1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die
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1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die
1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die
AuthorRobert Dimery (general editor)
Cover artistJon Wainright
CountryUnited Kingdom
GenreReference work
PublisherTristan de Lancey; Universe Publishing (first edition)
Publication date
Media typePrint (Hardback)
Pages960 p.
781.64026/6 22
LC ClassML156.9 .A18 2006

1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die is a musical reference book first published in 2005 by Universe Publishing. Part of the 1001 Before You Die series, it compiles writings and information on albums chosen by a panel of music critics to be the most important, influential, and best in popular music between the 1950s and the 2010s.[1] The book is edited by Robert Dimery, an English writer and editor who had previously worked for magazines such as Time Out and Vogue.[]

Each entry in the book's list of albums is accompanied by a short essay written by a music critic, along with pictures, quotes, and additional information (such as the album's running time and producer). Only albums consisting of original material by a particular artist are included. Compilations of various artists, and most film soundtracks, are excluded.[2]

The most recent edition consists of a list of albums released between 1955 and 2017, part of a series from Quintessence Editions Ltd. The book is arranged roughly chronologically, starting with Frank Sinatra's In the Wee Small Hours[3] and the most recent edition concluding with Microshift by Hookworms.[]

Selection and sorting methodology

In the book's introduction, general editor Robert Dimery notes that the selections were also intended to bring attention to gifted songwriters. Joni Mitchell, Elvis Costello and Nick Cave are named as examples. The release dates are chosen from the date the album first released in the artist's home country, and the version is the first one released. In most cases, bonus tracks added for later versions are ignored. The editors also attempted to ensure that each album profiled was still available for purchase. Soundtracks that were not original material from a particular artist were also excluded.[3]

Critical reception

In February 2006, Publishers Weekly called the book a "bookshelf-busting testament to music geeks' mania for lists" and said it was "about as comprehensive a 'best-of' as any sane person could want". The reviewer added: "For music lovers, it doesn't get much better."[4] As of July 24, 2020, the 2006 edition had an average rating of 3.96 stars out of 5 with 1,754 ratings on Amazon.com's social cataloging website Goodreads[5] and 4.6 stars out of 5 on Amazon.com.[6]


Most of the book's recommendations are rock and pop albums from the Western world. 1001 Albums also features selections from world music, rhythm and blues, blues, folk, hip hop, country, electronic music, and jazz. The rock and pop albums include such subgenres as punk rock, grindcore, heavy metal, alternative rock, progressive rock, easy listening, thrash metal, grunge and rockabilly. Classical and modern art music are excluded.[2]


These artists have the most albums in the 2017 edition.

See also


  1. ^ "Publisher description for 1001 albums you must hear before you die / [edited by] Robert Dimery". Library of Congress. Retrieved 2016.
  2. ^ a b Dimery, Robert (June 10, 2016). 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die (2016 ed.). Octopus Publishing Group. ISBN 978-1-84403-890-9. Archived from the original on 16 April 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ a b Dimery, Robert (2011). 1001 Albums: You Must Hear Before You Die. Preface by Michael Lydon. Octopus. p. 22. ISBN 1-84403-714-2; ISBN 978-1-84403-714-8.
  4. ^ "1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die". publishersweekly.com. 2006-02-06. Retrieved .
  5. ^ "Goodreads: 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die". goodreads.com. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "Amazon.com: 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die". Amazon.com. Retrieved .

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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