Various Artists

CMJ the Year in Alternative Music 1979

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The first volume in CMJ magazine's series documenting the roots of alternative rock is arguably the strongest of the bunch -- cuts like Elvis Costello & the Attractions' "Accidents Will Happen," Blondie's "Heart of Glass," the Buzzcocks' "Everybody's Happy Nowadays" and XTC's "Life Begins at the Hop" are all undeniable classics, and even if tracks like Lene Lovich's "Lucky Number" and the Boomtown Rats' "Rat Trap" don't hold up nearly as well, there's no denying the cumulative influence this music exerted throughout the decade to follow.

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