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Olivia Stock
23 May 2024, 15:03

Apple Music reveals its top 100 albums of all time

Records from Daft Punk, Burial, Kraftwerk, Sade and Prince all feature in the celebratory list, which was topped by Lauryn Hill

Apple Music reveals its top 100 albums of all time

Apple Music has revealed its top 100 best albums of all time, with Lauryn Hill’s ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ claiming the No. 1 spot.

The celebratory list has been curated by Apple Music’s team of experts alongside a select group of artists, including J Balvin, Charli XCX, Honey Dijon, and Nia Archives, as well as songwriters, producers, and industry professionals. Check out the rankings below.

The first 10 albums were revealed last Monday (13th May) with a further 10 being announced each day since, along with a new 100 Best microsite and dedicated Apple Music Radio episodes. The countdown culminated yesterday (Wednesday 22nd May) with the reveal of Apple Music’s top 10 albums of all time during a broadcast radio special.

“Putting this list together was a true labor of love, both in that it was incredibly difficult to do and in that we are all so passionate about it,” Zane Lowe, Apple Music’s global creative director and lead anchor for Apple Music 1, shared in a statement.

“We were tasked with selecting the 100 best — that’s practically mission impossible. But as music fans, it was also amazing to really take a minute and sit and think about the music and albums and artists that we love so much in this context.”

The list – which is described as a “journey through the albums that shaped, inspired and fundamentally changed music” – features a bevy of electronic titles, from contemporary game-changers to legendary long-players.

Burial’s seminal 2007 LP, ‘Untrue’, clocked in at No. 94, followed shortly by Mary J. Blige with ‘My Life’ at No. 86 and Snoop Dogg’s ‘Doggy Style’ at 84. Other albums featured in the 100-81 section include Travis Scott with ‘Astroworld’, 50 Cent’s ‘Get Rich or Die Tryin’’ and Rage Against the Machine’s self-titled debut.

Moving into the 80-61 section, Missy Elliott was named at No. 75 with ‘Supa Dupa Fly’, whilst Kraftwerk’s ‘Trans-Europe Express’ and N.W.A’s ‘Straight Outta Compton’ earned 71st and 70th rankings respectively. Erykah Badu clocked in No. 64 with ‘Baduizm’, followed by De La Soul at 63 with their landmark first record, ‘3 Feet High and Rising’

Sade’s ‘Love Deluxe’ kicks off the 60-41 category, which also features the first appearance of Prince with ‘Sign O’ The Times’ at No. 51. OutKast’s ‘Aquemini’ is awarded Apple Music’s 41st spot, ahead of Beastie Boys with ‘Paul’s Boutique’ at 48 and Talking Heads’ ‘Remain in Light’ at 43.

Wu-Tang Clan’s ‘Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (Expanded Edition)’ is named the 37th best album of all time in a category which also features releases from Public EnemyRadiohead and The Notorious B.I.G. In at 29 is A Tribe Called Quest’s 1991 album, ‘The Low End Theory’, followed shortly by ‘Discovery’ by Daft Punk at 23. 

The hotly contested top 20 kicks off with Dr. Dre’s ‘The Chronic’ at 19, followed by Jay-Z’s ‘The Blueprint’ (No. 13). ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city’ from Kendrick Lamar takes 7th place, ahead of Prince & The Revolution’s iconic ‘Purple Rain’ at No. 4.

Taking the number one spot is Lauryn Hill with her landmark 1998 album, ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’. Upon receiving the news, Hill told Apple Music: “This is my award, but it’s a rich, deep narrative, and involves so many people, and so much sacrifice, and so much time, and so much collective love.”

Apple Music has stressed that the list is an “editorial statement”, and has been curated fully independent of streaming numbers on the platform. Check out the top 10 albums below, and Apple Music’s full list here.

10. ‘Lemonade’ – Beyoncé
9. ‘Nevermind’ – Nirvana
8. ‘Back to Black’ – Amy Winehouse
7. ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city (Deluxe Version)’ – Kendrick Lamar
6. ‘Songs in the Key of Life’ – Stevie Wonder
5. ‘Blonde’ – Frank Ocean
4. ‘Purple Rain’ – Prince & The Revolution
3. ‘Abbey Road’ – The Beatles
2. ‘Thriller’ – Michael Jackson
1. ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ – Lauryn Hill