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Sebastian: Album order08 Aug 2003 20:14

I've found it really interesting since I read again that Sgt Pepper's article

I think a really interesting album is Rubber Soul, songwriter/wise:

Drive My Car - Paul
Norwegian Wood - John
You Won't See Me - Paul
Nowhere Man - John
Think For Yourself - George (till now it was Paul / John, now it starts John / Paul, this way)
The Word - John
Michelle - Paul
What Goes On - John & Paul (another dead point)
Girl - John
I'm Looking Through You - Paul
In My Life - John
If I Needed Someone - George
Run For Your Life - John

It's really nice. Similar to Races:

Tie Your Mother Down - Brian
You Take My Breath Away - Freddie
Long Away - Brian
The Millionaire Waltz - Freddie
You And I - John (before it was Brian/Freddie, now it reverses direction)
Somebody To Love - Freddie
White Man - Brian
Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy - Freddie
Drowse - Roger (the most logical would be to have it after Teo but it isn't a song for closure)
Teo Torriate - Brian


a good counterexample is A Hard Day's Night:

Title Track - John
I Should Have Known Better - John
If I Fell - John
I'm Happy Just To Dance With You - John
And I Love Her - Paul
Tell Me Why - John
Can't Buy Me Love - Paul
Any Time At All - John
I'll Cry Instead - John
Things We Said Today - Paul
When I Get Home - John
You Can't Do That - John
I'll Be Back - John

That order is caused because John wrote much more songs than Paul, in this case it was only three by Paul and ten by John. In Sgt Pepper's George wrote one, John 3 1/2, and Paul the remaining 7 1/2, being one of those songs reprised, being that McCartney's "revenge".

In Queen we can see a similar tracklist in Innuendo:

Innuendo - Fred & Roger (lyrics)
Slightly Mad - Fred
Headlong - Brian
I Can't Live With You - Brian
Don't Try So Hard - Fred & Brian
Ride The Wild Wind - Roger
All God's People - Freddie
These Are The Days Of Our Lives - Roger
Delilah - Freddie
The Hitman - Freddie
Bijou - Freddie & Brian
Show Must Go On - Brian

Note how Roger's songs are close to each other, as well as from the five pieces Brian had main input in, three are consecutive more or less in the beginning and the other two (or three if we coun't Hitman) close. The four singles are the three first and the least song, plus DOOL which was later double A with Bo Rhap and was located in the middle. That's a contrast with the previous album (Miracle), on which the five singles were located in tracks 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8.


to finish this parallel, by now (10 minutes or so), another Beatles example - Magical Mystery Tour:

Title Track - Paul
Fool On The Hill - Paul
Flying - Paul claims he was the one with original idea, God know if it's true...
Blue Jay Way - George
Your Mother Should Know - Paul
I Am The Walrus - John
Hello Goodbye - Paul
Strawberry Fields Forever - John
Penny Lane - Paul
Baby You're A Rich Man - John & Paul
All You Need Is Love - John

again Paul was the main songwriter

what the hell, put Help too:

Title Track - John
The Night Before - Paul
You've Got To Hide Your Love Away - John
Another Girl - Paul
You're Going To Lose That Girl - John
Ticket To Ride - John
Act Naturally - Morrison/Russell
It's Only Love - John
You Like Me Too Much - George
Tell Me What You See - Paul
I've Just Seen A Face - Paul
Yesterday - Paul
Dizzy Miss Lizzy - Williams

and a Queen one, Hot Space:

Staying Power - Freddie
Dancer - Brian
Back Chat - John
Body Language - Freddie
Action This Day - Roger
Put Out The Fire - Brian
Life Is Real - Freddie
Calling All Girls - Roger
Las Palabras De Amor - Brian
Cool Cat - Freddie & John
Under Pressure - Freddie & Bowie

Post was edited on 01 Dec 2007 12:44
1.Sebastian 08 Aug 2003 20:45
a Bee Gees example now: Horizontal

