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Thread: Martin's Top 150 favourite songs of ALL TIME!

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    by » 16-02-16, 13:34

    Not sure if there is a want/need for this, but recently I wondered what my favourite song of all time was, so I set about trying to work it out.

    I've trawled my iTunes, I've selected my favourites (there was a longlist of about 700 songs) and whittled them down to a best 150. To say my music taste is bipolar may be an understatement - I'm the first to admit that I am all over the place when it comes to what songs/bands/artists I like, and for some reason I have very little allegiances to having a favourite artist or band. There are bands which have several songs here which were obvious to me, some not so much, and even some artists that I was suprised to be including once, twice or even three times. In terms of genre, I guess my list is quite guitar heavy - I do tend to favour indie/rock/punk pop but there are pop bangers, a few R&B tracks, not much dance, a hell of a lot of ballads and a load of throwbacks!

    I WILL BEGIN!

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    by » 16-02-16, 13:35

    Can't wait to see this, I hope I will like some songs
    Whitney Houston

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    by » 18-02-16, 20:55

    ^Thank you! Just finished compiling my list, it probably won't be to everybody's taste but hopefully there will be something in here most of you can appreciate. Going to go in 10s, as it's easier for me to write.

    150 - Macy Gray - I Try

    "I believe that fate has brought us here. We should be together babe, but we're not..."

    First up, the only real hit single Macy Gray ever had (unless you count her festive cover of "Winter Wonderland") "I Try". It was the first thing most of us ever heard from her, and more than likely the last thing will anybody remember, but it's left a lasting impression on me since it came out in 1999. Keeping in mind that I was 8 or 9 years old when this came out, my appreciation of it has grown over the years, and although I forgot all about it until this time last year, when George Ezra covered it in Radio One's live lounge, as soon as I heard his version it prompted me to unearth the original, almost 15 years later. With it being a decade and a half old, I don't think it's aged that much and hearing it again, it was like listening to a new song. It was everywhere when it came out, and it became part of the furniture, but I'm glad that I revisited it.

    149 - Flobots - Handlebars

    "I can guide a missile by satellite
    And I can hit a target through a telescope
    And I can end the planet in a holocaust"


    A bit of a wildcard, this one! I loved it back in 2008 when it took to the radio - usually, I don't enjoy a rock/rap combination but there's something about this song that really captured me. The lyrics are quite menacing, and although the song contains a lot of the brovado which typically turns me off rap as a genre, it's chanelled in such an intelligent way it's hard not to admire them. I had a listen to their album and it was a really good piece of work, it's a shame they never really took off - their combination of rapping with a more organic, almost classical feel with the trumpets and strings felt really fresh at the time, and I guess that experimentation may have alienated them in terms of audiences as there was nowhere really to place them. I am happy that this song came about though, the build up is extreme to the point where he's almost screaming at the end.

    148 - Avril Lavigne - I'm With You

    "Isn't anyone trying to find me?
    Won't somebody come take me home?"


    The first entry of two for Avril Lavigne - I have to admit, I was surprised to have her in my chart once, let alone twice. This one sort of passed me by when it was released - I think she tried ever so hard to be taken seriously and establish an alt-Britney name for herself back when she first came about (and then did a complete U turn on it all, admitting defeat and throwing out "Girlfriend" re-hashes for the rest of her career), it put me off her a bit. But going back to these songs without the overplay or hype of 2003, it shines a whole new light on them. Considering this came after the relative novelty single "Sk8r Boi", it holds up quite well! A lovely lonely single bitch anthem, it sounds desperate and isolating but Avril sounds fantastic on it.

    147 - John Lennon - Imagine

    "You may say I'm a dreamer
    But I'm not the only one
    I hope someday you'll join us
    And the world will be as one"


    The first of many songs on my countdown which I can credit my Dad for, peace anthem "Imagine" by John Lennon. With it being released in the 1970s or whenever it was, clearly I have no memory of this being released, but what I do have memories of is those long journeys in the car, driving to a holiday park or a relative who lived ages away - there was always a soundtrack to those journeys. This was one of them - John Lennon's greatest hits. Being a child at the time, I had no awareness of what this song meant or who John Lennon even was, but as you grow up you hear about him and what he stood for, and this song being his legacy. Not much of the music my Dad listened to has made its way onto my playlists over the years - he has his tastes, and I have mine, but his taste was just as eclectic as mine and this has managed to infiltrate mine.

