Five albums from the 1970s that had no business being as excellent as they are

The 1970s were an excellent decade for music, but no one expected these albums to be as good as they were.
David Bowie in concert
David Bowie in concert / Ron Pownall Photography/GettyImages
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T. Rex - Electric Warrior (1971)

T. Rex went through so many lineup changes that one might feel as if they were listening to different bands who went by the same name. That Electric Warrior came together without too much fuss is almost a miracle. Plus, glam was always accidentally popular; a reaction to the 1960s with lavish clothing and big guitars, and this was the group's first foray into the subgenre after mostly having a folk-based sound.

Vocalist, guitarist, and lyricist Marc Bolan also made a huge transition with this record. Instead of fairytales, he dove headlong into rock cliches. The result was 40 minutes of pure fun that still sounds as good today as it did when the record was released in 1971. Perhaps because Bolan somehow knew how to fuse bubblegum pop with a pinch of harder rock and somehow make them almost literally shine.

Songs such as "Jeepster," "Bang a Gong (Get It On)," and "Monolith" didn't just come across as alien, they also helped start an entirely new subgenre. One that died out far too quickly.

The Velvet Underground - Loaded (1971)

Lou Reed and his mates left behind the psychedelia of the late 1960s to come up with a straightforward rock album and no one was quite sure it would work. Fans might have been turned off a bit by the record being less expansive and less experimental than the group's previous records. Instead, the talent of the group and their ability to spin a fantastic melody no matter what is happening underneath made this album boil with rock seethers.

"Sweet Jane" has been covered multiple times, but the Velvet Underground's version always seems slightly more biting. "Rock & Roll" seems like the song on which Belle and Sebastian has based 90 percent of their tracks. "Oh, Sweet Nuthin'" is the perfect track to simply sit back, watch the world in front of you, and just be...

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