Were Madness the best singles band ever?

riffraff

Striker
27 tracks on the original release of The Beatles- 1.
You could probably put together an album of 25 tracks that weren't released as singles which would be just as good as 1.

The extremely high quality and consistency of their albums just means the singles will automatically be good. It can't be helped
My problem is I’m too familiar with The Beatles to listen to em out of choice. Love it when they come on the radio or in a pub though, sorta stealth beatling is the best way to hear em. Same with a lot of the rock royalty/heritage bands.
 


People not just buying them for the odd track?

Probably true tbf. If you hear 3 good singles it's worth buying the album isn't it? Thriller, Billie Jean, Beat It, Wanna Be Starting Summat..
Then there's 9 singles off Bad as well.
Suppose the singles drove the album sales and they kept putting another one out and why not when they're all high quality
My problem is I’m too familiar with The Beatles to listen to em out of choice. Love it when they come on the radio or in a pub though, sorta stealth beatling is the best way to hear em. Same with a lot of the rock royalty/heritage bands.

I agree with that, listened to them so much that I don't often play them now but I'm never bored of them
 
Last edited:

GTG

Striker
The Kinks have a great back catalogue of singles:

All Day and All of The Night
You Really Got Me
Sunny Afternoon
Waterloo Sunset
Days
Dedicated Follower of Fashion
Till The End of the Day
Everybody's Gonna Be Happy
Wonderboy
Plastic Man
Shangri-la
Victoria
Lola
Celluloid Heroes
Apeman
Picture Book
Where Have All The Good Times Gone
Superman
Moving Pictures
Do It Again
Living On A Thin Line
Dandy
See My Friends
Set Me Free
Tired of Waiting
Dead End Street

Crazy amount of hits.
Yet, amazingly, only 3 Number 1s (can you name them without Googling?).

Also the 3rd British band to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame.

Both facts I learned at the Ould Rockers Music Quiz at the Mean Eyed Cat last week!
 

Shambo

Winger
Never been particularly into Madness but I recently listened to their 2009 album The Liberty Of Norton Folgate and thought it was pretty decent
 

SPUFF

Striker
That's a great album but not quite a singles collection.
Twist and Shout, Please Please Me, Strawberry Fields and some others not on it
Prefer chacka dumus n pliers version of twist and shout tbf 😉
People keep missing the point of what a singles band is marra. Yes the Beatles had great singles. Because they formed a part of many classic albums. The latter point means they can't be defined as a singles band.

For those struggling, a singles band is a band that has a few hits, but their albums are overall, and by comparison, canny shite.

Yup :lol:
Wigfield?
They'd make the criteria as their albums, on the whole, are absolutely shite.
Im a madness fan n fully agree!!!
 
Last edited:

GTG

Striker
The ACTUAL TRUTH is that The Beatles were both a singles band AND an albums band, and probably the best at both. Singles and albums were very different markets and George Martin and presumably the band believed it would be wrong for fans to have to buy the same songs twice ........ or maybe that they could sell more records by NOT including singles on albums.

Did any band really release a better list of singles than:

From Me To You
She Loves You
I Want To Hold Your Hand
I Feel Fine
Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out
Strawberry Fields Forever/Penny Lane
All You Need Is Love
Hello Goodbye/I Am The Walrus
Lady Madonna
Hey Jude/Revolution
Get Back/Don't Let Me Down
Ballad Of John & Yoko
Let It Be

What do they have in common? None of them were on 'official' albums (though a couple of the later ones did appear in very different versions).

Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out was even released on the same day as 'Rubber Soul' !! Imagine that album with those 2 added?!? Just too many great songs to squeeze onto one piece of vinyl?
Wigfield?

I don't think you've quite grasped the concept of 'a band'!
The extremely high quality and consistency of their albums just means the singles will automatically be good. It can't be helped
This is not true, for the reasons above.
People keep missing the point of what a singles band is marra. Yes the Beatles had great singles. Because they formed a part of many classic albums.
This is largely not true either.
 
Last edited:

billybumbler

Central Defender
My cousin (St Aidan's lad) played bass with them for about 12 years, after the first split. Never really had the same level of success in the singles charts but were still knocking out some belters like Hourglass and Third Rail, and were probably bigger in the US during that period. He has some good stories, especially from a stadium tour with Fleetwood Mac!!

