Living Colour Albums Ranked

Living Colour is an American rock band from New York City, formed in 1984. The band currently consists of guitarist Vernon Reid, lead vocalist Corey Glover, drummer Will Calhoun and bassist Doug Wimbish (who replaced Muzz Skillings in 1992). Stylistically, their music is a creative fusion influenced by heavy metal, funk, jazz, hip hop, punk, and alternative rock. The band’s lyrics range from personal to political, including social commentary on racism in the United States. Living Colour has released six studio albums so far. The band rose to fame with their debut album Vivid in 1988. Although they scored a number of hits, Living Colour is best known for their signature anthem “Cult of Personality”, which won a Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance in 1990. They were also named Best New Artist at the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards and won their second Grammy Award for their follow-up album Time’s Up (1990). Their third album, Stain (1993), was also well received by music critics. After disbanding in 1995, Living Colour reunited in late 2000 and has released three more studio albums since then: Collideøscope (2003), The Chair in the Doorway (2009) and Shade (2017). The band has been in the process of working on new material for the follow-up to Shade. Here are all of Living Colour albums ranked.

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9. Everything Is Possible: The Very Best Of Living Colour (2006)

Everything Is Possible: The Very Best of Living Colour - Living Colour |  Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic

“These guys flat out rock! They are also excellent muscicians. Although guitarist Vernon Reed seems to sometimes put speed over substance. The ultimate downfall of this band may have been that they tried to get a little too preachy on social subjects. But, they were great for about a 3 year span. Songs such as Cult of Personality and Open Letter (to a Landlord) provide interesting social commentary and really rock. However, this formula wouldn’t work for long. Other good songs include the hard rocking Middleman.”

8. Avalon – Boston, MA 10/17/04 (2004)

☆LIVING COLOUR 「AVALON - BOSTON, MA 10/17/04」 - 廃盤日記(増補改訂版)

“From what I have read this is their second live cd and it is pretty damn good. I recommend it if you love living colour. Funny thing though. There are no pictures or artwork inside of the cd and the bottom od the cd is blue like a burned copy but the top of the cd looks like it was made from a record company. It looks like it is bootlegged but it sounds pretty good. It is not real flashy with pics and info like there first live album recorded in 1989 and released is 2004 called “Living Colour Live from CBGB’s”.”

7. Biscuits (1991)

Living Colour – Biscuits EP (1991, CD) - Discogs

“Living Colour serves up six tasty biscuits on this little gem of live cuts and out-takes. My first exposure to the band was seeing them perform on Saturday Night Live, and i’ve been a fan ever since. The energy that caught me that night comes through on the great live performances here. Vernon Reid is amazing, and if he were white, would be a guitar God. Check out his bow to Hendrix as they cover “Burning of the Midnight Lamp”, and listen to how nicely he can play as they cover Al Green’s “Love and Happiness”. These guys have range, but for me, there’s nothing better than when they turn it up. They do that a lot here.”

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6. Shade (2017)

Living Colour - Shade - Reviews - Album of The Year

“Glover’s voice hasn’t lost anything after some 30 years, it’s still full of feeling and soul. Reid is still a phenomenal song writer and has (finally) abandoned the ‘make a whacky noise here’ approach to solos, instead opting for some very tasteful and impressive solos. Wimbish and Calhoun lay down the bottom and and rock when it calls for it, groove when the time comes, and never miss a beat.”

5. The Chair In The Doorway (2009)

Living Colour - The Chair in the Doorway Lyrics and Tracklist | Genius

“This album contains what I think are some really great songs such as “Burned Bridges”, song-wise it could even be the best album of songs they have done. My uncertainty is because the arrangements and production, as others refer to, is truly awful. For example would you think that a sound like hitting a rim of the drum should be by far the loudest instrument noise drowning vocals and guitar with bass reduced to a drone? Clearly the band/production think that so as that is the way it sounded.”

4. Stain (1993)

Metal Anniversary - Living Colour's 'Stain' - 3/2/93 |

“Like the preceding Time’s Up, Living Colour’s Stain doesn’t quite deliver up a standout song on the level of the anthemic Cult of Personality, and like Time’s Up it adds even more thrash metal influence to the band’s funk and jazz-tinged metal foundations. In fact, the dial on the harder-edged and darker influences is dialed up enough to elevate the album above Time’s Up somewhat – whilst there’s no smash hit on there, there’s also a substantially higher level of quality overall, and in terms of the heaviness and complexity of the material involved they aren’t quite as enamored of technical complexity as jazz-death outfits like Atheist were at the time, but they wouldn’t be embarrassed sharing a stage with them either.”

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3. Collideoscope (2003)

Living Colour – Collideoscope (2003, CD) - Discogs

“Happy to see them back, but this is not one I spin much. I will give them credit for returning and largely retaining their sound. It’s the worst when a come backing band sounds nothing like the way you remember them. But the quality here is not on par with the first three albums. That, and there is just too much production here. Sampling, noises, drop-ins, etc. Just play, guys. The Back in Black cover doesn’t work for me, but Tomorrow Never Knows does. Overall, for completists only.”

2. Time’s Up (1990)

Time's Up - Living Colour | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic

“Living Colour’s Time’s Up finds the pioneering funk metal unit steering further into more experimental turf. The upshot of this is that there’s no one standout hit here like Cult of Personality was for the debut album, but the album is worth digging deep into if you are keen on the idea of funk and jazz/fusion influences being combined with a metal approach.”

1. Vivid (1988)

Vivid by Living Colour (Album, Hard Rock): Reviews, Ratings, Credits, Song  list - Rate Your Music

“Vivid is nothing short of a knockout punch in album form. It hits with stunning shattering force. An all black Heavy Metal band that burns this ferociously? In 1988 that was both revolutionary and unheard of. Vivid goes right for the jugular and never backs down. The song Cult Of Personality is a towering blast of megaton rage directed at most everything that’s wrong with humanity as a whole and Politics in general and a smashing great song too. Living Colour’s Guitarist Vernon Reid is easily one of Metal’s greatest overlooked and talented Guitarists ever. If You have never heard him play, please do so for your ears’ sake. And if You’ve never heard Vivid do so now, it’s amazing.”