We're counting down the best albums of The Aughts this week.

#100-81   #80-61   #60-41

My Chemical Romance, "Welcome to the Black Parade"

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40. U2, “How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb” (Interscope, 2004) ["Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own"]
39. Kanye West, “808s & Heartbreak” (Roc-a-Fella, 2008): The best use of AutoTune as a creative, mood-enhancing choice, rather than a production shortcut. ["Heartless"]
38. Lucinda Williams, “Little Honey” (Lost Highway, 2008) ["Real Love"]
37. 'N Sync, “No Strings Attached” (Jive, 2000): You may hate me, but it ain’t no lie. ["It's Gonna Be Me"]
36. Kelly Clarkson, “All I Ever Wanted” (RCA, 2009) ["Already Gone"]
35. The Hold Steady, “Separation Sunday” (Frenchkiss, 2005) ["Your Little Hoodrat Friend"]
34. Joseph Arthur, “Nuclear Daydream” (Lonely Astronaut, 2006) ["Slide Away"]
33. Radiohead, “Hail to the Thief” (Capitol, 2003): The most surprising of the Radiohead albums, probably because it is the easiest to listen to straight through. ["Backdrifts"]
32. Nas, “Hip Hop Is Dead” (Def Jam, 2006) ["Can't Forget About You"]
31. Bruce Springsteen, “Devils & Dust” (Columbia, 2005)
30. Taking Back Sunday, “Where You Want to Be” (Victory, 2004) ["Set Phasers to Stun"]
29. Outkast, “Stankonia” (Arista, 2000): Forever. Forever-ever. ["B.O.B."]
28. Jay-Z, “The Blueprint 3” (Roc Nation, 2009): An artistic stretch, as well as proof that Jay can light up the pop charts whenever he wants. ["Empire State of Mind"]
27. My Chemical Romance, “The Black Parade” (Warner Bros., 2006) ["Teenagers"]
26. Courtney Love, “America's Sweetheart” (Virgin, 2004) ["Mono"]
25. Dixie Chicks, “Taking the Long Way” (Open Wide/Sony, 2006): Despite death threats and radio bans, the Chicks did not retreat, pushing back with “Not Ready to Make Nice” and side-stepping with laid-back SoCal-styled country.
24. The Streets, “Original Pirate Material” (Vice, 2002): A brash, unique blend of hip-hop, dance and rock. ["Let's Push Things Forward"]
23. Jay-Z, “American Gangster” (Roc-a-Fella, 2007) ["Blue Magic"]
22. Stars, “In Our Bedroom After the War” (Arts & Crafts, 2007): Gorgeous, timeless pop melodies that rally and comfort. ["Take Me to the Riot"]
21. Radiohead, “Kid A” (Capitol, 2000) ["Everything in its Right Place"]