World - Barry & Robin
And The Sun Will Shine - Robin
Lemons Never Forget - Barry
Really And Sincerely - Robin
Birdie Told Me - Barry
With The Sun In My Eyes - Barry
Massachussetts - Robin
Harry Braff - Robin
Day Time Girl - Maurice & Robin
The Earnest Of Being George - Barry
The Change Is Made - Barry
Horizontal - Robin & Barry

the constant change was also because they had the Beatles rule: who wrote the song sings it, hence the album would be monotone if we put all Barry's songs in one side and Robin's in the other. Queen took the risk in the second album, in the first 5 songs one is instrumental, one sung by Roger, one by Brian, one by Fred, and one by Fred and Roger, while the entire 2nd side is by Freddie.

talking about Beatle/ruled bands, here there are more examples: Bangles' Different Light. As that's a band of four singers, if the song is a cover I'm putting the singer in parenthesis

Manic Monday - Prince (Susanna)
In A Different Light - Vicki
Walking Down Your Street - Susanna
Walk Like An Egyptian - Liam Stenberg (Vicki, Michael, Susanna)
Standing In The Hallway - Debbi
Return Post - Vicki
If She Knew What She Wants - Jules Shear (Susanna)
Let It Go - Susana, Debbi, Vivki, Michael
September Gurls - Chilton
Angels Don't Fall In Love - Vicki
Following - Michael
Not Like You - Debbi

as you can see Susanna sang just three, but thanks to producer's preferences, all of them and Walk Like And Egyptian (on which she co-sings with Vicki and Michael), were the singles of the album, provoking a public image of Susana as the singer of the band, above Viki, who had sung the same number. Michael got one, Debbi two and the four of them co-sang another one.


Kiss: Destroyer

Detroit Rock City - Paul
King Of The Night Time World - Paul
God Of Thunder - Paul
Great Expectations - Gene
Flaming Youth - Paul
Sweet Pain - Gene
Shout It Loud - Gene & Paul
Beth - Peter
Do You Love Me - Paul
2.PD 08 Aug 2003 22:39
A nice eclectic set of examples to demonstrate the two approaches:
1 blocks of songwriters (Queen II is a fine example),
2 alternating songwriters
(3 irregular)
3.Sebastian 09 Aug 2003 01:16
next one - Guns N Roses Apetite

Jungle - Axl & Slash
It's So Easy - Duff
Nightrain - Unknown, probably Duff
Outta Get Me - Unknwown, probably Axl + Slash
Mr Brownstone - Izzy
Paradise City - Duff
My Michelle - Apparently Axl
Think About You - Perhaps Izzy
Sweet Child Of Mine - Izzy & Axl
You're Crazy - Axl (apparently)
Anything Goes - Izzy & Axl
Rocket Queen - Izzy

and let's put Lies as well

Life - Izzy
Nice Boys - Cover
Move To The City - Izzy
Mama Kin - Cover
Patience - Izzy
I Used To Love Her - Izzy
You're Crazy - ?
One In A Million - Axl
4.LG 11 Aug 2003 15:27
> Innuendo - Fred & Roger (lyrics)
> Slightly Mad - Fred
> Headlong - Brian
> I Can't Live With You - Brian
> Don't Try So Hard - Fred & Brian
> Ride The Wild Wind - Roger
> All God's People - Freddie
> These Are The Days Of Our Lives - Roger
> Delilah - Freddie
> The Hitman - Freddie
> Bijou - Freddie & Brian
> Show Must Go On - Brian

Where did you get the information about credits? I don't think that The Hitman is Freddie's. Brian sings the vocals on demo version.
5.Sebastian 11 Aug 2003 19:40
it's incredible you hadn't ask me that before.

