Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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The 1987 Pazz & Jop Critics Poll

Albums

1. Prince: Sign "O" the Times (Paisley Park) 1491 (118)
2. Bruce Springsteen: Tunnel of Love (Columbia) 912 (81)
3. The Replacements: Pleased To Meet Me (Sire) 846 (74)
4. U2: The Joshua Tree (Island) 698 (56)
5. John Hiatt: Bring the Family (A&M) 694 (59)
6. Los Lobos: By the Light of the Moon (Slash) 483 (51)
7. John Cougar Mellencamp: The Lonesome Jubilee (Mercury) 462 (44)
8. R.E.M.: Document (I.R.S.) 420 (45)
9. XTC: Skylarking (Geffen) 390 (28) *
10. Hüsker Dü: Warehouse: Songs & Stories (Warner Bros.) 350 (32)
11. Ornette Coleman: In All Languages (Caravan of Dreams) 341 (29)
12. Sonic Youth: Sister (SST) 313 (30)
13. Robbie Robertson: Robbie Robertson (Geffen) 311 (30)
14. Public Enemy: Yo! Bum Rush the Show (Def Jam) 284 (25)
15. Tom Waits: Frank's Wild Years (Island) 278 (30)
16. Marianne Faithfull: Strange Weather (Island) 263 (28)
17. Terence Trent D'Arby: Introducing the Hardline According to Terence Trent D'Arby (Columbia) 214 (21)
18. Stevie Wonder: Characters (Motown) 199 (21)
19. Alexander O'Neal: Hearsay (Tabu) 198 (17)
20. The Jesus & Mary Chain: Darklands (Warner Bros.) 197 (22)
21. Van Morrison: Poetic Champions Compose (Mercury) 184 (14)
22. Pet Shop Boys: Pet Shop Boys, Actually (EMI-Manhattan) 159 (12)
23. Rosanne Cash: King's Record Shop (Columbia) 156 (16)
24. The dB's: The Sound of Music (I.R.S.) 153 (16)
25. Sly and Robbie: Rhythm Killers (Island) 151 (16)
26. Chris Isaak: Chris Isaak (Warner Bros.) 148 (17)
27. Eric B. & Rakim: Paid in Full (4th & B'way) 136 (14)
That Petrol Emotion: Babble (Polydor) 136 (14)
29. 10,000 Maniacs: In My Tribe (Elektra) 131 (15)
30. French, Frith, Kaiser, Thompson: Live, Love, Larf and Loaf (Rhino) 127 (9)
31. Phil Alvin: Romeo's Escape (Epic) 125 (13)
George Michael: Faith (Columbia) 125 (13)
33. Sinéad O'Connor: The Lion and the Cobra (Chrysalis) 120 (13)
34. L.L. Cool J: Bigger and Deffer (Def Jam) 119 (13)
35. The Million Dollar Quartet: The Million Dollar Quartet (S import/Million Dollar import) 114 (8)
36. Sting: . . . Nothing Like the Sun (A&M) 105 (11)
37. The Smiths: Strangeways, Here We Come (Sire) 104 (10)
38. The Smiths: "Louder Than Bombs" (Sire) 101 (8)
39. Tom Verlaine: Flash Light (I.R.S.) 96 (12)
40. Warren Zevon: Sentimental Hygiene (Virgin) 95 (12)

*Includes 1986 votes: 138 (8)

This poll compiles ballots from 226 critics, each of whom divided 100 points among 10 1987 LPs. Points determined placement, with total mentions (indicated in parentheses) used for tie-breaking. Maximum per album: 30. Minimum: 5.

Singles

1. Prince: "Sign O' the Times" (Paisley Park) 54
2. Suzanne Vega: "Luka" (A&M) 53
3. Los Lobos: "La Bamba" (Slash) 46
4. Prince: "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man"/"Hot Thing" (Paisley Park) 32
5. M/A/R/R/S: "Pump Up the Volume" (4th & B'way) 30
6. Grateful Dead: "Touch of Grey" (Arista) 28
Bruce Springsteen: "Brilliant Disguise"/"Lucky Man" (Columbia) 28
R.E.M.: "The One I Love" (I.R.S.) 28
9. Prince: "U Got the Look"/"Housequake" (Paisley Park) 27
10. Bruce Springsteen: "Tunnel of Love" (Columbia) 25
X: "Fourth of July"/"Positively Fourth Street" (Elektra) 25
12. R.E.M.: "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" (I.R.S.) 24
Stevie Wonder: "Skeletons" (Motown) 24
14. Eric B. & Rakim: "I Know You Got Soul" (4th & B'way) 23
15. LeVert: "Casanova" (Atlantic) 21
U2: "With or Without You" (Island) 21
17. Bangles: "Hazy Shade of Winter" (Def Jam) 19
18. Public Enemy: "Bring the Noise" (Def Jam) 18
U2: "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" (Island) 18
20. George Michael: "I Want Your Sex" (Columbia) 17
The Replacements: "Alex Chilton" (Sire) 17
22. Crowded House: "Don't Dream It's Over" (Capitol) 16
Fleetwood Mac: "Big Love"/"You and I" (Warner Bros.) 14
Michael Jackson: "The Way You Make Me Feel" (Epic) 14
George Michael: "Faith" (Columbia) 14
Alexander O'Neal: "Fake" (Tabu) 14

Reissues

1. James Carr: At the Dark End of the Street (Blue Side) 35
2. Otis Redding: The Otis Redding Story (Atlantic) 32
3. Elvis Presley: The Memphis Record (RCA Victor) 18
4. Buddy Holly & the Crickets: The "Chirping" Crickets (MCA) 14
Jefferson Airplane: 2400 Fulton Street (RCA Victor) 14
6. A History of New Orleans Rhythm & Blues (Rhino) 13
Elvis Presley: The Complete Sun Sessions (RCA Victor) 13
8. The Bristol Sessions (Country Music Foundation) 12
Culture: Two Sevens Clash (Shanachie) 12
10. Detroit: Detroit (MCA) 9
The RCA Victor Blues & Rhythm Revue (RCA Victor) 9
Frankie Valli and the 4 Seasons: 25th Anniversary Collection (Rhino) 9

Videos

1. Squeeze: "Hourglass" (Adrian Edmondson) 12
2. Prince: "U Got the Look" (David Hogan) 11
3. Bruce Springsteen: "Brilliant Disguise" (Meiert Avis) 10
4. U2: "Where the Streets Have No Name" (Meiert Avis) 8
5. Grateful Dead: "Touch of Grey" (Gary Gutierrez) 7
R.E.M.: "The One I Love" (Robert Longo) 7
They Might Be Giants: "Don't Let's Start" (Adam Bernstein) 7
8. George Harrison: "Got My Mind Set on You" (Gary Weis) 6
Les Rita Mitsoukos: "C'est Comme Ça" (Jean-Baptiste Mondino) 6
The Replacements: "The Ledge" (Bill Pope & Randy Skinner) 6
XTC: "Dear God" (Nicholas Brandt) 6

Village Voice, Mar. 1, 1988


1986 Essay | Dean's List 1988