Thursday, December 22, 2005

The discopop directory totally unbiased top ten singles of 2005

Well, we promised it, so here it is! Our top ten singles are free from any editorial bias or attempts to seem 'cool'. They are based solely on our itunes play-count, which cannot lie. So without any further ado...

1) 1 Thing - Amerie
Key lyric: "You did this one thing and I was so with it"

But the question remains: What was that one thing that Amerie's man did to get her 'tripping'? We don't know for sure, but we think he's cooked her a Shepherd's pie.

Anyway, this song sits deservedly atop our list. Proof that, if you have a magnificent sample, you can't go wrong by looping it for four minutes and getting some woman in hotpants to scream over the top of it.

2) Biology - Girls Aloud
Key lyric: "The way that we walk. The way that we talk"

On the other hand, if you have five fantastic choruses you should stitch them all together in a ProTools orgy and let them fight it out to see who's best.

As is the Girls Aloud tradition, this is an unbelievably brave single for a band who should be producing production-line pop. The main hook doesn't arrive until after the 2 minute mark, and it manages to squeeze four distinct musical genres into its tiny Top Shop boob-tube. True, it's not Xenomania's best work, but it is the highlight of the third Girls Aloud album without a shadow of a doubt.

3) Ooh La La - Goldfrapp
Key lyric: "Switch me on. Turn me up."

A.K.A. The one that made everyone go: "Oh, Goldfrapp? They're quite good, really".

Like the band's previous single, Strict Machine, we have the vague idea this could be about a vibrator. Or a transistor radio. It's so easy to get those two mixed up.

4) Number 1 - Goldfrapp
Key lyric: "I'm like a dog to get you"

If this hadn't come out a couple of weeks after Ooh La La, we suspect the final positions of these two songs would have been reversed. Nevertheless, this is a fantastically moody synth ballad, with even more pervy lyrics. Alison wants it 'up and on', apparently.

5) Feel Good Inc - Gorillaz
Key lyric: "Watch me as I navigate, a-ha ha ha haaaa"

Although it's embarrassing to listen to Damon Albarn's attempt to rap at the beginning of this track (he actually uses the word 'wack'), De La Soul soon take command and rip the song to shreds. But in a good way.

This single has been recognised by the national institute of old-people's metaphors as "a real foot tapper". Oh, and apparently the band are all cartoons. How post-modern.

6) Every Day I Love You Less And Less - Kaiser Chiefs
Key lyric: "I can't believe once you and me did sex"

Did you know that, by law, all Kaiser Chiefs songs have a bit where they go "woahhhhh" just before the last chorus? This one is no exception, which only goes to show how canny Kaiser Chiefs are: Building up to a crescendo is a lost art in pop, and they are one of the few bands who've got the musical nous to realise the importance of a big climax (missus). Aside from that, listen carefully to the drumming in this track - there's a lot of very clever hi-hat work going on there, which punctuates the jerking guitar lines. Top marks from the Royal Academy of Music.

7) Cool - Gwen Stefani
Key lyric: "Circles and triangles, and now we're hanging out with your new girlfriend"

I literally have no idea why this is in the top ten. Is that lyric a playstation reference?

She's up the duff now, apparently.

8) My Heartbeat - Annie
Key lyric: "Feel my heartbeat drumming to the beat like a symphony"

Annie's genius is making sugary strands of pop confectionery that are just the right side of sickly sweet. This song's paper-thin melody would be vomitous in the hands of Britney or Kylie. Annie, however, locks it to a thumping drum loop that transforms the song into a wondrous dancefloor stomper. But only if you live in Europe. Apparently the UK would rather listen to McFly. Fuckers.

9) I Need Some Fine Wine and You, You Need To Be Nicer - The Cardigans
Key lyric: "Baby you're foul in clear conditions, but you're handsome in the fog"

Why is it that Swedes can write better English lyrics than any British pop band? Quite aside from the fantastic title, this song has a proper narrative about a relationship killed by drinking and indifference. It also has a metaphor about dogs.

Forget Dido and James Blunt (and believe us we will... as soon as radio stops playing that fucking song every ten minutes), this is proper mature pop from some of the most interesting and creative musicians in the business.

10) Do You Want To? - Franz Ferdinand
Key lyric: "Doo doo, doo da-doo da-doo do"

Another one of those songs that's either too inventive for it's own good, or three different ideas badly stuck together with a tempo change and some reverb. Never mind because, either way, this is utterly superb spiky guitar pop.

Franz Ferdinand are grittier and tighter than they were this time last year, but they can still toss in an homage to Kylie and a naughty blow-job reference. Thank heavens for that.

So that's our top ten singles of 2005. The top ten albums will be published next week... just in case Santa delivers any real stonkers on Christmas Day.

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