It seems to me that most of the classic albums in the history of rock music have gone on to inspire numerous later bands, many of whom have gone on to produce music which is better than that which it was influenced by.
However, in my opinion, Talk Talk's 'Laughing Stock' is a record which no one has ever truly bettered with music of a similar ilk. However many "post rock" bands since 1991 claim to have been heavily influenced by Talk Talk's later work, that doesn't really come out in the music of most (bar, perhaps, Bark Psychosis).
For me, it's the sort of record which, if released in 2008, would not sound remotely dated. In fact, it would probably be lavished with praise by music critics as an astonishingly progressive and forward-thinking record.
I wish more bands had genuinely been influenced by the structures, lyrics, production, timbres, etc of 'Laughing Stock', but it still pretty much stands out there on its own after 17 years.
For those in the know, DiScuss.