Dud Tracks On Favourite Albums

Yesterday I was listening to ‘Harvest’, one of my favourite albums by the great Neil Young. There’s one song however that I always skip, and that’s ‘A Man Needs A Maid’, an overwraught, over-orchestrated effort that just gets on my nerves.

Later I got to thinking about how often it’s the case that there’s one dud on a lot of my favourite albums; that one song that’s just inferior due to weak writing, or over-production, or incompatability with the overall mood or ‘feel’ of things.

Take The Beatles’ ‘White Album’, that cornucopia of sounds which is a landmark in their catalogue. Or rather, just take ‘Revolution 9’, all fucking four hours of it. I know that some regard this as a sort of ‘avant garde’ piece, but I regard it as out-of-place snash. Oh and as this is a double album, let’s point the finger at ‘Wild Honey Pie’, a piece of pure McCartney crap which at least has the virtue of being short.

How about ‘Voices of Old People’, that burst of chuntering on the otherwise enduring ‘Bookends’ from Simon and Garfunkel? Okay, I know it could be argued that it helps to establish the album’s theme, but once heard, forever skipped.

The Smiths ‘Meat Is Murder’ would be perfect, were it not for that darned title track, with its abattoir noises and dragging, tub-thumping moralising. Nobody doubts the sincerity of Morrissey’s commitment but honestly, it makes me want to go out and eat a big, juicy steak.

I appreciate that The Police’s ‘Mother’ from ‘Synchronicity’ is a bit of a Marmite track; so love it, some hate it. I wouldn’t say that I hate it so much as find that its inclusion jars and upsets the ‘flow’ of the album. Would have been much better as a quirky ‘b’ side I’d say.

I don’t want wear out my welcome so I’ll conclude with one final example. ‘Bringing It All Back Home’ remains my favourite Dylan album, an almost perfect synthesis of his acoustic and electric styles. Almost.The bad apple in this collection is the oh so pretentious ‘Gates of Eden’. ‘Of war and peace the truth just twists its curfew gull it glides, upon four-legged forest clouds the cowboy angel rides’. I’ve seen it described as Dylan’s most ‘surreal’ song. I suppose that’s one way of putting it.

Of course this is very subjective; one man’s musical meat is another man’s poison.
But I’d bet that when you think about it, there’s that album with THAT track on it that irritates the life out of you. Not a matter of life and death; just a bit of a cunt.

Nominated by Ron Knee.
No Dud tracks on the cover picture album C.A. or are there?

119 thoughts on “Dud Tracks On Favourite Albums

  1. The biggest dud track on any album is the whole of tubular bells 🔔 wank.
    I think Mike oldfield is a great guitarist but tubular bells is shit from start to finish

  2. D’yer make,er
    Houses of the holy
    Led Zeppelin

    I hate that bag o shite.

      • It’s that ‘ cod – reggae’ thing, Minge.☹️

        Dunno what they were thinking sticking that on the album?

        Compare that to Kashmir, immigrant song or friends, awful.

      • Stairway To Heaven is shite, apart from the last two minutes and twenty-eight seconds.

      • Led Zeppelin II does not have a single duff track on it though.

        Neither does Murmur by REM.

        These albums are near to perfection.

    • Funny, how ‘Out Of Time’ was R.E.M’s big breakthrough. But a lot of it is crap. The dreadful rap of ‘Radio Song’, the CSNY rip-off ‘Endgame’ and the dreadful ‘Shiny Happy People’, which sounds like the Muppets crossed with ‘Wait Till Your Father Gets Home’.

  3. Revolution 9 is eight minutes and twenty-two seconds.
    Not four fucking hours.
    It’s better if you listen to it backwards.

      • I agree . Sounds like a pub song from the Queen Vic in Eastenders. McCartney at his worse.

      • I think Lennon hated that track Minge.

        I believe he came up with the piano intro to try and liven it up a bit.

      • I had to sing the Worst of the Beatles at school, as well as Simon and Garfunkel folk.

        Not a fan of the Beatles or folk.

      • I loathe ‘The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill’ because Yoko Fucking Ono is on it.

  4. Was never a fan of Mulligan and O’Hares instrumental, avante garde version of ‘Brimfull of Asha’ on their seminal album, ‘Tittybiscuits’.


    Good piss take of pretentious bollocks tunes though.

      • I recall:

        She was turned down for adoption
        Because of her bizarre appearance

      • The day the donkey Derby came to town
        People came to watch them all around.

        Alas, we didn’t see who won the race
        Because the supergroup The Who
        Swooped down from the moon

        And squirted tartar lemon in our face

  5. Like him or hate him, it has to be admitted that Synchronicity would have been a solid classic if Sting had written the lot.
    That album is a good example of band politics interfering with the finished product.

    • The Police were fucking brilliant (in my opinion)

      Stewart Copeland on the skins 👌

      • Deffo an infusion of originality, energy and genius into the fairly patchy 80’s,musical landscape in general ?

