Editor’s Note: The Albumism staff has selected what we believe to be 50 Essential Albums by LGBTQ Artists, representing a varied cross-section of genres, styles and time periods. Considering that the qualifier “LGBTQ” can often be open to various interpretations, for the purposes of this particular list, we have defined an artist as LGBTQ if he, she or they have ever publicly identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer. Moreover, albums by groups have been included in the list if any of their members fit the aforementioned criteria, even if some members do not.
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AGAINST ME! | Transgender Dysphoria Blues
Total Treble/Xtra Mile (2014)
Selected by Chris Powers
Laura Jane Grace has been a charismatic punk rock icon for over a decade, and that charisma flows steady through the varied discography of Against Me! Whether it be through songs that are Florida dirtbag pub rock or more radio friendly hard rock, Grace gives off the energy of a captivating preacher who relates through her vulnerability and frenzy. Even with all of the band's success and talent, it was impossible to anticipate an album with the huge emotional impact of Transgender Dysphoria Blues.
Set in stone shortly after Grace came out as a transgender woman, this album is a perfect blend of the many previous sounds of Against Me!, with Grace using her talents to vividly broadcast specific dysphoria anxieties and manias that she must have felt since god knows when. Grace's catchy songs and rageful singing cadence have a unique crowd-rousing energy that shares blood with infectious pub chants, and she uses it to bring light to a lived experience that will hopefully help empathy bloom. Transgender Dysphoria Blues is a relevant story of feeling like a misfit in a cruel world, and feels like it can effectively hook anyone who listens to it. Truly one of the greatest modern day punk albums.