100 Best Debut Albums of All Time

From the Beatles to Nas and beyond

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'Modern Lovers'
Courtesy Beserkley Records48/100

48. 'Modern Lovers'

Modern Lovers
Beserkley, 1976

Jonathan Richman moved from Boston to New York as a teenager in hopes of sleeping on Lou Reed's couch. That influence shows on the two-chord anthem "Roadrunner." Recorded in 1972 but not released until 1976, Lovers turned the tough sounds of the Velvet Underground into an ode to suburban romanticism, pure love, parents, the Fifties and all kinds of other things were that were totally uncool in the early Seventies. "[Rock] wasn't about drugs and space," he said years later. "It was about sex and boyfriends and girlfriends and stuff."

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