        Andy Summers and Sting’s memoirs are well worth reading.Summers account of his first acid trip is fascinating and relatable.A brilliant guitarist it has to be said.

  6. Not all albums have a shit track on them.
    The elbow is taboo, by Renaldo and the loaf is 9 songs of pure genius.
    So there are exceptions to this cunting.

    • For sure, Violator by Depeche Mode does not have a flaw. To my ears anyhow.

  7. Alabama Song on The Doors first LP.
    And Horse Latitudes on Strange Days.

  8. I am sure Ron has the Birdie Song Album in his collection, not a single dud track

  9. Does anyone remember the K-Tel and Ronco best of type albums?
    Rock music was always padded out with some bollocks by Neil Sedaka or Gilbert O’Sullivan.
    Tracks to skip. (Or any commercial soul shit).

    • Certainly do m’lud.

      Does anybody remember those awful, dirt cheap covers of hit songs that used to be released on the ‘Embassy’ label and sold at Woolworth’s?

      If you went into our local store in Balsall Heath they were always playing them. I remember being in there one time and saw some old dear buying a cover copy of the ‘Coronation Street’ theme ffs.

  10. I usually have the opposite problem. Albums which are 95% shite with just one good track on them. A good example is Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”. Mostly a long pretentious boring whinge from nutty socialist millionaire Roger Waters – until you get to Another Brick in the Wall, which is a great track. The rest of the album can be binned, along with the ugly Gerald Scarfe artwork.

    • For me, that’s pretty much all of ‘the Beatles’ long players.

      But hey each to their own.

    • For me it was Guns n Roses. Apart from Sweet Child O’ Mine and, to a lesser extent, Paradise City I thought Appetite for Destruction was bollocks.

    • I hated The Wall. What a dullard of an album.
      I liked Pink Floyd during their Trippy Period up to DSOTM.
      David Gilmour lives just down the road from me in Hove, He’s selling his modest pad for 15 million quid if anyone’s interested.
      Afternoon MMCM

    • I always thought that Pink Floyd were massively overrated and don’t even get me started on that hate-filled old cunt Waters.

  11. There’s only one or two albums in history that I don’t skip at least one track on. Sound Affects by The Jam was probably the last one I could listen to all the way through and that was released in 1980!

  12. On Kate Bush’s albums, I always skip the ones with the didgeridoo as they were played by that nónce convict.

    • Anybody subscribe to George Martin’s view that ‘The White Album’ would have been better distilled into one album?

      • Not me.
        Besides, you can bet your bottom dollar Martin would have included Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da.

      • It would be fascinating to know what Martin would have picked for a one album release. We’ll never know now tho.

      • Yep.Ditto ‘Tales from Topographic Oceans’ by YES.Maybe left material over to improve the ‘Tormato’ horror show ? Wakeman concurred.Over ambitious.

  13. Dud or not, pop music cheated you out of vinyl space for more tracks. Whereas classical music, you got your money’s worth, even though symphonic movements had to be split for short of space. All the better when CDs came out, abling you to listen to the work as a whole as it was intended. Besides not having the vinyl crackles in the quieter movements.

  14. Aja and Gaucho by Steely Dan.

    There’s not a skipper on those albums.

    In fact I would say there isn’t a track that I would skip on any album by the Dan but then again I’m biased.

    • “You go back, Jack, do it again, wheel turnin’ ’round and ’round
      You go back, Jack, do it again…”

      I know how they feel.

    • Their first three albums are flawless.
      Found some of the later albums a bit sterile.

      • Gaucho was the last album of theirs that I got into.
        Wasn’t overly keen at first but has gradually became my favourite.

        I don’t think any band rewards repeated listens more than the Dan.

        Afternoon MJB

    • I agree Herman.
      Steely Dan’s later albums oozed sophistication. Extremely well performed and produced

  15. You can guess someone’s age by the albums they cite. Enrico Caruso Live has no dud tracks.

    • @Hardy

      I was a child of the 80s and 90s but the music of those eras (especially the 90s bar Radiohead and REM) couldn’t hold a candle to the 60s and 70s.

      Some decent electronic/dance/rave from the 90s was good but generally speaking – it was wank. Especially Britpop.
      In my opinion of course.

      • Cemetery/Cemetry Gates is a wonderful song. What’s the weather like where you are? Here it’s a dreaded sunny day.

  16. Never mind the Bollocks.

    No duds.

    Like a rocket , whoosh!!💫

    Changed music forever.

    Gawd bless the Sex Pistols

  17. The oasis album be here now is one big repetitive dud from start to finish, riding on the coat tails and frilly bits of the excellent definitely maybe and the ok whats the story morning glory. Overrated like bowie and springsteen.

    • The Gary Glitter one off ‘What’s The Story Morning Glory’ really stinks. So does ‘She’s Electric’. A rip-off of a kids schools and colleges TV show ‘You and Me’.

  18. I can’t think of any duds on Prodigy’s Fat of the Land, or Aphex Twin’s Ambient Works 85-92. Perhaps Leftism by Leftfield had a couple.

  19. I thought the first two tracks on Des O’connor’s thirty fourth album were complete wank….

  20. Wait until the government insist on inserting a dud track into every album. The record producers will be able to pick from a specially selected group of ‘diverse’ groups.

  21. Depeche Mode are my favourite band, Violator is the perfect album, a classic. No duds, Enjoy the Silence, Personal Jesus, World in my Eyes, Halo. Even the lesser known tracks on the album, Blue Dress is one of my favourites. Although they’ve released very good albums since Violator, they’ve never reached that same level in my opinion. No disgrace in that, 40 years on and still going strong. RIP Fletch.

    • Same here Bob.I bought Speak and Spell after Violator and it’s fine but not on the same compositional or lyrical level. or the newer tracks i quite like John the Revelator and Precious but not Lilith.

    • I can listen to Depeche Mode’s songs of faith and devotion over and over again.

      • 2nd favourite of mine Cuntsville. Slightly edgier than other Depeche albums.

    • “…Enjoy the Silence..”

      Past few weeks a mate o’ mine has been asking me to find him a ‘nice wall hanger’ guitar for his front room, (great voice but doesn’t play a note) “…one of the chrome plate things like the Brothers in Arms cover…” that his Dad used to have apparently. Then the other day he sent me this link… “Can y’ find me one o’ these?”
      Enjoy the Silence – Live in Berlin

      Chops clicks the linky… “Blimey Flee, you don’t play a note and you wanna hang £5,000 worth of Gretsch ‘Green Knight’ Double Anniv on yer bloody wall, better sell that Boxster then!”

      …but one thing that cannot be denied (and speaking as fundamentally a proggie greebo rocker)… that is a fucking killer riff… so I grab a guitar and spend 15 mins trying to finger the thing… errr… aha… drop the bottom E to D and it all fits the handspan, then spent 3 hours trying to tweak the pedal board to nail that sumptuous reverb. there’re a thousand worse ways to spend an afternoon.

  22. As a school boy i was heavily into Prog Rock.Still am to some degree.
    They released sampler albums to get you into the various bands.
    They usually had the best tracks on these samplers

    Nice enough to eat on the island label.
    Picnic a breath of fresh air on the Harvest Label
    Fill your head with Rock on the CBS label.
    Anyone remember these albums ?

    • The Rock Machine Turns You On (CBS, 1968)
      Gutbucket (Liberty, 1969)

  23. I’m afraid I’m a musical philistine I cant read or interpret anything into songs for that deeper life changing aspect, I either like the tune or I don’t, I cant waffle about modern art either seeking that hidden meaning only apparent to the intellectual odd shaped glasses wearing, goatee beard stroking cunts, it’s either a pretty painting or not.

    • A lot of it is waffle, dont worry.
      Sight and Sound was pretty far up its own arse for that sort of pseudy claptrap. All postmodern bumlickery and Emperors New Clothes type reasoning.

  24. Squeezebox from The Who by Numbers spoils an otherwise solid effort. It was popular and played to death here in the States. If I never hear it again I will die happy.

    As to RK’s point, in my later years I have come to agree with George Martin, there is some crap on The Beatles (White) album. But I didn’t think that at the time.

    From Abbey Road…Maxwell’s Silver Hammer anyone?

    • I reckon that the two Macca tracks on ‘Abbey Road’ side one are the worst tracks on the album.

      Seeing interviews with the other Beatles latterly, it seems that Paul had them working on MSH for weeks, and just about drove them around the bend with it.

      I don’t know why he bothered; it was another of those rather silly and annoying songs that he started writing around the time of ‘When I’m 64’ and ‘Honey Pie’. I’d assume that he was the main contributor to ‘Yellow Submarine’ as well.

      • Maxwells Silver Hammer
        When I’m 64

        Fucking weak.

      • ‘Yesterday’ is the most overplayed song of all time. Utterly done to death.

        Let’s not forget ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ while we’re on about it.

      • PS –
        According to the Guinness Book of Records ‘Yesterday’ is the most covered song of all time.
        With more than 1,600 recorded cover versions.

      • ‘All Things Must Pass’ is a mostly fine album. Ony the crappy ‘Apple Jam’ last side scuppers it.

        The stench from McCartney’s post-Band On The Run output is still unbearable.

    • I love what John Entwistle (RIP) said about ‘Squeeze Box’.

      ‘Squeeze Box? I thought it was about tits.’

  25. Not too keen on ‘In the shadows’ on the otherwise perfect album ‘Black and white’ by The Stranglers.

  26. ‘Elizabeth My Dear’ off the Stone Roses first album.
    And ‘Good Times’ ‘Straight To The Man’ and ‘Your Star Will Shine’ off Second Coming.

    ‘Mind Gardens’ off Younger Than Yesterday. Not a Byrds track at all. Crosby at his hippy worst.

    ‘Monkberry Moon Delight’ off Ram. Pure ‘because I can’ Macca crap.

    • Yes.’Mind Gardens’ is an abomination on a superb album.Old Cros must have yielded some heavy social power to get that one in the can ?

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