Wednesday Question: Worst Releases By Great Bands?

This time we want you to have some fun with your nominations and showcase the low points in our heroes' careers.

Ultimate Guitar

The Wednesday question and it's resulting top 10 are one of our favorite parts of the week. We get to find out what UG readers really think about a topic, then compile it for the rest of the internet to enjoy over the weekend before repeating it the next week.

But we always tackle the best of something. This time we've decided to flip it around, and have some fun with poking at the worst of something instead.

So this week we're asking you to answer the following:

What Is The Worst Release By A Great Band?

This could be a single or an album, but could even be a piece of merchandise or something equally creative if you can think of it. We have a feeling that a certain angry record by Metallica will make the chart, or maybe that set of dildos from Rammstein... but we'll leave the nominations to you.

Place your nominations in the comments, and as usual, vote with the upvote buttons on each post. If you add a reason for your nomination, you might be quoted in the resulting post on Friday.

595 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Shark Sandwich wasn't really a good album
    Lulu. Duh.
    No St. Lulu is the worst... A mashup of Metallicas St Anger drums over the entire Lulu album... WHERE IS YOUR GOD NOW???
    Does anyone realise that this includes things that aren't albums as well? Everybody has gone off on album directions xD there's surely got to be worse things. I'm going with the Justin Bieber dream catcher... That shit's just creepy.
    The only think Metallica did wrong with lulu was brand it with metallica. If they put a different name on it, it would have been just a nice little album. Its not the most terrible music ive ever heard, but you expect metal from metallica and it makes you hate it. But lets be realistic, its all just vibrations and how can you hate a vibration. You hate the image.
    Lulu is rather unlistenable. I've tried. There are segments of Reed babbling on about a bleeding cock, spermless, and... I think I've blocked the rest out. I can't even let the album play while I do something else. It's the worst CD I've ever payed for... Bought it first week because it had Metallica's name on it. I was kinda hoping for magic on par of Neil Young & Pearl Jam, but nooooo!!!
    Oh please, St. Anger was still worse than that.
    St. Anger is actually pretty good considering the context that the album was made; Metallica were in a very stressful time, and St. Anger reflected just that. I personally love St. Anger.
    Some Kind of Monster and St. Anger were what introduced me to the band. I can't say I'm a huge fan of that album, but in the proper context it's quite a good album.
    "St. Anger is actually pretty good considering the context that the album was made" .. "We're angry and stressed, so let's completely invalidate all that by turning it into an horribly-produced and angsty piece of trash that will be marketed to twelve year olds!"? Because that's what they needed to do, right? Not make legitimately angry, Metal music that is perfect for those kind of times in your life. And of course, it has nothing to do with the fact a certain riffless, bassless, and angsty genre was popular at the time.
    I really like St. Anger. That, along with their first three are the main Metallica albums I listen to. Lulu was one of the worst things ever.
    Scream by Chris Cornell.
    Scream was good. He wanted to experiment and pulled it off. Like Kiss doing Dynasty, but currently. He also pulled the songs off nicely live, along with Sound Garden, Audioslave and his solo stuff. The guys a genious.
    *genius* and thats a rather strong word imo. he does have one of the strongest and most memorable voices in rock
    You are right. Genious is a strong word. I guess that is where I was going with this. As in, your description of his voice.
    Metal Machine Music - Lou Reed
    all other answers are invalid compared to this one. If anyone doesn't agree, look up this album.
    The category is worst alums by great artists. You are missing the great artist. Lol
    Dude, Lou may have ****ed up with Metallica, but his work with Velvet Underground was very influential to most of the music that came after 1967. Not to mention some of his pretty cool solo albums, like Transformer, Berlin, New York, Sally Can't Dance, etc...
    I know, I'm just trolling here. He's made some great, unique music. But that album is a bit unbearable.
