Summoners Tales" or "Mercury Falling"
Buckingham/Nicks - "Buckingham/Nicks"
Donald Fagen - "Kamakiriad"
Van Morrison - "Hymns To The Silence" or "Too Long In Exile"
Daniel Lanois - "Acadie" or "The Beauty Of Wynona"
Marc Cohn - "Marc Cohn" or "The Rainy Season"
David & David - "Boomtown"
Willy Deville - "Miracle" Absolutely Great Album!
Pousette-Dart Band - "Pousette-Dart Band"
Charlie - "No Second Chance"
Willy Nelson - "Stardust"
Linda Ronstadt - Any of the three with Nelson Riddle
Enya - "Shepherd Moons"
plus I agree with all of Rosstaman's picks! :-)
Most major label rock stuff sounds like poop (no matter how much it gets polished) when it gets put next to:
Can-Ege Bamyasi
Guru Guru-s/t, or Kanguru
Harriet Tubman-Prototype
Kollektiv- s/t
Massacre-Funny Valentine, or Meltdown
Screaming Headless Torsos-Amandala
Ui-Two Sided Sharpie
There are lots of other specimens of incredible mind altering riffage out there. After a few of the above have printed in yer' brain you'll need more.
radiohead kid A and ammenisac excellent recordings
I lean towards things that are bluesy, try:
Melvin Taylor and the Slack Band - Dirty Pool Evidence
ECD 26088-2
Melvin will put most guitar slingers to shame and this one is very nicely recorded
the black crowes...'nuff said
The Doors gold (I think DCC) re-releases of the albums.


Linda Ronstadt w/ Nelson Riddle. Now there are three albums that rock! (?)
The first "rock" album that came to mind that was not already mentioned ( Pink Floyd ) was "Wishmaster" by a band called Nightwish. I found them by reading reviews on Amazon.

Think of talented and somewhat versatile "metal" band with refined production. Now add a female vocalist that sings "opera" style. Pretty different to say the least. This disc can come across as sounding somewhat "digital" on some systems, but is very dynamic with excellent "blackness" between notes. Doesn't suffer from the typical "keep everything as loud, even, vague and smeared as possible" rock recording that we run into most of the time. Good bass extension without sounding muddy or bloated in mid-bass. You can pick everything out. While it does sound best loud ( like most harder music ), I always suggest listening at reasonable volumes first and learning how loudly you can listen later. That is, unless your system is indestructible. : ) Sean
neil young...ragged glory, mirrorball, & broken arrow
north mississippi allstars...phantom 55
white stripes...white blood cells
alice in chains...facelift & dirt
slayer...seasons in the abyss (rick rubin produced)
system of a down...toxicity (rick rubin produced)
tool...lateralus & sober the center
fu manchu...king of the road & in search of...
son volt...wideswing tremelo & straightaways
uncle tupelo...anodyne
jayhawks...hollywood town square, being there, & summerteeth

could go on, but most of this has been in heavy rotation lately...
btw, i would hesitate for about 2 seconds if i felt the slightest interest in a disc or lp rick rubin produces...
bands evolve, in a good way, when they work with rubin, imo
Days of the New's very first and second, The white sripes's 'the white blood cells", any 'Rage against the machine', 'The Sixteen horsepower's first two (at least thoes I have)All of the above have 'blackness' (that Sean talks about in his post)between and thru the notes that makes the sound much clearer with precise imaging and depth with least amount of grunge(no pun intended). Few of the Mapleshade CD's I have ( the fallen angels and silent bearm and few more-can't recall all) are my reference for rock sound.( Although music you gotta use to) with all the qualities that Sean describes with much more realism
Tool is some of my favorite music and some of the best recorded hard rock going, IMO. I listen to a lot of rock on my system and like the way it sounds on most stuff. I wish it was all as well recorded as Tool, Pink Floyd, Creed, etc. Days of the New, Tragically Hip, Counting Crows, Radiohead, Dream Theater - I like their recording quality. Plenty of great female vocalists with rock-ish background. -Kirk
"Linda Ronstadt w/ Nelson Riddle. Now there are three albums that rock! (?)" wrote Easy_e on 03-07-02.

Answer to Easy_e:
Snuggle up with your favorite woman, turn the lights down low, play any one of those 3 Linda Ronstadt LPs - and you'll find out what "Rock & Roll" really means. :-)

The term "Rock & Roll" referred to that exactly in it's early days Egoss, and good point.

Ever listened to the lyrics of the old "60 Minute Man" cut from Minit records, released in 1961?

"I can rock-um, roll-em all night long,.....I'm a 60 minute man."

I don't think he's talking about dancing.
Ridiculous sounds good on your system?
Oh and by the way, if you really meant that my idea was ridiculous.

From the best of BBC online, titled "The Dawn of Rock and Roll"

The term "rock and roll" was originally a nautical term which has been used by sailors for centuries. It refers to the rock (fore and aft motion) and roll (sideways motion) of a ship. The term entered black spiritual music in the 1800's, but with a religious meaning, and was first used as such in a recording in 1912, in an early black gospel recording called "The Camp Meeting Jubilee" on the Little Wonder Record label. The artists were listed simply as "Male Quartette."

Keep on rockin' an' roll me in yo' arms,
Rock an' roll me in yo' arms,
Rock an' roll me in yo' arms,
In the arms of Moses,

Then, in 1947, Roy Brown did a blues called "Good Rocking Tonight" that was a parody of gospel, where instead of rocking the Lord, he had church people like Deacon Jones and Elder Brown rocking in a secular manner. "Good Rocking Tonight" was the first time the gospel meaning of rocking (in a cradle) and the secular meaning (dance, sex) were fused together in the same song. The joke was taken from Louis Jordan's "Deacon Jones" of 1943, in which a Deacon was stealing money from the collection plate, getting drunk on the sacramental wine, and having sex with all the female congregants. Brown took the Deacon one step further and had him rocking.

Along comes Wynonie Harris. Although Harris wasn't the first to sing blues with a gospel beat, as others like Big Joe Turner had been doing this for years, and Brown was not the first to use the term "rocking" for sex, it was Harris' record that started the "rocking" fad in blues and R&B in the late 1940's. After Harris' record, there was a massive wave of rocking blues tunes, and every black singer had a rocking blues record out by 1949 or 1950
Very interesting post, Albert. Thanks!
Steely Dan's "Gaucho" has been prominent lately.....especially "Hey Nineteen". this cut rocks on my $1 thrift-shop special pressing.....a rock'n roll eargasim.
I'll 2nd Gregm's comment-- great post Albert-- Thanks. Cheers. Craig
Sticking to "albums", and not mentioned above(I think):
Traffic "Low Spark"
Nirvana "Nevermind"
Van the Man "Astral Weeks"
MMW (OK, not exactly rock) "Combustication"
Roxy Music "For Your Pleasure"
And the best I've heard is a sealed ( before I got it :) flimsy 120 gm YES "Fragile" found in a used record shop in Philly for $4.99. BASS? YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE BASS!!
Forgot to mention "The California Project" by Papa Doo Run on Telarc. Good sound and great music. Another one that is probably out of print.
As an old Genesis fan I've been buying the remasters recently for my new system (McIntosh integrated, Arcam CDP, Tannoy speakers) and they sound really good. It's like rediscovering old records, but they sound better than they did then. I'm talking about the old Genesis stuff, not the newer pop stuff. Also Radiohead, Los Lobos.
The Creedence Clearwater Revival remasters sound excellent.