    146 - The Offspring - Why Don't You Get A Job?

    A beautiful contrast between John Lennon's peacekeeping anthem, and this abusive retort to a greedy partner. This song was such a novelty to me when it came out. Christ knows how or why I was allowed to listen to this at 8/9 years old, but hearing "dick" and "bitch" used so flippantly in a song was the definition of rebellion as far as I was concerned. It's amazing to hear that this song did so well back then, it's hard to imagine anything like this even making it it radio in 2016, let alone reaching the top ten but that was beauty of the late 90s.

    145 - Chris Brown - Next To You (ft. Justin Bieber)

    Everything that I have is yours, you will never go cold or hungry"

    ..and we go full circle to famous woman beater Chris Brown and reformed irritant Justin Bieber with their collaborative effort "Next To You". This is here pretty much on memory alone - before I was a mid-20s homosexual, I was in fact in a settled relationship with a lady, and together we had a lovely son who is now four and a half years. After a gruelling three day labour, he popped out at 2am and after a few hours of bonding I was sent home whilst the baby and his mother were left to rest in the hospital until visiting hours permitted me to return. I left them at about 06:30am, and this was the first song that came on the radio on my drive home. It sounds like ultimate cheese, but the magnitude of what had just happened hit me in that moment, and I bawled my eyes out all the way home, and this song forever reminds me of my son. I mean, I know it's a bit naff and I wish it had happened with a different soundtrack as I didn't particularly care for the song at the time, but it's anchored itself to my life now and there's always a moment every so often where I want to listen to it.

    144 - Placebo - Nancy Boy

    "Kind of buzz that lasts for days, had some help from insect ways
    comes across all shy and coy, just another nancy boy."


    I'm not really sure how to justify leaping from Chris Brown and JB straight into Placebo but whatever, I'm going to have to get over that. Androgynous anthem "Nancy Boy" is Placebo's first appearance on my chart - there's another one or two from them somewhere in here I'm sure. This, and "Pure Morning" are probably their most well known songs, and I have to admit I don't really remember them being around much - by the time time I was actively interested in music, their heyday may have been over or they certainly weren't appealing to my tastes (back when Steps were my favourite band). I first encountered them when "Meds" came out, and I was aware of their lovely "Running Up That Hill" cover. They intrigued me - Brian Molko is a great, mysterious frontman and I immediately found their singles collection and delved head first into it. This was the song that stood out to me, and it came as no surprise that it was one of their bigger songs. There's a couple of others that didn't make it on my chart - "Special K", "You Don't Care About Us" and the aforementioned two songs, that I'm still massive fans of.

    143 - Owl City - Vanilla Twilight

    "And I'll forget the world that I knew, but I swear I won't forget you
    Oh if my voice could reach back through the past, I'd whisper in your ear:
    "Oh darling, I wish you were here" "


    Christ, remember Owl City?! I sort of wish this beautiful song was given to somebody else - lyrically it's gorgeous, and I don't think the robotic vocal given by Adam Young does it 100% justice, but you can't keep a good song down and that last verse (partially quoted up there^) is particularly poetic. On the surface it looks like a longing break up song, but I always thought it was more about the passing of a partner rather than the seperation - all the references to the sky and whatnot, and in that sort of space, it takes on a new level of emotion, even if that isn't the intended meaning. Either way, a lovely song that has stayed with me - although I don't ever remember it being released in the UK. Not sure that it would have changed his relative one-hit-wonder status here (apart from "Good Times" with CRJ) but it should have at least been given a chance.

    142 - Kings Of Leon - The Bucket

    "It's been too long since I left the shed,
    You kick the bucket and I'll swing my legs
    Always remember the pact that we made,
    Too young to die but old is the grave"


    For me, the career of Kings Of Leon is divided between pre-"Sex On Fire" and post-"Sex On Fire", the former being much more impressive to me than the latter. This is the only entry for them on my chart ("Fans" was close, but didn't quite make it) and I'm not entirely sure what makes it stand out to me. I guess it has that Nashville twang that made them stand out in their early days that sort of dropped off afterwards. Not that I'm being a preachy "rock bands shouldn't be successful" sort of purist - I don't subscribe to the idea that bands can sell out, or that they should be afraid to write a hit single out of fear of being rejected by the core fanbase - "Sex On Fire" and "Use Somebody" are great, great songs but both have suffered irrepairable amounts of overkill for me, and their post-SOF output (excluding "Temple") hasn't been on the same level. This is a great country indie pop banger, and I love that you almost can't understand what Caleb is saying. A brave song for them to lead their difficult second album with, but it was worth the risk and paved the way for bigger things.

