100 Best Debut Albums of All Time

From the Beatles to Nas and beyond

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'Piper At the Gates of Dawn'
Courtesy Columbia Records47/100

47. 'Piper At the Gates of Dawn'

Pink Floyd
Tower, 1967

"I'm full of dust and guitars," Pink Floyd's Syd Barrett told Rolling Stone. Here's what that sounded like. The band's debut is all playful, psychedelic imagery and acid guitars. "Astronomy Domine" shows the group's pop side; "The Gnome" gets high on observations like "look at the sky/Look at the river/Isn't it goooood"; "Interstellar Overdrive" is a orgiastic guitar freakout that still leaves a burning sensation in the back of your brain. Barrett's vision of psychedelia was blues-free, a huge innovation in late-Sixties England, and his genius-freak persona has been a chimeric lodestar for scads of trippy shut-ins.

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