But here are the proofs:

Brian (1991 at Sunset Streep Hotel): "Hitman's finished version had very little to do with the original idea. Most of the riff came from Freddie. I wasn't even in the room when they wrote it. I changed the key and some of the notes to make it playable on the guitar. We finished the backing track, but it seemed to ramble. John sat down and decided to reconstruct the track. He changed the order. He changed everything. I went back and played on that. Then we filled in the gaps on the lyrics, did the harmonies and generally tidied up"

About Don't Try So Hard it was David Richards who said that.

Innuendo it was Brian in 1994. His exact words were: "Innuendo started off as most things do, with us just messing around and finding a groove that sounded nice. All of us worked on the arrangement. Freddie started off the theme of the words as he was singing along, then Roger worked on the rest of them. I worked on some of the arrangement, particularly the middle bit, then there was an extra part that Freddie did for the middle as well. It basically came together like a jigsaw puzzle"

Slightly Mad David said it's Fred, Roger said it too, and Brian confirmed. No doubts

Brian said he wrote Headlong and I Can't for his solo album. Later Dave Richards said I Can't is Brian's, and this year Brian said he plays keyboards in the same song. And we know that Brian wrote the songs on which he played keys - Flash, Teo, Dear Friends, Save Me...

Brian and Dave both said that Fred wrote All God's People at the time of Barcelona, they both said Fred wrote Delilah, too

David Richards remembered all the story of Bijou and said that it was just the two of them - Fred in synth and Brian in guitar

Roger said Days Of Our Lives is his best song, Dave confirmed Ride The Wild Wind is Roger's and Show is Brian's
6.LG 12 Aug 2003 08:16
Thanks, I was uncertain about two or three songs.
7.Sebastian 12 Aug 2003 14:08
no problem, that's what this forum is about
8.Sebastian 16 May 2010 08:55
Lately I've been thinking more about this situation. There seem to be some unwritten general guidelines to sequence an album:

1. Follow the story-line, plot or concept (usual for soundtracks, musicals and, of course, concept albums).

2. If there's no story-line, plot or concept (i.e. the album's a collection of individual songs), then numbers can be queued by:

a) Alternating styles or tones. Queen loved to do that: 'Two Legs' vs 'Sunday Afternoon', 'Stone Cold Crazy' vs 'Dear Friends', 'Scandal' vs 'My Baby Does Me', 'Sheer Heart Attack' vs 'All Dead' (incidentally, the titles match an arc or mini-plot perfectly).

b) Alternating songwriters or producers, which may or may not be an extension of the previous rule. As mentioned years ago, 'A Day at the Races' and 'Rubber Soul' are examples of that.

c) Alternating lead singers (again, a possible extension on the previous rules). Examples include 'Rubber Soul' (where more often than not songwriter = lead singer) and several works by my favourite band, Blink-182 (e.g. 'Enema of the State').

3. For non-instrumental albums, opening and closing numbers tend to be sung by the band's or group's main vocalist (in cases of musicals, by the main character). Cases include Eagles' 'Hotel California' (first and last sung by Don), 'Jesus Christ Superstar' (first and last 'main' sung pieces are by Judas, though technically the overture's instrumental and there's the thing about Jesus whispering while he's dying after Judas' last bit, and then the whole instrumental finale) and Pink Floyd's debut.

4. Some releases pick the 'block' formula, which tends to be somewhat risky. Examples are 'Queen II' (by songwriters) and Extreme's 'III Sides to Every Story'.

Examples coming soon...
9.Sebastian 16 May 2010 09:08
... I mean now. But b4, a note on the Queen albums. Notice how each of them begins in terms of song and instrument(s):

Queen: Ostinato guitar, lead single.
Queen II: Ostinato bass-drum, atypical album track (in terms of being the only instrumental one).
Sheer Heart Attack: Ostinato (so-so) sampled carnival. The song's a regular album number.
A Night at the Opera: Piano fading in, again not a single.
A Day at the Races: Gong. The overture's technically not part of TYMD.
News of the World: Ostinato stomp-stomp-clap percussion. B-Side of the (later double-A) lead single.
Jazz: A cappella. The song's not a (global) single.
The Game: Synthesiser. The song's the album's lead single (first time since the debut album).
Flash Gordon: Dialogue. Again, lead single.
Hot Space: Synth + drum-machine. Not a single.
The Works: Programmed looped percussion. Lead single.
A Kind of Magic: Ethereal reversed/varisped noises. 'Bastard' or 'premmie' single.
The Miracle: Programmed percussion. Not a single.
Innuendo: Drum-roll. Lead single.