    141 - Macklemore and Ryan Lewis - Can't Hold Us

    ""Raise those hands, this is our party
    We came here to live life like nobody was watching"
    I got my city right behind me, if I fall, they got me. Learn from that failure gain humility and then we keep marching ourselves"


    First of three for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, the stomping "Can't Hold Us". It's hard to think back to Macklemore and Ryan Lewis prior to this song - many had them pegged as one hit wonders after "Thrift Shop" blew up, which almost seems novelty compared to their later output. I like how easily they straddle the cheeky-pop lane and the more serious issues displayed in other songs, but this is an out-and-out banger, perfect for any part. I always liked them, but this song really fit into place for me when I saw them perform it (twice!) at Leeds festival in 2014. They were the revelation of the weekend for me - quite high up on the bill considering they had only one album at a rock dominated festival, but they smashed it and this song was wheeled out twice as part of an encore when I can only assume they ran out of other material. Two more entries from them on my chart - the iconic "Same Love" and the more recent "Downtown", meaning their signature debut single misses out.

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    by » 18-02-16, 21:00

    150 - Macy Gray - I Try
    Not among her best songs but I really like it.

    148 - Avril Lavigne - I'm With You
    My fave from Av, great track.

    147 - John Lennon - Imagine
    Really nice song, peaceful.

    146 - The Offspring - Why Don't You Get A Job?
    They are so fun, love this, so catchy.

    144 - Placebo - Nancy Boy
    Used to hate his voice but it grew on me, I like this one.

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    by » 18-02-16, 21:02

    Some great songs to start off with. Flobots and Macklemore were great. Love that Avril one, Placebo and Macy too!

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    by » 18-02-16, 21:02

    Will be following this. Great start, Can't Hold Us is one of my favorites of the current decade, would be in the top 100 on my all time list probably. I Try is another great track, i started appreciating it a few years ago. Imagine, though very cheesy now is another one of my favorites, an anthem. I'm With You and Why Don't You Get A Job are also good. The only miss in the batch is Next To You, such an awful and whiny song.

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    by » 18-02-16, 21:05

    I'm With You is incredible. One of my favourite songs ever too

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    by » 18-02-16, 21:11

    144 - Placebo - Nancy Boy
    Oh, my teenage years
    Waffles are checked cookies

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    by » 18-02-16, 23:07

    150 - Macy Gray - I Try
    good song

    148 - Avril Lavigne - I'm With You
    I like it

    147 - John Lennon - Imagine
    a bit boring

    146 - The Offspring - Why Don't You Get A Job?
    good one

    145 - Chris Brown - Next To You (ft. Justin Bieber)
    I love Chris, but not this song. maybe also because it has Justin in it

    144 - Placebo - Nancy Boy
    I never liked the band

    141 - Macklemore and Ryan Lewis - Can't Hold Us
    horrible for me
    I am not trying to seduce you... Would you like me to seduce you? Is that what you're trying to tell me?

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    by » 19-02-16, 10:52

    wow!
    just of of teen years, and already recap of your life

    In terms of genre, I guess my list is quite guitar heavy - I do tend to favour indie/rock/punk pop
    You're welcome

    My picks are
    147 - John Lennon - Imagine
    146 - The Offspring - Why Don't You Get A Job?
    144 - Placebo - Nancy Boy
    142 - Kings Of Leon - The Bucket
    This is the only entry for them on my chart
    big ?
    My year(s) in lists by Ivan (2008 - 2013)

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    by » 19-02-16, 18:49

    Wow, such response in one day already - thanks a lot for that, glad to see that you're enjoying the songs I enjoy, welcome aboard

