What makes a great album?
Is it a raft of superb singles? Or a piece of work that stands the test of time?
Perhaps it's one that your dad recommended while retrieving his vinyl from the loft?
It could be a combination of all three. And more besides.
For whatever makes a truly great album is open to a myriad of subjective interpretations and the answer often lies within the very being of each individual listener.
There are, however, certain albums which near unanimously transcend these barriers and are agreed upon as 'classics'.
Albums which have shaped culture when they were released and continue to do so today. Albums which dictated the tone and shaped future generations.
Albums which appear impervious to time and find new fans with every passing year.
While now and again, there are a select few that appear out of nowhere, seemingly fully formed and deemed instant classics.
We've delved into Liverpool's music past and present to select nine classic Merseyside albums
Tweet us your selections with a reason why and we'll publish the best.
Clinic - Internal Wrangler
No one sounds like Clinic.
Yet their whacked out eccentricities could hardly have come from anywhere but Liverpool.
Having emerged in the late '90s with a series of EPs, they signed to Domino Records (now home to the Arctic Monkeys and Bill Ryder-Jones ) and for a brief spell captured the imagination of music fans both sides of the Atlantic.
Their hissing minimalism, overdriven organ and Ade Blackburn's haunted vocal proved such a hit Levi's mopped up single The Second Line for their Twisted Jeans TV ad campaign while Radiohead invited them as tour support for their Kid A album.
Tracks like The Return of Evil Bill, Distortions and Hippy Death Suite remain fan favourites and last year they headlined the closing party of Liverpool Music Week ensuring their status as one of the city's much-loved underdogs remains intact.
The Beatles - Revolver
There has to be one Beatles album - and if you held a gun to our head, it'd be Revolver.
From Taxman (their greatest opening track on an album) to Eleanor Rigby (assembled entirely through producer George Martin's classical string ensemble) and George's Indian infused Love To You, it's the album which took The Beatles on their first giant leap.
Revolver marked the band's transition from a live unit to a full-blown studio sonic orchestra of noise.
The results are staggering - and contain possibly the most influential track of all-time - Tomorrow Never Knows.
Defining psychedelia, shaping dance culture through its use of samples and beats and pioneering the first use of double-tracking, it deserves to be on this list simply due to this monster all on its own.
Shack - HMS Fable
Liverpool's love affair with song-writing, the city and the sea has rarely been captured better than on HMS Fable.
Littered with characteristic Head brothers melodies, the album is bigger, bolder and lusher than their usual kitchen-sink approach with bracing effervescence shining through in tracks like Natalie's Party and the Burt Bacharach-trumpet-assisted Since I Met You.
But it's their ode to Kensington on the wild blow out of Streets of Kenny and Comedy, one of the greatest pop songs ever written, which elevate this to classic status.
Purists may prefer Waterpistol or even Michael Head's The Magical World of the Strands, but HMS Fable is the one which took Shack to the masses. There's a reason for that.
Echo & The Bunnymen - Ocean Rain
Like The Beatles, there's an embarrassment of riches to choose from in the Bunnies album armoury.
But Ocean Rain gets the nod. Just.
What marks the album out against the likes of Heaven Up Here and Crocodiles is the band's epic orchestration and truly warm, beautiful atmospherics.
For evidence see their crowning glory The Killing Moon which is a bona fide masterpiece - and saw the Bunnymen gain a new legion of fans when it was used in Donnie Darko.
It was famously hailed as 'the greatest album ever made,' by then manager Bill Drummond - and while that's up for discussion it's classic status is undeniable.
Forest Swords - Engravings
When we alluded to albums appearing to land fully formed as modern day classics - we had Forest Swords' Engravings in mind.
FS - aka Matthew Barnes - is quite unlike anyone to have emerged from Merseyside in recent times and the music he creates is quite simply astonishing.
Blending dub, angular Samurai-sword-sharp guitars and widescreen Morricone-like collages of sound, Engravings was a critical hit both sides of the Atlantic.
His music has been used in computer games like Assassin's Creed, he's teamed up with Massive Attack and reggae legend Lee Scratch Perry and he won Merseyside music prize The GIT Award in 2014 .
If you've yet to check out his music - make that a new year's resolution.
The La's - The La's
Is there a better debut album? My mate Jamie would argue you under the table and suggest otherwise.
One thing's for sure - Lee Mavers and co. have entered the pantheon of rock mythology by virtue of their one and only album.
It's not hard to see why, for The La's is 12 instant winners.
There She Goes may be their calling card but Son Of A Gun, Timeless Melody and Feelin' are its equal.
Fun fact: According to an interview Mavers gave to The Independent, he was unhappy with the recordings of The La's because the vintage mixing desk didn't have the right sound - he claimed this was because "it hasn't got original Sixties dust on it".
George Harrison - All Things Must Pass
A massive record in every way and probably the best solo album by a Beatle.
In The Beatles, George only got a couple of songs an album. When they split, he had a lot of great songs in his locker.
Enough for a triple album in a box, in fact.
But he wanted to make it sonically as well as physically big.
