Vatican’s Official Top Ten Albums Of All-Time

Vatican’s Official Top Ten Albums Of All-Time

Rocking The Rosary.

On February 14th, 2010, L’ Osservatore Romano released its official list of all-time top ten albums. Surprisingly, these albums are from the rock and pop genres.

Even so, one should keep in mind that these aren’t the Pope’s favorite albums, or what you’ll find in his iPod (if he has one). These are the top albums of the Vatican.

L’ Osservatore is the official newspaper of the Holy See and nearly 150 years old. The article was written by Giuseppe Fiorentino and Gaetano Vallini.

This list marks a change of tune for the Vatican as they once condemned rock music as a product of the devil.

The list is somewhat conservative but it still quite well done. It has the correct ratio of the four type of selections every good list needs:

  • Obvious selections (Rumors, Graceland, Thriller, Dark Side of the Moon).
  • Selections from obvious artists but not the first album that comes to mind (The Beatles’ Revolver instead of Sgt. Peppers or Abbey Road, U2’s Achtung Baby instead of Joshua Tree).
  • Selections pulled from the back of the record collection (The Nightfly, If I could Only Remember My Name).
  • Selections that immediately cause anger and outrage (Supernatural, (What’s the story) Morning Glory).

The most glaring admission from the Vatican’s list is Bob Dylan. The authors excluded Zimmerman because they felt he paved the way for generations of untalented singer-songwriters who have “harshly tested the ears and patience of listeners.”

It’s hard to argue with that sentiment. After all, Dylan is the most overrated artists of all-time. His stature, at least in America, has been overblown by the fawning Rolling Stone magazine.

The list feels organic. As if Fiorentino and Vallini were unaffected by the politics of music when they made their ten selections. You don’t find the pair choosing a Radiohead, a Talking Heads, or a Captain Beefheart album just to show their edginess.

Despite containing some fairly controversial selections (Dark Side of The Moon, Morning Glory) the Vatican’s list is still the product of a religious entity. How else would you explain the absence of the Exile on Main Street, London Calling, Fear of a Black Planet, and Never Mind The Bullocks.

10. Supernatural
Carlos Santana
9. (What’s the story) Morning Glory
Oasis
8. Achtung Baby
U2
7. Graceland
Paul Simon
6. Thriller
Michael Jackson
5. The Nightfly
Donald Fagen
4. Rumours
Fleetwood Mac
3. The Dark Side of the Moon
Pink Floyd
2. If I could Only Remember My Name
David Crosby
1. Revolver
The Beatles

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