Tuesday, 11 December 2007

In this era of global warming and environmental consciousness, where even people watering their gardens with ‘grey’ water get bricks thrown at them by concerned citizens does nobody say anything about Christmas lights. The amount of energy being spewed out to power the thousands of suburban displays must be obscene. And for what? At least if you’re wasting electricity and helping contribute to sticking the final knife in planet earth you may as well be doing something of importance. Like writing this post perhaps? Will certainly contribute more to society than some riggy display featuring Santa’s considerable sack (sure 0.000000000001% isn’t much of an impact, but it’s better than nothing). At least for the brown coal required to make this post you can come back and read it in six months, or god forbid write back and tell me to stick the entire concept.

Take note, this is probably the first and last environmentally friendly post you’re ever likely to see on TSP.

P.S - Christmas? Bah.

Friday, 7 December 2007

Glittering Prize - TSP's Top 100 of 2007

Welcome to the most glittering prize in world music - the TSP David Lee Roth Award for Song of the Year, featuring the largest countdown yet.

As ever, the rules.

* Only two songs per artist. Sorry New Young Pony Club, Fantastic Playroom may be the album of the year but that doesn’t mean squat in this countdown.
* Re-releases are acceptable as long as they were released again on album or single this year and I’d never heard them before. Complete ignorance of the Klaxons output from last year sees them score a guernsey here.
* No covers. Although you could do worse than checking out Staring At The Rude Bois by Gallows and Lethal Bizzle.

For those of you who have come in late, the top 5’s from recent years are as follows;

2005

1. Kaiser Chiefs - I Predict A Riot
2. Maximo Park - Apply Some Pressure
3. Goldfrapp - Ooh La La
4. The Killers - Somebody Told Me
5. Bloc Party - Helicopter

2006

1. The Young Knives - Here Comes The Rumor Mill
2. Giant Drag - This Isn’t It
3. Silvia Night - Congratulations
4. Lily Allen - LDN
5. Joey Negro - Make A Move On Me

And, err, that’s it. On with this year’s spectacular - top 30’s are tremendously boring, so this year the countdown has been extended to the full 100. This means that the ‘essential’ tracks stop around number ??, but the rest are definately worth a listen anyway.

100. Lost Penguin - Pleasurewood Kills

99. Bondo De Role - Office Boy

98. The Cold War Kids - Hospital Bed

97. Kinski - Passwords and Alcohol

96. Those Dancing Days - Those Dancing Days

95. Glasvegas - Daddy’s Gone
Yes they are singing in English. Cue the thickest accents since Trainspotting. Sadly you don’t get subtitles on a song.

94. Passions - Emergency

93. Remi Nicole - Lights Out

92. Bloc Party - Flux
Where Kele and friends listen to too many Klaxons records and decide to go ‘new rave’

91. The Courteneers - Acrylic

90. Black Francis - Captain Pasty

89. Cut Off Your Hands - Still Fond
Still below Dave Dobbyn and Herbs in the all-time top 100 New Zealand artists of all time.

88. Kate Nash - Foundations
All the available evidence says I should hate this, but I sort of like it. Fool me.

87. The White Stripes - You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told)

86. Good Books - Passchendaele
World War I meets pop music. At last?

85. The Heavy - Colleen
Sleazy 60’s blaxploitation music. Back at last.

84. Dizzee Rascal - Pussyole (Oldskool)

83. The Sounds - Tony the Beat

82. The Hives - Tick Tick Boom

81. Joe Lean and the Jing Jang Jong - Lonely Buoy
The skinniest man in music, fronting the worst named group in the world. Still ready to be a massive star by this time next year.

80. Vampire Weekend - Mansard Roof

79. Santogold - L.E.S Artistes
Touted as a massive ’summer’ hit. You heard it here first. Though I heard it from somebody else so if you never hear about it again it’s not my fault.

78. Beck - Timebomb

77. Black Kids - I Wanna Be Your Limousine

76. Future Of The Left - Plague Of Onces

75. The Satin Peaches - Well, Well, Well, Well

74. Koldun - Work Your Magic
Belarus’ contribution to Eurovision 2007. Quality cheese pop.

73. Hadouken! - Superstar

72. Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip - Thou Shalt Always Kill
Massive novelty track that was funny the first time you heard it, and irritating the second.

71. Candie Payne - I Wish I Could Have Loved You More

70. Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
Catchy for five minutes, annoying after five listens.

