Rock albums from alternate timelines

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by flippikat, Oct 11, 2015.

  1. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    In this thread, I'm going to post a few tracklists for rock albums from alternate timelines.

    These are not intended to be complete timelines - but rather snapshots of what could have been done differently at certain points in bands careers.

    For a start, here's one I've had as a playlist for a while..

    Cream - Blind Faith
    Released July 1969.

    Side A
    1 - Never tell your mother she's out of tune (*)
    2 - Well all right
    3 - Theme from an imaginary western (*)
    4 - Weird of Hermiston (*)
    5 - The clearout (*)
    6 - Can't find my way home

    Side B
    1 - Had to cry today
    2 - He the Richmond (*)
    3 - The ministry of bag (*)
    4 - Badge (+)
    5 - Tickets to Waterfalls (*)
    6 - Presence of the Lord

    All tracks from OTL's "Blind Faith" album, except (*) from OTL's "Songs for a Taylor" by Jack Bruce, and (+) from OTL's "Goodbye" album by Cream.

    Instead of breaking up as in OTL, Cream add Steve Winwood to their lineup in late 1968, and instead of issuing the bits-and-pieces 'Goodbye' album they press ahead exploring brass arrangements & a style influenced at times by The Band. The Clearout & Weird of Hermiston were old Cream tunes, demo-ed as far back as the Disraeli Gears sessions.

    (Alternately, Clapton & Bruce sack Ginger Baker and move forward with a new drummer plus Steve Winwood to add a keyboards/2nd guitar option to flesh out their live sound.. which is actually more plausible given the friction between Baker and Bruce)

    -- Spotify Link to playlist

    If there's interest for more, I'll post a few others - and any big music fans here feel free to add your own.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
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  2. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    Roxy Music - Stranded
    Double album, released December 1973

    Side A
    1 Street Life
    2 The Paw Paw Negro blowtorch (*)
    3 Baby's on fire (*)
    4 Amazona

    Side B
    1 Needles in the camel's eye (*)
    2 Serenade
    3 Dead finks don't talk (*)
    4 Some of them are old (*)

    Side C
    1 Mother of Pearl
    2 Blank Frank (*)
    3 A Song for Europe

    Side D
    1 Just Like You
    2 Cindy tells me (*)
    3 Sunset
    4 On some faraway beach (*)

    Tracks from OTL's Roxy Music "Stranded" album,
    (*) from "Here come the warm jets" by Brian Eno


    It was a near thing. Brian Eno threatened to quit after Roxy Music's 2nd album, worried at the increasing dominance of Brian Ferry in the group - only to be encouraged to stay by a show of solidarity from his bandmates ("Brian, if he quits we're going to quit with him.") Although a lot of pride was swallowed on Brian Ferry's part, the rewards of sticking together were quickly revealed, as Roxy Music soon had enough songs for more than a single album. With input from "hired gun" Robert Fripp (notably featuring in a blistering guitar duel on 'Baby's on Fire" with Phil Manzanera), the album featured high in year-end critics lists, and was their best selling album to date.

    Spotify Playlist:
    (Note: Side A tracks 2 & 3 are the "Peel Session" versions, as only those are available on Spotify - but hey, they sound good!)
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  3. BlackentheBorg This is going to become a bad meme

    Jun 2, 2015
    This looks fun, can I join in?
  4. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    Absolutely! Will be fun to see what ideas others have, and any thoughts on my lists are welcome.

    The good thing is that I have a few already on my iPad as playlists, so I just have to post the track lists here.

    As you can see so far, my ones aren't the usual fare like "What if the Beatles didn't break up?", and some of them will be multiple albums from bands which will kinda make a mini-timeline. (I'll leave the details to your imagination, but for a wee clue - one of those sets of albums is from a band in the 2000s)
  5. neamathla Well-Known Member

    May 17, 2010
    Trapped near the Inner Circle of Thought
    I came across this a few years back. A Flickr user, michelle_66, did an alternate history discography for the Monkees. She created album covers (front and back) and records. Each image has background information. As a Monkees fan, I found it interesting.
    MatthewFirth likes this.
  6. shiftygiant Auf Wiedersehen Gone Fishin'

    Apr 24, 2015
    Tropics of Copnor
    From 11/22/63

    Tea Set - MORE (June, 1969)
    Roger Waters, David Bowie, Nick Mason, Richard Wright.