Made in Heaven will be commented later on as it's not entirely an album in the way the other fourteen were (for many subtle or not-so-subtle reasons).

Let's see how each of them ends:

Queen: Instrumental snippet of what would be their next single.
Queen II: Lead single, a cappella drunk chant.
Sheer Heart Attack: Not a single, but concerts' closing number. Explosion.
A Night at the Opera: The National Anthem. Instrumental as in the debut album.
A Day at the Races: Technically, the album closes on the neverending guitar thingy rather than on a song per se. Fade-out.
News of the World: A laid-back non-single relaxed number. Fade-out.
Jazz: Not a single. Arrangement gets less busy until it stops.
The Game: Premmie single. Piano.
Hot Space: Premmie single. Clicks/claps until they simply stop.
The Works: Relaxed and laid-back number which is not a single.
A Kind of Magic: Lead single (in the States and Oceania, that is). Echoed vocal.
The Miracle: Not a single. Ends on a music-box type of relaxed 'this is it' epilogue.
Innuendo: Sophomore (?) single, and the album's unofficial anthem. Ends on echoed vocal like 'Princes'.
10.Sebastian 16 May 2010 09:45
And now, examples by other acts:


SPICE (Spice Girls, 1996): Interesting in terms of sequence.

1. Wannabe: Lead single, co-written and produced by Rowe and Stannard, four of the five girls share lead.
2. Say You'll Be There: Sophomore single, co-written by Kennedy and produced by Absolute. All five share lead.
3. Two Become One: Thid single, same writers, producers and singers as in 'Wannabe'.
4. Love Thing: Not a single. Same writers and producers as SYBT. All five share lead.
5. Last Time Lover: Not a single. Same producers as SYBT and LT, different writers. Two lead singers.
6. Mama: Fourth single (double-A with WDYTYA). Same writing/producing team as 1&3. Three lead singers.
7. Who Do You Think You Are: 4th single (with Mama). Same team as 5, five lead singers.
8. Something Kinda Funny: Not a single. Same team as 5&7. Three lead singers.
9. Naked: Not a single. Same team as 5,7&8. Four lead singers (so-so).
10. If U Can't Dance: Not a single. Same team as 1,3&6. Three lead singers (so-so).

All songs except for 'Last Time Lover' were performed live. As an alleged 'ensemble cast', the producers didn't want any of the members to have most of the attention. In that respect, Spice Girls were probably the most equally-balanced group, with all five having huge fanbases and sharing an almost 20-20-20-20-20 precise rate either in terms of singing or media exposure (e.g. Geri sang lead much less often than three of her groupmates but she still got more headlines in her heyday). Same for the way they posed (as a quintet) in photos and concerts, alternating who was in the middle.

Check out who's the first girl to sing lead on each track:

1. Melanie B
2. Emma (first verse).
3. Melanie C.
4. Emma.
5. Melanie B.
6. Emma.
7. Geri.
8. Melanie C.
9. Geri.
10. Melanie B.

So, as you can see, it was pretty much balanced in that department, except for Victoria who never got to open a song in the album. But she'd be the one who'd appear in most fashion mags anyway.

All in all, the album combines the alternating songwriters (first side) with the blocks (second side), and doesn't have two songs started by the same person (although we could quibble about Mel C saying the title line on SYBT some ten seconds before the first verse begins).