    The ? about Kings Of Leon, Navi - I guess, in my mind they have a lot of okay songs! I'd never call them one of my favourite bands though - "Fans" and "Temple" would have been on the long list, potentially "Use Somebody" and "Four Kicks" too but they dropped off. And thanks, but I'm 25 - not quite of teen years

    Going to do another ten now:

    140 - Avril Lavigne - Complicated

    The second and final entry for Avril Lavigne, her debut single "Complicated". I guess this could be called a bit juvenile looking back, but it has such a charm, it's hard not to like it really. I can't really think of much more to say - it's a great teenage angst anthem, that sort of got overshadowed as "Sk8r Boi" was the lane she decided to go down for most of the rest of her career. I do like that song, it's a great fun song, and "What The Hell" and "Nobody's Home" are the others I'd still listen to from her, but this will always be my favourite!

    139 - The Mouldy Peaches - Anyone Else But You

    "Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, "b", "a", start.
    Just because we use cheats doesn't mean we're not smart.
    I don't see what anyone can see in anyone else but you"


    The break out song from the Juno film sound track, the gloriously cute-but-nonchalant "Anyone Else But You". With questionable-at-times lyrics, there's something completely and utterly adorable about this song - it's practically a nursery rhyme, and fit the vibe of Juno perfectly. I did love that film, haven't watched it in ages but the whole soundtrack was full of these little jams - this one from Mouldy Peaches probably stands out the most though, and I love it.

    138 - Yuck - Shook Down

    "You could be my destiny
    You could mean that much to me"


    I have to admit to not knowing a single solitary thing about this band or song - even when it came out or where I first heard it! A quick google suggests that this wasnt even released as a single - maybe a song off an EP or something, I can only imagine that it was brought to my attention from something late at night on Radio One, I have no idea! What I like about it is the gentle, chilled sound through most of it, and the roaring guitar solo at the end.

    137 - Hoobastank - The Reason

    "I've found a reason to show
    A side of me you didn't know
    A reason for all that I do
    And the reason is you"


    In at the coveted #137 slot, Nickelback-lite rock one hit wonders Hoobastank with their only UK hit "The Reason". As it happens, Nickelback also have a song on here despite my distain for them, but that's by the by - I remember loving this when it came out! Such a dad-rock anthem, but it's so epic, it always gets me! I always wondered why this was never touched by an X Factor contestant - it's that sort of Aerosmith vibe, emotional rock ballad that Ben Haenow would have slayed. This has stayed with me since 2008 or whenever it was released, and my main memory of it trying to nail it (and failing) on Singstar...

    136 - Four Year Strong - One Step At A Time

    "I'll never forget the day my heart fell from my chest
    It was the moment that I said goodbye
    And I laid your body to rest"


    More noise, this time from Four Year Strong. I got into them quite late on, "Wasting Time" crept into my life as the single from their "Enemy Of The World" album (which I loved) but this song was the absolute stand out to me. It's easy to overlook the incredibly painful lyrics when such noise is being made, but it's such a powerful song - I always assumed it was about the passing of a friend/family member (pinpointed by my chosen lyrical sample) and it's easy to make quite a crass, cheesy song about things like that, but I think "One Step At A Time" does it beautifully, and the signature line of the song - "No matter how far the view, I still always look up to you" is really poignant for me. A couple of other songs from that album just missed out - "Find My Way Back" and the aforementioned "Wasting Time". I've not really taken an interest in anything else Four Year Strong have done unforunately, but "Enemy Of The World" is a great album.

    135 - Billy Ocean - Love Really Hurts Without You

    From that, to this Fresh from 1976, function room family party favourite "Love Really Hurts Without You" by Billy Ocean! I heard this when I was out a few years ago, in one of those 70s/80s/90s bars which I love, having never really listened to it before, but it is classic Aunts-on-the-dancefloor stuff and it reminded me of being forced along to those awful family parties where you don't know anybody. I'm not sure if everyone has been there or it's just me, but this song really makes me smile. Alas, it is the only entry for Mr Ocean on my chart.

    134 - Manic Street Preachers - You Stole The Sun From My Heart

    "I have - I've got to stop smiling
    It gives the wrong impression
    I love you all the same


    Another lone entry, this time from 90s rock band Manic Street Preachers and "You Stole The Sun From My Heart". Another one of those songs I inherited from my Dad - he absolutely hammered the "Design For Life" album, and the one that this is from but this is always the song that stuck with me. I'm not really sure what it is about it - it just sounds good k?

