Six incredibly fantastic debut albums from the 1970s

These weren’t all on the top sellers list in the 1970s, but they are amazingly good debut albums and signaled much more to come from the artists. 

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Television - Marquee Moon

Now for some harder-hitting guitar-based post-punk rock. Marquee Moon is one of the most influential albums providing a legacy for other top bands and music to follow. That’s pretty impressive for a debut album that sold poorly in the band's US homeland. 

It didn’t even touch the Billboard 200. The main commercial success was in the UK with 100,000 sales and a 28 slot in the album charts there. But sales aren’t everything in measuring success. That’s so true for Marquee Moon.

Television released the album in February 1977. It wasn’t heavy on recording time, much of Marquee Moon being taped live in the studio, often in one take. That adds to the fresh, raw, and simple sound of the songs.

Linking back to that Roxy Music album, Television decided against using some demos produced by Brian Eno for them. Despite Eno’s great work in the New York scene in the 1970s, the band didn’t feel the demos had the sound they wanted.

Television had been around New York for some time but left behind their punk roots for this record. It was more musical, less power chords and plenty of rock tones. In terms of influence, The Smiths, Joy Division, U2, and Pixies, amongst many others, are all cited as following on from Tom Verlaine’s edgy, jangly guitars on this album. It may even have been a very early forerunner of indie rock, certainly, the album stands the test of time and easily fits that category now. 

Despite those low sales, the quality and legacy of Marquee Moon are evident. The album frequently appears on top-ranking album lists, Rolling Stone, for example, placing it at 128 on their 500 Greatest Albums of All Time in 2003. All in all, a pretty impressive debut album of its time.