Why is Love’s Forever Changes on my best 1,000 albums ever list?
Eclectic psychedelic rock released at the pinnacle of the Flower Power era.
Some stats & info about Love – Forever Changes
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? SoCal Bands, Rock Music, Psychedelic Rock
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – #180
- All Music’s rating – 5 out of 5 stars
- When was Forever Changes released? 1967
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #707 out of 1,000
Love’s Forever Changes on Spotify
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective review of what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.
What does Love’s Forever Changes mean to me? What does it make me feel? Why is it exciting or compelling?
I had heard about the band called Love years before I ever actually heard their music. This was the pre-Internet days, of course, whereas now it’s so shockingly simple to plug a search query into Google or YouTube or Spotify.
As a mega fan of The Doors during my high school years, I read as much as I could about the band (which at that time included The Doors biography, No One Here Gets Out Alive, by Danny Sugarman and Jerry Hopkins). Whether or not this is fully factual, it locked in for me that at the time The Doors were forming in the mid-1960s, Love was the most popular band in Los Angeles and the band that The Doors wished they could be as “big” as one day.
I’m pretty sure the first Love song I ever heard is “Seven and Seven Is,” which was on a compilation album I had at some point (it was originally released on the Da Capo album, released in 1966). It’s a really cool driving psychedelic rock song with kind of a bolero feel to it.
By the time I caught up to Forever Changes, released in 1967, the peak hippie year of The Summer of Love (and the year The Doors zoomed to superstardom on the back of their stellar debut album and “Light My Fire”), I was blown away by how eclectic and varied it is.
“You Set the Scene” is my favorite song on the album at the moment. It’s got a hippie, psychedelic vibe with a fun little funky swing, but one that’s exceptionally produced and executed. It reminds me of the “feel” of the music from the musical, Jesus Christ Superstar, which I relay as high praise.
If you’re a fan of the Netflix show Russian Doll, you might recognize that “Alone Again Or” was used prominently at the end of the first season finale. It’s fun and upbeat, yet strange and psychedelic and mysterious at the same time. And it too leverages Latin-influenced horns as a nice touch.
I really dig the minor chord progressions used in “Live and Let Live.” It’s obvious that Love has an assembly of highly accomplished musicians, and this song is a great showcase.
While Forever Changes was released during the peak of the “Flower Power” era, songs like “Bummer in the Summer” foresaw the limits and eventual demise of the counterculture movement.