    133 - The All-American Rejects - I For You

    "Somebody's getting by for you
    I don't bend, I just break in two
    Somebody like me
    I'd die for you"


    The first of many for one of my favourite bands, The All-American Rejects, with the final track from their fourth and most recent album "Kids In The Street". I loved The All-American Rejects as soon as I heard "Swing Swing" and have followed them ever since. I have to admit, the quality of their albums has decresed with each one, but "I For You" is a beautiful acoustic ballad from their latest release, it shines among the rest of the album. There's a wealth of their songs that I had to omit from my list - "Dirty Little Secret", "Dance Inside", "Your Star", "Time Stands Still", "Can't Take It" to name a few, but there's still another three or four to come.

    132 - New Found Glory - My Friend's Over You

    "You were everything I wanted
    But I just can't finish what I've started
    There’s no room left here on my back
    It was damaged long ago
    Though you swear that you are true
    I still pick my friends over you"


    Another US Pop Punk band up at #132, this time New Found Glory with arguably their most well known song, "My Friend's Over You". There is a story attached to this - in the summer of 2010 I had a temporary job which involved driving around in a van all day, not doing much. During that time, I listened to a lot of radio and sent an application into Radio One for a feature on Fearne Cotton's radio show called the new music generator. I was contacted, and asked to supply three songs I liked at the time. Based on my love for All Time Low, You Me At Six and Kids In Glass Houses at the time, they spat this song back out at me. Granted, it was about ten years old at this point but they wanted an excuse to play New Found Glory. At the time I was aware of them, but not really listened much and I loved it. In terms of their other stuff, I think there is two more from them coming up but they are both from their cover albums. I like their other material, but let's be honest his voice is well annoying after a while.

    131 - Alt-J - Every Other Freckles

    "Turn you inside out, and lick you like a crisp packet"

    The last of this batch is stalker anthem "Every Other Freckle" from professional wierdo's Alt-J. This is the first of two (or three, I can't quite remember) from them. I really like Alt-J - I don't quite believe them to be the creative masterminds that a lot of people do - their albums can be an exhausting listen, I find them best when they let their pop sensibility shine through, much like they do on this track. I mean, yes, it's very creepy but the lyrics make this song for me. And it does annoy me that the best bit is that menacing intro and it was uncerimoniously hacked away to create a radio edit which lasted little over two minutes.

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    by » 20-02-16, 01:36

    Complicated and The Reason were my songs when I was a teen, but I've outgrown them.

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    by » 20-02-16, 12:21

    And thanks, but I'm 25 - not quite of teen years
    oh, you're so old
    (i remember dinosaurs )

    139 - The Mouldy Peaches - Anyone Else But You
    138 - Yuck - Shook Down
    134 - Manic Street Preachers - You Stole The Sun From My Heart
    131 - Alt-J - Every Other Freckles
    Strange, this video (girl version) is blocked as inappropriate for some users,
    while the boy version (also nudity) is free to watch :-?
    My year(s) in lists by Ivan (2008 - 2013)

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    by » 20-02-16, 19:48

    Quote Originally Posted by toni_pest
    Complicated and The Reason were my songs when I was a teen, but I've outgrown them.
    Your taste suggests otherwise.

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    by » 20-02-16, 21:17

    148 - Avril Lavigne - I'm With You
    147 - John Lennon - Imagine
    146 - The Offspring - Why Don't You Get A Job?
    141 - Macklemore and Ryan Lewis - Can't Hold Us
    137 - Hoobastank - The Reason
    135 - Billy Ocean - Love Really Hurts Without You

    All these are great. I just rediscovered the Billy Ocean song last week on the 1976 retro chart.

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    by » 24-02-16, 06:20

    150 - Macy Gray - I Try
    148 - Avril Lavigne - I'm With You
    147 - John Lennon - Imagine
    145 - Chris Brown - Next To You (ft. Justin Bieber)
    143 - Owl City - Vanilla Twilight
    141 - Macklemore and Ryan Lewis - Can't Hold Us
    140 - Avril Lavigne - Complicated

    Some great songs, especially in the first batch so far. "I'm With You" and "Vanilla Twilight" are my faves out of these

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    by » 25-02-16, 12:44

    Thanks for the replies ya'll! Another ten:

    130 - Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Downtown

    "Running around the whole town
    Neighbors yelling at me like, "You need to slow down."
    Going thirty-eight, Dan, chill the fuck out
    Mow your damn lawn and sit the hell down!