    I guess you are right UG: Lulu - Metallica
    It isn't a Metallica record. It is a collaboration between Lou Reed and Metallica. Granted, it is the worst rock record (if you could call it that) ever released, but it isn't a Metallica record. Now to actually answer the topic question: Chinese Democracy by Guns N' Roses. It's a bad album by itself. Add in the fact that it was 13 years in the making and it becomes 100 times worse. When I first listened to it, I was still standing by the belief that St. Anger was the worst rock record by a great band ever, but Chinese Democracy actually made me listen to St. Anger again (and as it turns out, it's not that bad of an album. Just bad production). For an album to change your outlook on another album, it either has to be really good or really bad, and in this case, it's an absolute piece of crap.
    I happen to think chinese democracy is a wonderful album (catcher in rye for example, is an amazing song)
    Also, if you think its going to be "guns n roses", then its going to suck, because obviously, its not going to sound like izzy and slash (and the others), when its not. you have to see it as a different band, like linkin park or green day or any other band who made a U-turn in sound.
    You're ignoring the difference here. Bands like Green Day and Metallica changed their sound, but they did so together, with the same band members. Guns N' Roses was never just Axl Rose, it was a group of 5 musicians who came together and made something special. Chinese Democracy is just Axl Rose, it's not Guns, at least in my opinion. To me it's like if Robert Plant made an album and released it as a Led Zeppelin record or if Mic Jagger released a record as The Rolling Stones.
    Exactly. If you listen to it as Axl And Friends instead of GNR, it's a pretty solid album.
    wondering if some of the criticism of Chinese Democracy has to do primarily with the fact a certain top-hat wearing guitar player isn't in the band...that said, i really like the cd. Some tracks more than others, but if you listen closely, you can hear the different layers to the music itself. If you listen to it with the intent to compare it to Appetite, well, it is going to suck. Listen to it for what it is and perhaps you may come to respect it.
    Personally, I thought CD was different but ok when I first listened to it. After listening to it a few more times it really began to grow on me. I guess the main problem in reception for that album is that people were expecting something somewhat similar to Appetite for Destruction, but in reality with the Use Your Illusion albums GNR's sound was obviously already shifting away from that sound (even with the almost intact original lineup). That said I still don't find it anywhere near as good as AFD or UYIs but it aint bad
    The awesome thing is, any way you look at it, Axl Rose is a complete perfectionist. Every second he spent actually developing the record had a purpose. I know that on "november rain," the orchestra in the beginning on the recording is actually something that Axl constructed over months by himself on a keyboard, layering and harmonizing, and weaving texture around. and he recorded every track individually, on his synthesizer, even the flute "soli" right before he sings. It's an audio masterpiece, and love him or hate him, yes, Axl is a crazy s.o.b., but my God he is ridiculously intellectual and gifted, as a poet, composer, and vocalist.
    Not only was it like 15 years in the making, but they spent $13 million making it. For something that took that long and that much money to make, it really is a poorly produced album full of terribly mediocre songs.
    Chinese Democracy? Chinese Democracy.
    Fuck off. That's a pretty damn good album. Just because Slash isn't on it, that doesn't automatically make it bad. It's got a few bad songs on it, but it's got more good ones than bad.
    Chinese democracy was a great album, the Spaghetti Incident was much worse
    "angry record by Metallic" I don't know who Metallic are
    I don't think Lulu was that angry. In any case, i'm gonna say that 'Metal Machine Music' is perhaps the worst album ever released. It's almost an hour of nothing but guitar feedback, and i'm pretty sure that a person could use it for torturing people by placing it on an endless loop.
    It's bad because it doesn't have any pop hooks? Some people enjoy droney music. I'd say Morbid Angel's Illud Divinum Insanus was the oddest turn from a decent band.
    Or maybe it's just too extreme for me to understand.
