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What's The Best Three Song Streak On An Album?

By Kevin EG Perry

Kevin EG Perry on Google+

Posted on 03 Oct 12

 
 

Two great songs one after another could be considered a coincidence, but three in a row is something quite special. Inspired by this post on Reddit, we’ve been wondering what the best three-song streak in the history of albums is? Reddit user ‘ghost_of_lectricity’ kicked things off by suggesting that it could be either ‘Kid A’, ‘The National Anthem’ and ‘How to Disappear Completely’ from Radiohead’s ‘Kid A’ or ‘Gates of Eden’, ‘It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)’ followed by ‘It's All Over Now, Baby Blue’ from Bob Dylan’s ‘Bringing It All Back Home’.

Both worthy choices, and there’s plenty of options that immediately spring to mind. That bit on ‘Sound Of Silver’ where LCD Soundsystem casually follow the hilarious punk blast of ‘North American Scum’ with the two best songs of the last decade: ‘Someone Great’ and ‘All My Friends’ for example. However, my absolute favourite trio is probably the climax of The Rolling Stones’ 1969 classic ‘Let It Bleed’.

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This period of the Stones is simply untouchable – in fact this three-song set happens to sit slap in the middle of their impeccable four album run that stretches from 1968’s ‘Beggars Banquet’ to 1972’s ‘Exile On Main Street’.

As much as I love Mick Jagger as a frontman, deep down in my soul I’ve always been a Keef man. The first track of my trio was Keith’s first ever full solo vocal: ‘You’ve Got The Silver’. It’s one of his best: his cracked, languid singing style gives the impression ofsomeone regaling you in a bar. It’s still a live favourite as well: seeing Keith sing this at the O2 in 2007 was hands down the coolest thing I’ve ever seen on stage.

The second track, ‘Monkey Man’ has surely the greatest opening of any song every recorded. It’s this vast, shimmering vibraphone sound that I can never hear without visualizing vast open plains. It’s a gorgeous, shimmering slice of rock’n’roll perfection, that also features one of Jagger’s best, most knowing couplets: “I hope we're not too messianic / Or a trifle too satanic.”

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Then my three-track run, and the album, concludes with ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’. People always talk about The Beatles and The Beach Boys as the great writers of pop symphonies, but this is the track that shows Jagger and Richards could match them every step of the way. Backed by the London Bach Choir and with Rocky Dijon on congas, with lyrics that skip from sex to politics to drugs, there’s so much going on that it shouldn’t work. Improbably, and majestically, it does. The perfect, euphoric way to close an album and this three song run.

So, over to you. What’s your favourite three track streak on a record?

 
 
 
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