69. Malajube - Montreal -40c
It’s in French, but don’t let that turn you off.

68. The Pigeon Detectives - Romantic Type
Twattish ‘lad rock’ band in decent song shock horror.

67. Les Savy Fav - Raging In The Plague Age

66. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Down Boy
Who am I to ignore orders from Karen O? And how much does the guitarist look like the guy who shot everyone in that mall the other day?

65. The Killers - Tranquilize
B. Flowers, special guest Lou Reed and whoever else is in that band in “Filler track tacked on to ill-advised ‘Best Of’ CD is actually quite good” shock horror. The children’s choir at the end may as well have been chanting “WE WANT TO BE U2!” for all the stadium rock ambition that this track screams out.

64. Everytime I Die - We’re Wolf
Shouty.

63. Anonymous - Salvem Mon
The Andorran entry in the Eurovision Song Contest. No wait, come back. It’s actually the sort of quite decent, bouncy, pop punk that people would whack off over if it had been done by Avril Lavigne and produced by somebody famous. Criminally not voted through to the ‘Balkan Heavy’ competition final.

62. Babyshambles - Carry On Up The Morning
Pete Doherty Esq. Is he on heroin or not? One way or the other it’s becoming fairly obvious that Babyshambles are disconcertingly similar to The Libertines in that they have a handful of good songs amongst a massive sea of slop. The only difference is that the ‘good’ Libertines songs were absolute certified gold corkers, while the ’shambles variety are merely ’serviceable’.

61. 1990’s - Cult Status
One of the few songs ever to suggest that they are shagging the listeners wife.

60. The Wombats - Let’s Dance To Joy Division

59. The Courteneers - Cavorting
For the record “cavorting” is one of the greatest words ever invented.

58. We Start Fires - Hot Metal

57. Jakobinarina - His Lyrics Are Disasterous
Icelandic. This is the most multicultural countdown ever.

56. Grafton Primary - Relativity
An Australian song. That’s the most ludicrous thing yet. Usually I don’t hear anything local that I like until I dissect the Triple J Hottest 100 countdown when they replay the videos on Rage. This is a potentially great song ruined by one line in the chorus that is so unbelievably bad that it almost derails the whole thing.

55. My Chemical Romance - I Don’t Love You
Yes, it’s an emo power ballad. Fuck you.

54. Does It Offend You Yeah - Let’s Make Out

53. Pharoahe Monch - Desire

52. Calvin Harris - The Girls
The chorus is great, the verses are moderately tripe. But the great definately outweighs the slop.

51. The Wombats - Moving To New York

50. The Gossip - Jealous Girls

49. Jamie T - Sheila

48. The View - Same Jeans
aka: The only half decent song on the “video jukebox” thing that I had on my flight to Thailand. Queue watching it ten times in eight hours.

47. Charlotte Gainsbourg - The Songs We Sing
Notable for the bit where she scares a small child.

46. Rufus Wainwright - Rules and Regulations

45. My Chemical Romance - Mama

44. CSS - Alala

43. Reverend And The Makers - Heavyweight Champion Of the World
Enjoyment of song ruined firstly by the revelation that the Rev is a complete wank, and secondly by every other song on the accompanying album being worthy of gouging your eyes out to.

42. Swizz Beatz - It’s Me Bitches
Don’t be decieved, not Swiss. ‘Clean’ version changes the title to ‘Snitches’. Pissweak.

41. The Pigeon Detectives - I Found Out

40. Kubichek - Stutter

39. Enter Shikari - Ok, Time For Plan B

38. Maximo Park - Our Velocity
Former #2 place getters in this list. Desperately unlikely to ever make anything as good as Apply Some Pressure again.

37. The Fratellis - Flathead

36. The White Stripes - Icky Thump

35. The Lovemakers - Whine & Dine
I’m not entirely convinced this isn’t either a cover or based on something else, because it seems absurdly familar to something from the mid 1990’s.

34. The Hold Steady - Stuck Between Stations

33. Guts - And The Living Is Easy (Dynamics Remix)
One of the rare times when a remix is better than the original.

32. Just Jack - Starz In Their Eyes
Potential top ten smackdown of TV talent shows, ruined by a farcical spoken word rap part at the end. Jennifer Lopez excelled at those and look where she is now. OUT.

31. Peeping Tom - Mojo

30. Black Francis - Angels Come To Comfort You
The man formerly known as Frank Black and “that bloke from the Pixies” returns with a concept album about a Dutch painter. That should equal disaster. This was pretty sweet though.

29. Dizzee Rascal - Sirens

28. Smashing Pumpkins - Doomsday Clock
I don’t recall anyone inviting the Pumpkins to come back, but this was a cracker. Better than anything they’d done since Bullet With Butterfly Wings.