    Red Hot Chili Peppers - One Hot Minute. Fruscainte's absence didn't go unnoticed.
    "African Child" by Aldous Snow
    I actually think "One Hot Minute" is a really good, underrated album. Not one of RHCP's best albums, but still better than some of their 80s albums.
    screw you that albums awesome...if anything it's I'm with you by rhcp...I'd take navaro over klinghoffer In any band any style
    Faith in humanity restored for all the down votes on this.
    This really made my day lol. By the way, great movie. And if anybody ask you, "you love African Child, you brush your teeth to african child" LOL
    planet caravan by sabbath. its a bit of a WTF moment after war pigs and paranoid
    Planet caravan is one of the top songs by black sabbath. Its not the most famous,but its up there. (get high and listen to it xD)
    ha, i still need to do that. i have their version and Pantera's version on my iPod. i just don't understand the song. now i need pot.
    after doing so yesterday, i must say. i felt like a hippy at such undescribable peace....
    Everything post-Minutes to Midnight from Linkin Park.
    More like anything post-Meteora
    I'll argue half of M2M will save that album's rep. No More Sorrow, Bleed It Out, Given Up all badass tunes. The Little Things Give You Away and Leave Out All The Rest I found to be very well written. In Pieces is cool for having the only guitar solo in the band's cataloge and it's all a nice build up to it as well. The rest is pretty weak even though Valentine's Day is a favorite of mine, I can understand if that is piled into the hate.
    The Blaze Bayley years of Maiden...
    Virtual XI (Except for Futureal) for sure. X-Factor had some good songs. But by far the worst albums they put out.
    Virtual XI and the X Factor both had some wicked songs on them. Hadn't the maiden logo been printen on the cover they would blow most metal bands from that time away. I actually nominate No Prayer for the Dying. Some decent stuff but so much filler.
    What the ****? The Blaze years are great! And Virtual XI is a great album!
    I don't know. Just can't get into them. And I'm a huge Maiden fan, obviously. I think after Adrian left the songwriting took a downturn, and once Bruce left, my two favorite song writing elements in Maiden were gone. I think there was just something missing from those records. Just me though.
    True - I think No Prayer for the Dying and Fear of the Dark both have pretty bad songwriting. But if you ask me, X Factor and Virtual XI are both phenomenal albums, Blaze just has a voice a bit different for Iron Maiden.
    Como estais amigos, dont look to the eyes of the stranger, the clansman all good songs on virtual XI. No prayer for the dying is their least impressive.
    The Elder by Kiss has to make this list....
    A thousand suns by linkin park
    No way man, I loved that record!
    As did I - there was an interesting concept and theme to the album. It was no Meteora, but I still really enjoyed it over both Minutes to Midnight and Living Things combined.
    just because they decided to to something different instead of doing the same nu-metal thing over and over again. branch out, metalheads
    Definitely Scream by Chris Cornell and LuLu.
    +1 here, when I heard a new Cornell album was out I was looking forward to it, once I heard it I entered the world of question marks.
    I thought it was a nice idea for Chris to try something so radically different. Pretty cool of him. that said, it wasn't very good music.
    Black Sabbath (More or less just Tony Iommi) Forbidden, no joke, Tony Martin was great on Cross Purposes and Headless Cross. But this, is just bad. Some of the songs even sound similar, and ones so bad that they have Ice T singing it. Even Tony Martin himself said the album is terrible.
    Yeah, I love Sabbath and some of the Tony Martin albums are great but Forbidden is just awful. Tough to listen to.
    Lou Reed - Metal Machine Music The WORST abum ever. Seriously, listen to it.
    Or just listen to the first minute, or even the first 10 seconds and you'll already know the album in its entirety.
    love me some rhcp, don't hate on one hot minute that is a very good album, good songs that don't get a lot of recognition
    Iron Maiden the blaze bailey days ie x factor and virtual xi. I am happy to listen to any maiden but those 2 albums are just horrible.
    I love how this topic just resulted in people whining about how much they love the worst album from every band.
    Ratitude- Weezer
