If I had to choose 3 records that had a huge influence in my life, not necessarily what I'm currently listening to, they would have to be:
Heard this in early 1987 (Grade 11), late at night, and it absolutely blew me away. Before this, my vinyl collection consisted essentially of: an Art Of Noise album, the Miami Vice soundtrack, Boney-M, and The Police - Synchronicity. Oh dear.
Hearing "Where The Streets Have No Name" and "With Or Without You" for the first time was, needless to say, a "Road To Damascus" event.
In April of 1991, I completed 3rd year electrical engineering at The University Of Manitoba and did a 16 month internship at BNR (Bell-Northern Research, now know as Nortel or "That Canadian tech company that is totally tanking") in Ottawa.
I spent a lot of time reading Select magazine (a UK music mag, not network loops), and New Music Express looking for the best of the BritPop imports. Every review compared the current flavour of the month to this band so I had to check them out. Pop perfection.
Still in Ottawa, 1992, a review of this album went something like this:
"... like lying in bed early Sunday morning with a strange girl watching dust mots float in the air whilst coming down from last night's high..." Crazy Brits.
You will never hear beautiful noise like this again in your lifetime.
Just as a side note, I really love the Live Journal / Instant Messenger things that indicate what you are listening to at the momemt of posting. It feels more like a snapshot that way.