    If I only had one helmet I would give it to you, give it to you
    Cruising down Broadway, girl, what a wonderful view, wonderful view
    There's layers to this shit player, Tiramisu, Tiramisu
    Let my coat-tail drag but I ain't tearing my suit, tearing my suit"


    A second of three entries for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, this time their recent single "Downtown". This made my #8 of 2015, and at the time I wrote:
    When I first heard this, I was a bit bamboozled - there's so much in it, for a song which is basically guff about a moped which goes on for five minutes, it's difficult to take in but it really grew on me, particularly that spectacular second verse. I love how it all builds, how it all progesses and it just slaps you in the face one part after another. I really like Macklemore, he always puts out a solid single and this is more of the same from him, a song I've really loved this year, after "Can't Hold Us" and "Same Love" were high in my chart of 2013, and "White Walls" was in 2014. I'm not sure who the vocalist is on the chorus as there are seven hundred people credited but he sounds androgynous and wonderful. The whole thing is just a bit bonkers, but it's a bit of me.
    It may seem slightly premature to have such a recent single on my chart of all time - there are a few 2015 offerings peppered across my chart, some lower down than this actually, but have landed higher up. There are some songs that do leave a lasting impact in different environments - some songs are my favourites of 2015 for different reasons than what they would be included in my chart of all time - I'm sure there may be songs that were higher up my end of year chart that aren't even on my all time list. Basically, don't ask me to justify, because I can't.

    129 - Kids In Glass Houses - Give Me What I Want (Me Me Me)

    "Your glass half empty, glass half full,
    I'd say you've got some catching up to do"


    The memories! I'd probably say that, after The All-American Rejects, Welsh pop/rock band Kids In Glass Houses were my favourite. There are a few more from them still to come, and this was the first I ever heard of them, back when it was affectionatley known as "Me Me Me" before it was duly renamed for the radio. They never really happened, commercially, which makes me sad as they have now split. But we got four good albums from them, and their first two being by far the best. "Smart Casual" was my soundtrack to 2008 - they built up somewhat of a cult following thanks to support in all the right places, but they never had that crossover hit that a lot of rock bands needs. Personally, I think several songs had that appeal but it just never worked out for them - this is a solid, catchy piece of pop rock that has aged well - as has all of their material. Songs of theirs which didn't make the list are "Youngblood (Let It Out)", "Undercover Lover", "Matters At All", "Only The Brave Die Free" and "The Florist" - all great songs which I still love, but they do have another three to come.

    128 - You Me At Six - Save It For The Bedroom

    "Go home and wash your jeans, 'cause there's dirt on the knees
    And jealously doesn’t sit with me"


    Another offering from the late 00's rock resurgence, this time You Me At Six's breakout single "Save It For The Bedroom". You Me At Six sort of won the war when it came to thier genre - still pumping out half baked angst ridden radio friendly singles, but "Take Off Your Colours" will always be their most memorable body of work, to me - its title track just missed out on this list, as did "Stay With Me" and "Safer To Hate Her" from their second album. This is where it all started for me though - a great introduction to what could have been a great band, if they'd have stuck in this lane. The video is a good watch too - a humorous take on the Jeremy Kyle show, my favourite part being the "Is my son a nechrophiliac" segment. "Always Attract", an album track from "Take Off Your Colours", is still to come.

    127 - Vampire Weekend - Giving Up The Gun

    "I see you shine in your way
    Go on, go on, go on"


    The third big-hitter on my chart, Vampire Weekend. Another of my favourite bands - and this is the first of another three entries for them, the almost-nursery-rhyme single "Giving Up The Gun" from their second album. I fell out of love with them when the "Contra" album came out - largely due to "Cousins" and "Horchata" being two of the worst things they've ever recorded, and leading the album with those two at the forefront was a terrible decision. I don't think I even bothered listening to the album after hearing those two, which was a shame as I enjoyed their self titled debut so much - a rare case of being able to listen to every single song, even to this day, all the way through with no skips. And then "Giving Up The Gun" came along, with its absurd video featuring a tennis-playing Jonas Brother, and I loved it. It was a hark back to their sound of the first album, with progression at the same time. Vampire Weekend have such a distinct sound, it's almost hard to describe - like an upper class, African-influenced reggae/pop/indie fusion which somehow is consistent across all of their songs. This is one of their best - unfortunately, "Holiday", "Run", "Campus", "Blake's Got A New Face", "Unbelievers", "Walcott", "Oxford Comma" and their signature song "A Punk" all miss out - but it's testament to them that all of those don't feature, yet this does, with another two comfortably higher up.