    Side 1:
    01. ''The Valley, Part I'' 3:10 (Mason)
    02. ''Let there be Light'' 5:51 (Waters, Wright)
    03. ''More'' 4:13 (Walters, Bowie)
    04. ''Space Oddity'' 5:15 (Bowie, Waters)

    Side 2:
    05. ''Careful with that Ax, Eugene'' 10:14 (Waters)
    06. ''Memories of the Festival'' 2:10 (Waters, Bowie, Wright)
    07. ''Man of Music'' 4:01 (Bowie)
    08. ''The Valley, Part II'' 3:05 (Mason)

    MORE is the third, and considered the breakout, album of the British Band the Tea Set. Created shortly following the sectioning of their former front man, Syd Barrett, the album is a shift into Space and conventional Rock, as well as experiments in Ambient sound, the latter of which can be heard in 'The Valley Part I' and 'Part II'. The albums central themes of detachment and disruption are evident in the songs 'Let there be Light', 'Careful with that Ax, Eugene', and 'Man of Music', which take a more literal approach to the this theme, whilst the songs 'More', 'Space Oddity', and 'Memories of the Festival' are more abstract in this regard. The Cover depicts the band running to a Lighthouse, panicking as they look back at an unseen pursuer, the colors inverted. The album saw commercial and critical success, opening the band to an American Audience. Fearing they would become too mainstream and loose their edge, Waters and Bowie began to work on their next album, which would become known as For the Man Who Has Everything...

    <-Scream Thy Last Scream-|-For the Man Who Has Everything->
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2015
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  7. gougeaway Active Member

    Nov 8, 2008
    Roger Waters is his name.

    And I think this would be an interesting combination.

    But if it means no "Ziggy" album, that would be sad; as that is one of the best albums ever made. :(
  8. gougeaway Active Member

    Nov 8, 2008
    On the Bowie note...

    How about the rest of Queen convince Freddie to scrap lots of the sub-par material on the awful Hot Space album, and instead record a full album with Bowie and Freddie singing duet and/or alternating songs. This could easily be accomplished if the chemistry trumped both Freddie's and David's egos.

    Imagine an entire album of Queen and Bowie at their best feeding off each other's creative energy. A whole album as great, if not even better, than Under Pressure!
  9. Jefferson Lee Roosevelt I'm Mr Brightside

    Oct 13, 2012
    Res publica Populi Romani
    the easiest thing would be a 1971ish Beatles album with songs from McCartney I (such as Maybe I'm Amazed), All Things Must Pass (My sweet Lord, Apple Scruffs) and John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band (Working Class Hero). amazing to say the least.
  10. BlackentheBorg This is going to become a bad meme

    Jun 2, 2015
    Cool cool cool.

    Here's one I've been sitting on for a while now; What if Janis Joplin joined The 13th Floor Elevators? (which she nearly did)

    The 13th Floor Elevators - Turtle Blues (November 1996)

    SIDE 1
    1. You Don't Know (How Young You Are) (Powell St. John)
    2. Through the Rhythm (Hall, Sutherland)
    3. Monkey Island (Powell St. John)
    4. Apple Of My Eye (Joplin)
    5. Fire Engine (Hall, Sutherland, Erickson, Joplin)

    SIDE 2
    1. Reverberation (Hall, Sutherland. Erickson)
    2. Women Is Losers (Joplin)
    3. The Last Time (Joplin)
    4.You're Gonna Miss Me (Erickson)
    5. Turtle Blues (Joplin)
    6. Don't Fall Down (Hall, Erickson)
    7. The Kingdom of Heaven (Is Within You) (Powell St. John)

    Joplin's headlining presence caused a shift in the Elevators' music style, moving away from their Jug-band preferences and into the world of Stoner/Acid Rock. After cutting their first album, the group rises to a more moderate fame, and they end up playing Woodstock together. Despite this, Joplin is soon labeled the "Face" of the band by the press, which leads to conflict between her and band founder Rocky Erickson. After a disastrous altercation with the Hells Angels at the Altamont Free Concert, jug player Tommy Hall walks away from the band, angry at the direction the band is going in. This leads to Erikson's first major schizophrenic breakdown...

