Must Own Albums: AOR

bostonBoston – Boston

The brainchild of musical maestro Tom Scholz, recorded almost entirely in his basement. The record label didn’t like this unprofessional approach, so Scholz had the rest of the band act as a decoy in the studio so he could carry on creating the album at home at his own pace. It had a revolutionary guitar sound that was the product of effects designed by Scholz himself. It helped influence a generation of rock bands and cost a tiny fraction of the cost to produce a regular album.

hotel californiaEagles – Hotel California

The greatest achievement by one of America’s quintessential rock bands. It is a concept album that looks at the dark side of the American dream, as well as the prominent hedonism and excess in the music industry at the time. It contains some of their most famous songs, most notably the title track and ‘Life in the Fast Lane’, and has since become one of the best selling albums of all time.

slippery when wetBon Jovi – Slippery When Wet

With their first two albums Bon Jovi had found little success either critically or commercially, but clearly it was third time’s the charm as they soon became a household name across the globe. They have since become one of the most successful bands in history but this is where they really kicked off, and it includes their biggest hits: ‘Livin’ on a Prayer’, ‘You Give Love a Bad Name’ and ‘Wanted Dead or Alive’.

escapeJourney – Escape

The band had been shuffling round a fair bit since their prog debut with former members of Santana. Now on their seven studio album, Jonathan Cain joined as keyboardist and as one of the key songwriters. With the band’s classic line-up all together for the first time they produced hit after hit. On Escape they could do no wrong and with Steve Perry’s incredible vocals they became one of the best selling bands of the time.