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From David Bowie to Radiohead: 24 Wonderful Artists With The Worst Debut Albums Ever


Sadly, for some legendary musicians, their first foray into the highlight wasn’t a harmonious triumph. And sure, even massive photographs like David Bowie and Radiohead missed the mark with their debut tasks. However they don’t seem to be the one ones. Let’s discover the turbulent landscapes of creativity, resilience, and the fascinating evolution of those iconic trailblazers.

1. David Bowie (1967) By David Bowie

David Bowie (1967) by David Bowie
Picture Credit score: Deram Information.

David Bowie’s debut album feels like he took a left flip at glam-rock and ended up in a parallel universe the place his model was completely incomparable. Humorous sufficient, the album did not even chart within the U.S. or U.Ok. However it randomly skyrocketed to primary in New Zealand and Austria! Who noticed that coming? Definitely not Bowie himself.

He as soon as confessed, “I did not know if I used to be Max Miller or Elvis Presley.” If he was imitating Elvis on this album, it wasn’t the hip-swiveling rock & roll legend who modified the world.

2. Empty Sky (1969) By Elton John

Empty Sky (1969) by Elton John
Picture Credit score: MCA Information.

Everyone knows Elton John as a famous person, however his rise to fame had just a few bumps. His self-titled album in 1970 was not his first; it was a mission referred to as Empty Sky launched the summer time earlier than. Elton mentioned making the Empty Sky album nonetheless holds his loveliest recollections. Oh, the keenness he felt because the album took form. Sadly, critics did not share that enthusiasm. Fortunately, Elton received it proper the second time round.

3. For You (1978) By Prince

For You (1978) by Prince
Picture Credit score: Warner Information Inc.

When he scored a three-album cope with Warner Bros., Prince satisfied them to let him self-produce his debut. Dangerous transfer? The ensuing classes had been a mixture of rigidity, debt, and bodily wreckage. Critics say For You appeared to endure from slick overproduction and formulaic disco vibes. Prince might have sounded coy and kittenish, however the witty songwriting and peak innovation that might later outline his work was nowhere to be discovered.

4. From Genesis to Revelation (1969) By Genesis

From Genesis to Revelation (1969) by Genesis
Picture Credit score: Decca Information.

5 teenage members, fresh-faced and nonetheless in boarding faculty, scored a report deal because of an alumnus who had a success with “Everybody’s Gone to the Moon.” And what did they title themselves? Genesis.

The report label wished them to create an idea album primarily based on the Bible. Their debut album cowl learn “From Genesis to Revelation,” main confused retailers to file it away as spiritual junk. Poor Genesis! Ultimately, they reinvented themselves as a progressive rock outfit. Amen to that!

5. Janet Jackson (1982) By Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson (1982) by Janet Jackson
Picture Credit score: A&M Information.

Do you know that Janet’s first album was launched at 17? And who arrange the deal? Her pricey previous dad, Joe Jackson. Critics weren’t precisely variety, claiming she confirmed no musical persona. However it’s all good as a result of we all know Janet blossomed right into a musical power to be reckoned with.

On her hit tune “Management,” she mentioned, “Once I was 17, I did what folks informed me.” Effectively, she actually broke free and confirmed the world her true colours.

6. Wonderwall Music (1968) By George Harrison

Wonderwall Music (1968) by George Harrison
Picture Credit score: Apple Information.

The primary launch on Apple Information got here from none apart from George Harrison. Yep, the quiet Beatle made his solo musical debut, and boy, was it one thing! Wonderwall Music was George’s earnest expression of his love for classical Indian music. However let’s be sincere, it decreased a posh model to a set of hip background sounds. We appreciated the keenness, however the execution left us scratching our heads.

7. Grit Sandwiches for Breakfast (1990) By Child Rock

Grit Sandwiches for Breakfast (1990) by Kid Rock
Picture Credit score: Jive Information.

Within the ’80s, white youngsters had been starting to vibe to hip-hop, however not many launched an album. Child Rock did, and we’re not sure if that is a blessing or a curse. His debut, Grit Sandwiches for Breakfast, is so generic it is like he dumped the whole lot present about hip-hop in 1990 into a large colander and sifted out all of the individuality. Fortunately, Child Rock redeemed himself six years later and averted being remembered as a historic flop.

8. Chilly Spring Harbor (1971) By Billy Joel

Cold Spring Harbor (1971) by Billy Joel
Picture Credit score: Household Productions/Columbia.

