150 Best Albums of 1977

No Elvis*, Beatles or Stones in 1977. At least not here. (One of them died!) These are my 150 favorite LPs of the year. I’ve spent the past four years or so re-listening to my entire LP and CD (even cassette) collection, then resorted to streaming several albums I can’t physically touch. I’m ready to reveal the fruits of my labor, and this is just the beginning.

There are steaming piles of punk rock, more Brit pub rock than seems strictly necessary, and countless bands on the punk/new wave/late-glam/hard rock cusp. I’m not gonna try to figure out whether disco or funk does better, but maybe you can. Unless the Marshall Tucker Band count (second-highest-placing Southern rock album despite Jimmy Carter being president), four out of the six country LPs wind up in the bottom 20, including a CB radio comp bringing up the rear. The list also maybe goes a bit skimpy on on solo women — top two are both Donna Summer, at #1 and #60. (Trivia note: Only album on this list I actually owned in the year of two sevens clashing is Heart’s Little Queen.)

Other artists on the list twice: Cheap Trick, City Boy, Steve Gibbons Band, David Bowie, Santa Esmeralda. Second ’77 albums by Ramones, Cameo, Ashford & Simpson, Legs Diamond, Detective, Belle Epoque, Pat Travers and Derringer didn’t quite make the cut. There are music critics who, on lists like this, would pretend Low and Heroes (or Rocket to Russia and Leave Home) together qualify as one album occupying a single spot, but that’s cheating. Had I included the other Cameo, there would be LPs on the list named both You Know Who You Are and We All Know Who We Are. So that’s kind of a shame.

