Seven art rock albums that deserve more love

From the artists who should have achieved more success than they did

Hiroyuki Ito/GettyImages
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David Ackles - American Gothic

If there ever was an artist’s artist in pop music it was late David Ackles. Covered and revered by many, Ackles never achieved the wider recognition he deserved.

Part of his problem possibly lies in the fact that Ackles’ music was often closely tied to theater and vaudeville, quite evident in this album from 1972, which is considered his masterpiece, but also one of the best of the prime singer-songwriter era. Add to that some deeply thoughtful lyrics and the album unfortunately remained in the record bins.

Jane Siberry - No Borders Here

If there ever was an artist that fits squarely into the definition of art rock, it would be this Canadian singer-songwriter. Playing with conventions and turning them on their head suited her so well from the beginning of her career, and this album from 1984 is a prime example of her unconventional approach to both music and lyrics.

Add the fact that the album includes one of her best songs "Mimi On The Beach." Jane Siberry never gave her left-field approach to music, and also went through a couple of changes to her name to underline the changes in her music, it seems.

The Triffids - Born, Sandy, Devotional

Here you can start with the fact that the late (great) Australian songwriter and vocalist David McComb and his band picked their name from a classic science fiction novel (and film).

Yet, the band’s music stylistically is so hard to pin down, and that includes, this 1986 album, often considered by critics and hardcore fans as their best. It refers so much to wide open spaces that can be rooted anywhere, with some equally open-ended meanings in McComb’s lyrics. Oh, and the song with the same name as this album doesn’t even appear on it.