Today we look at the number of entries in each top 500 by decade of release - as shown in the following chart.
The Rolling Stone list peaks in the 1970s and then declines each decade thereafter. The People's chart also peaks in the 70s - but has another, lesser peak in the 90s.
Does this mean the Rate Your Music crowd is younger than the Rolling Stone cognoscenti - or just hipper? For my money the 90s were better musically than the 80s - so The People's chart rings truer to me. And also the stronger showing of jazz and art rock that we've observed so far in The People's chart suggest they may be more musically sophisticated than the Rolling Stone panel.
Both groups agree that the 2000s were no great shakes - and the 2010s aren't shaping up too well either. Interestingly Rolling Stone have both the oldest and newest albums, with Robert Johnson - The Complete Recordings (c. 1928) and Bob Dylan - Love and Theft (2011). Both also include Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010).