  • – Wait, I was wrong! There is an Elvis below. Just not that one.
  1. Donna Summer Once Upon a Time… (Casablanca)
  2. Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols (Warner Bros.)
  3. Fleetwood Mac Rumours (Warner Bros.)
  4. Boney M Love For Sale (Atlantic) 
  5. The Clash The Clash (CBS UK)
  6. Garland Jeffreys Ghost Writer (A&M)
  7. Ornette Coleman Dancing In Your Head (Horizon)
  8. Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly (Capitol)
  9. The Vibrators Pure Mania (Epic UK)
  10. Lynyrd Skynyrd Street Survivors (MCA)
  11. Jimmy Castor Bunch Maximum Stimulation (Atlantic)
  12. Earthquake Leveled (Beserkley)
  13. Kraftwerk Trans Europe Express (Capitol)
  14. Elvis Costello My Aim is True (Columbia)
  15. Slave Slave (Cotillion)
  16. C.J. & Co. Devil’s Gun (Westbound)
  17. The Persuasions Chirpin’ (Elektra)
  18. Hit Rocket: 20 Super Hits (Arcade Germany)
  19. AC/DC Let There Be Rock (Atco)
  20. Saturday Night Fever (RSO)
  21. Jack DeJohnette Pictures (Elm)
  22. Cheap Trick Cheap Trick (Epic)
  23. Steely Dan Aja (ABC)
  24. Bizarros/Rubber City Rebels From Akron (Clone)
  25. Cerrone Supernature (Cotllion)
  26. Hawkwind Quark Strangeness and Charm (Sire)
  27. Starz Violation (Capitol)
  28. Yabby You Deliver Me From My Enemies (Grove UK)
  29. Hit Tornado: 20 Super Hits (Arcade Germany)
  30. Cheap Trick In Color (Epic)
  31. Ted Nugent Cat Scratch Fever (Epic)
  32. Archimedes Badkar Tre (MNW Sweden)
  33. L.T.D. Something to Love (A&M)
  34. Talking Heads Talking Heads 77 (Sire)
  35. The Dictators Manifest Destiny (Asylum)
  36. Bionic Boogie Bionic Boogie (Polydor)
  37. Ramones Rocket to Russia (Sire)
  38. The Boomtown Rats The Boomtown Rats (Mercury)
  39. Chic Chic (Atlantic)
  40. Riot Rock City (Fire Sign)
  41. Richard Hell and the Voidoids Blank Generation (Sire)
  42. Al Green The Belle Album (Hi)
  43. Nick Gilder You Know Who You Are (Chrysalis)
  44. Ultravox Ultravox! (Island)
  45. Space Magic Fly (United Artists)
  46. Mr. Brown Mellan Tre Ögon Med Mr. Brown (Mr. Brown Sweden) 
  47. Golden Earring Mad Love (MCA)
  48. City Boy Young Men Gone West (Mercury)
  49. Television Marquee Moon (Elektra)
  50. Christ Child Christ Child/Hard (Buddah)
  51. Ram Jam Ram Jam (Epic)
  52. The Count Bishops The Count Bishops (Chiswick UK)
  53. Pat Travers Putting It Straight (Polydor)
  54. Eddie and the Hot Rods Teenage Depression (Island)
  55. Foghat Live (Bearsville)
  56. Brownsville Station Brownsville Station (Private Stock)
  57. Steve Gibbons Band Rollin’ On (MCA)
  58. Santa Esmeralda Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood (Casablanca)
  59. The Motors The Motors (Virgin)
  60. Donna Summer I Remember Yesterday (Casablanca)
  61. The Marshall Tucker Band Carolina Dreams (Capricorn)
  62. Kate and Anna McGarrigle Dancer With Bruised Knees  (Warner Bros.) 
  63. Blondie Plastic Letters (Chrysalis)
  64. Foreigner Foreigner (Atlantic)
  65. Gilla Help! Help! (Hansa International Germany)
  66. Bad Boy The Band That Make Milwaukee Famous (United Artists)
  67. Graham Parker and the Rumour Stick to Me (Mercury)
  68. Automatic Man Visitors (Island)
  69. Heart Little Queen (Portrait)
  70. Belle Epoque Miss Broadway (Shady Brook)
  71. Goddo Goddo (Fatcat Canada)
  72. Parliament Funkentelechy vs. the Placebo Syndrome (Casablanca)
  73. Heartbreakers L.A.M.F. (Trak UK)
  74. Culture Two Sevens Clash (Joe Gibbs UK)
  75. Billion Dollar Babies Battle Axe (Polydor)
  76. Disco Fever: Die Platte Des Jahres (K-Tel Germany)
  77. Fatback NYC NYUSA (Spring)
  78. Lavender Hill Mob Lavender Hill Mob (United Artists)
  79. Fela and Afrika 70 Zombie (Creole UK)
  80. Grupo Sportivo 10 Mistakes (Ariola Benelux)
  81. Blue Öyster Cult Spectres (Columbia)
  82. Geils Monkey Island (Atlantic)
  83. Merle Haggard A Working Man Can’t Get Nowhere Today (Capitol)
  84. MX-80 Sound Hard Attack (Island UK)
  85. Dirty Tricks Hit and Run (Polydor)
  86. Dave Edmunds Get It (Swan Song)
  87. Metro Metro (Sire)
  88. Fabulous Poodles Fabulous Poodles (Pye UK)
  89. Dr. Feelgood Sneakin’ Suspicion  (Columbia)
  90. Jackson Browne Running on Empty (Asylum)
  91. The Alpha Band Spark in the Dark (Arista)
  92. Kongas Africanism (Crocos)
  93. Mink Deville Mink Deville (Capitol)
  94. David Allan Coe Rides Again (Columbia)
  95. Earth, Wind and Fire All ‘n All (Columbia)
  96. Steve Gibbons Band Caught in the Act: Live (MCA)
  97. Judas Priest Sin After Sin (Columbia)
  98. Amanda Lear I Am a Photograph (Chrysalis)
  99. Legs Diamond Legs Diamond (Mercury)
  100. Mother’s Finest Another Mother Further  (Epic)
  101. Radio Stars Songs for Swinging Lovers (Chiswick UK)
  102. Chris Spedding Hurt (Rak UK)
  103. Brick Brick (Bang)
  104. Mick Stevens The River (Spaceward Studios UK)
  105. Disco Fever: 20 Original Disco Hits (K-Tel UK)
  106. Cameo Cardiac Arrest (Chocolate City)
  107. Derringer Sweet Evil (Blue Sky)
  108. Ashford & Simpson So So Satisfied (Warner Bros.)
  109. Nils Lofgren Night After Night (A&M)
  110. Suicide Suicide (Red Star)
  111. War Galaxy  (MCA)
  112. Deaf School Don’t Stop the World (Warner Bros. UK)
  113. Nutz Hard Nutz (A&M)
  114. Angel On Earth as it is in Heaven (Casablanca)
  115. Peter Gabriel Peter Gabriel (Atco)
  116. Joe Tex Bumps and Bruises (Epic)
  117. The Tubes Now (A&M)
  118. City Boy Dinner at the Ritz (Mercury)
  119. David Bowie Low (RCA Victor)
  120. Piper Can’t Wait (A&M)
  121. Prism Prism (Ariola America)
  122. Randy Newman Little Criminals (Warner Bros.)
  123. Radio Birdman Radios Appear (Trafalgar Australia)
  124. Aerosmith Draw the Line (Columbia)
  125. Hirth Martinez Big Bright Street (Warner Bros.)
  126. Damned Damned Damned Damned (Stiff UK)
  127. Millie Jackson Feelin’ Bitchy (Spring)
  128. Hydra Rock the World (Polydor)
  129. Sweet Off the Record (Capitol)
  130. Shalamar Uptown Festival (Solar)
  131. Muddy Waters Hard Again (Blue Sky)
  132. Santa Esmeralda The House of the Rising Sun (Casablanca)
  133. Rick Dees and His Cast of Idiots The Original Disco Duck (RKO)
  134. Styx The Grand Illusion (A&M)
  135. Joe Ely Joe Ely (MCA)
  136. Charlie Rich Rollin’ With the Flow (Epic)
  137. Yes Going for the One (Atlantic)
  138. Boxer Absolutely (Epic)
  139. Detective It Takes One to Know One (Swan Song)
  140. David Bowie Heroes (RCA Victor)
  141. Village People Village People (Casablanca)
  142. Gary Stewart Your Place or Mine (RCA Victor)
  143. Flame Queen of the Neighborhood (RCA)
  144. Floaters Floaters (ABC)
  145. The Angels The Angels (Albert Productions Australia)
  146. The Eyes New Gods: Aardvark Thru Zymurgy (World Theatre)
  147. Horslips Aliens (DJM)
  148. Nona Hendryx Nona Hendryx  (Epic)
  149. Thundertrain Teenage Suicide (Jelly)
  150. All Ears: 10 New and Original Songs with a CB Theme (Realistic)

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