    The band's members go their separate ways -- Joplin goes on to enjoy a solo career, backed by Kozmic Blues Band. Erikson, however, dies two years later after a fatal methamphetamine overdose. A collection of demo tapes found in his residence are released posthumously as "Pearl (Casting the Runes)".
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015
  11. arrowiv Well-Known Member

    Mar 14, 2006
    I got one for you. How about an interim Beatles album in December 1966, set between Revolver and Sergeant Pepper? The POD is touring earlier in the summer, thus creating several butterflies. The guys are introduced to large Marshall amps, thus giving the inspiration to do better shows, and inspiring them to create songs which would be just as good to reproduce on stage. Ditto for several songs on Sgt. Pepper. Said interim album would start off with a beautiful acoustic version of Strawberry Fields Forever (listen to John's original demo on Youtube) and ending with George's It's All Too Much. This album points the way to Sergeant Pepper and marks the next phase of the Beatles' career. The back album cover has John now wearing his famous glasses, George now with a mustache, and Paul and Ringo now starting to grow their own. Comments?
  12. Glass Onion Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2007
    The Beatles actually did come across great for the time equipment at least once during during their touring days. During their concert in Atlanta they were given equipment loud enough for them to be heard over the audience, and there were even able to hear themselves play-which pretty much never happened then. Brian Epstein tried to hire the company responsible to take care of the Beatles audio equipment for the duration of the tour-but they declined to do so.

    If you want the Beatles to have better equipment during their 1966 tour the Atlanta concert strikes me as the most likely divergence-either the company in question agrees to work with the Beatles going forward -or Epstein (or someone else in the Beatles orbit at the time) asks the company just what they did-and where else they might be able to buy or rent similar equipment for subsequent tours. It might take the Beatles and their periphery time to find someone who can replicate Atlanta in other venues-but if one random company could pull it off in Atlanta I'm sure that the Beatles could have improved their equipment by the time the 1966 tour rolls around.
    Indiana Beach Crow likes this.
  13. BlackentheBorg This is going to become a bad meme

    Jun 2, 2015
    I got another one --

    Jimi Hendrix – Black Gold (double album, February 1971)

    SIDE 1
    1. Suddenly November Morning
    2. Here Comes Black Gold
    3. Little Red Velvet Room
    4. Machine Gun
    5. Stepping Stone
    6. Local Comotion
    7. The Jungle is Waiting

    SIDE 2
    1. Captain Midnight
    2. Night Bird Flying
    3. God Bless This Day
    4. Belly Button Window
    5. Drifting
    6. I've Got a Place to Go

    SIDE 3
    1. Astro Man
    2. Earth Blues
    3. In From the Storm
    4. Room Full of Mirrors
    5. Dolly Dagger
    6. Ezy Ryder

    SIDE 4
    1. Izabella
    2. Straight Ahead
    3. My Friend
    4. Send My Love to Joan of Arc
    5. Freedom
    6. Hey Baby (New Rising Sun)

    In this world, Hendrix never chokes on his own vomit; instead he wakes up and vomits violently off the side of the bed, which wakes up his girlfriend. After spending the next few days in hospital, Hendrix continues with his musical lull, until he meets keyboardist Billy Preston, who eagerly offers to assist him with studio work.

    This new partnership of The Experience and Preston results in Hendrix fully realizing his next project, Black Gold, a double concept album. Whilst it initially focuses on the ‘comic’ character Black Gold, each side ends up becoming a loose story of three other supporting characters (Side 1 is for Black Gold, Side 2 for his ‘sidekick’ Captain Midnight, Side 3 for the villain Astro Man, and Side 4 for the Lois-Lane-esque Izabella).

