60 years ago today (July 22), the first Official Albums Chart in the UK was compiled to record the best selling albums of the past week. On July 22 in 1956, one Frank Sinatra nabbed the top spot with his 10th studio album ‘Songs For Swingin’ Lovers!’ and featured Ol’ Blue Eyes’ famous cover of ‘You Make Me Feel So Young’ – but the album would only go on to last two weeks at the top of the charts, duly knocked off by the soundtrack to the film Carousel! Never mind, Frankie.
Over the following decades, Britain’s album charts have played host to game-changing records (see: The Beatles), countless greatest hits collections (see: Queen, Abba) and even the odd novelty cash-in (see: Mr Blobby).
One thing that has been constant however is the consistency of amazing albums that dominate the charts. In the ‘60s, The Beatles and Stones regularly fought for the top spot and the ‘70s arguably belonged to Led Zeppelin, Simon & Garfunkel and Abba. The 1980s saw Michael Jackson own the rankings and in the following decade, the ‘90s charts became the playground for Britpop titans Oasis and Blur to scrap in. The ‘00s were dominated by Take That reject Robbie Williams and some little-known upstarts called the Arctic Monkeys and a decade later, the charts evolved to incorporate streaming, but it hasn’t hindered Adele sitting pretty at the top for large stretches of the ’10s.
But which era of music was the best for albums? That’s a tricky one, so we’ve left it up to you. If you were a ‘90s teenager that was enthralled by the Britpop heavyweights or perhaps there from the very beginning, let us know which decade you think stands the test of time in our poll below. Think of it as a little musical referendum – the power is in your hands. Choose wisely…