27. Kanye West - Champion

26. Klaxons - Golden Skans
So I didn’t hear it last year… And it did get re-released so it’s in.

25. Republic Of Loose - All Mine
Filthy and Irish.

24. Calvin Harris - Acceptable In the 80’s
Fun TSP fact: I love 80’s house music. Therefore I loved this.

23 - The Young Knives - Terra Firma
The first single from the new album for last year’s #1 act. Probably the most underrated band in the world. Tour here you bastages.

22 - Happy Mondays - Jellybean

21 - Little Man Tate - Down On Marie
In which ecstasy fuelled 3-ways are given their long awaited chart airing.

20 - Joe Lean and the Jing Jang Jong - Lucio Starts Fires

If I was this thin I’d be famous too.

19 - MIA - Jimmy

Sri Lankan singer with Tamil Tiger connections goes Bollywood with spectacular results.

18 - Good Shoes - Morden

Despite the rather unflattering portrait of South London I still want to live there.

17 - Brother Ali - Watcha Got

White rap? GET OUT. No actually come back, it’s quite good.

16 - Arctic Monkeys - Brianstorm

15 - New Young Pony Club - Get Lucky

Finally released as a single when they realised that they couldn’t get away with putting ‘Ice Cream’ out for the 200th time this track would be all over commerical radio if the programmers listened to music rather than scouring focus groups and results and snorting cocaine off prostitutes.

14 - Klaxons - Gravity’s Rainbow

Two of them are currently on with members of bands that appear above them in the countdown. Girl power? Who knows.

13 - The Gossip - Standing In The Way Of Control

Shouty pop. You can’t argue against it.

12 - CSS - Music Is My Hot, Hot Sex

Sounds like it was made in somebody’s basement, yet is still epic. Apparently the bit in Portuguese at the end is quite filthy so feel free to translate if you’re fluent in that kind of stuff. Bonus points for having a singer called Lovefoxxx who is simulatenously weird looking and cute.

11 - Gallows - In The Belly Of A Shark

The long awaited arrival of shouty 21st century punk. You’ve got to respect a band that could dissolve at any moment so that the lead singer can go back to being a tattoo artist.

10 - Art Brut - Direct Hit

Novelty band, half-novelty song featuring a singer named after a supermarket. But, then again what’s wrong with being named after supermarkets?

9 - The Decemberists - O Valencia

Romeo and Juliet updated for the kids again - this time in song form. One of the videos of the year (ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the ‘Piano Wire Girls of Burnside’) and a fine song as well.

8 - The Twang - Either Way

The world’s biggest Oasis fans make the ballad that the Gallagher brothers never really married. Wonderwall? Fuck that for a joke, this is so superior that it’s almost depressing how many millions of dollars less that The Twang will make. Oasis still ahead overall, but it’s 1-0 Twang when it comes to love songs.

7 - Gallows - Abandon Ship

The shoutiest song ever to be top ten in one of these countdowns. Makes me want to jump around like a mad bastard.

6 - The Cribs - Men’s Needs

Ignore the video with the half naked woman prancing about (they’re being ‘ironic’, or something, kids), the awful haircuts spawned by the entire band or the fact that the singer is bonking Kate Nash and concentrate on the song instead. Lovely stuff. Rest of the album subject to the law of diminishing returns.

5 - Jack Penate - Spit At Stars

Everything else he’s done is total bollocks, but this is class. Bouncy, poppy and as catchy as fark. But is he gobbing at planets or celebrities? We may never know.

4 - Arctic Monkeys - Fluorescent Adolescent

Second album moderately inferior to first, but still high on corker value. Teetering on the brink of being the band of the 00’s. And they’re all about 13-years-old. Doesn’t that make you feel old? Over the side of the Westgate Bridge we all go.

3 - The Teenagers - Homecoming

Simultaneously filthy and sweet offerings from the same French hornbags who bought you a song about stalking Scarlett Johannsen. Features one of the great choruses of modern music but is about as likely to get played on radio anywhere as the spoken word version of Hitler’s Mein Kampf read by Ben Cousins. Liven up your family Christmas by whacking this on the turntable and seeing if Grandma can decipher it.

2 - New Young Pony Club - Ice Cream

The standout track from the album of the year and, for good measure, the music from the Intel ad. What more could you ask for? How about a song so catchy that it even makes me want to dance.

1 - The Hold Steady - Chips Ahoy!

The first song I loved this year, and a constant fixture in the playlist throughout. Features one of the greatest organ solos you’re ever likely to hear. An instant TSP classic.