We Rank The Best Albums From 1969

We Rank The Best Albums From 1969 | Society Of Rock Videos

via The Beatles / YouTube

The greatest rock albums from 1969 capture a turning point in history as the 1960s drew to an end. This countdown depicts the development of an era that included the demise of the Beatles, the rise of new bands, and the transformation of the cultural scene.

30. Deep Purple, Concerto for Group and Orchestra
Deep Purple’s groundbreaking collaboration, featuring Jon Lord’s music and Ian Gillan’s lyrics, blended classic hits with a thunderous score, challenging preconceptions about rock.

29. Grateful Dead, Aoxomoxoa
Jerry Garcia’s evolving partnership with lyricist Robert Hunter resulted in the Grateful Dead’s exploration of studio confines, creating a mix of psychedelic rock and acoustic-leaning numbers.

28. The Kinks, Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire)
The triumph of rock with a British sensibility, Arthur, is a more listenable counterpart to contemporary works like the Who’s ‘Tommy,’ resembling a rock musical rather than an opera.

27. The Beatles, Yellow Submarine
Amidst personal pursuits, the Beatles’ involvement in the Yellow Submarine film was minimal, featuring older songs. Yet, the soundtrack showcased late-period collaborative moments and a dose of acid rock.

26. Mothers of Invention, Uncle Meat
Frank Zappa’s subversive orchestration challenged rock conventions, blending genres from orchestral music to free jazz and blues, creating an ever-engaging musical landscape.

25. Elvis Presley, From Elvis in Memphis
Presley’s return to non-soundtrack work in Memphis showcased a fusion of country soul, marking a departure from his ’50s recordings and revealing a new musical dimension.

24. Nick Drake, Five Leaves Left
Overlooked in its time, Drake’s folk-rock recordings, assisted by Richard Thompson, conveyed an autumnal yearning, foreshadowing the artist’s tragic end in 1974.

23. Jefferson Airplane, Volunteers
Blending bucolic moments with psychedelic rock, Volunteers served as the last album featuring key members, leaving the ’60s with a series of powerful social rebukes.

22. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Bayou Country
Creedence’s discovery of their identity unfolded in Bayou Country, reaching high points with notable tracks like “Born on the Bayou” and “Proud Mary.”

21. Chicago, Chicago Transit Authority
Chicago’s debut album showcased a band with a bright horn section and a scalding guitarist, offering engaging musical diversity and sharp political commentary.

20. The Allman Brothers Band, The Allman Brothers Band
Their self-titled debut blended rock, blues, jazz, and Southern sensibility, establishing a unique musical identity for the Allman Brothers Band.

19. Flying Burrito Brothers, The Gilded Palace of Sin
Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman’s venture into country and western music produced an album that, while overlooked on the charts, inspired future bands like the Eagles.

18. Bob Dylan, Nashville Skyline
Dylan’s shift to deep country on Nashville Skyline was revolutionary, shattering counterculture archetypes with a sincere exploration of country music.

17. Boz Scaggs, Boz Scaggs
Recorded at Muscle Shoals, Boz Scaggs showcased a loose, soul-lifting affair, departing from Scaggs’ later silky-smooth hits and offering a plate of home-cooked soul food.

16. King Crimson, In the Court of the Crimson King
A daring debut and prog’s standard bearer, In the Court of the Crimson King set the template for King Crimson’s ever-evolving lineup.

15. The Velvet Underground, The Velvet Underground
A departure from nervy experimentalism, their fourth album focused on singer-songwriter compositions, reflecting a shift from the Andy Warhol aesthetic.

14. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Green River
Codifying the promise of’Bayou Country, Green River showcased Creedence at their best, with sharp compositions and a definitive voice.

13. Crosby, Stills & Nash, Crosby, Stills & Nash
Blending blues-rock, social consciousness, and pop smarts, the trio brought a back-to-basics aesthetic to the masses.

12. Captain Beefheart, Trout Mask Replica
A free-thinking concerto that set the stage for post-punk, new-wave surrealism, and alternative rock, Trout Mask Replica opened up new possibilities for the future of rock.

11. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Willy and the Poor Boys
Amidst remarkable invention, CCR’s third album occasionally delved into dreamlike reverie, marked by the raging protest song “Fortunate Son.”

10. Santana, Santana
The big bang of Latin rock, Santana blended genre-bending explorations with compact hits like ‘Evil Ways,’ influencing a wave of multicultural musical expressions.

9. Sly and the Family Stone, Stand!
A groundbreaking amalgam of race, gender, and genre, Stand! offered a powerful message of transcendence before Sly Stone departed from the charts.

8. The Stooges, The Stooges
With a wiry, first-take feel, the Stooges’ debut fueled heavy metal, and presaged punk, and left a lasting impact on the rock landscape.

7. Neil Young, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
Neil Young’s collaboration with Crazy Horse marked a departure from folk-rock conventions, combining wild eclecticism with a sharper and looser tone.

6. Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II
Recorded on tour, ‘II’ showcased Led Zeppelin’s heaviest and most inventive moments, setting the stage for subsequent successes.

5. The Who, Tommy
A pioneering concept album, Tommy represented the Who at their finest, opening up new narrative possibilities for pop composers.

4. Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin
Arriving as a fully formed blues-rock variant, Zeppelin’s debut influenced their career and countless heavy-metal purveyors.

3. The Band, The Band
Moving to California, the Band consolidated and improved upon their initial recordings, creating a self-titled album exploring brotherhood and community with hootenanny fun.

2. The Rolling Stones, Let It Bleed
An aptly titled gritty counterpart to the Beatles’ utopian ‘Abbey Road,’ Let It Bleed reflected the apprehensions of the era and marked a visceral triumph for the Stones.

1. The Beatles, Abbey Road
A fitting send-off, Abbey Road showcased the Beatles as distinct individuals, weaving a tapestry of brilliance that resonates through the ages.

Don’t Miss Out! Sign up for the Latest Updates

Premium Partners

Society of Rock partner World War Wings
Society of Rock partner Daily Rock Box
Society of Rock partner Country Music Nation
Society of Rock partner Country Rebel
Society of Rock partner I Love Classic Rock
Society of Rock partner Rock Pasta

Interested in becoming a partner?

Contact us for more info.