Keith Wilkinson? And a St Aidans"s lad? Fuckin hell cool mate!
 

JAZZMANB

Striker
Mid 70s to mid80s was single peak time .
Loads knocking out good singles one after another.
The Police and Madness I'd say . Just on amounts and quality . Old timers like Roxy and Lizzy had some great singles too. Abba was a good shout
 

dangermows

Striker
The ACTUAL TRUTH is that The Beatles were both a singles band AND an albums band, and probably the best at both. Singles and albums were very different markets and George Martin and presumably the band believed it would be wrong for fans to have to buy the same songs twice ........ or maybe that they could sell more records by NOT including singles on albums.

Did any band really release a better list of singles than:

From Me To You
She Loves You
I Want To Hold Your Hand
I Feel Fine
Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out
Strawberry Fields Forever/Penny Lane
All You Need Is Love
Hello Goodbye/I Am The Walrus
Lady Madonna
Hey Jude/Revolution
Get Back/Don't Let Me Down
Ballad Of John & Yoko
Let It Be

What do they have in common? None of them were on 'official' albums (though a couple of the later ones did appear in very different versions).

Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out was even released on the same day as 'Rubber Soul' !! Imagine that album with those 2 added?!? Just too many great songs to squeeze onto one piece of vinyl?


I don't think you've quite grasped the concept of 'a band'!

This is not true, for the reasons above.

This is largely not true either.
Let's make it more simple for you. If you wrote numerous amazing albums you can't be classed as a singles band.
 

GTG

Striker
Let's make it more simple for you. If you wrote numerous amazing albums you can't be classed as a singles band.
Who says? You're just making up your own rules to suit your own argument.

I don't think they wrote amazing albums - there's no real 'concept' holding them together. They just wrote loads of amazing songs, some of which they released as amazing albums, and some as amazing singles.

Would you say that 'singles band' is a derogatory term?
 
Last edited:

dangermows

Striker
Who says? You're just making up your own rules to suit your own argument.

I don't think they wrote amazing albums - there's no real 'concept' holding them together. They just wrote loads of amazing songs, some of which they released as amazing albums, and some as amazing singles.

Would you say that 'singles band' is a derogatory term?
Dear me. They wrote loads of class albums. Look at the songs they missed off Peppers. And for a reason. They didn't fit the sound of the record.

That is what a singles band is. A band which is known for the odd hit/few good songs on each record and nowt else.

What the hell do you think is meant by a singles band? :lol:

@rapscallion we've got another one saying The Beatles :lol:
 
Last edited:
The Beatles released impeccably good singles. That is without question. Yet there's loads of album tracks that are of equally high, or higher quality than their singles. Their albums are regularly high featuring in greatest album ever polls. Their albums are extremely famous.
Casual fans could probably name 5 of their albums. Most people into music will know Beatles albums. Everyone knows Beatles singles.

Ask anybody to name 5 ABBA songs, they'd do it no bother.
Ask anybody to name 3 ABBA albums and unless they're a fan of the band they won't know them.
Ask somebody to name 10 Elvis songs and they will. Ask somebody to name 3 Elvis albums and they wouldn't be able to do it. That's unless they know the titles of a few of his films.
Elvis and ABBA are singles artists without a doubt.
The Beatles aren't a singles artist.

If a greatest hits is what most people know a band for then they're a singles artist.
Beatles aren't a singles band despite the fact they released excellent singles.
Pop - erasure

I can only think of 3 erasure songs. Don't think that's enough imo.
Who says? You're just making up your own rules to suit your own argument.

I don't think they wrote amazing albums - there's no real 'concept' holding them together. They just wrote loads of amazing songs, some of which they released as amazing albums, and some as amazing singles.

Would you say that 'singles band' is a derogatory term?

This is a bit of a strange thing to say.
Widely recognised as having recorded the first concept album Sgt Pepper.
Side 2 of Abbey Road is a continuous piece of music.
Revolver doesn't sound like any of their other albums.
I'd say you can hear different sounds and stages of their evolution in just about every album.
They never made two albums that sounded the same.
 
Last edited:

GTG

Striker
Dear me. They wrote loads of class albums. Look at the songs they missed off Peppers. And for a reason. They didn't fit the sound of the record.

That is what a singles band is. A band which is known for the odd hit/few good songs on each record and nowt else.

