Technically I never voted in this countdown. I did however, create a list which showed the order I would have ranked them if it was left to me. A list that I will only refer if one thing happens, which is if there is a tie. Then I will refer to my list and the song that is higher will be given an extra point. Three of todays songs (84, 83 and 82) all got the same points. In my list there were 76 places between the song at 84 and the song at 82. Just saying.
85. Grace – Supergrass (2002, Parlophone Records, Taken from ‘Life On Other Planets’)
On reflection Musical Jury Member 3 might have been right. “WHY!” he shouted at me in an email “have you not gone for ‘Alright’ by Supergrass it’s a far better song than “Grace”, I’m not voting for it out of sheer annoyance!” The answer, is because, I hate ‘Alright’ with its plinky plonky piano and its cheeky chappy chirpy geezer lyrics. ‘Grace’ is a much better song and it’s inspired by a children’s money box instantly making it more likeable than nearly everything Supergrass have recorded. Although I agree ‘Alright’ would have definitely got more points.
84. Overcome – Tricky (1995, 4th & Broadway Records, Taken from ‘Maxinquaye’)
‘Overcome’ is of course a cover version, of sorts. More a remake of a track (‘Karmacoma’) that Tricky recorded with Massive Attack on their ‘Protection’ album. Tricky turns what was originally a stoned sounding walk in the park into some sort of paranoid hazy dream of a song. He even replaced the gruffness of the Massive Attack version and replaces it with the vocals of Martina Topley Bird and it’s effect is devastating.
83. Olympians – Fuck Buttons (2009, ATP Recordings, Taken from ‘Tarot Sport’)
It might be lazy but this only appeared on the blog a few days ago when it was featured as part of the ‘Nearly Perfect’ Series so I’m just going to direct you back to that review if no one minds, I mean it’s a very good review and should almost certainly be read twice.
82. History – The Verve (1995, Hut Records, Taken from ‘A Northern Soul’)
‘History’ is brilliant, an epic string laden twist on a conventional ballad. It set the scene as far as The Verve were concerned for everything that followed it – huge songs weighed down with strings, soaring vocals with more than just a hint of bitterness. It was, it was rumoured to be about Ashcrofts split with his girlfriend at the time, although he denies this, probably because around the time this was recorded, he was more probably than not carrying on with Jason Pierce’s girlfriend. Might just add an ‘allegedly’ there.
81. Cornerstone – Arctic Monkeys (2009, Domino Records, Taken from ‘Humbug’)
Here are two relatively rare facts about ‘Cornerstone’ – you may of course already know these, apologies if you do. Anyway, the vinyl release of ‘Cornerstone’ was only made available to buy in branches of Oxfam. Which is a brilliant thing to do but it did rather limit the success of the record, as it peaked at number 94. The B Side ‘Sketchead’ actually sold more copies on download than ‘Cornerstone’ and rose on its own to Number 80 in the charts. This makes it one of the few singles in chart history where the B side has performed better than the A side. I know, I bet you are even gladder that you woke up this morning.