So he teamed up again with legendary Wall of Sound producer Phil Spector, who flooded the studio with musicians.
So many took part that George didn鈥檛 discover until 30 years later that Phil Collins was on there.
But he did know about Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Billy Preston, all of Badfinger, all of Delaney and Bonnie鈥檚 backing band, Gary Brooker of Procol Harum... the list goes on.
There were so many acoustic guitar parts that you鈥檙e meant to feel them instead of hear them.
So what you get is a lush blanket of sound, building to thunderously epic.
From gentler slowies like I鈥檇 Have You Anytime or the title track, pleading acoustic rock majesties like My Sweet Lord, thunderous euphoric pop like on What Is Life, pounding orchestral slide-guitar speckled gospelly rock on Wah-Wah or Awaiting on You All... it鈥檚 all BIG and brilliant.
It鈥檚 such a big album there鈥檚 even an unnecessary third disc of bluesy jams, featuring Eric Clapton. Don鈥檛 bother.
That aside, All Things Must Pass swamps you with sound but never overstays its welcome.
It鈥檚 the joyous sound of a Beatle breaking free.
- as picked by Alistair Houghton .
Half Man Half Biscuit - This Leaden Pall
I've chosen this, their fifth album, because it was actually the first one I bought, despite knowing of and liking what I'd heard on their previous releases and having some singles - I own everything by them now of course.
Singer Nigel Blackwell is, I believe, our greatest living lyricist, and there are plenty of classic lines here. Running Order Squabble Fest includes the memorable chant "You're going on after Crispy Ambulance!"
While 4AD3DCD begins: "I dream of occasional fanzine mentions/I've been to one too many David Lynch conventions/I play postal chess with a man who doesn't know me/I've got a better frown than Tony Iommi/And I've got a 4AD3DCD/A 4AD3DCD/A 4AD3DCD/And I'm on a foundation course."
It also includes possibly my two favourite HMHB tunes, Floreat Inertia (the title is a play on Eton College motto Floreat Etona - May Eton Flourish), and Turned Up Clocked On Laid Off.
And it has an acclaimed sleeve!
The grey, grainy and overdeveloped image (designed by Blackwell/Gareth Jones/Jacuzzi) featured in Q magazine's limited edition collector's special The 100 Best Record Covers Of All Time.
It shows a tyre round a lamp post - HMHB sound man Gareth Jones took the picture outside the (since demolished) Hale Wood pub in Halewood.
It relates to Nigel's line from LP track Whiteness Thy Name Is Meltonian: "I'll throw your tyre round a lamp post as a tribute to youth." Buy it today!
- as picked by Paddy Shennan .
The Coral - The Coral
The album and band that put Liverpool back on the music map in a big way.
The Coral set sail from the Wirral peninsula in the early 2000s and together with a merry band of freewheelers including The Stands, Bandits, Zutons, Basement and a whole host of others landed in the Zanzibar to kick off a cultural storm.
Their eponymous album defined that era in mixing elements of the past while injecting a cosmic future pop - and the results were something else.
There was searing guitar rock (Goodbye), sea shanties (Spanish Main), oddball freakouts (Skeleton Key) and dancefloor pop gold (Dreaming Of You) all thrown in their mystical cauldron.
They returned last year and reminded everyone why they're so vital.
What the critics say - Marc Riley, 6 Music
"I think defining a 'Classic Album' is nigh on impossible - for me at least.
"Would you base it on how well the record performed? If so - the Bay City Rollers debut Rollin sold by the truck-load. If not then surely its a matter of taste.
"Some people say Van Morrison's Astral Weeks is a 'Classic Album' but I find it to be a whiny affair that certainly hasn't stood the test of time.
"From my own personal viewpoint I'd say an LP becomes 'A Classic' in my world when it gets to the stage when you've heard it so often that you know EXACTLY how long the silence lasts between all the tracks."
What the critics say - Pete Paphides, Q, Mojo Magazine, Soho Radio
"For me there are three sorts of approaches to making a classic album," acclaimed music journalist Pete Paphides, told The ECHO.
"The first is to create something which feels like it鈥檚 travelling towards some sort of resolution, a sense of covering a distance together with the listener and feeling slightly altered by the experience, even if that means simply being in a better mood as a result.
"Air鈥檚 Moon Safari, Marvin Gaye鈥檚 What鈥檚 Going On and obviously Sgt Pepper are probably my favourite examples of that," added Pete.
"The second is the sort of album where someone is really just saying: 'welcome to my world' and inviting you to see the universe as they see it. David Bowie鈥檚 Hunky-Dory, Saint Etienne鈥檚 first two albums, Lloyd Cole & The Commotions鈥?Rattlesnakes, Dexys鈥?Too Rye-Ay and The Good The Bad & The Queen are good examples, records that are very sure of themselves aesthetically.
"And then, there鈥檚 the sort of album where the artist just sets out to make everything sound like a hit. George Michael has been in my thoughts a lot recently, Faith is a good example of the latter thing. Abba鈥檚 Voulez Vous also sounds like an album full of hit singles."