- 18 Dec 09
Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks has been voted the best Irish album of all time by a panel of musicians. The full list is revealed in the Hot Press Annual 2010 due for publication on Friday, December 18.
The Hot Press Annual 2010 has been titled The Hot Press of the Decade, as it also contains a complete look back over the past 10 years.
Among the hundreds of leading musicians who voted in the poll are Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol, Glen Hansard, composer Bill Whelan, Shane McGowan, Sharon Corr, Edge of U2, Gavin Friday and Laura Izibor as well as members of The Sawdoctors, The Undertones, The Blizzards, The Coronas, Republic of Loose and dozens more bands and musicians across all genres.
The Hot Press of the Decade will carry the full list of the top 250 Irish albums, which feature in the poll.
To order the Hot Press Annual 2010 just go here
U2’s Achtung Baby comes in at number two, taking over from The Joshua Tree as the most highly-rated U2 album among Ireland’s musicians. In a similar poll, conducted by Hot Press five years ago, The Joshua Tree was No.3, behind Astral Weeks and Thin Lizzy’s 1978 meisterwork, Live and Dangerous, which is voted into third place on this occasion.
Van Morrison features in a total of 11 entries, including three with Them, and Irish Heartbeat, his collaboration with The Chieftains.
Rory Gallagher also has seven entries, including his two albums with Taste. Reflecting his status as a dynamic live performer, his two highest polling albums are both live recordings,. Live In Europe and Irish Tour ’94.
Other acts have four entries, including Planxty and The Frames, although The Frames can also lay partial claim to The Swell Season album and their fiddle player Colm Mac An Iomaire’s solo album The Hare’s Corner.
Nine of the albums in the Hot Press top 250 are live recordings and the highest new entry since the 2004 poll is Cathy Davy at number 19.
Hot Press editor Niall Stokes offered the following refection on the poll.
“Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks is a worthy poll-topper. It’s an extraordinary work, packed with marvelously evocative songs that are rooted in Belfast but which deliver a powerful and lasting universal poetic resonance. Astral Weeks has consistently appeared in polls of the Greatest Albums of All Time, in the US, the UK and all over the world – so it has been widely recognized as a really important work of art.
“Overall, the selection of 250 albums also shows the extraordinary depth of Irish music over many decades. The selection covers 45 years of exhilarating music, from the earliest album in the list, The Dubliners With Luke Kelly which is at number 176, up to one of this year’s really special albums, Pages by Julie Feeney, which features at number 55.”
Now, it's over to the readers of Hot Press to pick THEIR favourite Irish Albums of All Time by voting online @ hotpress.com