    126 - Johnny Cash - Hurt

    "What have I become, my sweetest friend?
    Everyone I know, goes away in the end"


    A lone entry at #126, for the legendary Johnny Cash and his cover of the cult Nine Inch Nails classic "Hurt". Recorded shortly before his sad death 2003, you can almost hear the frailty in his voice, and it makes it even more effective listening to it, even now, years after his passing. I was too young to really know much about Johnny Cash, so my appreciation of him comes years down the line, having grown up with my Dad playing songs like "A Boy Named Sue" and "Ring Of Fire" and having them embedded into my early years. It was only after watching "Walk The Line" and being completely captivated by it, that I truly delved into his back catalogue. I mean, don't go listening to this if you need cheering up, but he's an artist I always go back to from time to time.

    125 - Bloc Party - I Still Remember

    "And our love could have soared
    Over playgrounds and rooftops
    Every park bench screams your name
    I kept your tie"


    Another lone entry, this time from next-big-thing-in-2006 Bloc Party. I have massive affection for "I Still Remember" (and largely, absolutely nothing else this band have ever done) which mostly stems from being 15 and confused about whether I fancied boys or girls, and it was nice to have a song that reflected that to find comfort in at such a time. Even outside of that sexuality box, it's still a beautifully written, nostalglic song that has transcended that NME-saturated period between 2004 and 2006. "Flux" is probably what they're most remembered for - a song I never particularly cared for. "Everything You Wanted" was a nice song by lead singer Kele Okereke, but didn't make it onto my list either.

    124 - Kids In Glass Houses - Giving Up

    You lie by my side with your hand on a weapon
    Waiting for a confession
    You knew me better than this"


    Another entry for Kids In Glass Houses, this time album track "Giving Up" from 2010's "Dirt". I read somewhere that this was lead singer Aled's favourite song that the band ever recorded - it's not hard to see why, it's an affecting break up rock ballad that most bands would be proud to have to their name. Quite why it was never released, I'm not sure - Aled's voice sounds amazingly strong, particularly as it soars at the end, and to be honest, any song with a strong string section added is a winner for me. Two more left for them still to come.

    123 - Hear'say - Pure and Simple

    NO SHAME! Pop jam of its time, it is a travesty that this was ever forgotten. Yes, it's All Saints-lite, and yes, Hear'say never happened, but imagine splitting up and leaving this anthem behind?! They truly set the standard for reality TV popstars everywhere - one massive single, spent the rest of their career struggling to live up to it, and ended up jacking it all in when one of them left anyway. Nowadays, it has condensed to winners single-year off-flop album-dropped, but the formula was there. It's hard to imagine such a programme captivating people now, especially with no public vote involved. Anyway, I digress - you can't deny a good pop song, and although this has aged horribly (even when it came out in 2001 or whenever it was, it already sounded five years old) I still can't resist singing along. I couldn't name you any of their other songs though - can anybody?!

    122 - Gnarls Barkley - Crazy

    "I remember when, I remember, I remember when I lost my mind
    There was something so pleasant about that place.
    Even your emotions had an echo
    In so much space"


    This is one of those songs that is so emedded into modern culture, it's almost part of the furniture so it gets overlooked (by me, anyway). I forget what an absolute tune it was - it's hard to pinpoint into any particular genre - pop, soul, dance, R&B, but it's just fantastic, let's be real. I'll always remember that astonishing vocal performance Cee-Lo Green delivered of this on Top of the Pops (rest in peace) - probably one of my defining memories of the show, with that great military arrangement of the song. As Fearne Cotton kindly reminds us in that video, this was the first song ever to get to number one on downloads alone, and it stayed there for nine weeks, which was remarkable back in 2006. No other entries for Cee-Lo, Danger Mouse or Gnarls Barkley, although shout outs to "F*ck You" which I loved at the time, "Run" and "Smiley Faces" are also songs I've not listened to for a while and are demanding another listen which I may do RIGHT THIS SECOND!

