Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Twenty-five great tracks of 2006

Feeling list-less? This should sort you out: my 25 favourite tunes of the year. This is one mean playlist; go to iTunes and treat yourself.

Music Is My Hot Hot Sex - CSS
Why: Beyonce's Crazy in Love for electro-indie kids. Also features the sassiest Portuguese rapping heard since [simile missing].
Key lyric: "Music is my granddad / Music is my great granddaughter / Music is my sister / Music is my favourite mistress"

TV – The Sugars
Why: The catchiest tune of the year, it's Helen Love shagging The White Stripes with an excellent anti-everything sentiment at its centre.
Key lyric: "I don't like the people that make the TV / And the people on TV don't like me"

Crazy – Knarls Barkley
Why: Because that F# to B major chord change (the thing's in B minor for crying out loud!) is the most unexpected thing to happen in pop music in eight and a half years.
Key lyric: "Does that make me crazy? / Probably"

Thanks for All the Aids – Akira the Don
Why: Scared a lot of record execs, possibly because the great, hummable tune smuggles in some highly subversive lyrics which have a go at everyone, from the World Bank to Keane.
Key lyric: "If your kids are on Ritalin you are / Twelve times worse than the worst crack whore"

Eanie Meany – Jim Noir
Why: Twangy, understated and totally old-skool psychedelic; mentions garden gnomes, which you don't get with Girls Aloud.
Key lyric: "If you don't give my football back / I'm gonna get my dad on you"

Emily – Joanna Newsom
Why: Rhapsodic, weird and truly unpredictable, there was nothing else like it this year.
Key lyric: "And the meteorite's just what causes the light / And the meteor's how it's perceived"

Dress Up in You – Belle and Sebastian
Why: Lovely ballady stuff from B&S, still the only band who can sweetly sing "…so fuck them too" before seguing into a highly dignified horn solo.
Key lyric: "I am the singer, I am the singer in the band / You're the loser, I won't dismiss you out of hand"

Kidz – Plan B
Why: Scary and real; also unforgettable.
Key lyric: "Ai, listen up. Fuckin' cunts."

Country Girl – Primal Scream
Why: Simply a brilliant rocker that still has some of the churning danciness of previous Scream incarnations, elevated, as ever, by a pumping Mani bassline à la Kowalski.
Key lyric: "Crazy women / Mess your head / Wake up drunk and beaten / In some strange bed"

Alice the Goon – Quasi
Why: Sounds like a load of grand pianos being chucked off the roofs of art galleries by lunatic geniuses.
Key lyric: "Electric eel / Swimming the seas of the unreal"

See Me In My Dreams – Silver Sun
Why: You know how we said that Sugars song was the catchiest of the year? Well this is catchier.
Key lyric: "On the Northern Line, oh what have you found?"

Meeting Paris Hilton – CSS
Why: Manages to sound sharply satirical, mainly by using the word 'bitch' many many times. Laters Paris!
Key lyric: "She came to me and said: 'Do you like the bitch, bitch?'"

We Are the Pipettes – The Pipettes
Why: What a statement of intent! They are the Pipettes!
Key lyric: "We are the Pipettes and we've got no regrets / If you haven't noticed yet, we're the prettiest girls you've ever met"

Workingman Blues #2 – Bob Dylan
Why: The spidery piano intro means you know it's going to be a classic by 0.03.
Key lyric: "No man, no woman knows / The hour that sorrow will come"

Fee Fie – The Hidden Cameras
Why: Best use of the triangle, like, ever.
Key lyric: "Smell yearning"

Rough Gem – Islands
Why: Seems to be about mining and the planet's limited resources, but sounds more fun than every Christmas toy ever invented.
Key lyric: "Dig deep but don't dig too deep / When it's late, you'll see the hole is empty"

Running the World – Jarvis Cocker
Why: Furious song that gets its point across without shouting. Lots of swearing, though.
Key lyric: "It stinks, it sucks / It's anthropologically unjust / But the takings are up by a third / Cunts are still running the world"

I'm Free from the Chain Gang Now – Johnny Cash
Why: Weary but triumphant, a wonderful last track for the Man in Black's final album.
Key lyric: "All the years I was known by a number / How I kept my mind is a wonder"

Manitoba – Tapes 'n' Tapes
Why: Sounds like you know it already, but you know you don't.
Key lyric: "When you see streams of boulders / Higher hills from higher moulders"

Lust in the Movies – The Long Blondes
Why: Features a chorus that sounds like a non-sequitur, but which, as you soon realise, is what it's all about.
Key lyric: "Edie Sedgwick, Anna Karina, Arlene Daaaahl"

It Hurts to See You Dance So Well – The Pipettes
Why: Very short, very sweet, trussed with gliding, wintery harmonies.
Key lyric: "But you never knew / How much I was in love with you"

Black and White – The Upper Room
Why: The 80s were back again. But this time they were good.
Key lyric: "Pain pain pain pain pain pain"

Ldn – Lily Allen
Why: Savvy but innocent; manages to make tales of mugging seem fun.
Key lyric: "A fella looking dapper, but he's sitting with a slapper / Then I see it's a pimp and his crack whore"

Boom [Remix] – Akira the Don ft Bashy
Why: Sampling Elastica's Connection is good, but the rhymes – mentioning subjects as varied as David Cameron, Costcutter and Lebanon – are even better.
Key lyric: "Zimmer zimmer zimmer got a donner and a dick"

Gun vs Knife – Dan Sartain
Why: Both menacing and uncertain; according to new research, they don't write 'em like this any more.
Key lyric: "Bring your gun and I'll bring my knife"


Last year's 25 great songs

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Maneater -- Nelly Furtado
Why: It makes me dance like a bitch, even if I'm sober.
Key lyric: "She's a maneater, make you buy cars, make you cut cords..."

Will said...

Late addition: Generator by The Holloways. Great.