NewCC0025: The Clash

  • London Calling (79): *****
  • The Clash (77): **** 1/2
  • Story of the Clash, Vol. 1 (88): **** 1/2
  • Give 'em Enough Rope (78): ****
  • Clash on Broadway (91): ****
  • Super Black Market Clash (94): ****
  • Combat Rock (82): *** 1/2
  • Live: From Here to Eternity (99): *** 1/2
  • Return to Brixton (90): ***
  • Sandinista! (80): **
  • Cut the Crap (85): **
Author Comments: 

This is a new entry in an up-dated series I'm calling the New Critical Consensus. Several people have requested updates of the older series, and since critical opinions shift, I am revamping the entire system. I am averaging the opinions of several excellent music critics to produce a list of each artist's albums. Rather than using a number system, which was perhaps a bit clunky, I will now be using a five-star system. The albums will be listed in a recommended purchasing order, so new fans will have an idea of where the best place to start buying an artist's work is.
These are not my opinions, although, since I have chosen the critics used (and I'm using many), my taste will perhaps seep through a bit.

Terribly nerdy, I know, but maybe this will help people only now beginning to dabble into certain artists' bodies of work.


***** - Masterpiece
**** 1/2 - Classic
**** - Great
*** 1/2 - Good
*** - Above Average
** 1/2 - Average
** - Below Average
* 1/2 - Bad
* - Terrible
1/2 - One of the worst albums ever

Hey Lester, I find this list really fascinating for a couple of reasons. First, I'm gratified to see that my top two picks came in at the top, although I think I would give both London Calling and The Clash five stars. Secondly, do you find it strange that Sandanista! is so continually lowly rated by critics, but you find critics here and there who champion it as far and away the best of The Clash (Rough Guide Greatest Rock Albums). And both pro and con use the same argument: the sprawl and diversity of a triple LP. What do you think about all this?

I have only heard Sandanista! a few times in a radio studio, but my impression is that the greater number of critics are correct in this matter. The triple album does contain many great songs, but the filler is rather hard to bear unless you are a dyed-in-the-wool Clash completist. I did not find the sprawl in this case to be a positive attribute of this album. The radio station I worked at at that time did have a shortened radio-ready version titled, Sandinista Now!, I believe, and this stripped-down one-album version was rather great, if I recall correctly. Too bad it was only released to radio...

Shalom, y'all!

L. Bangs

I disagree with your rating of Combat Rock. For some reason, I like it best.

Jeff, did you read the description of these lists. These are not his opinions.

Well then, I disagree with whoever opinions they are.


Care to go into any detail about why you favor Combat Rock? There certainly are several reasons to like the album, the great singles standing out particularly strong in my mind.

Shalom, y'all!

L. Bangs

Straight To Hell, Sean Flynn, and Death Is A star stick out, other than the great singles as you mentioned. I just love this album. Its like the most mature sounding Clash I know of. Love it, Lestermaniac.

Hey jblack, I gotta agree with you, I love Combat Rock. It's got some of my favorite Clash songs.

Amen Sebreg ol' buddy.