The Albums of The Clash
Malcolm
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After the wild and crazed success of the first couple of lists i created:
The Albums of Bob Dylan
The Albums of Bruce Springsteen
Post The Band You Play In - oh, you can find my band here

- it's onwards and upwards with "The Only Band That Matters"...

It's a short list but "The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long, and you have burned so very very brightly..."
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1. Board Game: Clash of Cultures [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:211]
Malcolm
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"The Clash" [1977]

The 'punk' one
There are 2 somewhat different versions of this - The 'real' UK release and the 'lets add a couple of big singles to make it easier to sell' US version. Both are great. I'll take the UK version as it flows more but the US has a couple of essential tracks added including one of their greatest recordings: '(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais'.
A great debut that catches the band and their times perfectly.

10/10
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2. Board Game: Cut the Rope [Average Rating:3.93 Unranked]
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"Give 'Em Enough Rope" [1978]

The 'Rock' one
So this showed that the band was going to be pigeon holed (if that wasn't obvious from the singles & EPs that came out around the same time). It's a bit too polished but it makes for a great/thrilling listen that sounds fresh today.
The first album to feature the 'classic' line up now that Topper Headon had joined as drummer. If it's true that a band can only be as good as their drummer then The Clash now had no excuses with one of the best in the business...

8/10
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3. Board Game: London [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:262]
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"London Calling" [1979]

The 'classic' one
This is the album where everything comes together - one of the best ever recorded (According to Rolling Stone, it's the greatest album of the '80s.... go figure, eh?), also one of the few double albums that actually works as a double.
There is little to add to the accolades of this as it now walks alongside albums by those old dinosaurs that they set out to remove from the history books. However, I will say that it's one of the few 'classics' that still sounds fresh and fun to listen to after become part of the 'musical background'.

10/10
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Sandinista! [1980]

The 'batshit crazy' one
Triple album sold for less than the price of a double (pop quiz: name another non-live triple album?). If London Calling re-drew the punk landscape this threw the map away. Mick Jones said it was an album for people on oil rigs who can't get down to the shops very often. It features all kind of madness, some great, some dire but that all makes it more perfect for what it is...

7/10
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"Combat Rock" [1982]

The 'pop' one
Features a couple of their biggest hits and put them solidly in the post-punk world. Started out as another sprawling double album but eventually trimmed down to what is the weakest 'real' album. Despite that it is still solid and well worth your time, if only the production was a bit better (meaning 'rawer') it could still have been a classic.
'Straight to Hell' is the pick of the record.

6/10
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"Cut the Crap" [1985]

The 'crap' one
OK, is this still 'The Clash' with no Mick or Topper...?
Anyway, whatever it is it's pretty dreadful quite what is going on here is anyone's guess!
A couple of the tunes are OK but the recordings are horrible, despite everything 'This Is England' manages to stand up as something worth hearing...

2/10

And, like that, they're gone... A pretty dismal way to end such a quick fire great career. The 4 members would all go on to do various other projects with the Mick Jones led BAD probably being the most successful (and interesting...) but in general they show what a 'band' really means. "The Last Gang In Town"
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