    The albums success, coupled with an appearance in The Concert for Bangladesh, Preston is officially invited to join The Experience as a full member.
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  14. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Stampede (Released December 1967)

    Side A (Songwriter in brackets)

    1 - Mr Soul (Young)
    2 - Rock'n'Roll Woman (Stills)
    3 - Stop right there (Nash)
    4 - Hung Upside Down (Stills)
    5 - Postcard (Nash)
    6 - Bluebird (10 minute 'Jam' version - Crosby/Stills/Nash/Young)
    (this version of Bluebird similar to the 10-minute take released on a Buffalo Springfield compilation in the early 1970s)

    Side B

    1 - Pretty Girl Why (Stills)
    2 - Everybody's been burned (Crosby)
    3 - Expecting to fly (Young)
    4 - Renaissance Fair (Crosby)
    5 - Maker (Nash)
    6 - Bluebird (brief banjo reprise) (Crosby/Stills/Nash/Young)
    (The end piece from the album version from OTL)
    7 - Broken Arrow (Young)

    All songs from OTL sessions for
    The Byrds "Younger than Yesterday" album (Crosby)
    Buffalo Springfield Again (Stills & Young)
    The Hollies "Evolution" & "Butterfly" albums (Nash)

    Tensions flare in The Byrds & Hollies earlier than OTL, with Crosby quitting just before the sessions for 'Younger than Yesterday' and Nash similarly quitting the Hollies in late 1966. Nash heads to LA, having been in touch with Crosby thoughout mid 1966, looking for any opportunity to progress a solo career.
    Buffalo Springfield limp through sessions for their first album, but internal bickering coupled with frustration at the poor production leads to that band falling apart before their debut album is released.
    The quartet coalesce in early 1967 at a party - when Crosby introduces Nash to Young & Stills, a 'Eureka' moment occurs - "We have great songwriters, and the best 2-guitar sound in LA, standing right here!"
    The sessions for the new band's album run through most of 1967, with non-album singles 'Lady Friend b/w Everydays' & 'Wish You a Wish b/w Triad' released in the early & Late Summer respectively to stoke interest.
    The album itself features a picked banjo snippet of 'Bluebird' towards the end of side 2, in homage to the Beatles reprise of Sgt Pepper on their album - and similar musical themes in Rock and Roll Woman/Renaissance Fair, plus a brief burst of "Mr Soul" at the start of final track "Broken Arrow".

    The name of the album was taken from what would have been Buffalo Springfield's 2nd album if they'd stuck together.

    Spotify playlist:
    note: long version of Bluebird substituted for short version (look up the long version on youtube) - banjo ending of short version is used as reprise in my tracklist
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  15. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    I had an idea for The Beatles where they disagree over direction after Sgt Pepper (Maybe just releasing I am the Walrus/Hello Goodbye as a single), and decide to all try individual projects for a year, and re-assemble as the Beatles in autumn 1968.

    John forms a new band called Plastic, plays a few live gigs then releases a 'Plastic' album in early 1968 - basically a lot of his raucous White Album stuff, plus 'Hey Bulldog' for good measure. Minimal studio tricks, maximum energy.

    Paul goes into the studio with George Martin & some session guys and crafts a well polished pop album.

    George goes back to India for a while (after having experienced the culture in his late 1966 holiday), then releases a few decent singles in 1968.

    Ringo either joins John on the road with Plastic, or tries a few acting roles. Or both (if the calendar allows).
  16. BeardedHoplite Nixon/Haig '88

    Jan 7, 2013
    Disintegration - Robert Smith

    Side One
    1 - Plainsong
    2 - Pictures of You
    3 - Fear of Ghosts*
    4 - Lovesong
    5 - Closedown

    Side 2
    1 - Pirate Ships*
    2 - Prayers for Rain
    3 - Lullaby

    Side 3
    1 - 2Late*
    2 - The Same Deep Water as You

    Side 4
    1 - Out of Mind*
    2 - Fascination Street
    3 - Disintegration
    4 - Untitled

    (*) Demos released OTL on the Disintegration deluxe edition

    Before The Cure released Disintegration in 1989, Robert Smith had most of it written out and believed in the material enough that he was ready to go solo if the rest of the band didn't like it. In OTL they did and we got the version we have now, but supposing they didn't like it, this is might how it might have looked. I'd imagine the songs would be even gloomier, as Smith wanted to move away from the poppy sound of Kiss Me (x3) and back toward the gothic Pornography. Such a move might have dampened the commercial success of the album, but goths around the world would have ate it up, moreso then OTL

    I also added a couple tracks that only got to the demo stage, figuring he would finish them to try and make what he wanted to be his masterpiece better. I've also left off "Homesick" and "Last Dance" as they were left off OTL vinyl pressing
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  17. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    The Velvet Underground - Loaded (November 1970)

