Saturday, December 20, 2008


20) Hearts On Fire (Cut Copy)
Ok so Cut Copy's default setting is "try to sound like New Order" but there are worse bands to ape and when you get it right like they do with Hearts on Fire, you can't really complain.

19) Outta My Head (Ashlee Simpson)
She may be fantastically useless but you can normally rely on Ashlee Simpson, or at least the people controlling her, to come up with one good song per album. This may have veered a little too close to Gwen Stefani territory for it to be a coincidence, but this kicked the pants off anything on Madonna's new album.

18) Violet Hill (Coldplay)
You see when people accuse me of being biased, it's really not true. Sure, the video to this did nothing to dissuade you that punching Chris Martin in the face wouldn't be great fun, but not even I would deny that this is a bloody brilliant song. I'm still not sure on the "white snow" thing but it would be churlish to dismiss this song purely on inane lyrics...

17) When I Grow Up (Pussycat Dolls)
If only all pop music was as manic as this. In a year where Girls Aloud went a little bit too serious for my liking (still some good tunes, but without the bizarre nonsensical lyrics) this was a mad, random and funny pop ditty. And it was an pretty damn infectious one.

16) Stepping Stone (Duffy)
The best song of the year that made me cry...

15) The Beginning Of The Twist (Futureheads)
I always like it when fantastically crap bands come out with something amazing. Or at least something that is listenable. It took being dumped by their record label for the Futureheads to do it, but all credit to them.

14) Dusk Till Dawn (Ladyhawke)
I was slightly underwhelmed by Paris Is Burning, namely it didn't live up to the hype, but that proved just to be an aberration as far as Ladyhawke is concerned for me. This was one of those songs which only needed to be heard once for it to lodge itself in my brain. Indeed I think I greatly annoyed people at work with constantly singing "doo doo doo dooo, do doo doo dooo, bang bang bang, on the wall from dusk till dawn" over and over again for about a week.

13) Save The Lies (Gabriella Cilmi)
A proper pop record that did the seemingly made Gabriella Cilmi seem interesting. Of course its atypical of her efforts, with most of her album sounding like Sweet About Me but I suppose that's what pays the bills. I would in 2009, mind you, like to see an advert on TV that she HASN'T provided a song for...

12) Boyfriend (Alphabeat)
Another act in 2008 who I didn't really like and I have to admit that their "we're hear to save pop" routine was annoying me before I heard the original version they did of this. But I'm not one to complain about artists changing their sound for commercial reasons, especially when the song is as good as this. For three minutes we're back in the glorious 1980's.

11) Ready For The Floor (Hot Chip)
This had a "mentalist" that was missing from most pop records in 2008. It actually shouldn't work, but somehow it does.

10) I Know Ur Girlfriend Hates Me (Annie)
Ok so the general apathy from the record buying public towards the delightful Annie continued, but that doesn't make this any less of a brilliant pop song. If Kylie had done this it would have been number one for weeks.

9) Guilt (Long Blondes)
Distinctly underwhelmed by the album I may have been, but Guilt was the kind of song which had everything that made you like the Long Blondes in the first place.

8) Love Song (Sara Barellies)
A refreshing antidote to the usual singer-songwriter crap. Simple, but no less catchy for it.

7) I Kissed A Girl (Katy Perry)
Hey, when I criticised Katy Perry's very mediocre album, I did say that in the terms of a novelty pop record this is pretty bloody fantastic. Yes I know I also criticised the lyrics as being trite, but I'm allowed a bit of leeway. Who cares if most of the rest of her album is rubbish; this was pop gold.

6) Beat Control (Tilly And The Wall)
Ok, so I first heard this on the Jo Wiley show (honestly, my car radio went to Radio 1 of it's own accord) but I can't hold that against the song can I? Proof that Tilly & The Wall have been unfairly ignored previously.

5) American Boy (Estelle & Kanye West)
The fact that Estelle's follow up single where Kanye West was replaced by Shaggy didn't have half the success that this did perhaps might be telling, but anyone who can get Kanye rapping about WAG's and Ribena gets the thumbs up from me.

4) Spiralling (Keane)
I've always thought Keane were a bit boring and, well, wet. But right from the first "ooh" this is a quality tune. I actually became quite obsessed with this when I first heard it, needing to hear it all the time. Gets extra marks for the "did you want to be an Icon" spoken interlude.

3) My Delirium (Ladyhawke)
Ladyhawke becomes one of only two "artistes" to crack the top 20 twice. I can't really say much more than the fact that this is brilliant.

2) Mercy (Duffy)
Proof positive that you can have all the advance press in the world, but you have to have the songs to back it up. Duffy did have the songs. I would admit that in some senses it's not exactly groundbreaking, but what it is, is a bloody good song.

1) Dance With Me (Dizzee Rascal & Calvin Harris)
I quite like Dizzee Rascal anyway, but it was a stroke of genius to put his lyrical flow to the dance pop beats of Calvin Harris. I doubt that I listened to any other song in 2008 as much as I did this one. And if that's not a reason put it at the top of the list, well I don't know what is.

No comments: