1968-List

1968 Classic Rock Reviews
1968 Music
The universe of rock and roll continued to expand in 1968, as rock and roll edged closer towards maturity.

We featured albums from the year 1968 during November and December 2013. During this 45th anniversary celebration of this music, we have written original reviews these albums:

*1968 Album of the Year
+ Double Album Review

Below are further descriptions of each album, in the order that we reviewed them.

November 3, 2013
The Beatles (white album)The Beatles waited until their ninth studio album to use the eponymous title, commonly known as “The White Album”. Although the album was written and recorded during a period of turmoil for the group and many of the songs were “solo” recordings, It is still a highly esteemed recording from late in the band’s career.

Review of The Beatles

November 7, 2013
Music from Big Pink by The BandAn incredible confluence of working band experience, style, and circumstance brought the newly christened group The Band to Woodstock, NY in 1967, where they wrote and arranged the material for Music from Big Pink along with Bob Dylan. Nearly half a century later it is still considered one of the most influential albums ever.

Review of Music from Big Pink

November 11, 2013
Steppenwolf 1968 albumsSteppenwolf arrived like a heavy rock storm in 1968 and produced their most indelible songs on the two albums released that year – Steppenwolf and The Second. With a blend of heavy blues and sonic overload, the band has been credited as the origin of the genre they coined – “heavy metal”.
Review of Steppenwolf and The Second
November 14, 2013
Waiting For the Sun by The DoorsThe Doors third album Waiting For the Sun was probably the weakest of the band’s career. This was due mainly to lack of good material once the intended side-long composition was abandoned. Still, there are short and sweet moments of brilliance from the band at the zenith of their popularity.

Review of Waiting For the Sun

November 19, 2013
SF Sorrow by The Pretty ThingsThe Pretty Things produced what was arguably the first true rock opera in 1968 with SF Sorrow. Due to lack of label support, being overshadowed by concurrent British releases, and the dark nature of this album’s content, this has unfortunately become a mainly forgotten masterpiece from the late 1960s.

Review of SF Sorrow

November 23, 2013
At Folsom Prison by Johnny CashClassic Rock Review only covers studio albums, not compilations or live albums. But there will be one exception to this rule –At Folsom Prison by Johnny Cash. This totally unique and legendary record, by one of the legendary founders or rock and Americana, may be the most honest album of all time.

Review of At Folsom Prison

November 26, 2013
A Saucerful of Secrets by Pink FloydThe only Pink Floyd to include all five members is 1968’s A Saucerful of Secrets. This was due to the album being recorded both before and after the departure of guitarist and songwriter Syd Barrett, whose sad demise is hauntingly documented in real time on this classic album.

Review of A Saucerful of Secrets

November 30, 2013
Deep Purple 1968 AlbumsArriving on the music scene in 1968, Deep Purple was incredibly prolific in establishing their repertoire and rapidly writing and recording their first two albums, their debut Shades of Deep Purple and the follow-up The Book of Taliesyn. Both albums offer a unique fusion of hard rock jams, original songs, and original interpretations of cover songs.

Double review of Deep Purple’s 1968 Albums

December 5, 2013
Odessey and Oracle by The ZombiesThe Zombies second and final original studio albums during their heyday in the 1960s was the slightly-psychedelic, pre-prog-rock classic Odessey and Oracle. Released in 1968 after the group had actually disbanded, this album contains twelve succinct but richly arranged tracks of top notch production done independently by group, members.

Review of Odessey and Oracle

December 9, 2013
Wheels of Fire by CreamThis double album Wheels of Fire by Cream consists of one studio LP and one live LP, and it would go on to become the first ever platinum-selling double album. With wild diversity and eclectic rock, this album would be the creative apex of the short-lived English power trio.

Review of Wheels of Fire

December 13, 2013
Astral Weeks by Van MorrisonAstral Weeks was the second solo album by Van Morrison, and blended of folk, blues, jazz, and classical music, in a complete departure from anything Morrison had done previously. This impressionistic, stream-of-consciousness album of the music has received critical acclaim for four and a half decades and counting.

Review of Astral Weeks

December 17, 2013
Electric Ladyland by Jimi Hendrix ExperienceThe group Jimi Hendrix Experience were a formidable power trio for a short but important period. Electric Ladyland was the last of three albums by the Experience and this double LP was their creative and musical apex. The only album to be produced Hendrix himself, the recordings spanned over a year in duration and were made on two continents using different technologies.

Review of Electric Ladyland

December 21, 2013
In Search of the Lost Chord by The Moody BluesOn their 1968 album In Search of the Lost Chord, the members of The Moody Blues played approximately 33 different instruments, exploring eclectic sounds from the Indian sitar and tambura to the orchestral oboe, flute, harp, and cello. But at its core, this is still a rock album.

Review of In Search of the Lost Chord

December 26, 2013
Beggars Banquet by Rolling StonesAfter dabbling with psychedelia in 1967, the Rolling Stones returned to their roots with the 1968 album Beggars Banquet, and entered the highest quality period of their long career. While this album may be their finest ever, it is sadly the last on which Stones founder and visionary Brian Jones played any significant role.

Review of Beggars Banquet

December 30, 2013
The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, 1968 Album of the Year
Although it barely made a ripple critically or commercially upon its release, the concept album The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society would go on to become one of the most influential in rock history. And, despite the plethora of great albums during the year, we chose this Kinks work as our 1968 Album of the Year.

Review of The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society

Final 1968 Poll Results
Q: What is the best album of 1968?

1 The Beatles (white album)
by The Beatles
35%
2 Electric Ladyland
by The Jimi Hendrix Experience
18%
3 The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society
by The Kinks
16%
4 Beggars Banquet by The Rolling Stones 13%
5 Music from Big Pink by The Band 11%

Conducted on our site, November-December, 2013

Other 1968 Albums of Note

The year 1968 featured debut albums by Jethro Tull, Fleetwood Mac, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Neil Young. It also saw sophomore efforts by The Grateful Dead, Traffic, and the Velvet Underground, along with a great jam album by Spirit and a bizarre psychedelic soundtrack by The Monkees.

Mr. Wonderful by Fleetwood Mac Notorious Byrd Brothers by The Byrds Every One of Us by The Animals Children of the Future by The Steve Miller Band Lumpy Gravy by Frank Zappa Tons of Sobs by Free Magic Bus by The Who Head by The Monkees Friends by The Beach Boys  In-a-Godda-Da-Vida by Iron Butterfly The Soft Machine This Was by Jethro Tull Truth by The Jeff Beck Group Traffic Creedence Clearwater Revival The Hurdy Gurdy Man by Donovan Neil Young debut album Spirit For Once In My Life by Stevie Wonder Sweetheart of the Rodeo by The Byrds Wonderwall Music by George Harrison Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding White Light, White Heat by The Velvet Underground Anthem of the Sun by The Grateful Dead
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