Even the “Piano Man” himself was disgusted with the outcomes of his debut album. Poor Billy appeared like a chipmunk! Because of a mastering mishap, the songs had been performed too quick, making Joel’s voice greater than a helium balloon. No surprise he fell out with the report label proprietor.

9. Providing/Ticket To Trip (1969) By The Carpenters

Offering/Ticket to Ride (1969) by The Carpenters
Picture Credit score: A&M Information.

Ah, the Carpenters. Do you know their debut album initially had the title Providing? Yeah, not precisely a chart-topper. It barely reached No. 150 within the U.S. The one saving grace was a canopy of “Ticket to Trip,” a minor hit. So, what did they do? They re-released the album with that tune because the title. Intelligent transfer, Carpenters.

10. It (1983) By Pulp

It (1983) by Pulp
Picture Credit score: Pink Rhino Information.

Earlier than turning into Glastonbury headliners, that they had a bit of detour with their debut album, It, launched in 1983. And what occurred? Little fanfare, my good friend. It is just like the nation collectively hit the snooze button. However let’s be sincere, they had been nonetheless determining their sound, and once they finally did, many people had been hooked!

11. Infinite (1996) By Eminem

Infinite (1996) by Eminem
Picture Credit score: WEB Leisure.

Eminem is the rap god, sure, however earlier than he reached these heights, his life could not have been farther from the glitz and glamor of hip-hop. Rapping provided him an escape, and he developed his Slim Shady alter-ego. However earlier than Slim Shady took over the world, Eminem launched Infinite in 1996. And what occurred? It was a powerful failure.

Each setback is a setup for a comeback. Eminem realized and used his classes to gasoline his journey to the highest. We’re glad he did not keep caught within the infinite abyss.

12. Sure (1969) By Sure

Yes (1969) by Yes
Picture Credit score: Atlantic Information.

Sure is one band that divides opinions. Some followers adore them, whereas critics dismiss them. However let’s discuss their 1969 debut album. Essentially the most notable factor about it’s that there is little to get anybody labored up, whether or not you are a fan or a critic. Sure did not make an enormous splash, and the 2 most notable tunes had been covers. They gave a light-weight, jazzy spin to the Byrds’ “I See You” and tried a posh improvisation with the Beatles’ “Each Little Factor.”

13. Skinny Lizzy (1971) By Skinny Lizzy

Thin Lizzy (1971) by Thin Lizzy
Picture Credit score: Decca Information.

Skinny Lizzy, the rockers who gave us killer tunes like “The Boys Are Again in City,” needed to begin someplace. And that someplace was awkward. Their self-titled debut album did not showcase the laser-focused twin-guitar arduous rock they’d develop into identified for. As a substitute, it stumbled by way of varied kinds, from rock to people to blues, with a lineup that might change later. And guess what? Plenty of it was ad-libbed!

14. The Rolling Stones (1964) By The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones (1964) by The Rolling Stones
Picture Credit score: Decca Information.

The Rolling Stones want no introduction. However have you learnt how they began? They recorded their debut album in simply 4 days, and boy, does it present!

At that time, they had been but to face on their very own two ft and failed to face out from the crowded subject of blues bands producing data like their debut. However the Rolling Stones had far more to supply. They confirmed they had been far more than simply one other blues band and have become one of many biggest rock ‘n’ roll bands ever.

15. Sonic Flower Groove (1987) By Primal Scream

Sonic Flower Groove (1987) by Primal Scream
Picture Credit score: Elevation Information.

Primal Scream finally discovered the proper fusion of indie rock and dance with their iconic album Screamadelica. However earlier than they reached that pinnacle, that they had their humble beginnings. In 1987, they launched their debut, Sonic Flower Groove. Now, you may suppose it was an prompt hit, however nope! Like dozens of different bands on the time, it left critics dissatisfied, calling it “a pile of lifeless leftovers.”

16. Leisure (1991) By Blur

Leisure (1991) by Blur
Picture Credit score: Meals Information.

Damon Albarn as soon as labeled Leisure as downright terrible. He expressed reduction that you would launch a report that missed the mark again then with out being immediately tossed into oblivion. Leisure was like a nostalgic leftover from the saggy indie growth of the late 80s and early 90s, with its shuffling rhythms not precisely pointing the way in which to Blur’s peculiarly British indie model.