    Side One
    1 Hello, There (*)
    2 Sweet Jane
    3 Bring it on up (*)
    4 Lonesome Cowboy Bill
    5 Cool it down
    6 Rock and Roll

    Side Two
    1 Who loves the sun
    2 Oh Gin (+)
    3 I found a reason
    4 Train round the bend
    5 Oh! Sweet Nuthin'

    All tracks as per OTL's 'Loaded' album by The Velvet Underground, except
    (+) Loaded demo, as released on 'Fully Loaded' deluxe edition
    (*) From OTL's 'Vintage Violence' album by John Cale

    In this timeline, John Cale isn't sacked by Lou Reed - The Velvet Underground still recruit Doug Yule to flesh-out their live sound (Maureen on drums, John on keyboards or viola, Lou & Sterling on guitars, Doug on Bass).

    After their mellow third album, they surprise everyone with a take on the emerging country-rock sound. Still, with the Velvets being the Velvets, there's still a few good rock songs there - particularly their top-10 hit "Rock and Roll".

    This time, I even made a spotify playlist for this album - and the others I've posted so far (scroll back to the posts). :)
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  18. flippikat A lot goes a little way.

    Jul 21, 2008
    New Zealand
    Pink Floyd - Atom Heart Mother (Released April 1971)

    Side One
    1 There Is Loving/Among Us/There is Loving (Ayers)
    2 If (Waters)
    3 Summer '68 (Wright)
    4 Rheinhart & Geraldine (Ayers)

    Side Two
    1 Atom Heart Mother (Pink Floyd)

    In this timeline, Pink Floyd replace Syd Barrett with David Gilmour for lead guitar duties and Kevin Ayers (ex-Soft Machine) for Rhythm guitar & songwriting, in an effort to keep on the whimsical track pioneered by Syd.

    The result? A swirling orchestral journey of an album.

    Playlist here:
    destiple likes this.
  19. BlackentheBorg This is going to become a bad meme

    Jun 2, 2015
    The Hurly-Burly - Moonstruck (May 1970)
    Brian Wilson, Syd Barrett, Roky Erickson, Ray Davies

    SIDE 1
    1. "Lola" (Davies, Wilson)
    2. "Wonderful" (Wilson)
    3. "Baby Lemonade" (Barrett)
    4. "Apeman" (Davies)
    5. "Never Another" (Erickson, Davies)
    6. "Do You Like Worms?" (Wilson)

    SIDE 2
    1. "Opel" (Barrett, Wilson)
    2. "This Time Tomorrow" (Davies)
    3. "G
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2015
  20. rjrrzube ... you can never go back again.

    Jun 9, 2008
    POD: George Harrison quits the Beatles during the filming of Let It Be [1] in January (although that's kept quiet until July), and both the film and album are scrapped.

    Two singles from the sessions are released in late 1969:

    April: Get Back b/w Don't Let Me Down
    May: Let It Be b/w The Ballad of John and Yoko

    John Lennon asks Eric Clapton to join the band.[2] So Clapton goes from Cream to the Beatles, which probably butterflies away Blind Faith.

    The Beatles, with Clapton aboard, record a new album, "Everest."[3] Clapton contributes "Layla," but since in this world there is no collaboration with Jim Gordon, there is no piano segment. The famous song is largely a guitar jam, not the rock monolith that it was in OTL.

    Released September 1969. Reviews are good, but it's not their biggest album.

    The Beatles

    Side 1
    1. Come Together
    2. Layla
    3. Oh! Darling
    4. Maxwell's Silver Hammer
    5. Octopus's Garden
    6. I Want You (She's So Heavy)

    Side 2
    1. The Long and Winding Road
    2. Because
    3. You Never Give Me Your Money
    4. Sun King
    5. Mean Mr. Mustard
    6. Polythene Pam
    7. She Came In Through The Bathroom Window
    8. Golden Slumbers
    9. Carry That Weight
    10. The End [4]
    11. Her Majesty

    Come Together b/w You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)
    Layla b/w Across The Universe [original version]
    The Long and Winding Road b/w Presence of the Lord

    [1] George did walk away, briefly.
    [2] When George took his temporary leave, John angrily suggested Clapton as a replacement
    [3] An actual alternate name for the album that became "Abbey Road"
    [4] Imagine the guitar solos!

    ... I've got more ideas in this timeline if anybody is interested!
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015