    121 - La Roux - Bulletproof

    "Been there, done that, messed around
    I'm having fun, don't put me down"


    More stellar pop, this time from electropop saviours La Roux and their number one hit "Bulletproof". I'm not entirely convinced that Elly Jackson and Jess Glynne aren't related in some way - maybe when La Roux's second album was widely ignored, she grew out her ginger hair and developed a fondness for vanilla-house/pop, but she needn't have bothered, a re-release of "Bulletproof" every few years would have done just fine. I was largely indifferent to La Roux at the height of their popularity - "In For The Kill" never appealed, and the rest of their material I found forgettable, but the Popjustice's of this world still hail them as the second coming of pop, and if any of their material since was as good as "Bulletproof" I'd be inclined to agree. This is a near-perfect pop song, and for some reason I always really liked the lyric I've quoted. It has all the sass and attitude a song like this needs, and I love how it's just all laid out straight away, and sticks with that energy all the way through (apart from the little dip just before the end), but there's no need for a drop, no soaring moment, no build up - just a good song that peddles on all the way through!

  18. #18
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    by » 25-02-16, 18:18

    Hurt is beautiful, one of the best cover versions ever. Bulletproof is also good.

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    by » 25-02-16, 19:59

    140 - Avril Lavigne - Complicated
    Still sounds good, don't like it as much as IYW though.

    135 - Billy Ocean - Love Really Hurts Without You
    Lovely song, golden oldie.

    126 - Johnny Cash - Hurt
    Classic and sad song.

    122 - Gnarls Barkley - Crazy
    One of the first songs I put on my very first iPod, I still love it.

    121 - La Roux - Bulletproof
    Still sounds great, so catchy.

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    by » 26-02-16, 04:12

    "I'm with You" is a beautiful ballad. It took some time to grow on me, but it's probably my second favourite Avril ballad after "When You're Gone".

    My mother adores "Imagine" just as your father does, so I grew up hearing it quite a bit too. I felt it was the most dull track ever until a few years ago. It's still grossly overrated, but I appreciate it a lot more now.

    Aw, your "Next to You" story is so sweet! On its own merit, I think "Next to You" is fairly underrated. It was an unlikely pairing that didn't seem like it'd work on paper, but it did.

    "Can't Hold Us" was my #1 song of 2013 - a decision I regret as "Do What U Want" (my #2 that year) has held up so much better. It's a fist-pumping, stadium-worthy anthem for sure, though, and far and away my favourite song from the act.

    "Complicated" is classic Avril, but I don't play it much because there are at least a dozen songs from her that I prefer to that one. "The Reason" is so cheesy, but that's never stopped me from liking it.

    "Crazy" is brilliant, and definitely my favourite song on your countdown thus far! It just has this instant classic feel to it. It's held up remarkably well over the years too. It's one of a handful of songs that I could listen to on repeat for an obscene length of time and not go mad.

    "Bulletproof" is solid and has grown on me over the years.
    Akini's Top 25 Artists of 2018: [#1 Revealed!]

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  21. #21
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    by » 26-02-16, 12:05

    Gnarls Barkly!
    And 'Hurt' is such a classic!

  22. #22
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    by » 26-02-16, 13:07

    129 - Kids In Glass Houses - Give Me What I Want (Me Me Me)
    127 - Vampire Weekend - Giving Up The Gun
    125 - Bloc Party - I Still Remember
    Another lone entry :(
    Where's the Banquet, So here we are, Two more years, Little thoughts, try again.
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  23. #23
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    by » 02-03-16, 06:39

    "Bulletproof" is probably my fave of the last batch

  24. #24
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    by » 04-03-16, 12:52

    what?
    is this going to die, already
    My year(s) in lists by Ivan (2008 - 2013)

  25. #25
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    by » 04-03-16, 13:00

    Hurt is nice, Bulletproof and Crazy are very good

    I hate Downtown
    I am not trying to seduce you... Would you like me to seduce you? Is that what you're trying to tell me?

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