17. Three Imaginary Boys (1979) By The Treatment

Three Imaginary Boys (1979) by The Cure
Picture Credit score: Fiction Information.

Earlier than the grand data, The Treatment was simply one other group making an attempt to determine punk. This album was excused as a mishmash of random songs that they had written over just a few years throughout their stay gigs. The kooky cowl and the less-than-superb manufacturing had nothing to do with them. Belief us; their story begins with their subsequent album, Seventeen Seconds.

18. Lou Reed (1972) By Lou Reed

Lou Reed (1972) by Lou Reed
Picture Credit score: RCA Information.

There was fairly a buzz surrounding Lou Reed’s debut in early 1972. Everybody knew him because the chief of the Velvet Underground, who had crafted some brilliantly twisted songs within the earlier decade. Sadly, he appeared to have forgotten to deliver one thing recent for the listeners. So, he ended up belting out previous VU tunes like “Trip into the Solar” and “I Cannot Stand It.” That is positively not what followers had been anticipating.

19. Wished Useless or Alive (1970) By Warren Zevon

Wanted Dead or Alive (1970) by Warren Zevon
Picture Credit score: Liberty Information.

Warren Zevon did not precisely look again fondly on the aftermath of his stark and bizarre first album, which was a shambolic and primitive tackle people rock. The album’s launch was met with crickets — critics and listeners appeared unimpressed, and it did not do nicely commercially both.

20. Pablo Honey (1993) By Radiohead

Pablo Honey (1993) by Radiohead
Picture Credit score: Capitol Information.

Radiohead’s first is a far cry from the brilliance of their different albums. Pablo Honey has wonderful songs like “Anybody Can Play Guitar” and even received platinum certifications within the U.S. and U.Ok. However the mission is all underwhelming. Critics mentioned it was considerably satisfying however flawed, and followers all agree it isn’t their greatest mission. The most effective of Radiohead was but to return.

21. Metallic Magic (1983) By Pantera

Metal Magic (1983) by Pantera
Picture Credit score: Metallic Magic.

Metallic Magic is a cringe-worthy imitation of that period’s glam metallic; no main label wished to be affiliated with it. The band members themselves would later dismiss this report and the 2 LPs that adopted (Tasks within the Jungle and I Am the Evening). In line with them, their “first major-label report” was the Phil Anselmo-led 1990 masterpiece, Cowboys From Hell. All of us agree with them.

22. Motion (1981) By New Order

Movement (1981) by New Order
Picture Credit score: Manufacturing unit Information.

Pleasure Division’s crew was grappling with the lack of Pleasure Division’s lead singer Ian Curtis the 12 months earlier than. They tried to jot down recent materials as they reconvened below the brand new title “New Order” with Gillian Gilbert. Sadly, it ended up being seen as a watered-down model of their former band, and no one wished that. Sadly, producer Martin Hannett one way or the other made the report sound empty and uninspired. However when their follow-up album, Energy Corruption And Lies, dropped, New Order discovered their sound wowed their listeners.

23. Juvenile Hell (1993) By Mobb Deep

Juvenile Hell (1993) by Mobb Deep
Picture Credit score: 4th & B’means Information.

Prodigy and Havoc scored a cope with 4th and Broadway simply in time to leap on the short-lived kiddie rappers bandwagon. However Mobb Deep’s gritty tales of rising up had been removed from kid’s play. The duo could not again up their hard-bitten road narratives with memorable choruses, and the album’s manufacturing was nothing greater than your on a regular basis boom-bap.

24. The Pink Sizzling Chili Peppers (1984) By Pink Sizzling Chili Peppers

The Red Hot Chili Peppers (1984) by Red Hot Chili Peppers
Picture Credit score: EMI America Information.

The Chilis’ debut album might have performed higher, riddled with flimsy manufacturing and unhealthy vocals. So as to add to that, there have been no actual hits or chart-toppers. Their efficiency on this album was a blueprint for what to not do on subsequent tasks.


Boloere Seibidor, fondly referred to as B.S. is a Nigerian-based author and poet. Her favourite matters to cowl embrace music, particularly Hip-Hop, movie, life-style, and vogue. She’s been printed by Feral Journal, Fantasy Journal, The Temz Overview, and most notably, Wealth of Geeks. She enjoys romantic dinners, film nights, and touring new websites. When she’s not writing, she’s delving again in time to the underground world of Hip-Hop, watching TikTok, or visiting the cinema.


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