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Funny to think that we, in the not-so-distant past, relied almost entirely on polycarbonate discs approximately 1 milimetre thick to populate our music collections. The “future” was the compact disc – tape decks and turntables hibernated…

Today, the tape deck remains a relic of the past and the CD isn’t too far behind it. Vinyl has returned as a hot commodity for a niche market of collectors while digital music remains the most efficient and popular way to collect music in many parts of the world.

When the CD was on top of the food chain I had a lot of what one might call the “disposable” income of a youth lacking goals for her immediate (or long-term) future. My part-time jobs while in school helped to bankroll an epic spend-bender, lining my CD books with an interesting curation of discs. Happening upon the lot of them while clearing out one of my guest rooms, I realized that it might be good to make a list of every single disc – the good, the bad, the bizarre – and to do so might lead to an entertaining series of features. So, to begin here are discs one to four.

#1 Depeche Mode – Barrel Of A Gun (single)

Depeche Mode released Ultra in 1997 and it was the band’s first album since the departure of Alan Wilder. I had the privilege of seeing Depeche Mode sans Alan – live in Toronto during the Ultra tour.  I bought the single on compact disc before the album was available. Depeche remixes are always worth a listen and often collectors’ items.

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#2 Depeche Mode – Exciter

Exciter was released in 2001, my copy was a gift from a friend who appreciated my love for the band. A stark minimalism and emptiness permeates this CD, it is ambient and mellow – almost a perfect reflection of how many people were feeling at the turn of the millennium.

#3 The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead

Arguably, the essential Smiths album to own. Genius lyrics and Johnny Marr’s unique style perfectly encapsulated in 10 tracks on their haunting third album.


#4 The Smiths – Best…1

A compilation album that I picked up in high school during a long stretch of excellent poetry writing. Warning – listening to “How Soon Is Now” on a loop is definitely not recommended…