The way the best-known tracks are also the first in the album track-list can be paralleled in 'Sgt Pepper's' (debatable in terms of ADitL), 'News of the World' (two anthems), Backstreet Boys' 'Millennium' (also having the three earliest singles as three opening pieces) and, in a way, Queen's 'Greatest Hits' (Bo Rhap and Dust, the two biggest commercial hits).



As all songs have the same producers, that's not a factor. All lyrics were by Roger, so that's put aside as well (so-so, as there were several instrumental numbers). Let's see it in terms of composer:

1. Credited to Mason although it's actually Waters'.
2. Wright (mainly), with Gilmour/Waters also credited.
3. Gilmour/Waters.
4. All four.
5. Wright/Torry.
6. Waters.
7. Wright.
8. Gilmour, Mason & Wright.
9 & 10. Waters.

Interestingly, they sequenced the order of tracks without repeating songwriting credits in simultaneous positions except at the end. And some even consider Brain Damage and Eclipse to be actually one song.

Now, let's see in terms of singer:

1. 'Instrumental' / Clare
2. Dave
3. Instrumental
4. Dave & Rick
5. Clare
6. Dave
7. Dave
8. Instrumental
9. Roger
10. Roger

Again, more or less alternated.



Same producer. Let's see them in terms of lead singer first:

1. Don
2. Tim
3. Joe
4. Don
5. Don & Glenn
6. Glenn
7. Don
8. Glenn & Don
9. Don
10. Don

By this time, Don already dominated the lead vocal department, as you can see. It's quite ironic that Glenn, who'd started off as the band's de facto leader, only got to sing half-way in the album. Compare it with the debut album from six years earlier:

1. Glenn
2. Don
3. Glenn
4. Randy
5. Don
6. Bernie
7. Randy
8. Bernie
9. Glenn
10. Randy

11.Sebastian 16 May 2010 10:19
Blink-182 always had two lead singers, and the order of each album is determined by that. Let's see their entire catalogue:

BUDDHA (1993):

1. Tom
2-5. Mark
6-7. Tom
8. Mark
9-10. Tom
11. Mark
12. Tom
13-14. Mark

Usually, the one that didn't sing lead still did some 'harmonies' (if we use the term too broadly).



Tom: 1, 4, 6, 8, 11, 13, 14, 16.
Mark: 2 (single), 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 12.

13 has no actual lead singer as it's mostly full of screaming and ad-libs.

Also, tracks 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, and 14 were self-produced.


DUDE RANCH (1997):

The first track is indeed a duet. Otherwise:

Tom: 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 13, 15.
Mark: 3, 6, 9-12, 14.

Even though Mark sang more (including the hit single), Tom was supposed to be the front-man and that's why he sings the first (solo) and last tracks.



Tom: 1, 3, 6, 8, 10, 12.
Mark: 2, 4, 5, 6 (middle-eight), 7, 9, 11.

Same as b4: Mark sang more, but Tom did the first and last. Technically, this time Tom did get the hit (All the Small Things).



Tom: 1, 3, 7-10, 13, 15-18
Mark: 2, 4-6, 12, 14

11 and 19 are duets. 20 is a studio thing for a change and it's sung by Mark although Tom still has loads of input.



Tom: 1, 3, 5, 9, 11, 13
Mark: 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12

7 is a duet. Again, Mark sings more songs but Tom got the opening and closing tracks.



Tom: 2, 4, 9, 10 and 14
Mark: 8 and 13

1, 3, 5, 6 and 11 are duets. 7 is instrumental (sort of) and 12 is sung by a guest (Robert Smith from The Cure).

So, this time Tom both dominated the lead vocals and got the first and last.


GREATEST HITS (Compilation with some new things):

Tom: 1, 6, 10, 15, 16.
Mark: 2-5, 7-9, 17.
Duets: 11-14.

So, again Mark got more but Tom got the opening. For the first and only time, Mark got the closing track. On stage is more or less the same: Tom opens and closes, the last encore's usually 'Dammit' but sung as a duet instead of just Mark as in the album/single.

Talk about having insomia...
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