What the hell do you think is meant by a singles band? :lol:

@rapscallion we've got another one saying The Beatles :lol:

I don't think you have actually read what I wrote, probably because it doesn't fit in with the sound of your own voice.

A 'singles band' isn't really a thing though, is it? I don't think your 'definition' fits in with the OP anyway but I don't think many bands set out to fill their albums with rubbish, they just have some songs which are better, or more, commercial than others. The difference with the Beatles is that virtually everything they recorded hit the spot but I don't think they wrote albums where all the songs had a common theme or sound. They recorded whatever songs they had written at that point and produced and sequenced them into something that worked. However, the tracks that they decided NOT to include on albums, for whatever reason, are hardly inferior.

I would say that 4 or 5 of the 'singles only' list above would be among the 20 most recognisable songs in world history and have been loved and sung for decades by millions who might never have even listened to a whole album.

I don't even know why we are discussing this, to be honest, and why it bothers you and @What A Waster to have the Beatles referred to as a singles band. They weren't just a singles band but they were a GREAT singles band.
 

Chatty83

Goalkeeper
So where would GNRs stand in this. They made some great albums but I doubt most people could recognise any songs bar from their big singles so do they qualify.

Sweet Child of Mine
November Rain
Welcome To The Jungle
Paradise City
Patience
Knockin on Heaven's Door
Night Train
Live and Let Die
Civil War

Gotta be in with a fair shout seen as though they seem to fit the mould of people changing the meaning of a singles band every five minutes.
 

dangermows

Striker
I don't think you have actually read what I wrote, probably because it doesn't fit in with the sound of your own voice.

A 'singles band' isn't really a thing though, is it? I don't think your 'definition' fits in with the OP anyway but I don't think many bands set out to fill their albums with rubbish, they just have some songs which are better, or more, commercial than others. The difference with the Beatles is that virtually everything they recorded hit the spot but I don't think they wrote albums where all the songs had a common theme or sound. They recorded whatever songs they had written at that point and produced and sequenced them into something that worked. However, the tracks that they decided NOT to include on albums, for whatever reason, are hardly inferior.

I would say that 4 or 5 of the 'singles only' list above would be among the 20 most recognisable songs in world history and have been loved and sung for decades by millions who might never have even listened to a whole album.

I don't even know why we are discussing this, to be honest, and why it bothers you and @What A Waster to have the Beatles referred to as a singles band. They weren't just a singles band but they were a GREAT singles band.
They weren't a singles band. It's not even debatable by the very definition.

You're getting there though... No a singles band doesn't set out to fill an album with rubbish. They aren't good enough to write numerous albums full of class songs and end up with a few good uns amongst shite, and those good songs are all most know them for.
 
Last edited:

GTG

Striker
This is a bit of a strange thing to say.
Widely recognised as having recorded the first concept album Sgt Pepper.
Lennon disagreed and he wrote half of it. Having the same song at the start and end, and wearing some co-ordinated outfits on the cover doesn't really create a 'concept'.

Revolver doesn't sound like any of their other albums.
I'd say you can hear different sounds and stages of their evolution in just about every album.
They never made two albums that sounded the same.

I agree with all of that.
They weren't a singles band. It's not even debatable by the very definition.
There you go again! It's YOUR definition of something that doesn't really exist, and isn't the one which started this thread.
 
Last edited:

dangermows

Striker
So where would GNRs stand in this. They made some great albums but I doubt most people could recognise any songs bar from their big singles so do they qualify.

Sweet Child of Mine
November Rain
Welcome To The Jungle
Paradise City
Patience
Knockin on Heaven's Door
Night Train
Live and Let Die
Civil War

Gotta be in with a fair shout seen as though they seem to fit the mould of people changing the meaning of a singles band every five minutes.
Not my cup of scad but yes, they qualify. @GTG take note of the lad, he gets it.
Lennon disagreed and he wrote half of it. Having the same song at the start and end, and wearing some co-ordinated outfits on the cover doesn't really create a 'concept'.



I agree with all of that.

There you go again! It's YOUR definition of something that doesn't really exist, and isn't the one which started this thread.
You chose not to read the rest of the post, where I clearly explained what a singles band is. You clearly don't know what one is. Which surprises me tbh. And haven't even been able to offer up an alternative.
 
Last edited:

Top