I just stumbled on Rate Your Music - RYM - http://rateyourmusic.com/
To quote from the site:
Rate Your Music (RYM) is an international metadata database where musical albums, EPs, singles, videos and bootlegs (collectively referred to as "releases") are added, rated, and reviewed by users. This data is then used to generate automatic music recommendations for users, create lists of compatible users, and to create lists of top-rated music albums. Weighted averages are used to calculate the ordering for these lists; regular members who write reviews and rate more albums have a greater weight applied to their ratings.
Because users can add, rate and review any album they know of without site approval, RYM can be used to quickly and easily to rate any music collection. A welcome side effect of this policy is that the RYM database is extremely diverse, limited only by the collective knowledge of its users.
RYM is also a community, with extensive message boards and the ability to send private messages and music recommendations to other users.
Sure there are other sites (such as Amazon) that allow user rating, but RYM is a dedicated rating engine - as such it benefits from specialisation, which makes it much more convenient to use than other rating sites. It has a wide range of search options to allow you to generate album charts - for time periods, genres, artists, etc.
Yes - I have a new favourite music exploration tool!
1001 Best Albums anyone?
How will the public ratings (from RYM) compare with the critics ratings from 1001 Albums You must Here Before You Die?
Let's find out!