The Best LP Side Ones Ever

Spurred on by the realization that both David Bowie's commercial breakthrough Let's Dance and Queen's News of the World had solid, sturdy side ones on their vinyl releases, I then began the hunt for other great vinyl slabs with amazing side ones.

Of course, the idea is that this could only include albums from the (first) great rock vinyl heyday. I am sure that Wilco and others have turned in great side ones in the past decade, but only a select few of you have heard them on vinyl.

The secret to great albums, of course, has everything to do with genius and gripping songs, plus proper sequencing and editing. And you may remember a few years back, when I attempted to cut some of most popular double slabs down to one lean collection.

Not all double albums should have been double albums, just as some albums had to be double albums in order for their point to be made. Each case is different with each band or artist. Or something.

This was one of the most headache-inducing lists to come up with because you are inherently going to miss things, and you will have to shed some classic albums from monolithic bands.

Or your favorite band that I forgot to mention. Because I knew it would piss you off.

It took a lot of nerdery on my end, but here it goes. On a side note, every Pink Floyd album I looked at had amazing side ones, and I couldn't pick one out. Dark Side, The Wall - just look at them.

Also, why I am at it, I didn't include any Beatles or Bob Dylan albums. In fact, I wish we could leave them out of most lists of this sort. Let's argue about water, air, and sunshine too. Though Highway 61 Revisited has a great side one.

I also went by the standard U.S. versions of the albums' track listings whenever possible. is a cool tool if you want to do your own digging/hating.

Run-DMC, Raising Hell

"Peter Piper"
"It's Tricky"
"My Adidas"
"Walk This Way"
"Is It Live"

David Bowie, Let's Dance

"Modern Love"
"China Girl"
"Let's Dance"
"Without You"

Queen, News of the World

"We Will Rock You"
"We Are the Champions"
"Sheer Heart Attack"
"All Dead, All Dead"
"Spread Your Wings"
"Fight from the Inside"

The Minutemen, Double Nickels On the Dime

"Anxious Mo-Fo"
"Theatre Is the Life of You"
"Viet Nam"
"It's Expected I'm Gone"
"#1 Hit Song"
"Two Beads at the End"
"Do You Want New Wave or Do You Want the Truth?"
"Don't Look Now"
"Shit from an Old Notebook"
"Nature Without Man"
"One Reporter's Opinion"

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John Seaborn Gray
John Seaborn Gray

Have to add INXS' Welcome to Wherever You Are. Every song on side 1 is pure gold. Whereas maybe 2 songs on the reverse side are halfway decent.


Yep! this is fun! let me profferGrateful Dead - American BeautyBox of Rain, Friend of the Devil, Sugar Magnolia, Operator,Candyman

The Smiths - The Queen is DeadThe Queen is Dead, Frankly, Mr Shankly, I Know It's Over, Never Had No One Ever, Cemetry Gates



Pink Floyd?? Side One?? YMBK!! Side 2:DSOTM: Money, Us and Them, Any Colour You Like, Brain Damage, EclipseMeddle: Echoes--Best PF song everAnimals: Pigs (Three Different Ones); Sheep...Zeppelin?? Side One??Zoso: Misty Mountain Hop, Four Sticks, Going to California, When the Levee Breaks

Don't get me started...

Edward Reyna
Edward Reyna

Honorable Mention: 

AC/DC - Back in BlackHells BellsShoot To ThrillWhat Do You For Money (Honey)Giving The Dog A Bone Let Me Put My Love Into You

It is AC/DC's best-selling album, the second best-selling album of all time, and the biggest-selling album by any band, with more than 49 million copies sold worldwide.[

Mirko Kokot
Mirko Kokot

Some of those are really bold choices. But i agree with whole list... and every page I was like: "wow, they even remembered that album... yeah, it's pretty awsome" [and than played most of things for cca 20 min]

Me to would rather choose eliminator than tres hombres 


captain beefheart and the cars on the same list...  these truly are the end of days...

as for "trout mask", i'd give the edge to "safe as milk" as a better side 1...  although, i'm hard pressed to think of a song more happy-happy-joy-joyful than "ella guru"...



Millions to choose from. Here's a few:

The Who - Live at Leeds"Young Man Blues""Substitute""Summertime Blues""Shakin' All Over"    Plastic Ono Band - Live Peace in Toronto"Blue Suede Shoes""Money (That's What I Want)""Dizzy, Miss Lizzy""Yer Blues""Cold Turkey""Give Peace a Chance"(and for all that is holy, stay away from Side 2)

Eric Clapton"Slunky" "Bad Boy" "Lonesome and a Long Way from Home" "After Midnight" "Easy Now""Blues Power" 

Jim Porter
Jim Porter

Billy Thorpe - Children of the Sun

Jim C
Jim C

(and for all that is holy, stay away from Side 2)

Thanks.  Now I have to clean Diet Coke off my keyboard.

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