We are in for a treat today as we are looking for the best sounding classic rock vinyl that you can buy! I love classic rock and that is why I have put together this essential list of albums that you need to get in your collection. Recently we had a look at The Best Vintage Speakers For Rock Music which was a lot of fun and that is actually what inspired me to write this article today. I know that we may all have differing opinions on what is classed as classic rock. So, to have a cut-off point, I decided that I would not include any albums or artists from beyond 1995.
I do also want to mention that the albums we are looking at today are ones that are readily available. Hey, there is nothing cooler than getting a vintage Bon Jovi: New Jersey vinyl album that was pressed back in 1988 or an Iron Maiden: Fear of the Dark album from 1992. However, for the sake of this article and to save you a lot of hassle, I am suggesting albums that are easily available to you online that are recent pressings of classic stuff. By all means, get out to your thrift stores, flea markets, and so on and find those best sounding classic rock vinyl treasures that are waiting for you. I though, see nothing wrong with buying a reissue of a classic album at all!
The Best Sounding Classic Rock Vinyl
At the end of the day, this is not an “official” list, I am just one music fan sharing their opinion with you!
1. Motley Crue: Greatest Hits
I love it when a band/record label goes the extra mile and that was what they did with this amazing Motley Crue: Greatest Hits. I would have recommended to you guys the album, Dr. Feelgood, but even the more recent pressings of that are going for an insane amount of money. With this, you get this awesome looking crimson smoke vinyl record and it is amazing. If you are a collector, it is a real showpiece record to have. However, this also sounds great and features all of the Crue’s biggest hits.
My personal favorite song will always be Kickstart My Heart which if I had to do my top 10 songs of all time would make number 2 on that list every time:
Shout at the Devil, Wild Side and Home Sweet Home are a few of the other notable tracks on this album. I have noticed some people say the sound is not there and I will admit the Dr. Feelgood album sounds better than this, but I feel this is the better option considering the price and the awesome way it looks!
2. Guns n Roses: Use Your Illusion II
Look I know that part 1 has November Rain on it, but for me, Part II is the better album. I think that Appetite for Destruction, Use Your Illusion I and II are three of the greatest rock albums of all time, but I really wanted to give Use Your Illusion II some special attention here. Granted you could buy the Guns n Roses Greatest Hits Album which has all the hits from here and their other albums on it.
However, I love the way the blue on this jacket looks and this sounds just fantastic! It is a tremendous album and one that I feel is often overshadowed by Appetite for Destruction and their Greatest Hits album.
I have no complaints at all about the sound quality here. I actually have this most recent version as well as an original that was actually my dad’s and I can hand on heart say that the new pressing is way clearer. As far as a favorite song on this album goes it is You Could Be Mine which is actually my number one rock song of all time which is taken from my favorite movie of all time, Terminator 2: Judgement Day.
Without a doubt, this album has to feature on our best sounding classic rock vinyl list!
3. Poison: Open Up And Say Ahh
To say I am a massive Poison fan is a huge understatement and actually, Open Up And Say Ahh! is one of my favorite albums of all time. The original version of this goes for quite a lot of money. However, this is a special version that has this funky looking vinyl and best of all it sounds great. Sometimes when they try and get fancy with the vinyl it can affect the sound quality, but that is not the case here. The album well and truly sounds fantastic… but there is an issue here I have to warn you about and that is the jacket. For some reason, they made the back pictures all burly and kind of low res. I am not sure if this was intentional or a mistake, but it is a bit of an eyesore!
This is the second album from Poison and it is their best in my opinion all though Flesh and Blood with Unskinny Bop and Flesh & Blood Sacrifice is awesome.
What I think is great about Open Up And Say Ahh is that you have Poison’s two most iconic songs on here with the upbeat and kickass anthem that is Nothin, But A Good Time:
and the power ballad that makes everyone cry, Every Rose Has Its Throne:
4. AC/DC: Iron Man 2
It is so hard to pick an AC/DC album and I was very close to going for Fly on the Wall which is one that I love, but ultimately I am going for Iron Man 2 which is cooler than the other side of the pillow. What we basically have here is an AC/DC greatest hits album that features some of their most iconic tracks. As you have guessed this is a tie-in with the movie, Iron Man 2 Movie and as Tony Start loves him some AC/DC they got the band and record label on board to do this. Just make sure that you get this and not the original music score! What I love about this is just how badass of a package it is. Having the AC/DC logo with Iron Man and War Machine in front of it is awesome. Best of all, every song on here sounds amazing!
As far as picking a favorite song goes, that is impossible with this album so I am cheating and giving you two of my favorites. The first one has to be Shoot To Thrill which is not only a real kickass song, it is also a fantastic scene from the movie too.
I also have to give special attention to Thunderstruck which is a song that I always listen to in the gym and it is also a song that is used in another Marvel movie, Deadpool 2.
While the whole package, song listing, and so on is great here the real reason this had to be on my best sounding classic rock viny list was that the tracks on here truly sound amazing.
5. Aerosmith: Greatest Hits
I had to have an Aerosmith album on this list! The thing with Aerosmith and modern vinyl is that there is not enough of it out there. Big Ones, which if you ask me, is a better greatest hits compilation is very hard to track down on vinyl.
And for some incredibly strange reason Young Lust: The Aerosmith Anthology which is a tremendous collection of their greatest work has never (well as far as I know) been released on vinyl!
If Young Lust ever gets released on vinyl, you need to pick it up right away. Still, Aerosmith: Greatest Hits is a great album of some of their earliest hits. It has a very cool and classic jacket and the sound quality is great, which is awesome considering this can be had for around 20 bucks!
There are some amazing songs on here and I think that Aerosmith are a band that just never goes out of style and even some of their very early songs still sound amazing. Same Old Song And Dance was actually the first Aerosmith song that I ever heard as a kid as it was a favorite of my dad’s.
Another classic and a music video I loved back in the day is Sweet Emotion which is just classic Aerosmith if you ask me.
If you want a great sounding album with some of Aerosmith’s early hits, you cannot go wrong with this release.
Thanks very much for taking this walk through some of my favorite and best sounding classic rock vinyl albums that I have in my collection. Truth be told this is just a small portion of what I consider to be the best of the best when it comes to classic rock. I think that all of these albums are iconic in their own way. They all sound great too which is the real reason we are here today. If you ask me when it comes to starting a classic rock collection on vinyl your staples are Guns n Roses, Aerosmith, Motley Crue, Bon Jovi, AC/DC, and Iron Maiden. You cannot go wrong with any of these bands. Hopefully, we will be back with a part two, but for now, rock on my fellow hard rocking amigos!