    If we're going with a Weezer album, it's gotta be Hurley
    Must agree with Hurley. Most Weezer post-Pinkerton is sort of bad but I could always find something to enjoy, even if it's just a silly fun song like 'If You're Wondering..', but I don't think there's a single thing on Hurley that's even remotely interesting (in fairness though, I've probably only listened to it twice haha).
    Probably gonna get hate mail for this, and I'm a Zep freak, but In Through The Outdoor just doesnt even feel like a Zep album.
    I'd agree actually. In The Evening is alright. But you can tell that they had so much shit going on that made the music kind of obscure. Drugs, death, stresses of touring and fame etc. Got away from the sexy bluesy improv riffing of the first few albums towards a more experimental sound. And I prefer JPJ to be on the bass rocking out. He's one of the most underrated bassists. Not saying its a particularly bad album, but compared to their other releases it's not at the same level.
    I felt like that at the start but I think its got some pretty underrated songs that arent amazing but are pretty good like South Bound Saurez, In The Evening, Fool In The Rain, and Hot Dog is actually pretty hard to play
    not St. Anger. but Lulu. don't hate on Risk by Megadeth though. also we could've lived without most of Machine Head's The Burning Red and Supercharger.
    Any Fleetwood Mac album without Peter Green
    I'd go the other way, any Fleetwood Mac album without Buckingham & Nicks
    The women ruined the band
    Wow... That's surely got to be a troll. Rumours is an amazing album and everyone knows that you can't get bitchiness without women, and that album was based on bitching. Go figure.
    Wow! Wouldn't say all those after Peter were all that bad, but in comparison to Mac's blues years, they all pale in comparison! +1 for you sir/ma'am! Love me some Peter Green!
    I bought a The very best of Fleetwood Mac. Disappoitment. Not as close as their best.
    Love Beach by Emerson, Lake & Palmer! Less known maybe, but real crap.
    I thought of Love Beach has an embarrassing cover, 1/2 the songs are awful, but it does have 'Memoirs of an Officer and a Gentleman' which I really like so I wouldn't count it. I think Black Moon is the worst ELP album.
    I don't get why Mick Jagger and David Bowie's "Dancing in the Streets" aren't here... Seriously, Bowie and The Rolling Stones are two of the greatest and most influential artists of all time... But that song... Really?
    Ever seen the video? i tried to claw my eyes out when i first seen it.
    Yeah... The Video definitely adds to the experience... So to speak... Might just be the worst video ever made.
    Falling into Infinity - Dream Theater Is it a bad album? Probably not (Except only remember it for Lines in the Sand) but compared to what they've put out it might as well be labeled as their "worst releases".
    Coming from a big VH fan, Van Halen III was just so, so bad. While I do like A Year To The day, and Cherone did a great job with the previous incarnation's material live, this record just didn't work.
    You guys make me feel bad for liking St. Anger /: I really liked that album, it was just really different. Anyway, my choices: Insecticide - Nirvana Virtual XI - Iron Maiden Undisputed Attitude - Slayer
    I'm willing to bet this article was made simply to give UG another excuse to rag on Lulu, because they can't seem to let it go. We already know it's going to be number one. Anyway, my votes go to: "In Through the Out Door" by Led Zeppelin "Deftones" by Deftones (am I the only one who doesn't like this album?) "Album of the Year" by Faith No More "Light Grenades" by Incubus (save a few songs) "Amputechture" by The Mars Volta "Zeitgeist" by Smashing Pumpkins "Raditude" by Weezer "Hefty Fine" by Bloodhound Gang (okay, so BHG aren't a GREAT band by any means, but this album was a piece of shit)
    Oh, can I add "The Weirdness" by The Stooges to that list? The Stooges are one of my all-time favorite bands... that album, though, is also a piece of shit.
    Yeah i agree with the deftones mention.Saturday night wrist wasnt great either but you cant say they are not back to their best now.
    I love Album of the Year by Faith No More. Opens up with a badass tune and has a lot of good songs in between. Other than that, yeah your list I agree with. Also I personally like In Through the Out Door enough to disagree as well but thats just me.
    I'll go with one that hasn't been said, that last Incubus album "If Not Now, When?" was pretty unimpressive.