50 Greatest Live Albums of All Time

You wanted the best and you got it!

The Replacements, 'The Shit Hits the Fans' (1985)
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50. The Replacements, 'The Shit Hits the Fans' (1985)

A pre-sobriety Paul Westerberg, Chris Mars and Bob and Tommy Stinson alternate between the best and worst bar band of all time on Twin/Tone's cassette-only The Shit Hits the Fans. Recorded with two hanging mics at Oklahoma City's converted church venue the Bowery in 1984, these 24 songs (19 of which are covers) are a lubricated mix of blues, metal, soul and spilled-beer wankery. "I asked Paul or somebody if he minded that I record the show," Bowery manager and DJ Roscoe Shoemaker recalled in the Replacements oral history All Over But the Shouting. "'Why? We suck.' Typical Westy response." Between the comical breakdowns, the 'Mats show off the bruised slack-rock template of the Let It Be era that eventually inspired Nirvana, Wilco and thousands of other pop-loving punks. Faithful and furious takes on "Sixteen Blue" and "Can't Hardly Wait" are balanced out by decidedly insincere covers of the Jackson 5's "I'll Be There" and Led Zeppelin's "Misty Mountain Hop." By the time it's done, they've artfully mangled R.E.M., U2, Thin Lizzy and the Rolling Stones. Reed Fischer