So I thought I'd contribute something.
I've been enjoying the Guardian blog topic on album closers, and so of course started thinking about album openers. Some openers are let down by what comes after - for example, "The Fallen" on Franz Ferdinand's second album was head and shoulders over what followed - while some are so weak as to forever be labelled "skip" (for me, "Sunday Morning" by the Velvet Underground is one of these. Controversial, I know). So I guess I really mean songs that let you know from note one what to expect from an album, those that suck you in and keep you there and could almost be said to typify the album. I've come up with a random ten, in no particular order, from a cursory glance at the shelves, which as ususal would probably be a different ten another time. A bit "High Fidelity", I know (I think they actually do a top 5 on this topic), but possibly fun.
Anyone have any other examples?
Led Zeppelin - Whole Lotta Love (II)
Sonic Youth - Dirty Boots (Goo)
Jane's Addiction - Stop! (Ritual De Lo Habitual)
Guns 'N Roses - Welcome To The Jungle (Appetite For Destruction)
Pixies - Bone Machine (Surfer Rosa)
Spiritualized - You Know It's True (Lazer-Guided Melodies)
The Beach Boys - Wouldn't It Be Nice (Pet Sounds)
Kate Bush - Running Up That Hill (Hounds Of Love)
The Stooges - 1969 (The Stooges)
Ministry - N.W.O. (Psalm 69)